Blind homeowner captures intruder
By Vic Ryckaert
A blind homeowner used the wrestling skills he learned more than 30 years ago to overpower an intruder and hold the man at knifepoint until police arrived this morning.
“I just kind of panicked and just kind of went crazy after that,” Allan Kieta said. “I’ve wrestled all my life. My dad’s a Marine; he taught me some stuff. You’re thinking in your head all this survival stuff.”
An Indianapolis police official called it one of the most incredible tales of citizen self-defense that he’s heard in years.
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“It’s pretty remarkable for anyone that’s blind to be able to defend themselves, let alone make an apprehension,” Lt. Jeff Duhamell said. “To be able to grab this guy and hold him down until police got there is pretty remarkable.”
Kieta is typically at work on Mondays but had taken the day off from his job with the federal government. So he was home when a man entered his Eastside residence in the 3100 block of Richardt Avenue about 9 a.m.
“We have a little poodle-like dog. It was barking and barking,” Kieta said. “I opened the door and just ran into him.”
Kieta, 49, who is legally blind, said he was the Kentucky high school wrestling champ for the 145-pound division in 1976. He used his skills and other self-defense tactics learned from his father to subdue the intruder.
“I had him pinned in the laundry room and just kept pummeling,” Kieta said, describing the pounding he gave the 25-year-old arrested by police.
Kieta punched, kicked and grappled until the suspect became disoriented. Kieta said he grabbed him by the belt and dragged him into the kitchen. Kieta then found a kitchen knife and held it at the man’s throat.
Kieta fumbled to dial 911 with his other hand.
“Being visually impaired, I couldn’t get the buttons because I was using my left hand,” he said. “It took me about 20 tries.”
Police arrived minutes after dispatchers received the call at 9:47 a.m.
Alvaro Castro, 25, was arrested on an initial charge of residential entry, Sgt. Matthew Mount said. Police say Castro denied trying to burglarize the home. He said he was the ex-boyfriend of Kieta’s 18-year-old daughter and said he was trying to visit her when he ran into her father, Mount said.
Kieta said Castro also told him he was looking for his cat.
“I go, ’Your cat? You’re in my house!”’ Kieta recalled.
Castro was held at Wishard Memorial Hospital's secure detention facility, then transferred to the Marion County Jail late Monday night.
Kieta said he suffered swollen hands and a sore back, but no serious injuries.
“When my wife was cleaning the blood off, she said ‘I think it’s all his,’.” Kieta said.