When it comes to homelessness, Portland, Oregon has a big issue. During my recent trip to the Pacific Northwest metropolis, I saw a large number of homeless people sitting on street corners. Many of these individuals were using drugs in broad daylight. When one resident of a Northeast Portland neighborhood discovered a strange homeless person sleeping on top of her child’s bed inside her home, the problem struck even closer to home.

While Kelsey Smith was outside her house having a conversation with a friend, something terrible occurred. The dogs began to bark, so Smith guessed that the workers had arrived to carry out the work they had promised to do in order to make her son’s bathroom more accessible. She went to the door and discovered no one was there. The contractors had not entered the home without Kelsey Smith’s knowledge, since her son’s bedroom door was also shut.

As she walked around her house, inspecting it with fresh eyes, Smith continued talking to her friend.

“The dogs continued to go crazy, specifically my chihuahua, which was running circles around my legs, which was really unusual,” said Smith.

“I followed her to where the other dog was into my children’s bedroom. My lab was standing on top of the bed on top of a pile of clean clothes that I had thrown on there. I walked in wondering if she had cornered a mouse or something because she was going crazy and I realized there was a person under there.”

Smith’s first assumption was that the figure in her son’s bed was her husband. After she called out his name with no response, she slowly realized that it was a stranger.

“I backed out of the room, talking to my friend on the phone saying I needed help, that there was a homeless person in the kid’s bed,” said Smith. “At that point she leapt up, I recognized her as a woman. She hopped off the bed and picked up the ottoman at the foot of the bed and bum rushed me, threw it at me, and then meandered out the door.”

In the video, Smith tells the woman to leave her house while the camera records. The footage was set up in advance by her son for medical purposes.

“My first thought was what is going on?” stated Smith. “The fear didn’t come until after she was gone and I started to run through the scenarios in my head about how this could have played out differently if my younger kids had been home. My 24-year-old son heard the commotion and came running upstairs, charging up the stairs because he knew something was wrong. He went straight out the door and into the street following her, calling 911.”

Terri Lynn Zinser, 54, was detained by police and charged with first-degree burglary and harassment.

The next day, Zinser was released from jail and returned to the same Portland neighborhood.

Smith said, “I actually just spoke with my mail carrier today who told me she’s started to carry mace because the woman was harassing her, that she couldn’t walk down the street without the woman screaming at her, swearing at her, following her around. She told me she doesn’t feel safe around that woman.”