A Southwest Side resident watching a thunderstorm roll in early Friday morning was startled to see three masked men in her kitchen, but the men fled when she started yelling at them.
The burglary happened at about 1:30 a.m. in the 2700 block of Tucson Trail, Madison police said.
The 35-year-old woman was not injured.
Police said the woman was lying on her couch in the living room when she saw the masked men, dressed in black, in the kitchen.
"She quickly yelled at the burglars, which scared them out of her house," said Sgt. Kurt Wege. "From there they fled to a white sedan that was waiting outside."
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Police spokesman Joel DeSpain said the sedan might be the same car used earlier in the week during an auto theft on the city's Far West Side.
"It appears likely the suspects were able to access the woman's house from items that were left in her unlocked vehicle," Wege said.
"This has become an increasingly common tactic for criminals," Wege said. "We ask everyone to please lock your vehicles and belongings."