Newton family makes change after stranger walks into home in middle of night

NEWTON, Kan. Lock your doors. It's a simple message from Newton family after they say a stranger walked into their home uninvited in the middle of the night.

Until this incident, the family says they've never felt like they had a reason to lock their doors.

The quiet Newton street is the last place Chris Odle says he expected an intruder to walk into his home.

"It's once you lay back down in bed and realize what just happened is when it really hits you that your kids' lives were in danger, you wife's life was in danger and so was yours," Odle says.

At about 3 a.m. Monday, Odle says his wife woke up after she heard boxes fall, then footsteps and the door slamming against the wall.

"By the time I walked out, they were gone, like gone gone," Odle says. "They weren't around the block. I walked around the block and couldn't see anybody."

Odle's four children were sleeping in the house at the time the stranger walked in. He says the front door being unlocked is something he plans to immediately change.

"It's not going to happen to you,' is your thought. 'You're in a good community where people watch for each other,'" Odle says.

Eyewitness News Personal Protection Expert Joe Schillaci says that a false sense of security can be dangerous.

"They're opportunists. So if you leave a door open, you leave a car unlocked, they don't want to get caught," Schillaci says. 'They want the easiest way in and the easiest way out."

He says if you wake up to an intruder in you home, do not confront that person.

"If there's an escape route,, get it," Schillaci says. "If there's not an esape route, get into a safe room that you can lock. Try to bring your cell phone with you. Try to stay as calm as you can and call 911. Let 911 know what's going on."

Besides locking doors to protect your home, Schillaci says homeowners should leave a front light on to ward off burglars, but most importantly, get to know their neighbors. He recommends neighbors exchange phone numbers so they can call one another if they see anything suspicious.