Suspected home intruder chased off by 11-year-old boy with machete

An 11-year-old boy is making headlines after he chased off three home invaders by striking one of them with a machete last Friday morning, according to WTVD

Braydon Smith, of Mebane, N.C., was home alone and on the phone with his mother when 19-year-old Jataveon Dashawn Hall and two accomplices reportedly broke into his house. 

"He pointed a pellet gun at me that was located in our house," Smith told the station. "I knew that it wasn't loaded so I just sat down and got in my closet like he told me to. He went into the living room to grab my phone to make sure I didn't call the 911 or anything."

Smith, who was able to escape the closet, said his instincts almost immediately kicked in. 

"I grabbed my machete off my wall and went to hit him," he said. "I hit him in the back of the head like right here." 

Hall then allegedly kicked Smith in the stomach before the boy swung the machete at the suspect again. Though Smith missed the second time around and was kicked once more, Hall and his accomplices left the home after the teenager realized he was bleeding from the back of his head. 

The 19-year-old turned up at UNC Hospital in Hillsborough shortly after to get treated, the Orange County Sheriff's Office said. He was eventually transferred to UNC Hospital in Chapel Hill but fled the clinic Friday night after learning that police had executed multiple warrants on him, including ones for second-degree kidnapping and assault on a child younger than 12.

At the time of Hall's escape, Smith's mother, Kaitlin Johnson, told WTVD that she was struggling to understand why it took officers nearly 10 hours — well into the early morning hours of Saturday — to learn that Hall had gone missing. 

"This guy that could have killed my child is on the loose," she said. "It was very scary."

Hall, however, was eventually caught in Burlington, N.C., on Sunday, after law enforcement there received an anonymous tip that he was at his parents' home. Following the teenager's arrest, the Orange County Sheriff's Office commended Smith for his courage. 

"Not only did this youngster thwart the larceny attempt, he created blood evidence that very well may lead to a conviction in this case," Sheriff Charles Blackwood said in a release obtained by WTKR. "This is [a] very tough kid who kept his wits about him. At the same time, I want to reflect that this youngster, his family, and indeed this community, are very lucky this event did not have a tragic ending for the child." 

For his part, Smith had some choice words for the suspect and his accomplices, according to WTVD.

"You shouldn't have done what you've done," he said. "You're better off to get a job than breaking into other people's houses." 

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