An Odessa woman used a gun to turn the tables on two armed burglars after the 21-year-old men reportedly snuck into her home early Friday morning and began rifling through her things.
Edgar Madrid Olmos, 305 Bernice Ave., and Jeffery Lucas Armendariz, 3829 Bowie Ave., were being held in Friday the Ector County Detention Center awaiting bond. Each was charged with one count of first-degree burglary.
According to jail listings, Olmos also had a parole violation warrant on a misdemeanor conviction, Armendariz had additional misdemeanor warrants.
The 24-year-old Hispanic woman, who declined to provide her name out of concern of retaliation, but lives in the 1400 block of East Everglade Avenue, said she was in bed with her 11-month-old daughter when she first heard noises in the house around 6 a.m.
Since her husband had gotten up earlier to drive to Gardendale, and had been rummaging around, she said she initially thought he was making the noises.
“I said ‘what are you looking for,’ ” the woman said.
However, her husband, who also declined to provide his name, had already left.
“I was upset with myself,” her husband said, since there was such a short window of time between his departure and the burglary.
Odessa police Cpl. Sherrie Carruth said the men had already armed themselves with knives from the kitchen.
The woman said one of the men went into her bedroom but it was dark and she wasn’t fully awake, so she still thought it was her husband, and asked again what he was looking for.
“When I looked at the shadows, I saw his elbow,” the woman said, and said that was the moment she recognized it was someone else
The man was crouched behind the foot of her bed and couldn’t see her, so the woman said she crawled over her daughter and retrieved the gun from under the mattress.
After seeing that she had a gun, the woman said he told her: “Do it (expletive), and I’ll (expletive) kill you.”
But instead of scaring her, the woman said she became angry, cocked the gun and pulled the trigger.
The gun didn’t fire but the men ran away. The woman said she chased them through the house and into the yard, continuing to pull the trigger to no avail.
In the yard one of the men tripped, and the woman said she hit him repeatedly in the back of the head with the gun.
“I hit him hard. I’ve been in boxing,” the woman said.
He turned while she was hitting him and the woman said she saw his face.
“I thought ‘Look at him, look at him,’ ” the woman said, so that she could identify him later.
After the first man cut her arm, the second pushed her, and then both men ran away down a nearby alley, the woman said.
“She calls me, hysterical,” her husband recalled. He advised her to contact the police and then began driving back from Gardendale.
Odessa PD officers responded to a burglary in progress call at approximately 6:36 a.m.
The woman said she was pleased with the response from police, and added with a laugh that when the police officer arrived he said, “So you’re the one who’s beating up the burglars.”
Within 20 minutes, Odessa Cpl. Clayton Johnson and officer David Muniz found Olmos and Armendariz about five blocks from the home. The woman then identified them as the two men in her home, and they were arrested accordingly.
While the incident destroyed her sense of security, both the woman and her husband said she did what was necessary to protect herself and her daughter.
“She can take care of herself,” her husband said.