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Libby teen surprises, scuffles with burglar

| January 18, 2007 11:00 PM

By GWEN ALBERS Western News Reporter

Home alone on Monday evening, 15-year-old Seth Wright called his parents in Kalispell when he heard a strange noise.

A standout Libby runner and wrestler, Wright minutes later - wearing only a T-shirt, shorts and socks - tackled an apparent burglar in the snow outside the family's Pipe Creek home. A fight between the two lasted for about 45 seconds before the suspect dashed off into the darkness.

Seth was not hurt.

"It scared me to death," said his mother, Corinne, after she heard about the incident at their Bobtail Cutoff home. "If that guy would've had a knife …"

Lincoln County Sheriff's Department continues to investigate the incident as a break-in and assault, Lt. Roby Bowe said Wednesday. The suspect is described as a man in his 20s with blond hair and a goatee. He was wearing a hood around his face that was tied at the throat.

"There's some people of interest," Bowe said.

Seth said he was upstairs on the computer at about 6:30 to 7 p.m. The lights were turned off.

"I heard the door open and I thought it was Evan May," Seth said.

May, who is Seth's friend, had just left the Wrights' home.

"The dogs were barking and I told them to be quiet," Seth said. "I looked outside and when I didn't see anything, I didn't think anybody was here."

He also called his parents on their cell phone before returning to the computer. His mother and father, Wade Wright, were in Kalispell for Corinne's birthday and their daughter Ericka's graduation from Crevier's School of Cosmetology.

"We told him we'd be home in an hour and didn't think any thing of it," Corinne Wright said.

Seth went downstairs again investigated.

"That's when I heard running down the hall and seen somebody run out my (bedroom) door," he said. "He flung the back door open and I ran out."

"We got into a fight," Seth continued. "I punched him twice in the nose and cheek. The last time he punched me, he pushed me (and got away)."

Seth said he did not recognize the man.

He called his parents, who told him to call police.

"He was having a major adrenaline rush," Corinne Wright said. "It just wasn't smart for him to go after him. He said, 'Mom my legs were just running and I couldn't stop.'"