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82-Year-Old Bodybuilder on Home Intruder: ‘He Picked the Wrong House’

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Willie Murphy was getting ready for bed in her Rochester, NY home last week when she heard an intruder trying to break in. But instead of panicking, she took matters into her own hands. 

Around 11 p.m., Murphy told ABC13 that a man began pounding on her door asking for help.

“He was outside and saying, ‘Please call an ambulance,’ saying, ‘I’m sick, I’m sick,’” she said.

She called the police, but didn’t open the door. She said that’s when he became angry and started to break the door. 

“He picked the wrong house to break into,” she told ABC13.

She hid in the dark as the suspect entered. She picked up a table and “went to work on him.” The table broke, and Murphy continued grabbing whatever was close by — which happened to be a bottle of shampoo and a broom. Murphy dumped shampoo on the intruder and started hitting him with the broom until officers arrived.

Murphy, who is 82, is also an award-winning bodybuilder. She works out at Rochester’s YMCA almost daily, and can deadlift 225 pounds. Rochester Police who responded to the call tweeted about Murphy’s bravery, adding that she’s “tough as nails.”

Kaley LaQuea is an award–winning print and digital journalist who’s been creating content since 2008. She’s passionate about economic, environmental and social justice. She has an unhealthy relationship with caffeine and two cats: Totoro and Mononoke.