NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) --A Northeast Philadelphia neighborhood is on alert as police continue their search for the man responsible for a home invasion and sexual assault.
The victim's father spoke to Action News Tuesday night. He says the terrifying ordeal began just before 4 a.m. Tuesday.
"He had a gun. We could've been in there dead. Our whole family could have been dead right now," the father said.
The father says it happened at their home on the 5100 block of Mebus Street, a block the family just moved to only four weeks ago.
He says he was sound asleep when he was awakened by his 25-year-old daughter.
"She was just crying, yelling and screaming saying, 'A man broke in here and put a gun to my head,'" the father said.
The 24-year-old female victim tells police the armed man forced his way into the home and tied up members of her family.
She tells police he then sexually assaulted her.
The father went through the home looking for him only to discover two adult relatives bound and gagged.
"And when I went down in the basement, my brother-in-law, he was tied up in the basement, they had him tied and gagged in the front of the basement," the father said.
The victim was taken to Temple University Hospital to be treated for injuries she suffered during the assault.
The incident has left neighbors nervous especially because they say there has been a strange man lurking on the block in recent days.
"Never been around here, staring around, driving through the driveway with the headlights off in the car, my dog was going off," neighbor Danielle Balderman said.
"It's a scary thing because somebody was looking through our window not too long ago and my son scared them off," neighbor April Abraham said.
Some neighbors say with the suspect still out on the loose, they are taking no chances.
"You don't want to be the next victim, you try not to be the next victim out here so you try to do what you can do to secure your house and your family," Abraham said.
The suspect is described as a black male, 5'6, 25 to 30 years old, dark complexion, wearing a black mask and blue jeans.
The Special Victims Unit is investigating.
Anyone with information should contact Philadelphia police.