Family under attack stops serial killer

"48 Hours Live to Tell:" A 15-year-old girl and her parents summon the courage to stop a serial killer in his tracks and save an innocent man accused of murder

Shea McDonough: It was the scariest thing I had ever seen. I saw a knife ... a guy that was probably three times the size of my dad ... going after my mom and my dad.

Jeannie McDonough: He was dressed all in black - black pants, black mask. Just a terrorizing figure. And he was huge.

Shea McDonough: My dad just jumped on top of him ... he was trying to grab the knife. I was just trying to get out of bed.

Kevin McDonough: I was saying, "Get the knife! Get the knife!"

Jeannie McDonough: The knife was very big. The blade was - I'm gonna say that long (motioning with her hands). And so I tried to grab the grip of the knife, but the man's hand was huge and it was ineffective ... it wasn't doing anything. So I just grabbed the blade of the knife, because I didn't know what to do.

Kevin McDonough: I instinctively told my daughter, "Call 911 and get my gun." I don't have a gun. But something inside me told me to say that, which would keep him on his guard.

911 dispatcher: What's going on?
Shea McDonough: A man came in with a gun and put it to my mouth...
911 dispatcher: Alright, alright, just relax
Kevin McDonough heard in background "Hurry up"!
911 dispatcher: Is he still there?
Shea screams

Shea McDonough: I was so confusing with the dispatcher and I was so flustered that I didn't even know what I was saying on the phone.

Kevin McDonough: All of a sudden he got a burst of adrenaline, and he erected himself up off the bed with me on his back ... That's when I - I knew I was in some deep s--t.

Jeannie McDonough: When the man stood up with Kevin on his back, the knife slid through my hands. I thought, "Oh, this is it, we're all dead."

Shea McDonough: It was so stop and go. One minute my dad had him under control and then he'd freak out again. And it - it was scary.

Kevin McDonough: In high school, I wrestled... I knew a choke hold was the only thing with a guy of this size, that I had a chance on restraining him and takin' him down, was if I took his wind out ... And I choked him on the throat and threw my weight back and pulled him with me. And we hit the floor.

Jeannie McDonough: And so at that moment I turned around and I grabbed the knife again, I grabbed the blade of the knife again.

Shea McDonough: And I ran back into the bathroom and saw a lot of blood. And I didn't know what it was coming from, and then I looked down and I saw my mom holding onto the knife for dear life and she wouldn't let go of it.

Jeannie McDonough: I was pissed. And all I could think about was, "I need to distract this guy so that he doesn't try to do anything else." ...So I'm screaming at him, I'm like, "What were you thinking?" That's when the man spoke and said, "I just wanted money." (mimicking his Southern drawl.) And I heard the accent, and Kevin and I looked at each other and went, "Who is this? Who is sitting in front of us?"

Kevin McDonough: And he said, "I'm nobody, let me go." And I said to him-- I said, "You-- you're not going anywhere you fat f--k."

Shea McDonough: When I saw the police come into the driveway, I was ecstatic. I was so relieved and so happy cause I knew that at that point, everything was gonna be fine.

And the second that the first officer got into the house, he just grabbed the guy and got him under control and everything.

I didn't cry. I just immediately hugged my dad. He was really choked up. It really hadn't hit him yet. He just -- I don't think it hit any of us, what had happened.

Jeannie McDonough: As I left the room ... Shea was with me. We just held onto each other for a little bit. And I wasn't gonna let go of her for the life of me.

Det. George Tyros | Chelmsford, Mass., Police Dept.: When I first arrived at the scene, I wasn't sure what to expect at that point. It was very serious.

The sergeant told me that a man had broken into the house. He was heavily armed. Different types of weapons - weapons that I've never seen before. Chinese throwing stars, choking wires, along with this horrifying mask.

Kevin McDonough: After they left our house with this intruder, Jeannie and Shea went by ambulance to the hospital to tend to Jeannie's wounds.

Jeannie McDonough: Ryan was in shock when he found out what happened. He felt bad that he wasn't there, that he was spending the night at his friend Ricky's house.

Shea McDonough: And it's unfortunate cause he shouldn't. Cause it's not his fault in the slightest bit. I think he just wishes that he was there to just protect us.

Jeannie McDonough: Detective Tyros told me... that the man that had broken into our house was a long haul trucker... His name was Adam Leroy Lane - lived in North Carolina and was running routes up and down from - North Carolina, up to Nashua, New Hampshire, and various... locations throughout the metropolitan Boston area.

Shea McDonough: He had a wife and he had three daughters. That made me sick to my stomach to know.

Det. George Tyros: On August 2nd, a few days later, we conducted a search warrant of Adam Leroy Lane's truck. We found his log book, receipts - some more knives.

We also found a movie inside of a DVD player. That movie's titled "Hunting Humans." This movie is about a serial killer that goes around randomly killing people without any motive or reason, other than to just kill people.

Later I learned that Adam Leroy Lane was on the prowl in our town for approximately five hours. He tried to get into at least three other houses before eventually getting into the McDonough residence through an unlocked door.

He was out in our town hunting humans that night.

We started to think, "Maybe he's done this in other places, and just hasn't been caught yet."