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Congressman Nabs Intruder At Capitol Hill Row House

October 7, 1988

WASHINGTON (AP) _ A Pennsylvania congressman nabbed a startled intruder who hid out in the powder room of the lawmaker’s Capitol Hill row house while police dusted for fingerprints and completed their investigation without searching the home.

Rep. Lawrence Coughlin, R-Pa., said his wife, Susan, called police early Wednesday after the family dog began ″kicking up a fuss″ and he discovered that someone apparently had pried open the front window.

The police discovered that Mrs. Coughlin’s purse was missing, ″dusted the window for fingerprints and got a list of the contents of my wife’s pocketbook,″ Coughlin said.

″As they were going out the door, I walked into the powder room and put on the light and found the gentleman with my wife’s pocketbook on his shoulder,″ he continued.

″I don’t know who was more startled,″ said Coughlin, 59. ″I remember lunging at him and the next thing I knew I was on top of him. I was so angry.″

Police said they found Coughlin wrestling with the young man.

″I guess it was my Marine Corps training,″ the congressman said.

Recco D. Bouknight, 22, was arrested and charged with burglary, city police said Thursday.

″Oddly enough, police did not search the house,″ Coughlin said. ″On reflection now, I think that would be an automatic thing to do, I guess.″

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