KANEOHE, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Saturday night was one Tracy Larrua won't forget. Not for the dinner she enjoyed with her mother, but for the events that unfolded afterwards.
"I was putting the key in the door, I heard someone running, footsteps on the grass in my yard, and I thought 'that was odd'" she recalled.
Larrua took note of those footsteps, but when she went to her bedroom she realized what was going on.
Many of her belongings were scattered on the floor, and several drawers were open.
"The next thing I thought was we've been robbed. Then the next thing I thought was I think somebody is still in the house" she said.
Not only in her house, but in the same room---hiding in her closet. Relying on advice given long ago by friends in law enforcement, Tracy pretended she didn't notice anything. She calmly left her bedroom, and called police from the family room.
"I got on the phone with the police, I was turning, and I was like 'why is our bamboo curtain blowing in the wind?'"
That's how the thief got in--through the sliding glass door. The crook was still hiding in the closet when police arrived on the scene. An officer walked through the house, then returned to the living room to tell Tracy and her mom to go to the neighbor's house. That's when the burglar took off.
"Whoever it was, ran out our back room where there's a sliding glass door for emergencies. So he opened that, ran over the fence of our neighbors...and that person took off down the hill" said Larrua.
Tracy was admittedly shaken by the episode. However, despite having some valuables taken, she refuses to be a victim.
"You can't live in fear, and although that's your initial reaction and that's how we feel. You can't live like that".
In the aftermath of the break-in, Tracy went to her neighbors to tell them what happened. She says it's made them stronger as a community. In the meantime, she's getting a dog and a security system for her home. The suspects remain on the loose.