A 26-year-old New Jersey man broke into the beachfront Rhode Island mansion of singer-songwriter Taylor Swift on Friday and removed his shoes because he wanted to be polite, police said.
Richard J. McEwan, of Milford, is the third man this summer to attempt to enter the 11,744-square-foot home in Westerly since July, but the first to make it inside, according to Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey.
Swift was not home when a witness saw McEwan scale a wall along the western edge of the 5-plus acre property around 5:10 p.m, Lacey said. Seconds later, a motion-detector activated a burglary alarm, triggering a police response.
Officers and the security guard soon found McEwan standing in the foyer after they searched the outside of the seven bedroom, nine bathroom house. The Hunterdon County man made a run for it, but was arrested after a short chase, according to police.
McEwan later told investigators he took off his orange shoes when he got inside because he was taught it was polite to remove shoes when a guest in someone’s home.
He got into the house by breaking a glass door and began wandering the mansion to find Taylor, according to Lacey. Police said he had no weapons and didn’t intend to hurt anyone.
McEwan, who drove to Westerly from New Jersey earlier in the day, is charged with breaking and entering a home without the owner’s consent and willful trespassing. He posted a $5,000 bond and was released.