Man in Underwear Climbs Into Girl's Bed but Flees After She Screams; Nabbed in Neighbor's Shorts

When a creepy stranger clad only black boxer-briefs climbed into a 14-year-old's bed on Sunday morning and told her to be quiet, the girl made the only sensible choice:

Scream. Loudly.

Her shouts woke up her 11-year-old brother, who shared her bedroom in the home near Peoria and 7th avenues. The boy saw the suspected perv, later identified as 35-year-old Jacob Nelson, trying to crawl under the sheets with his sister.

Nelson jumped up and ran out of the room.

It was just after 8 a.m. and the kids' father had just left the home, locking the front door but leaving the back door open. Police say Nelson apparently waited for the father to leave before sneaking in, which serves as a good reminder to lock doors and windows when possible.

Nelson, who's got a history of burglary and meth use, left his pants and socks "neatly" arranged on a table in the victims' fenced backyard, along with a computer flash drive. (The latter is sometimes used by burglars to steal info off their victims' computers that can later be used to commit ID theft, as we've learned from past cases.) The suspect's shirt, oddly enough, was found in the household's washing machine. Police don't state in court records whether he'd turned the machine on.

After fleeing the home, Nelson apparently entered one of the neighbor's homes and stole an extra-large pair of shorts. Police spotted the man trying to be nonchalant as he walked down a nearby street, wearing the shorts that were held by a laundry pen.

The victims ID'd the man as the attacker. Police are seeking charges of attempted child molestation and burglary.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.