HEMET (CBSLA.com) — Teddy Roosevelt said “Speak softly but carry a big stick.”
That message isn’t lost on Karlee Meyer, a mother of four who lives in Hemet.
“My younger boys made me this for Christmas,” said Meyer, showing off a gift to KCAL9’s Crystal Cruz.
Meyer didn’t know that when her sons gave her the gift — a wooden stick with a large rock taped to it — she would need it just a few weeks later.
“I saw a man walking out of the garden, out to the street. So I followed him outside,” said Meyer.
She caught an image of the man on her security surveillance camera.
The video also showed the man had been sleeping in her garden — feet away from where her kids normally play.
“He didn’t know why I was mad about him being in my yard,” said Meyer.
The confrontation Meyer had with the intruder was caught on the security video.
She told the suspect to sit down and wait for police. Not only wasn’t he compliant, Meyer said, he he tried to take her stick away.
The man then tries getting into his car but Meyer wasn’t having any part of that and jumped into the car to turn it off.
“He said to me ‘Will you please show me mercy. I want to join the Marines,'” she said. “I told him, ‘Honey, the Marines don’t take boys who do stuff like this.'”
Meyer said the suspect was the third prowler in her yard this week alone. She said she’s tired of the looky-loos and the break-ins in her neighborhood.
Within minutes of the scuffle, officers showed up and arrested Martin Aguilera-Fonseca, 19. He’s been charged with trespassing and prowling.
“I want people to learn their lesson and to stop coming into people’s yards. The crime has got to stop in this town,” said Meyer.
She also has a warning for the next intruder. She has pepper spray and a Taser.
Meyer said Aguilera-Fonseca didn’t steal anything and suspects he was just sleeping off a hangover.