Man Demands Pate After Breaking Into Woman's Home

After a bizarre break-in on St. Thomas, a man confronts a homeowner with a culinary demand for pâté, leading to his arrest on multiple charges, including burglary and assault on a law enforcement officer

  • Janeka Simon
  • July 08, 2024

The VIPD has not provided a mugshot of Caleb Browne.

ST. THOMAS — One man is facing several felony charges after reportedly breaking into a woman’s house and demanding she cook him a popular local delicacy.

According to court documents, police were dispatched to Lindbergh Bay on June 27 in reference to a burglary. As they approached the location, the responding officer heard a woman screaming for help, and then spotted a man standing on a wall nearby. He ignored the officer’s commands to approach and instead jumped off the wall and reportedly took off running eastward on Crown Mountain Road, police in pursuit.

The man, subsequently identified as Caleb Browne, reportedly circled back to the residence, and the officer found him sitting behind a wall on the lower level of the structure. Browne again reportedly ignored the instructions given by police, resulting in the officer deploying their taser twice to gain compliance. With the taser only partially effective, Browne began to struggle as the officer attempted to handcuff him, resulting in the two individuals tumbling together down the hill into some bushes at the bottom.

The officer was able to regain control of the situation, pinning Browne to the ground while radioing for assistance. Eventually, with the help of two colleagues, Browne was taken into custody and taken to seek medical attention for his minor injuries.

Police then spoke to the woman whose house had been broken into. She told officers that she was home at around 7:20 p.m. when she heard a noise coming from another room. Getting up to investigate, she found Browne in her living room holding a large stick. When he spotted her, Browne — who is reportedly a relative of the woman’s late husband — shouted at her to make him a pâté. She instead ordered him out of her house and called 911 for assistance. An irate Browne reportedly began cursing and threatening the woman with violence, until he heard the police approaching, at which point he decided to make his exit.

Further investigation by police revealed that the woman had made a police report against Browne the day prior to the incident. In her report, she stated that he had stolen her house keys. Browne had reportedly been found carrying those keys at the time of his arrest, however because the door of the house had been latched when arrived, Browne used the stick to force open the latch in order to gain entry.

He was ultimately charged with first-degree burglary and disturbance of the peace as acts of domestic violence. He was also charged with aggravated assault and battery on an officer, and interfering with an officer discharging their duties.

During his first court appearance on June 28, Magistrate Simone VanHolten-Turnbull ordered that a cursory evaluation of Browne’s mental capacity be performed by the Bureau of Corrections. He returned to court on July 2 for his advice of rights hearing, in which the magistrate found probable cause to uphold all charges against him.

Bail was set at $15,000, with 10 percent in cash required to secure his release ahead of trial. Once released from detention, Browne is expected to report to the probation office every week via telephone, and immediately begin a work search, with written proof provided to the probation office every week. He must further report to the Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse in the Department of Health for a psychological evaluation. Browne has been ordered by the court to comply with the evaluation and any conditions placed on him by the health department.

His next court appearance is scheduled for July 19.

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