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The scent of an alleged burglar's shoes was all Falko the police dog needed to track her down on Madison's South Side Monday night, with human officers following the track to make the arrest.

Debra Johnson, 35, Madison, was tentatively charged with burglary, disorderly conduct and criminal damage to property, Madison police said.

Falko picked up the suspect's scent when she left her sneakers at the home she allegedly was trying to steal from.

"Officers were called to the residence on Waunona Way for a burglary in progress," said police spokesman Joel DeSpain. "The 59-year-old resident heard an intruder break into the basement, so she locked herself in a bedroom."

The woman's husband came home a few moments later and confronted the suspect.

"She cut her hand when she broke the basement window, and she had it wrapped in a towel," DeSpain said. "She then fled barefoot down the street."

Falko was presented with one of the suspect's shoes, and was given the command to track.

"He led officers through backyards and woods before lying down near another neighborhood home," DeSpain said. "The suspect resides at that address."

Johnson was found at home and was arrested.

The intended victims believe nothing was stolen from their house because the burglary had been interrupted.

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Bill Novak is a general assignment reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal.