By Kelly Werthmann

DENVER (CBS4) – A thief went to great lengths to get inside a home in the Stapleton neighborhood last week, climbing up a stolen ladder to get a second-floor balcony.

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“They used a ladder that they had stolen from another neighbor’s yard or garage,” Corie King explained.

King was among the three people sleeping inside the home when a thief came in sometime late Thursday night or in the early hours Friday morning.

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“We didn’t hear them,” King told CBS4’s Kelly Werthmann. “Our dogs didn’t hear them. I sleep with a fan on, so it’s white noise so I don’t know if that caused me to not hear anything, or even the dogs for that matter.”

King described that her neighbor’s second-floor balcony is a bit lower than hers. She believes the thief used the ladder to get to her neighbor’s balcony, couldn’t get inside their locked door and windows, then jumped over a wall to get to her unlocked door.

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“And then they walked through our backdoor and we think they visited our fridge,” King said. “They drank a couple drinks out of some orange juice. Left that out for us.”

When the juice wasn’t enough, King said the thief went to an office area and rummaged through her desk and nearby shelves. That’s where they found credit cards, check books and car keys. Silently, the thief then went down stairs to the garage.

“We think they carried it all down to the garage because it’s quieter down there,” she said. “They went through all of our cars.”

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King said the thief got away with $800 in cash, a laptop, iPad, several pairs of sunglasses and credit cards.

“I’ve always felt extremely safe living in Stapleton,” she said. “It’s one of the reasons I moved here.”

In the last few weeks, King said there has been a rash of break-ins around her neighborhood.

“Since then we’ve been a little bit more vigilant, but clearly we didn’t think Batman was going to come up and come through our back door,” she said.

Frightened by the brazen home invasion, King said she and her roommates are taking more precautions to stay safe.

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“We are getting security cameras and will upgrade the locks,” she said. “We usually leave the windows on the second and third floor unlocked, but not anymore.”

King said she’s also locking her car after parking in the garage.

“I would say that’s probably my biggest lesson,” she said. “I had my purse, everything for work that I need in there. My car is locked now.”

And she is encouraging others to do the same.

“Lock your doors always. Lock your windows, even when they’re on that second floor,” she said.

Denver police are investigating this as a home invasion case.

Kelly Werthmann joined the CBS4 team as the morning reporter in 2012. After serving as weekend morning anchor, Kelly is now Covering Colorado First for CBS4 News at 10. Connect with Kelly on Facebook or follow her on Twitter @KellyCBS4.