Family: Man with knife tried breaking into house

Posted at 11:39 PM, Aug 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-15 10:28:39-04

A Cheektowaga family says they woke up to a knife-wielding man trying to open their front door early Saturday morning.

Cheektowaga Police say a 61-year-old Buffalo man was on the family's porch on Straley Ave with a knife around 2am. Gary Geil of West Utica Street is facing charges of criminal mischief, obstructing government administration, trespass, menacing and criminal possession of a weapon.

The family wants to thank police for responding so quickly and keeping everyone inside the home safe.

Matt Colvin chased the man away from his house before an officer stepped in.

"A police officer pulled up and jumped out of his car," Matt explained. "He asked me where he was then spotted him running with the knife and gave chase."

Matt is still in awe of that officer's bravery.

"He didn't think twice before he ran after him," he said. "He might say that he does it every day, but he put his life on the line. He was totally calm and he kept his composure."

Cheektowaga Police tell 7 Eyewitness News that it was Officer Jeffrey Filipski who pursued the suspect.

The family also gives other officers involved a lot of credit for helping them get through a terrifying night.

"They were supportive," Matt's wife Melanie Colvin said. "We were all freaked out and amped up from what happened. They sat there and listened to us."

After making sure everyone was safe, Melanie was particularly upset about the damage done to her garden.

"Gardening is important to me and the girls," she said. Her daughters Kayla and Haley were both home during the incident. "It's our way of bonding."

On Sunday morning, the Colvins went outside to look over the damage in daylight. On their porch they found three new potted plants to help fill holes in the garden.

They're not sure who left them behind, but think it's just another example of fine police work.