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Fairbanks woman nearly severs intruder's hand in defense of home

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Posted: Sunday, February 13, 2011 4:35 am | Updated: 1:46 pm, Wed Dec 26, 2012.

FAIRBANKS — A Fairbanks woman nearly severed a man’s hand with a sword early Saturday morning as he was trying to break into her bedroom, according to Fairbanks police.

Police received a 911 call about 3:30 a.m. Saturday regarding a burglary in progress at a home in the Monroe Subdivison near Minnie Street. When officers got to the home, they found a trail of blood leading through house's kitchen and into its living room.

“We located a subject sitting on an exercise bike with his left hand barely hanging on and bleeding steadily from his injury,” Police Sgt. Kurt Lockwood said.

The man, who appeared to be in shock, was put into restraints, and officers immediately called EMTs, he said.

The man was taken to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital for treatment. His condition and if his hand was successfully reattached is unknown, and detectives were unable to conduct further interviews at the hospital, Lockwood said.

The woman was in her bedroom when the man started trying to get through her locked bedroom door, Lockwood said. As he was trying to get into the bedroom, the woman called a roommate who was also in the house and told the roommate to call 911. Officers were on the scene within minutes, Lockwood said.

The man reportedly entered the home through the garage and a side door connecting the garage to the house. He then reportedly descended into the basement, where the woman's bedroom was. He was not invited nor let inside, Lockwood said.

The woman told officers she yelled several times for the man to get back and stop, but as he broke through her door, she swung the sword. Lockwood described the sword as approximately 2 feet long with a bamboo handle.

“As soon as she did that, he stopped trying to get in the door,” Lockwood said.

No names were released and no arrests were made, as the case is still under investigation, the sergeant said.

The woman did not seem to be targeted, and the break-in appeared to be random, Lockwood said.

“We’re possibly dealing with a suspect and injured person that might have limited mental capacity,” he said. “It sounds like she was defending herself.”

It is unknown if drugs or alcohol was involved, he said. The case is likely to go the district attorney’s office because of the suspect’s mental state, Lockwood said.

Contact Gary Black at 459-4537.

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