Young woman hides in closet, comes face to face with burglars - KPTV - FOX 12

Young woman hides in closet, comes face to face with burglars

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Jestahn Jackson, Tiffany Wicke (jail booking photos) Jestahn Jackson, Tiffany Wicke (jail booking photos)

Scary moments for a young Salem woman, who came face to face with burglars who broke into her Salem home Wednesday.

But this story has a happy ending. No one was hurt, and the burglars are behind bars in the Marion County Jail. 

“I texted both of my parents telling them I loved them just because you don’t know. I didn’t know what else to do,” says an emotional 18-year-old Jenson Clark.

It was the dramatic end to the longest 30 minutes of Clark’s life.

Having grown up out in the country, Jenson says her rural Salem home has always been like her sanctuary. Quiet, serene, and peaceful, until now.

“I could see a man walk up and knock on the front door. He got really aggressive about it, and started yelling. Just really weird—not something you would expect for someone just knocking on the door,” Clark recalls.

Home alone around 10 a.m. Wednesday, Clark did not answer those knocks at the front door. Instead she immediately sent a text message her mom.

“I said ‘someone is knocking, who is here?’ She said, ‘don't answer.’ I said, ‘it's not a delivery man,” Clark says of the text conversation with her mother,

Jenson says she watched as a man and a woman rummaged through the shed in their front yard, and then eventually made their way inside the house.

“Hearing the wooden floors creak made me know they were inside. I didn’t think I could get more scared than that,” says Clark.

She then hid in the closet, hoping they wouldn't check there.

“The only thing separating me from them was the blanket hanging up,” Clark tells us.

Knowing there was no cell service to call 911, only Wi-Fi to text her parents, Jenson’s mother, Gena Young called for help.

“My daughter is in the room with some burglars and they're gonna hurt her,” Young said in her call with dispatchers.

They didn't hurt her. But text by text, Jenson let her mom know, they did find her. 

“I said, ‘they're in this room, I love you mom.’ She said 'are you there? Hold on,’ and I said, ‘they found me,' about 10 seconds after they pulled the blanket off the top of my head," Clark says, as she recounts the intense moments as the burglars entered the room.

Though she was terrified, Clark made a bold move.

“They both turned and looked at me. I stood up and said ‘you guys need to get out of here immediately. If you guys leave right now I won’t do anything, but you need to get out right this instant,” Clark tells us. 

And that's exactly what they did.

Police say 37-year-old Jestahn Jackson and 38-year-old Tiffany Wicke turned around and left.

“Less than 60 seconds after they left, the police were here,” Clark recalls.

Deputies caught up with the duo down the road, and it didn't take long before they were both in handcuffs. 

Shaken by the whole experience, Clark says she hopes people can take away an important lesson in safety.

“I just hope people have a plan of action just in case,” Clark explains.

Jenson's mother tells Fox 12 she thinks they could have had a target on them, because their house is up for sale, and perhaps the burglars assumed no one was living there.

Jenson also pointed out that the female burglar had a manila envelope and a puppy in her arms when she first walked up to the door--perhaps part of the plan, in case someone was home.

Both burglars are due in court Thursday.

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