Home News Mom brings along kids to break into retired officer’s house

Mom brings along kids to break into retired officer’s house


By Brett Gillin

There are lessons that every parent should teach their children. Things like how to treat other people, proper respect for authority, and the difference between right and wrong are at the top of just about every good parent’s “To-Do List” when it comes to instilling their children with lessons throughout childhood. One parent in Colorado either completely forgot to teach any of these lessons, or has a very strange way of explaining to her children the differences between right and wrong.

Melanie Romero Weld County Sheriffs Office
Melanie Romero. Image courtesy of the Weld County Sheriffs Office

Melanie Romero, a 35-year-old woman in Weld County Colorado, allegedly decided to break into a house earlier this month, according to 9 News. Her first mistake, if you don’t count the decision to commit a home invasion, was her choice of target. Romero decided to break into Kim Steffen-Braunch’s house in the middle of the day.

Steffen-Braunch is not just any homeowner, as Romero would soon find out. Steffen-Braunch is an armed, retired police officer. She also happened to be home when Romero came sauntering in to her house. Although Steffen-Braunch was taking a nap at the time, her officer instincts surely kicked in as soon as Romero entered her house.

“I felt this presence, almost like I could hear footsteps going across my living room,” she told reporters.

So Steffen-Braunch did what came naturally to her: She grabbed her gun. When Romero stood in Steffen-Braunch’s bedroom doorway, she was greeted with a sight no burglar wants to see: the barrel of a gun.

Kim Steffen-Braunch demonstrates her stance as she encountered Romero. Screen shot from video.
Kim Steffen-Braunch demonstrates her stance as she encountered Romero. Screen shot from video.

“That’s when I asked her, ‘What the ‘blank’ are you doing in my house? Put your hands up. Let me see your hands,” she explained.

She then marched Romero out to her living room and called the Weld County Sheriff’s Office. While the two women were waiting for the police to take Romero away, she explained that she wasn’t there to break in, but instead was searching for a friend. Steffen-Braunch’s finely tuned BS detector wasn’t buying it though.

“It just didn’t make sense, and I had a lot of red flags from my previous experience that said ‘don’t let her go,” she told reporters. When police officers made it to the house, they made a startling discovery in the driveway: Three children waiting patiently in the car.

Evidently, Romero packed her three children into the car before beginning her day’s nefarious activities. Despite her claims that she was just looking for a friend, police were quickly able to link her to another burglary just a few houses down from the one she was caught in.

Romero was charged with trespassing and child abuse for the incident at Steffen-Braunch’s house, and new charges are pending as officer’s gather evidence in similar cases throughout the area.

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