KEIZER, Ore (KPTV) - The woman called police just before 5 p.m. Monday. She said her husband was physically restraining the suspect, later identified as Francis Lucero, 29, of La Center, WA, who was trying to run away.
“He yelled, ‘Whoever’s in here you better come out!’” said Susie Kopaska. “He had to yell four times. The man finally came out, wrapping a towel around him.”
Police arrived at the scene on Appleblossom Avenue North within two minutes of the 911 call and found Lucero wearing only a towel around his waist, as the homeowner continued restraining him.
Lucero was taken into custody after a brief struggle with officers.
Police said Lucero claimed the couple had allowed him to camp in their backyard, so he thought it was OK to enter the home.
Police found a tent set up in the fenced backyard of the home. Kopaska said her son set the tent up to dry out after a camping trip, and Lucero spent Sunday night sleeping in it.
“People, if they’ve got tents in their backyards, check them periodically,” she said. “You never know. You could have an overnight guest you don’t know about.”
The homeowners said they did not know Lucero and had never seen him before. Police said he went into the house through an unlocked rear door.
Lucero was taken to the Marion County Jail on the charge of burglary. He also had an arrest warrant out of Multnomah County on drug charges.
Lucero was arraigned in a Marion County court Tuesday, and is behind bars on $40,000 bail. He is due back in court July 12.