Intruder Breaks Into Ohio Teacher's Home While She Was On Zoom With Student
Special education teacher Amanda Zupancic was on a Zoom call with a student when she heard glass shattering downstairs and jokingly said "I think someone is breaking into my house".
A harrowing ordeal for an Ohio special education teacher fortunately ended with no one hurt and a formerly convicted felon back in jail.
According to WEWS Amanda Zupancic was in her upstairs home office conducting a session with one of her students and the student's parent when she heard glass shattering downstairs.
“I heard a glass shattering crash downstairs. I was like, 'hold on, I think someone is breaking into my house, just joking.' I didn’t think anyone would be breaking into my house in the middle of the day,” said Zupancic.
Unfortunately it was not not a joke, but an intruder who she saw pass through her 1-year-old's baby gate (after struggling with it), knife in hand, walking upstairs. At this point Zupancic recounts "he started threatening me, yelling at me, calling me names. He grabbed me upstairs into my bedroom."
Zupancic told Good Morning America that she was forced to the ground of her bedroom while the robber went through her things, taking jewelry including her wedding rings.
Meanwhile, the parent of the student on the still active Zoom call heard the commotion from the next room over, and called 911. According to the call, the parent told the Lake County dispatcher "The teacher that teaches my son, somebody broke into her house we saw it on the Zoom." The parent told WEWS “I guess she (the dispatcher) heard the man say, ‘Get on the floor. I’m going to cut your f-ing throat.’"
After going through the bedroom the intruder asked for Zupancic's keys and wallet. While leading him downstairs, rather than retrieving and handing over the requested items she went to another baby gate and released her German Shepherd and Great Dane-Boxer mix. As one of the dogs went after the robber, Zupanic grabbed a pair of scissors and reportedly chased him out of the house while screaming for neighbors to call the police. A local contractor working on a neighboring house reportedly tackled the robber, however there are conflicting accounts of this happening. Either way transit police who happened to be in the vicinity were able to detain and arrest the alleged suspect, identified as Charles Derosett.
Derosset, who according to WEWS had previously served time for aggravated robbery, is now charged with aggravated robbery and felonious assault, among other charges.
As for Zupancic, she is grateful for all of those who came to her aid, including the parent on the Zoom call, saying “I’m lucky that there’s enough loving people in the world to figure this all out.”