CHESTERVILLE — Judy Paul hasn’t been able to sleep since she confronted a stranger inside her home and sent him running away scared Tuesday morning.

The 53-year-old woman heard a vehicle stop outside and then heard a commotion downstairs inside her two-story house about 9 a.m.

She walked down the staircase and found a man she didn’t know standing in a room.

“I asked him what he was doing and I told him to get out of the house, and he unlocked the door and ran out and drove off,” Paul said.

“He didn’t have time to even look around. He was surprised to see me.”

Investigators have some leads about the man described by Paul and hope to make an arrest soon, according to Maine State Police Sgt. Aaron Hayden. He wouldn’t provide additional details.

Meanwhile, Paul is worried that her Zion’s Hill Road home is no longer safe.

“I’m somewhat afraid to leave my house for fear that I’ll come back and find somebody inside,” Paul said Thursday. “The experience isn’t conducive to sleeping, either.”

She lives in the house with her husband, Faye Morley, 65, who was at a doctor’s appointment during the break-in, Paul said.

The intruder pushed a portable air conditioner unit through a downstairs window to get inside the house, which otherwise was locked up tight, she said. Her car was parked in the driveway at the time.

The couple’s two dogs — an English springer spaniel named Rosette and Rottweiler-mix named Boo — were in cages, but Paul heard the commotion before the dogs, she said.

Besides having trouble sleeping since the home invasion, Paul finds herself unsure of how to keep safe and she is struggling to concentrate on anything else.

She removed the air conditioner and plans to install an alarm system.

“I’m certainly hypervigilant now,” she said.

Paul also warned neighbors about the break-in, hoping to keep them aware that crime can strike anywhere.

“I just told them to make sure that everything is locked up really secured and possibly to have your air conditioners installed in a wall and not in the window,” she said.

David Robinson — 861-9287

[email protected]

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