"Not your house anymore:" Connecticut man attempts to move into family's home
“Not your house anymore:” Connecticut man attempts to move into family’s home
Benjamin Dahm, courtesy of Connecticut State Police.

Zach Murdock

Hartford Courant

A Ledyard man was arrested inside another family’s Old Lyme home after a bizarre break-in and encounter with police Monday evening.

Benjamin Dahm, 31, apparently intended to claim the family’s Meetinghouse Lane home as his own until police broke into the house themselves and found Dahm hiding in a second-floor bathroom, state police records show.

“I live here with my girlfriend, there shouldn’t be any problems, she will be home shortly,” Dahm told the officers holding him at gunpoint, according to an incident report.

Except Dahm was 20 miles away from his Gales Ferry apartment and there were problems: He was arrested and charged with third-degree burglary, second-degree criminal trespass, disorderly conduct and interfering with an officer, court records show.

The strange incident began around 5 p.m. Monday when the Old Lyme family’s 16-year-old son arrived home and found an unfamiliar car without any license plates parked in the garage, he told police.

The teen found the front door to the house locked and to his surprise spotted a man he did not know inside the house in just shorts, without a shirt, according to the report. The man saw the teen and opened the window to address him.

“This isn’t your house anymore,” Dahm told the teen before shutting the window, the teen said.

A landscaper arriving to work on the property arrived just after the encounter and called police while the stunned teen called his mother to try to explain the situation, according to the report.

When state police troopers arrived, they struggled to get Dahm’s attention because of loud music blaring inside the home. Eventually Dahm made eye contact with a trooper but the exterior doors remained locked and he would not leave the property, the report said.

Troopers and a police dog found a way into the home using the basement storm hatch and ordered Dahm to leave, but after receiving no answer again, troopers entered the home and ultimately found him hiding in an upstairs bathroom, according to the incident report.

A check of the house after Dahm’s arrest revealed no visible damage and apparently no items were stolen from home.

The state police report makes no other references to Dahm’s mental state or whether he may have been intoxicated or impaired in any way. The vehicle Dahm apparently used to get to the house also was towed.

Dahm remained in custody Tuesday in lieu of $50,000 bond. He has another half-dozen active criminal and motor vehicle cases pending in various Connecticut courts from April through July, including charges for disorderly conduct, filing a false incident report and violating the conditions of his release, court records show.

Zach Murdock can be reached at zmurdock@courant.com.

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