Man accused of following woman on roof is charged

FILE - In this Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014 file photo, Melora Rivera, who fled her house through an attic window to escape an intruder, seen on the roof behind her, waits for help after an early-morning break-in at her house in the Venice neighborhood of Los Angeles. The intruder, later identified as Christian Hicks, was arrested by Los Angeles police officers, Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. ( AP Photo/Venice311.org, Alex Thompson, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A man accused of breaking into a woman’s house in Venice and following her onto the roof as she tried to escape has been charged in the case.

City News Service says 29-year-old Christian Hicks pleaded not guilty Friday to a felony count of first-degree burglary with a person present.

A passerby’s photo of Melora Rivera cowering under a second-story ledge, frantically calling police as the intruder loomed above her has gone viral.

Officers soon surrounded the house on Wednesday and arrested Hicks, described by neighbors as a homeless person often seen in the area.

A criminal complaint filed by Los Angeles County prosecutors alleges that Hicks was convicted in 2008 of carrying an unregistered loaded handgun and in 2011 of corporal injury to a spouse, cohabitant or child’s parent.

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