A man accused of breaking into Taylor Swift’s house last week made sure to remember his manners while committing his alleged crime, with authorities reporting that he claimed to have taken off his shoes before wandering around Swift’s home in order to be “polite.”
Richard Joseph McEwan, a 26-year-old New Jersey resident, was arrested inside of Swift’s Rhode Island mansion on Friday evening after allegedly breaking in, The Westerly Sun reports. Officers with the Westerly Police Department responded to the home at around 5:10 p.m. after receiving a tip from a witness who claimed to have seen a man jumping a fence near Swift’s place, followed by a notification from the home security system, according to a police report obtained by the local paper.
Upon their arrival, officers joined with Swift’s security team to first search outside, where they found an unlocked door. Officers quickly spotted McEwan in the foyer after moving their search inside the home, and although he tried to flee, they quickly apprehended him, police claim.
Swift was not present at her seven-bedroom, nine-bathroom at the time of the break-in, according to NJ.com. Authorities believe that McEwan, who did not have any weapons on him when he was arrested, got into the house by breaking a glass door, at which point he began looking around for Swift, the outlet reports.
Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey told The Sun that a pair of orange shoes were left at the doorway near where McEwan broke in.
“When officers asked him why he wasn't wearing any [shoes], he told them, ‘I was always taught that when you go into someone's home, you have to take your shoes off,’” Lacey said. “He said he did it because it was polite.”
McEwan was charged with breaking and entering a home without the owner’s consent and willful trespassing, according to The Sun. He was released from custody on a $5,000 surety bond but is scheduled to appear at Washington County Superior Court for a felony screening. Police are also discussing the possibility of mental health treatment with his family, the outlet reports.
“This was an unusual case in the sense that we found him inside the house,” Lacey said. “We’ve dealt with a number of complaints at the home since it was purchased (by Swift), but this is the first I can recall of someone actually making it into the house.”
McEwan, whose hands were injured when he broke the glass door to gain entry to the house, did not seem like he planned to harm anyone, Lacey said.
Swift has dealt with a number of similar incidents this year, with an Iowa man getting arrested in July after he was found wandering near the 29-year-old singer’s home carrying a backpack with a baseball bat inside.
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