Braydon Carper, left, sits with his younger brothers Trenton and Skyler.
By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter
ADNA – It’s summertime. Braydon Carper is 13 years old and sometimes he babysits his 7-year-old brother Trenton.
Last week, while the two boys were at home alone, someone came knocking at the door of their Adna home and like he’s been told, Braydon didn’t answer it. He told Trenton to go his room and be quiet.
When their father got home from work, he saw religious literature on the porch and asked if someone came by.
The unexpected visit from Jehovah’s Witnesses was a good opportunity, according to their mother Krysta Carper, to talk to the boys in more detail about what to do if anyone they don’t know comes to the door when they’re home alone.
“I instructed them, no matter who came to the door, even if it’s a police officer, not to answer it,” Krysta Carper said.
The conversation that night paid off.
The following day, last Thursday, the Carpers for the very first time left their 5-year-old Skyler with the older boys while they went to work.
The children said they sitting on the couch watching television when a vehicle pulled up into their driveway and parked.
Trenton looked out the window and saw the foot of someone getting out of a red van.
Braydon took his little brothers into their bedroom, he said.
“We heard knocking,” Braydon said. “About a minute later, we heard slamming. Like hard slamming, so we locked the door.”
Braydon called his mother. Skyler hid in his closet. And Trenton climbed under his bed.
Their little dachshund Rider growled and barked so hard he retched, according to the boys.
Krysta Carper called 911 and called her son back to get him on the phone with a 911 operator.
The mother of three practically flew home to their Penning Road two-story. When she arrived, deputies were inside and the front door was broken. The intruder was gone.
And sure enough, she noticed some of her jewelry that had been on the counter in the bathroom was missing.
A deputy on his way to answer the call stopped a red van about a quarter mile away and detained a woman.
According to charging documents, on the floor of the van was a long crowbar type tool, next to it a pair of gloves lay.
The woman said she uses it to remove her hubcaps.
A small plastic baggie containing suspected methamphetamine was found; a meth pipe was inside her purse, according to charging documents.
The plastic diaper wipes container with a purple lid that Krysta Carper keeps her costume jewelry in was also found in the van, charging documents allege.
Darlene J. Lockard
Darlene J. Lockard, 50, of Olympia, was arrested and booked into the Lewis County Jail.
She was charged with residential burglary, possession of methamphetamine and misdemeanor theft. A judge last Friday set her bail at $100,000.
This morning, Lockard pleaded not guilty in Lewis County Superior Court.
Her attorney asked Judge Richard Brosey to reduce her bail. She’s not a flight risk, Centralia defense attorney David Arcuri said, she has a pending case in Thurston County.
As Brosey began to recite the 16 counts pending against her – burglary, theft, possession of stolen property and so on – Lockard hung her head. He denied the request noting there were children inside the house she allegedly burglarized.
Two grown daughters of Lockard’s were in the courtroom, not in support of their mother, but hoping to make sure she didn’t bail out of jail.
“She’s been down this path for way too long,” Misty Ward said. “I think this is the right place for her now.”
The daughters said their mother is separated from her husband and has been staying with a friend in Lewis County.
“She was clean for almost two years, then she started spiraling,” Ward said.
Krysta and Chris Carper came to the courthouse as well, to see the woman they believe barged into their home, while their three young boys cowered in a bedroom.
Krysta Carper thinks it probably wasn’t their barking dog that scared off the intruder, but was instead their home telephone answering machine.
During the various attempts to get her 13-year-old on the phone with 911, a dispatcher left a message saying, “This is 911, your mom called us; you need to pick up the phone.”
“I think she might have heard that message,” Krysta Carper said. “And realized, the one bedroom door that closed, there was someone in there.”
The Carper’s advice for all parents:
“I just urge parents to have a conversation with their kids, about what you would do if somebody kicked in the door,” Krysta Carper said. “I don’t know what they would have done if we hadn’t told them what to do.”