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Man chases burglar from mother-in-law’s home, beats him with bat, California cops say

If you witness a crime, here’s what to do

Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity.
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Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity.

A burglar in Redding, California, got a beating early Wednesday morning after breaking into a 66-year-old woman’s home, local authorities said.

The woman said the intruder entered her home through an unlocked front door around 3 a.m., and “was acting strangely and refused to leave” — so she ran upstairs in fear to wake up her son-in-law, according to a news release from the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office.

After she told her 50-year-old son-in-law about the intruder, the son-in-law picked up a flashlight and an ax and headed down the stairs to confront the burglar in the living room, deputies said. That’s when the burglar, identified by the Sheriff’s Office as Derrick James Jones, 35, ran out of the home through the back door, deputies said. From there he headed across the street.

The son-in-law pursued Jones out of the house — but he dropped the ax and picked up a baseball bat instead, according to deputies.

Meanwhile, the mother-in-law dialed 911 to report the unknown man who had broken in.

Outside, the son-in-law tracked down Jones as he tried to burglarize a neighbor’s RV trailer, the Sheriff’s Office said. He told Jones deputies were on their way.

“Jones had a shovel in his hands, which he dropped and instead picked up a pick axe, lying on the ground nearby,” Shasta County deputies said in a news release. “Jones displayed the pick axe in an aggressive manner ... and then attempted to run away.”

At that point, the son-in-law “defended himself against Jones, striking him with the baseball bat multiple times, causing Jones to drop the pick axe and to stop running,” deputies said.

Jones was detained until deputies came and arrested him, the Sheriff’s Office said.

All the commotion woke up “numerous neighbors,” deputies said.

Medical staff treated Jones’ injuries at the scene, according to authorities, and then he was taken to Shasta Regional Medical Center for more treatment.

He has now been booked at the Shasta County Jail on first-degree burglary charges, deputies said.

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