Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The True Story of Thomas Jabin Berry

History of Violence Pt. 1

Ann Pryor [a pseudonym] lived only a few houses away from Berry's residence in Englehard. Ann had become close friends with Berry's wife, and she and her boyfriend would frequently hang out with the couple.

One night during the summer of 1992, Berry knocked on the back door of Ann's home at about 3:00a.m. Ann asked him to leave, and then went back to bed. Then, Ann would later testify at Berry's trial, within minutes of returning to her bedroom, Berry broke into her home, entered her bed with his pants off, and climbed on top of her. While he was attempting to penetrate her, Ann noticed that his arm was bleeding. Berry told her that he had cut it while breaking and climbing through her kitchen window.

Ann told Berry that she would do whatever he wanted, but that he should let her tend to the wound on his arm first. When Berry agreed, Ann went into the kitchen. In her testimony, she was unable to remember if she got Berry a glass of water to calm him or if she wrapped his arm for him. What she did remember was leaving through the back door and running three blocks to a friend's house. She admitted that Berry didn't attempt to stop her, and that he had no weapon with him.

Ann never filed a complaint regarding the break-in or the assault, though she did state that she mentioned the incident to a deputy she met at the Seafood Festival a short time later.

Thomas Berry's version of his encounter with Ann Pryor was a little different.

According to Berry, he and Ann's boyfriend had been out drinking when the two decided that it would be a grand idea to switch partners for the evening. It was only after Ann told him to leaveand after the subsequent breaking and entering and attempted sexual assaultthat Berry acknowledged that Ann may not have been aware of the agreement between the two men.

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