Puyallup Herald

Teen arrested following viral video footage of South Hill intruder

A 16-year-old was arrested on Tuesday after a South Hill-area mom caught him on tape breaking into her home.

She shared the footage on Facebook, where users identified him.

Jessica Stone noticed $100 in cash was missing from her purse May 15 and asked her kids if they had taken money.

“I didn’t really think it was my kids, but you always have to rule it out,” Stone said.

The mom of six didn’t think much of the stolen money until $30 disappeared again the next day. Stone also discovered that her lighter and cigarettes disappeared and the side gate was left ajar, and she pieced together that someone had broken in.

Stone used her daughter’s video camera to film the next few nights. The camera caught someone sneaking in on May 28. Video footage shows him walking from the kitchen back out the sliding-glass door to the backyard. Six dollars were missing from Stone’s purse.

She later called police.

The sliding-glass door was sometimes left open when the family was home because it was always in use, Stone said.

“It’s just sad that I now have this additional responsibility,” she said. “I’ve lived here for 12 years and never had any problems.”

The homeowner said she was in denial at first but later wanted to warn her neighbors of the break-ins. Stone shared the video on Pierce County Facebook groups, where it was seen more than 17,000 times. Facebook users identified the teen to Stone.

The Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office said charges are pending.

Josephine Peterson covers Pierce County and Puyallup for The News Tribune and The Puyallup Herald. She previously worked at The News Journal in Delaware as the crime reporter and interned at The Washington Post.