Alice Dunn, David Franklyn Szakalos: 70-year-old Englewood, Florida woman stabs attacker
11:49 AM, Nov 7, 2013
7:08 PM, Nov 7, 2013
ENGLEWOOD, Fla., (WBBH) A man met his match after breaking into a woman's home early Wednesday morning.
After falling asleep on a reclining chair in her living room, Alice Dunn, 70, says she was awoken by a man, who was standing behind her chair and holding his hands against her mouth.
Dunn says she was scared and began to struggle and scream.
"He came to rape me. He turned to me and he held me over my mouth and then he grabbed me and said, 'Get in the bedroom,'" Dunn said.
The woman told deputies she had left a knife in a book in her living room because her home was burglarized the day before.
During the struggle, Dunn said she slid off the recliner. When she tried to get back up, she says the suspect appeared to be trying to help her to which she responded, "Let me do it myself."
The suspect then relaxed his grip on her and she was able to retrieve the knife from the book as she stood up.
Dunn, who had just undergone surgery for lung cancer that morning, began stabbing the man in the stomach area - but she didn't believe the knife was penetrating the suspect because her arm was weak from the surgery.
"The minute I stood up, he was on this side of me and I started stabbing ... and I just couldn't get it in far enough because I really wanted to get it in and twist it," Dunn said.
The suspect let her go and she fell to the floor, where she noticed he wasn't wearing any shoes. She says she then began to flail the knife at his feet.
According to reports, the man ran into her bedroom, back into the living room and then left the home. While he was running away, Dunn says she recognized the man.
She told deputies the suspect had went to her home previously and offered to keep her company, an offer she declined. She says in another incident, the suspect went to her home asking to help her shower, so she slammed the door in his face.
After Dunn described the suspect to deputies, they responded to his home on Berkeley Street and made contact with his wife. While deputies were speaking with his wife, they saw the suspect walk out of the bedroom limping.
Deputies noticed blood on the driveway that led to the garage. When asked about it, the couple told deputies they had no idea why blood would be in the driveway.
Deputies then asked the suspect to raise his shirt. Deputies say he had two large bandages on his stomach covering up puncture wounds.
A deputy then brought the victim to the suspect's home and she positively identified him as the man in her home.
David Franklyn Szakalos, 51, was arrested on charges of burglary with battery (person over 65 years of age). During his arrest, deputies say Szakalos become verbally and physically abusive. He was additionally charged with Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer.
The battle in Dunn's home left quite a scene, according to a friend who showed up Wednesday to help.
"I basically just came to clean up her house. There was blood everywhere," said friend Linda Patti.
Those who know the 70-year-old are proud of her.
"My friend is a fighter and she fought and she had a knife by her reclining and thank god she got him!" said friend Jean Czerny.
At first appearance, Szakalos' bond was set for $750,000 for burglary with assault or battery and $150,000 for battery on an officer.
He's ordered to have no contact with either victims. His next court date is Dec. 30.