MADISON, Ala - Madison Police arrested a woman who was the subject of a video shared on social media. The video was widely circulated on Nextdoor and Facebook showing a masked woman loitering around a residence front door at 1:00 a.m. Police said she was recognized as someone they have had contact with in the past.
"We were able to use a still shot of that, Compare it to previous files, work with our patrol officers who had contact with citizens on a regular basis, as well as some of our court personnel, and we were able to make a positive identification on this subject," Captain John Stringer with the Madison Police Department said.
Police filed three warrants against the woman, now identified as Tracy Lynn Cook, and she was arrested Thursday afternoon. Investigators said she was also seen at another nearby residence attempting to enter a backdoor of a home and was also filmed by a next door neighbor.
Arrest records show Cook faces one charge of criminal trespass, two counts of failure to appear and one count of probation violation.
According to state court records, she pleaded guilty to driving with improper lights and driving with a suspended license, offenses that occurred in in 2003. In 2004, she pleaded guilty to use or possession of drug paraphernalia.
It's a situation you hope to never be in, a person wearing a mask walks up to your doorstep at one in the morning. This recently happened to a Madison resident. He caught the entire encounter on video using a Ring video doorbell. He is now sharing the video hoping his story can help others.
The video shows a masked woman walking up to a home in Madison and then make her way to the front door. Using his Ring video doorbell the man who lives there was able to communicate with her on his phone through the video camera on his front porch.
He can be herd in the video saying "Can I help you?"
She replies, "I'm sorry," and then walks away from the camera.
He didn't want to sit down for an interview with WHNT News 19, but he took to Facebook to share this story.
His statement online read in part, "My interaction with the individual may have prevented their next move. I cannot know the intent of the person at the door but coming to my door with a robber mask on leads me to only one conclusion."
Huntsville Police aren't investigating this case, but they recommend using cameras to monitor your property.
"There really is no excuse not to have similar devices on their home. The best way to have it on your home and utilize it is to have every point of entry covered," Lt. Michael Johnson said.
Johnson says the footage can be a useful piece of evidence.
"If the person's face is covered, everything from height and weight to tattoos that are visible, just characteristics about a person that could not have been determined without that," he said.
The Madison resident told WHNT News 19 he installed this camera to just give himself a little extra peace of mind. He never thought it would capture something like this. He says because of this he is installing more cameras on his property and he hopes others will hear his story and this about installing their own surveillance system.
We have reached out to Madison Police to learn more about this situation. The homeowner says because the woman didn't gain entry to his residence there is technically no crime to report.