A Pittsburgh man secretly lived in the attic of his ex-girlfriend’s house for weeks despite the woman having a no-contact court order against him, police said.
According to a criminal complaint, Cary Cocuzzi was charged after the woman found him in her bedroom last Saturday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.
The woman told officers she was home alone in the kitchen when she heard a noise upstairs. At first, she attributed the noise to her cat, but when the woman went up to her bedroom, Cocuzzi came out from behind the door.
Cocuzzi allegedly grabbed the woman and put a hand over her mouth. She managed to push him away and ran outside screaming, prompting several neighbours to call 911.
According to the Post-Gazette, the woman had obtained a protection-from-abuse order against the man on March 25, barring him from having any contact with his ex or her two children.
Speaking with WPXI News, the woman said she had a weird feeling that someone had been in her home after noticing a misplaced blanket and a toilet seat left up.
“I had an intuition about it but I ignored it, I brushed it aside,” the woman said. “I didn’t want to seem paranoid but I should have trusted my instincts because I was right.”
Once police arrived, officers searched the house and found Cocuzzi hiding under some clothing on the second floor.
According to the Post-Gazette, the suspect told officers he had been staying in the home for about two weeks without the woman knowing, gaining access through an unlocked side door. Cocuzzi said he was coming and going from the house because he was tired of being homeless.
Cocuzzi was charged with burglary and unlawful restraint.