News / Utah / 

Ogden Mayor, Awakened by Burglar, Puts Man in Headlock

Ogden Mayor, Awakened by Burglar, Puts Man in Headlock



Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

OGDEN, Utah (AP) -- Don't mess with the mayor. Mayor Matthew Godfrey tackled a man who tried to steal a bicycle from his shed -- then discovered the would-be thief was a neighbor he knew well.

"He's from a family that we know and love and respect. They're good friends of ours, and they just have a wayward child," Godfrey said. "I taught this young man in church."

Godfrey and his wife were awakened at 2:56 a.m. Wednesday when somebody tried to break into their house through a side and then a rear door. Godfrey jumped out of bed, checked on his children, then went outside.

"He was heading across the front lawn riding a bike of ours," Godfrey said. "I ran him down and tackled him, wrestled him and put him in a headlock."

And Godfrey is "half the burglar's size," marveled Ogden Police Chief Jon Greiner in a slight exaggeration.

Godfrey, a long-distance runner, stands 5-foot-4 and weighs 110 pounds "dripping wet," the chief said.

Richard Poorman, 20, weighs 170 pounds on a 5-foot-10 frame. "This comes down to what he's always preached to the community: 'Get involved, you can make a citizen's arrest,"' Greiner said. "I don't encourage people to do that, I really don't, but helping us is always a good thing."

Poorman was arrested for investigation of burglary, robbery, public intoxication, illegal consumption of alcohol by a minor and possession of marijuana -- "we'll stop there," Ogden police Lt. Scott Sangberg said.

Greiner said Poorman was awaiting trial on charges involving two previous garage burglaries and should have been in jail, but a judge released him without bail pending the trial.

After Godfrey's wife called 911, Ogden police arrived to see the mayor holding down the man.

"I guess I feel like it's part of my job getting the bad guys off the street," chuckled Godfrey, whose only injury was a cut behind his right ear.

The mayor has made reducing crime in Ogden an issue in his re-election campaign and said the incident was evidence of the value of neighborhood watches. "People just being vigilant, making a stand, is part of the reason why we've had such huge reductions in crime," he said.

Asked if it was wise to take on an intruder in an early morning break-in, Godfrey said he would encourage others to let the police handle it.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Most recent Utah stories

Related topics

Utah

SIGN UP FOR THE KSL.COM NEWSLETTER

Catch up on the top news and features from KSL.com, sent weekly.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast