For two hours, Cathy Scoto said, she sat in the hallway of her Tahoe Park home with a stranger holding her hostage.
Once, when he wasn't paying attention, she texted her roommate, "Intruder in the house." Another time, she snuck a kitchen knife in her pants, just in case.
The last time, she grabbed her pit bulls and ran.
"I felt really in control until I stepped outside," said Scoto, 36, who escaped unharmed.
There, in the safety of Sacramento police SWAT officers, "I felt like my legs were going to give out," she said.
Scoto laughed a lot and cried a little Wednesday afternoon as she described her ordeal less than an hour after the intruder surrendered to police and she had been allowed back into her home.
The incident began just before noon, when a California Highway Patrol officer tried to stop the suspect later identified as Antwan Adger, 49, for a traffic violation. The suspect did not yield, and crashed the car he was driving in the area of Broadway and Kroy Way in Tahoe Park.
The CHP officer chased the suspect on foot, but lost him in the neighborhood. Police later learned that he possibly had holed up in a home on 64th Street near Second Avenue potentially after Scoto's roommate got the inkling something was wrong.
Scoto said she was on the phone with her roommate when the suspect came in. She had just let her dogs out to the backyard, and had not locked the door.
"It's a really quiet neighborhood so I don't really panic about locking the doors behind me," she said.
She hung up on her roommate abruptly, hoping to signal distress. At some point, when the suspect wasn't paying attention, she texted the roommate, "Intruder in the house."
Not long after, police were trying to confirm who was in the home and whether anyone was armed. Believing the suspect possibly had a hostage, the SWAT team and negotiators were called to the scene.
Scoto said she yelled at the man to get out of her house. He responded by repeating, "I'm not going to hurt you," and then, "Just stop, just stop."
She never saw a weapon but didn't know for sure whether he was armed. She felt threatened and unable to leave, she said. "He made it very clear I was not to leave the house."
Scoto said the suspect told her to check all the windows to make sure they were closed. When she went into the kitchen, she grabbed a knife and stuck it in her sweat pants in case she needed to protect herself.
The suspect seemed unfazed by the presence of her pit bulls. He seemed familiar with the breed, Scoto said, and knew to threw water on them to "shock them" after he had entered the house.
Eventually, she convinced the suspect he needed to "belly crawl" to the back of the house, where there are fewer windows through which the police could see him.
When he did so, she grabbed her dogs and ran out the front door. She ran to the SWAT officers waiting in the street, who asked her if she was armed. She said they seemed surprised when she revealed she had a knife in her pants.
"I don't know where my knife is," she laughed, gesturing toward the area where police had flooded the street.
Scoto said she didn't learn much about the suspect during their time together, but knew he must have been in some trouble with the law.
"He said he was going to do good in his life when he got out of this," she said. "I wanted to ask questions, but I was really afraid to find out why he was wanted."
Officer Doug Morse, a police spokesman, said police later learned the suspect had an outstanding felony warrant for his arrest in another county.
After Scoto escaped the home, police had sporadic conversations with the suspect. According to police radio traffic, the suspect indicated he wanted to speak to his wife or mother before giving up.
Two women apparently associated with the suspect showed up at the scene and were escorted behind police tape. They declined to speak to the media.
Almost 3 1/2 hours after the incident began, the suspect came out of the house on his own and surrendered to police.
Adger was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping, false imprisonment, burglary and his outstanding arrest warrant.
Nobody was hurt during the incident, and police did not find any weapons on the suspect after his arrest. Officials said they were grateful for a successful and safe conclusion.
"We were very fortunate to have the suspect surrender today," Morse said.