It started early Wednesday morning when burglars broke into her home while she was asleep inside. That afternoon, paparazzi surrounded her townhouse, eager to get her thoughts on the matter. By Thursday, we learned she had also separated from her spouse of seven years.
To put it kindly, all in all, it was a bad couple of days for actress Keri Russell. And her handling of the situation is why we're honoring her in this week's gossip roundup.
The New York Post was the first outlet to write about the home invasion, which happened on December 4. According to police, the star of "The Americans" was asleep on the basement level of her Brooklyn Heights abode when the perpetrators entered through an open, first-floor window. After Keri heard their voices, she went upstairs and noticed that a Filson bag, a Macbook Air and some jewelry had gone missing. She immediately called 911.
The thieves, meanwhile, got away but managed to trespass into another residence nearby. The denizen there called the cops too. The authorities then canvassed the area and arrested two people. Keri's possessions were found and returned.
Access Hollywood confirmed the incident with the New York Police Department. They said they would not release a report or mug shots, and that was pretty much all they had on the occurrence.
Keri, however, was willing to speak -- and to the media, shockingly enough. The 37-year-old released a statement through her rep, saying: "The break-in did happen. Everyone is fine. Keri sends her thanks to the police."
Within hours, video surfaced of photographers waiting for the mother of two to return home with her daughter Willa. Upon arrival, Keri politely thanked the police and reiterated that "Everything's OK." She offered a brief soundbite for the cameras, smiled and closed the front door.
For a second there, the drama was seemingly over. Now, for the bombshell...
On Thursday, People magazine announced they had an exclusive: Keri was separating from her husband Shane Deary. Another disclosure -- the two have been separated since the summer.
The announcement sent alarm bells throughout the entertainment community. Is it possible the robbers had inadvertently "outed" the former Disney entertainer into confessing why her partner was not at home when the burglary happened?
That's when it all clicked for me. I remember that when I first heard about the robbery, I looked into public records for Keri's address. They showed she lived on one street, not the one where the cops insisted the crime took place. I thought it was kind of strange that Keri owned a house and was possibly renting another in roughly the same area. Now, we seem to know why.
While it's unfortunate that Keri felt that she had to fess up about her marital situation in light of the theft, I applaud her for telling the truth immediately. Had she not done so, I think the story would have dragged on and on with press inquiry after press inquiry, and well, who would want that?
Sometimes honesty can be great PR and Keri couldn't have put in a better, more gracious performance.
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