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Venice guests use wrestling hold to detain burglar

VernonA suspected burglar at a Venice home was arrested early Monday after he was confronted by guests who disarmed him and took his identification before officers caught him hiding under a pile of clothes at a nearby house.

The Maine resident scaled a wall, climbed onto a roof and pulled off some "acrobatic moves" to enter a home in the 800 block of Vernon Avenue about 2:30 a.m. Monday, said Officer Jeff Bert of the Los Angeles Police Department.

The suspect took a laptop but was unable to make a quick getaway because of double locks on the doors, Bert said.

At least two guests who were in the courtyard noticed the stranger and detained him by placing him in a full nelson wrestling hold.

"These people were not going to be victimized," Bert said.

The man tried to slash the guests with a knife but was eventually disarmed.

Before letting him go, the guests took his wallet so they could identify him to police, Bert said.

He was found an hour later hiding under a pile of clothes in the closet of a home three blocks away.

The LAPD is investigating whether the suspect, who has a criminal record in Connecticut and Rhode Island, received help in the burglary.


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-- Andrew Blankstein

Image: Map shows location of where a man allegedly broke into a home in Venice. Source: Google Maps

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