Messed with the wrong guy: Elderly Vietnam Vet holds home invasion suspect at gun point until police arrive


PARADISE TOWNSHIP, PA – A 72-year-old Vietnam War Veteran was the victim of a home invasion when a man came crashing into a window in his house in the Poconos.  The suspect in the case must have thought the elderly man was an easy target, but quickly found out he messed with the wrong man. 

The vet held the suspect at gunpoint until police could arrived on scene, roughly ten minutes later.

The homeowner and military veteran, Michael Snyder, was sitting in his chair in his living room enjoying the day, when he heard someone outside of his house before 5pm on October 18th.  Snyder went to the door and spoke to the man to see what he needed.

Snyder said that he could not make out much of what he was telling him, however, he said that he believed there were people that were out to kill him.  He said that it could have something to do with some kind of gang violence, according to 5 On Your Side

Snyder said:

“He didn’t make a lot of sense.  He said, ‘Would you please call the police?  Please call the police.  They’re going to kill me.’  So I said ‘OK.”

Snyder told the man, later identified as Kwesi Skerritt, to stand outside while he made the call to 911.  While on the phone with the 911 operator, trying to explain what was going on, he heard a loud crash inside of his house. 

He said:

“I called the state police, called 911, and I’m talking to them.  I’m in the garage, and I hear this crash in the house.”

That’s when Snyder alleges that Skerrit had entered his home by crashing through a window.  Snyder, who was not about to be robbed, produced his firearm and pointed it at Skerritt and ordered him not to move. 

Snyder said:

“I had the pistol cocked and ready, and he was standing there in the kitchen.”

Thankfully, Skerrit kept calm and did not attack Snyder or do anything else that would have instigated a shooting.  Snyder was able to keep cool, calm and in control of the situation until police could arrive to take the man into custody. 

Snyder said that he was able to maintain his composure because of his experience while being deployed in Vietnam.  He also expressed how happy he was that he was not forced to shoot Skerrit. 

He stated:

“When I come under fire, how will I react?  Will it scare me to death?  Will I be able to react?  But yes, experience helps…I was so happy yesterday [that] I didn’t have to pull the trigger.  I do not want to do that.”

The police did not seem to buy the story that Skerrit was in fear for his life and fleeing someone who wanted to kill him. 

It also does not appear likely that they believed that Skerrit, who police did state they believed was under the influence of some type of drug, had entered the house out of some type of paranoia.  If the police had believed that this was, in fact, what happened, they would have gone another route instead of arresting him.

After police conducted their investigation into the incident, they took Skerritt into custody for criminal trespassing, simple assault, and criminal mischief.  Skerritt was taken to the Monroe County Correctional Facility and assigned a bond of $100,000.

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Man trying to break into home finds grandma armed with a shotgun – holds him until police arrive

October 20, 2020

SPANAWAY, WA – A 78-year-old woman heard her dog barking late at night on September 20th, and went to investigate, shotgun in hand.  When she did, she found a man breaking into her home and she held him until police arrived.

The incident happened in Spanaway, Washington, earlier this month.  The woman, identified only as Sandy, heard her dog Booboo barking and knew something was not right. 

Sandy went to investigate what was happening and opened her door to find a man standing right in front of her. 

Sandy said:

“I opened my door, and standing right 2, 3 feet in front of me was a man.  We looked at each other for a few seconds, and he turned and started to leave.  And I said, ‘Oh no, you don’t.  You stay right there!

“I reached over and got my shotgun.  And I cocked it, and I told him to stay right there.  Told him to go sit on the steps.  I followed him out, and I just stood here with the shotgun waiting for the police to come.”

This tough lady held the man at gunpoint until police arrived.  Sandy said that she did so because she knew that there had been a spike in crime in her neighborhood recently.  Not knowing if this man was responsible or not, she was not going to let him leave without talking with the police.

Sandy mentioned that she had first gotten the shotgun many years ago to protect her family as she was a single mother.  Sandy said she was nervous when she first produced the gun, but later felt calm. 

She said:

“But then I was totally calm, really and truly.  I thought, ‘This is amazing!’ I said, ‘You know, I’ve got grandchildren your age!’

“After he was so meek and mild and sat down like I told him to do?  It was empowering.  I felt like at least I was in charge.  I wasn’t afraid.”

While waiting for the police she decided to interrogate the would-be burglar.  Although she did not reveal specifics of what they talked about, she hopes the incident has changed him.

The Pierce County Sheriff’s Office responded and met with the man.  According to deputies, when asked by them what he was doing he said:

“He was looking for his wife and talked how God had sent him.”

It is unknown if the man was suffering from some type of mental illness.  However, his thought of God sending him may be quite sane.  After all, he encountered a tough lady who chose not to shoot him, which may well have been God’s way of showing him the path he was on, and hopefully leading him to a new one.

Deputies were able to take the man into custody for the attempted break-in and praised Sandy for her quick actions that may well have saved her life.  When speaking of the incident, Sandy just said that she was thankful no one, including the man, was harmed.

Sandy, in her kindness after an event like that, decided that she would not pursue charges against the man.  As a result, deputies released him after they determined that he did not seem to be under the influence of anything nor a danger to himself. 

We can all hope that this man truly saw the light and stops his criminal actions.  As for Sandy, Law Enforcement Today is proud of her standing up for her rights and refusing to be a victim. 


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