Teen foils a hotel-room intruder by using a trick her cop stepdad taught her
via Josie Bowers / TikTok

Josie Bowers, a 19-year-old woman from Canada, shared the story of how she thwarted an intruder when she was 15. The viral TikTok video is a harrowing tale and also an important lesson for everyone to learn.

Josie was staying with her family at the Ocean City Hilton in Maryland when the incident occurred. She went to her hotel room alone to take a shower while her family was on the beach.

After getting out of the shower, she was alarmed when she noticed a long wire with a hook at the end wiggling its way out of the crack at the bottom of the front door. The hook was waving around, trying to catch the handle to open the door.


It's amazing that no one in the hallway noticed someone shoving a wire through the bottom of a door.

The intruders eventually caught the handle with the wire and pulled it down to enter the room. Without hesitation, Josie slammed the door shut and put on the deadbolt.

"My main thought was holy shit I'm in a towel right now and someone is about to break in and get me," she said on TikTok. "So the door opens a crack, and I just slammed it back shut and put the deadbolt on."

@josiebowers10

#duet with @braccozz #hotel #staysafe #storytime #fyp #oceancity #hilton


After the door was shut on the intruders, they pretended to work for the hotel. "So they tell me your keycard is broken and we need to get into the room and fix your keypad for you," she continued. "And so I open the door a tad bit, to see if it was a worker. It clearly wasn't, they were in jeans and a T-shirt. Hilton keeps it pretty classy, not the attire."


@josiebowers10

Reply to @emmade1rey #part2


Josie then remembered a trick that her stepfather, who's a police officer, once told her: Never let people know you're alone.

"I yelled 'Hey dad, there's someone here to fix the door.' As soon as they thought that I wasn't alone – and potentially my dad was there – they ran, they were gone," she said. A lot of people freeze in such a stressful situation but Josie was able to remember her stepfather's advice and it made all the difference.

Given their reaction, it's pretty clear that the intruders must have followed her up from the beach or had some inside information to know that she was alone. They didn't want anything to do with her father.

The TikTokker shared the video to show others what they should do in a similar situation and to remind them to never let anyone know they are alone.

"I'm glad I had this experience so I can teach people about it. Obviously, I'm safe but it could have ended up a lot worse," she said. "Be safe, you can get door stoppers, always put on the deadbolt."





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Macy's and Girls Inc. believe that all girls deserve to be safe, supported, and valued. However, racial disparities continue to exist for young people when it comes to education levels, employment, and opportunities for growth. Add to that the gender divide, and it's clear to see why it's important for girls of color to have access to mentors who can equip them with the tools needed to navigate gender, economic, and social barriers.

Anissa Rivera is one of those mentors. Rivera is a recent Program Manager at the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc., a nonprofit focusing on the holistic development of girls ages 5-18. The goal of the organization is to provide a safe space for girls to develop long-lasting mentoring relationships and build the skills, knowledge, and attitudes to thrive now and as adults.

Rivera spent years of her career working within the themes of self and community empowerment with young people — encouraging them to tap into their full potential. Her passion for youth development and female empowerment eventually led her to Girls Inc., where she served as an agent of positive change helping to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold.

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Inspiring young women from all backgrounds is why Macy's has continued to partner with Girls Inc. for the second year in a row. The partnership will support mentoring programming that offers girls career readiness, college preparation, financial literacy, and more. Last year, Macy's raised over $1.3M for Girls Inc. in support of this program along with their Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programming for more than 26,000 girls. Studies show that girls who participated are more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, score higher on standardized math tests, and be more equipped for college and campus life.

Thanks to mentors like Rivera, girls across the country have the tools they need to excel in school and the confidence to change the world. With your help, we can give even more girls the opportunity to rise up. Throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases or donate online to support Girls Inc. at Macys.com/MacysGives.

Who runs the world? Girls!

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Over the past six years, it feels like race relations have been on the decline in the U.S. We've lived through Donald Trump's appeals to America's racist underbelly. The nation has endured countless murders of unarmed Black people by police. We've also been bombarded with viral videos of people calling the police on people of color for simply going about their daily lives.

Earlier this year there was a series of incidents in which Asian-Americans were the targets of racist attacks inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Given all that we've seen in the past half-decade, it makes sense for many to believe that race relations in the U.S. are on the decline.

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Did you know that girls who are encouraged to discover and develop their strengths tend to be more likely to achieve their goals? It's true. The question, however, is how to encourage girls to develop self-confidence and grow up healthy, educated, and independent.

The answer lies in Girls Inc., a national nonprofit serving girls ages 5-18 in more than 350 cities across North America. Since first forming in 1864 to serve girls and young women who were experiencing upheaval in the aftermath of the Civil War, they've been on a mission to inspire girls to kick butt and step into leadership roles — today and in the future.

This is why Macy's has committed to partnering with Girls Inc. and making it easy to support their mission. In a national campaign running throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases to the nearest dollar or donate online to support Girls Inc. and empower girls throughout the country.


Kaylin St. Victor, a senior at Brentwood High School in New York, is one of those girls. She became involved in the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc. when she was in 9th grade, quickly becoming a role model for her peers.

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Within her first year in the organization, she bravely took on speaking opportunities and participated in several summer programs focused on advocacy, leadership, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). "The women that I met each have a story that inspires me to become a better person than I was yesterday," said St. Victor. She credits her time at Girls Inc. with making her stronger and more comfortable in her own skin — confidence that directly translates to high achievement in education and the workforce.

In 2020, Macy's helped raise $1.3 million in support of their STEM and college and career readiness programming for more than 26,000 girls. In fact, according to a recent study, Girls Inc. girls are significantly more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, to be interested in STEM careers, and to perform better on standardized math tests.

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