By KRISTY KEPLEY-STEWARD, WLOS
GREENSBORO, N.C. (CIRCA via WLOS) — A University of North Carolina at Greensboro student found a man in her clothes going through her closet inside her apartment.
According to ABC affiliate WSOC, it happened over the weekend at the Summit at the Edge Apartments.
“I’ve been having like pieces of clothes missing. Like shirts and pants,” said Maddie, a junior at the college who did not want to give her last name.
“He tries on my hat. He goes in the bathroom and looks in the mirror and then is like, ‘You’re really pretty; can I give you a hug?’"
She said items were disappearing and handprints were left behind on the bathroom wall. She and her roommate thought a ghost was in her apartment, and it wasn’t until Saturday that she uncovered the truth.
“I just hear rattling in my closet. It sounded like a raccoon in my closet,” Maddie said. “I’m like, ‘Who’s there?’ And somebody answers, ‘Me.’ He’s like, ‘Oh, my name is Drew.’ I open the door, and he’s in there, wearing all of my clothes. My socks. My shoes. And he has a book bag full of my clothes.”
Police said that man was 30-year-old Andrew Swofford.
Maddie called her boyfriend, and as she calmly waited for help, she talked to Swofford to keep him distracted.
“He tries on my hat. He goes in the bathroom and looks in the mirror and then is like, ‘You’re really pretty; can I give you a hug?’" she said. “But he never touched me.”
Swofford left when her boyfriend arrived. Police arrested Swofford at a nearby gas station. He was charged with misdemeanor breaking and entering.
The women in the apartment are trying to figure out how Swofford got inside. They said their doors are always locked, and they did not see any damage to them.
They also said it’s not the first time strange men have been inside their apartment.
“There were two guys in the living room,” Maddie said.
That was Dec. 19, and the women alerted the leasing office. An employee confirmed they had changed the locks at that time but did not file a police report.
Maddie and her roommate told WGHP they’ve had enough.
“Last night I did not feel safe. I slept with my roommate in her bed,” Maddie said. “I can’t stay here. My closet, it stinks. Every time I go in (my room), there’s a bad vibe. I’m just ready to leave.”
Burkely Communities, the property management company, released a statement Tuesday, saying it thinks Swofford entered through an unlocked window.
In part, the statement reads: "On initial inspection, there were no signs of forced entry. The apartment residents inferred from what they knew that the lock may have been tampered with in some way. Upon further inspection of the apartment in the residents’ presence, Burkely’s Director of Maintenance found a living room window unlocked, slightly open, and the screen damaged. Burkely reported this finding to the police, who responded that an unlocked window was the most likely way the perpetrator had entered the apartment."
Swofford was jailed in Guilford County under a $26,000 bond on 14 felony charges, including larceny and identity theft.
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