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Resident finds, fights intruder in his home

The Merced County Sheriff's Department said a Winton resident surprised a intruder breaking into his house, wrestled the knife-wielding man to the ground and punched him several times before he escaped.

Nothing was taken.

On Wednesday at 8 p.m., the sheriff's office received a call of a burglary in progress in which the victim surprised the intruder in the middle of the theft. Deputy Ralph Zyskowski responded to the 7000 block of Ridge Road and spoke to the 31-year-old victim.

The victim told investigators he had come home, parked in the driveway and went inside to use the bathroom before going to his child's football practice. As he came out of the bathroom, he noticed a black man, about 25, dressed in dark clothes, standing in his living room by his television set. The TV had been moved and the victim believed the man was attempting to steal it, according to Deputy Tom MacKenzie.

The intruder ran toward him and jumped over a chair to try to get to the open sliding glass door in the dining room. The victim got in his way and the two started to wrestle. The fight moved into the kitchen where the victim slammed the intruder to the ground. The intruder knocked over a set of kitchen knives, grabbed one and began swinging it toward the victim's stomach.

The victim grabbed the intruder's arm and protected himself from being stabbed. The knife did cut a one-inch hole in the victim's shirt and scratched his stomach in several places, MacKenzie said in a news release.

The victim punched the intruder several times in the face before he broke free and ran out the sliding glass door. The victim suffered no serious injuries and nothing was taken from the residence.

Deputies searched the area for the intruder but no one was found.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Merced County Sheriff's Department at (209) 385-7472.