College student finds man hiding in her closet, wearing her clothes
Maddie, a student at the University of North Carolina in Greensboro, thought she had a ghost in her apartment. Articles of clothing repeatedly went missing, and peculiar handprints appeared on her bathroom wall. She and her roommate say they consistently lock their doors, and did not notice any damage to the locks. What was going on?
On Saturday afternoon, she finally got to the bottom of the mystery. There was no paranormal activity, but the truth was just as scary. After hearing a noise in her closet, she opened the door to discover 30-year-old Andrew Clyde Swofford, wearing her clothing.
"I just heard rattling in my closet. It sounded like a raccoon in my closet," Maddie told Fox 8. "I’m like, 'Who’s there?' And somebody answers, 'Me.' He’s like, ‘Oh my name is Drew.’ I open the door and he’s in there, wearing all of my clothes."
Maddie called the police and spoke with the intruder to keep him distracted until authorities arrived. "He tries on my hat," she recalled. "He goes in the bathroom and looks in the mirror and then is like ‘you’re really pretty, can I give you a hug?’ But he never touched me."
Greensboro police officers took Swofford into custody, and reportedly he did not act violent or threatening. (However, he was clearly acting creepy as hell.) The closet crasher is now facing 14 felony charges, including breaking and entering, identity theft, larceny, possessing stolen goods, and failing to appear in court in connection to previous cases. (A Google image search for his name pulls up multiple mugshots.)
Swofford was booked into a Guilford County jail under a $26,000 bond. (Not a pleasant situation, but hey, at least his cell is bigger than the closet.)
Maddie and her roommate live at Edge Apartments, a students-only building near UNC campus managed by Burkely Communities. Disturbingly, this is not their first problem with intruders. On a previous occasion, they found two strange men in their living room, and reported the incident to the leasing office. According to Fox 8, building management changed the locks, but did not fill out a police report, which they claim is standard protocol.
In news that will shock no one, Maddie and her roommate say they are planning on moving out after this alarming experience. "Last night I did not feel safe," she said. "I slept with my roommate in her bed. I can’t stay here. My closet, it stinks. Every time I go in [my room] there’s a bad vibe. I’m just ready to leave."
Hopefully Burkely Communities will address these startling security problems with student housing. Young women frequently get harassed by creepy dudes on the street, in the bar, while riding the train - basically everywhere. Home, at the very least, should be a safe space.