Suspected burglar arrested after getting into bed with sleeping child

Norwalk police: Man wanders into bedroom just before 5 a.m., startling the child.
Cary Ashby
Sep 17, 2013
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A Norwalk family got quite a shock early Sunday morning when they found a strange man in their house.

In fact, the man crawled into a child’s bed, covered up and went to sleep.

When confronted, the man appeared intoxicated and not sure where he was.

The man was charged with burglary.

James M. Clarke, 24 of 151A Benedict Ave., was arrested just north of the victims’ South Linwood Avenue residence. At 4:53 a.m., the Norwalk Police Department responded to the report of an unknown male suspect who was sleeping in a child’s bedroom where the child, an eighth-grader, also was asleep.

The home owner talked to the man while his wife called the police.

While police were on the way, the complainant reported Clarke was walking northbound away from the home and was wearing a yellow hooded sweatshirt. Two officers arrested Clarke shortly afterward and charged him with burglary.

“Mr. Clarke advised he believed he was in a friend’s residence,” Officer Dave Daniels said in his report.

The suspect was transported to the Huron County Jail. If convicted of burglary, Clarke faces six to 18 months behind bars.



I hope you 2 wake up some morning and find a random stranger in bed with your child.....go ahead and wake him up with the smell of hot fresh coffee, bacon, eggs, and biscuits and gravy. Take him to church after a nice breakfast and pray with him and introduce him to your holy roller friends, maybe he can sleep in their kids beds that night since there is nothing wrong with are all so ignorant. But hey, at least he didn't steal anything right?


Like I stated to ROFLMAO....It may not have been a bar he was at...There is such things as all night parties at peoples houses. Hemight have bee at one of these somewhere.


Seriously? After the last recent incident, one would think people would have started locking their doors. Not excusing this behaviour at all, but responsibility starts at home. Lock your doors...

Or did this guy break in? In which case, sorry...


You can lock your doors and windows but if someone wants to sneak in they will do it. A sharp dog and a loaded gun held by someone with a pair is the best deterrent. Shoot the intruder, give your dog a snack and the community and probably the cops will thank you.


If my doors unlocked or locked, that does not mean your invited in. Regardless if your not invited in my house, you will at the very least have a 45 pointed at you, the outcome from there would be determined by your very next move. End of story

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

If your doors are locked, that alone may prevent some idiot from comeing in and the you can get your beauty sleep.


You seem eager to kill someone. I hope you don't miss! It may not be that easy to prove they were not invited in if there's no signs of forced entry. Even if you are cleared of all potential charges, LE will still advise you to lock your doors. I think those that do not secure their property is putting their loved ones in potential danger.


@ Deertracker,
Sorry to inform you but I believe in the 2nd amendment I have the right to bare arms and to protect what is mine. Im not eager to kill anyone, im making a statement, dont read to much into it


@ Deertracker,
Sorry to inform you but I believe in the 2nd amendment I have the right to bare arms and to protect what is mine. Im not eager to kill anyone, im making a statement, dont read to much into it

Lillie Chaos

This is a scenario we should not even need to discuss. This man had no moral or legal right to drink himself stupid and invade someone's home. Each and everyone of us have the right morally and ethically and legally to be protected from addicts like this. Your door is YOUR door - no one has a right to enter or open it. Police state? Whatever it takes to put an end to this epidemic of drunkenness and abuse.

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

Everyone who's been dumb enough to get wasted has a horror story.


Totally agree. Remind me to use that defense if I ever kill someone driving drunk. Fool-proof argument you presented here.


I agree YOUR door is YOUR door; however, a responsible parent takes all necessary precautions to protect their child. I said I in no way condoned the drunken idiots behaviour, but unless he physically broke into the house, one would think this situation could have been completely avoided by a locked door. Simple.


Locking doors won't stop someone from coming in if the really want in. I agree that it is a good idea to lock doors but I was told by my father-in-law a very long time ago "locks are for honest people." I believe if that if the door was locked he would have broken his way in because he would have thought he forgot his key or something like that but at least he would have been heard doing so, hopefully, so I am not sure a locked door would have stopped him from trying to get in. He obviously thought he was home or at a place he knew so a locked door would not have made him walk on.


People are really trying to make it a point if the door was locked? This creep should be thanking his lucky stars he didn't become a lead dummy or get the beating of a life time.


The doors were locked at the Marine's ( sorry can't recall his name) house and that one drunken moron still broke in "cause he thought it was his house".

Remember the 911 call?

Remember the Marine holding him at gunpoint?

It was in the last year.


I NEVER said a locked door would have been 100% guarantee that this drunken fool wouldn't have gotten in!!! What I said was, that a locked door should have been the first obstacle this moron encountered. Apparently Norwalk is full of drunken idiots these days...I would certainly recommend at least locking the door!

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

Norwalk has always been full of drunken idiots. They just keep breeding more drunken idiots.


Well this seems to be a generation of directionally challenged drunken idiots...perhaps it's a mutation from the regular old drunken idiots of my day.


Maybe the damn doors were locked. We don't know there's not enough info in the post.


And I said that too...

I said if their doors WERE locked I was sorry.


These idiots need to quit Drinkin' & druggin'... Someone is going to get shot, and then it will be all over but the crying!


Hehehe, if you walk into my house uninvited, my german shepherd will have you for a midnight snack! :)


Not to get off topic, but it's sad to see Norwalk like this. I moved away a few years ago and still keep tabs on everything. Everytime I open this website it's just more drugs, drunks, and arrests. I hope things really aren't as bad as the paper makes them seem.


I guess be thankful, they're on foot and not driving.



Had he walked into my house, you would have been reading his obit in the Flector. Certainly not a story about his arrest! I would have dropped him like a bad habit.


Can't believe it is almost 2 in the afternoon, this story has been up all day and I haven't seen anyone on here with the typical "I know him, he is a GOOD PERSON" defense. Where are all the friends and family coming to his rescue? This is the 2nd uninvited guest, drunk and near (this time IN BED with) a child. I do not know if these people had a locked door, but it would go without saying to be SURE to lock your doors. For those who live in Norwalk or within walking distance of a bar, I say buy a baseball bat or a gun. Lock your door and get a good ALARM. Sleep with one eye open! I am not sure I would be able to sleep at all.

Scranton Tibbs

It's Rob Thomas from Matchbox 20.


Don't forget to include the many party houses, We got them in my town. It's just not the bars.

Maybe there should be a site were you could post stupid local criminals.

And yes, just where are all the typical defense posts.


Where do you people live? It is never okay to be in the most vulnerable state....sleep or showering....with your doors unlocked. How many times have you heard someone say "that doesn't happen here"? Yes, the guy needs to pay for his crimes but it is much easier to avoid these incidents by locking your doors. These drunks aren't breaking in, they are walking in. It's a no brainer.