Invader surprised by senior black belts

WHEN a ''bulky chap'' intruded into Jutta and Edwin Dowdy's Kenmore home, they all received a fright.

The elderly couple were spooked because someone was in their house and the intruder was terrified because he was faced with a couple who both hold ''several'' martial arts black-belt titles and were prepared to defend their home.

Mrs Dowdy, 76, and her 83-year-old husband were watching television on Friday night, when they heard someone in their house, just before 8.30pm.

Mr Dowdy picked up a World War II knife he kept for protection and went to investigate. He turned in to a narrow hallway in the couple's home and was confronted with a muscular man, aged in his 30s, wearing long pants and a jacket.

Mr Dowdy warned the man he had a knife, but Mrs Dowdy said the man did not seem to listen.

''He just came dashing towards Edwin; he was quite a bulky chap,'' Mrs Dowdy said.

''He dashed into him and ran into the knife.''

Bleeding from what police believe to be a ''significant'' wound to either his lower front or side torso, the man attempted to escape with an armful of the couple's possessions; but he didn't count on Mrs Dowdy.

''I chased him around the house. I only saw the back of him, as he was running away and things were being thrown everywhere. Except my handbag, I could see he was holding on to that for dear life.''

The thief eventually escaped Mrs Dowdy by jumping over a balcony. An injury last year left the sprightly woman with broken vertebrae and it is still healing, meaning she could not follow quickly.

The handbag contained some money and Mrs Dowdy's bank cards. The couple changed the locks to their home yesterday morning.''

''I would have liked to have used some martial arts on him, but I have to get back into it. It's been an awful year, really.''

Mr Dowdy, who has a pacemaker, made a trip to the doctor with a friend to have his blood pressure checked, but was not injured.

''To happen when we were home like that it is quite shocking. We have had about two hours sleep today; we both took sleeping pills, but they didn't work,'' Mrs Dowdy said.

''It is sickening; in our house! Especially with all that blood that just spilled out. I can't even look at it. But neither of us were hurt and that was the main thing.''

That blood, left by the man as he ran through the house to escape, led police to a nearby car that bore traces of the man's attempts to break in.

When he failed at that he ran for about a kilometre to playing fields near the Western Freeway.

It was there that police lost the trail.

Police have launched an appeal for information on the man, as they have concerns he has been seriously injured and is in need of urgent medical attention.

As of 7pm Queensland time last night, police had received no new information.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers.

This story Invader surprised by senior black belts first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.