When a thief climbed a fire escape and sneaked into a Brooklyn, New York, apartment through an unlocked window Wednesday, the woman who lived there caught him in action and fought back.
Tiffany Chang was watching TV with her roommate in her Lorimer Street apartment in Williamsburg Wednesday afternoon when she walked into her bedroom and caught the burglar red-handed.
"I saw this man halfway out my fire escape with my laptop in his hands," Chang recounted. "I said, 'Are you kidding me?' He smiles and he said, 'Yeah.'"
She decided to fight back.
"I remember saying something like, 'No' or 'You're not going to do this,' and I ran forward and grabbed the laptop," she said.
They wrestled for the computer, and Chang won. The fight, though, left her with some bumps and bruises, and the burglar was still able to get away with her cellphone and some heirloom jewelry.
Chang acknowledged the burglar could have been armed and dangerous but it was personal for her -- she said "a lot of indignation" drove her to confront the thief.
"I've been robbed a few times before," she said, adding, "I feel great about doing this. It's been empowering in a lot of ways."
Asked if she would do it again if she were faced with another burglar, Chang said, "I hope so. It's my stuff and I wouldn't want to draw a weapon or anything, but if I can protect my own stuff, with my own body, I'm happy to do it."
Chang said she actually sympathizes with the thief and doesn't think he's a bad person. But she just wants her stuff back.