‘I felt violated’: Woman discovers intruder living in roof
On a whiteboard at Monica Green's home in North Rockhampton a morning doctor's appointment was listed for Monday this week.
But the mother of three was lucky: she and her daughter were seen early and returned home sooner than expected.
What they came back to explained weeks of disturbing signs - faulty security cameras, items moved about the house - which were initially brushed off: someone was living in the ceiling.
"We've been noticing strange things around the house and because I'm by myself with the three kids, I thought it might have been them," Mrs Green said.
"Now that I look back on it, I don't know why I thought that."
Entering the lounge room, Mrs Green noticed the back door wide open, the TV and aircon on, and a half-cooked meal of chicken nuggets on the stove.
She immediately called the police, who upon arrival found the manhole to her ceiling partially open.
They climbed up and found that someone had been living there.
It was called 'phrogging', Mrs Green said, "like a frog jumping from lily pad to lily pad except it's a person jumping from roof to roof".
"I felt violated," she said. "I felt like my personal space had been invaded. I felt shocked, terrified, scared.
"What has this person been doing in my house when I'm not home? Were they trying to harm me or my kids? Did they want one of my kids? Were they going to come down at night and murder us? There's all these unknown questions rolling around in my head.
"I'm finding myself constantly shaking at the smallest noise. I'm triple-checking all my locks now before I go to bed. I spent the night in the house last night with family here, but being alone in the home scares me."
Mrs Green and her husband, who was away for work at the time of the discovery, built and moved into their home in March last year.
The intruder, Mrs Green suspected, stole her keys and stood on her car to reach a manhole in the roof.
"I'm praying that they catch this person because I don't want them coming back, and knowing that they're caught will make me feel a bit better at night," she said.
"This is my home; this is where I'm meant to keep my kids safe.
"This is where I'm supposed to raise my family happily, safely, and now we're just victims of someone else's misfortune. They must have been really desperate to live in someone else's roof."
But, she said, "I've got my family around me and that's all that matters."
It is understood police have gathered forensic evidence from the scene and investigations are ongoing.