POTOMAC, Md. - One day after a frightening situation involving an armed carjacking suspect barricading himself in a townhouse in Potomac, the front door of the home is now just a piece of plywood after police had to knock it down to get inside. But this door was also how the homeowner escaped what could have been a dangerous situation just as the suspect was breaking in.
“I saw the edge of the glass door shut, so I think as he ran, she just like slammed it sideways,” said next door neighbor Jameson McGrane.
He was watching from his window as the carjacking suspect on the run from police climbed up his back deck and broke into his neighbor’s house while she was inside.
“She just told me that she thought someone was hurt,” said McGrane. “In her back deck, she heard all this noise and then when he tried to lunge at her, she slammed the door shut and ran for the hills.”
McGrane said his neighbor, who is in her 60s, managed to run out of the front door just before officers surrounded her townhouse with their guns drawn. It was not clear yet if the suspect was armed.
It would be another five hours before police went in and found the man hiding inside.
“He tried to escape through the roof,” said McGrane. “He made it into the attic and tried to break out through the roof boards. And then he tried to go through the basement wall into my house.”
Officers were chasing 46-year-old Perry Bryant after they said he carjacked a woman at gunpoint in Bethesda. He led police on a chase before crashing the black BMW vehicle he allegedly stole in the woods off of Falls Road. Police said they found a gun in the car.
“It's obviously unnerving,” McGrane said.
But McGrane said his neighbor handled the situation very well.
“She was actually more concerned about the cats that were inside and that she was going to miss the Nats game,” he said.
The terrifying experience left McGrane with an important lesson.
“My mom usually tells me I need to lock everything and I'm like ‘Eh, we’ll be alright,’" he said. “Now I think it's vindicated everything she tells me.”
McGrane's neighbor was not hurt, but there is some property damage to her home.
Bryant has been charged with armed carjacking, attempted kidnapping and home invasion.