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Homeowner wins machete-versus-pipe fight against burglar

Man attempts break-in of Fort Lauderdale home, met with machete

Roderick Thomas was met with a homeowner armed with a machete in a failed burglary attempt of Fort Lauderdale home.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A Fort Lauderdale resident thwarted a home invasion attempt with a machete and pinned the alleged burglar in his backyard until officers arrived, Fort Lauderdale police officers said.

In the early-morning hours of Oct. 30, a homeowner heard someone trying to pry open a back door of their home at 724 West Evanston Circle.

According to investigators, the homeowner grabbed his machete inside the home as Roderick Thomas, 26, was trying to pry open the door with a copper pipe.

Thomas noticed surveillance cameras and paused to turn the cameras to face downward before continuing to try to pry the door open.

The homeowner eventually opened the back door and confronted Thomas.

According to investigators, Thomas took an initial swing at the homeowner with the copper pipe, striking one of the homeowner's thumbs.

In defense, the homeowner then swung back and struck Thomas several times with the machete, causing multiple cuts to Thomas' arms and hands, investigators said.

The homeowner proceeded to pin Thomas in the backyard until Fort Lauderdale police officers arrived.

Broward County Fire-Rescue arrived at the scene a short time later and transported the "badly injured" Thomas to Broward Health Medical Center. Thomas admitted to the attempted break-in to arresting officers saying he believed the home was unoccupied, investigators said.

Thomas, heavily bandaged on his arm, appeared in Broward County court Wednesday where he faces a burglary with assault or battery charge.

Video surveillance captured Thomas' initial attempt to break into the residence; however, it did not capture the ensuing melee, an arrest report noted.