Siblings honored for helping police catch burglars

Sister called 911 during home invasion

Author: John Turchin, Crime Specialist, jturchin@local10.com
Published On: Jun 25 2012 06:47:51 PM EDT   Updated On: Jun 26 2012 10:25:48 AM EDT
Teens honored
POMPANO BEACH, Fla. -

The Broward County Sheriff's Office honored a brother and sister who called 911 during a burglary at their Pompano Beach home, helping deputies catch three suspects.

"You can't help but be impressed by her courage and her bravery -- and her calmness," said Lamberti.

Darren Stannis told Local 10's John Turchin what he was doing last Thursday when he realized someone was trying to break into their house.

"I was just sitting here playing my computer and then I hear somebody knocking at the door,” Darren, 10, said, referring to his bed.

Darren said he and his sister Alexis didn’t think much of it until they saw a man pointing at the window to his bedroom and begin removing the screen.

Alexis ran through the house, looking toward the backyard and noticed another person on the porch.

"I saw them. Then, I said, 'Darren, let's go, they're trying to break in.’ So, me and Darren ran into my room," said Alexis.

Alexis closed the bedroom door, locked it, and both she and Darren hid in the closet. She immediately pulled out her cell phone and called her mother. No answer.  

"I was trying to protect my brother,” Alexis recalled. “I would have sacrificed myself for him."

Alexis then dialed 911.

LISTEN: Alexis' 911 call

911 Operator: What is your emergency?

Alexis: Me and my brother are home alone, and these two guys are in our backyard trying to break in.

911 Operator: What's your name?

Alexis: Alexis.

911 Operator: Alexis, are they inside the house?

Alexis: I think so.

Alexis was right.

"One of them were wearing slides so you could hear the flip flop of them going around the house,” said Darren. “That's how we knew where they were going."

Alexis continued to answer the 911 operator’s questions until her voice began to crackle when she realized the burglars were pulling at her locked bedroom door. She then began to whisper.

Alexis: I'm really scared.

911 Operator: I understand. The police are on the way, okay, I'm going to stay right here on the phone with you. Alexis. until they get there, okay?

Alexis: Okay.

Minutes later, police arrived. The deputies surrounded the house, moved in, and arrested the three juveniles. When 911 Operator Kimberly Kelly was told by her deputies that the scene was safe, she asked her to tell Alexis to unlock the door for the deputies.

"I'm just very happy she is safe and that she and her brother were not harmed," Kelly said.