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Crime & Courts

Police: St. Pete homeowner holds burglar at gunpoint


Published:   |   Updated: September 3, 2014 at 11:50 AM

As a St. Petersburg homeowner held a burglar at gunpoint early Wednesday, the intruder offered to come back and mow the lawn if he could be freed before police arrived.

Joseph Chihak wasn’t pursuaded, police said.

It was the second time in the past week someone had broken in to his home, at 21 Westwood Terrace N., police said. After the Aug. 28 burglary, Chihak and his wife planned to carry a gun whenever they got out of bed during the night, police said.

So Chihak was armed when he woke up to go to the bathroom at 4:27 a.m. Wednesday, heard noises and found Bryan Remley in the living room going through belongings, police said.

Chihak, 31, told police that he fired two shots that missed as Remley, 25, ran at him. The gun jammed, however, and Chihak ran to get a second gun. The intruder then ran toward the kitchen to try to escape, police said.

Chihak’s wife heard the confrontation from the bedroom and called 911.

Chihak found the intruder on the floor when he got to the kitchen with the other gun, police said. That when Remley offered to mow the lawn if he was let go, Chihak told police.

When officers arrived, they found Remley in possession of a 3- to 4-inch blade in a holster, police said.

Remley was arrested on charges of armed residential burglary and violation of probation. He also has an outstanding warrant from Seminole County on a petit theft charge, police said.

Police gave no details on last week’s reported burglary.

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