Home invader terrorizes, robs family

January 29, 2008 3:47:31 PM PST
A man with a gun forced his way into their home, terrorized them and then robbed the place.

Washington Twp. Police Chief Raphael Muniz said the masked gunman was dressed all in black when he entered the Samantha Court home this morning.

Hidden in the back seat of the family's car, he waited until the mother got inside the car to take one of her four boys to school. He then pulled a gun and ordered them inside the house. He tied her up along with her husband and their oldest son, police said.

Police received a 911 hang-up call, but when they went to investigate it appeared there was no trouble. Unbeknownst to them, that wasn't the case.

"As the wife stepped out and spoke to the officers and said she was okay, the gunman was in the bedroom," said Muniz.

Police left, but 15 minutes later got another 911 call telling them a masked gunman had just gotten away from the house with tens of thousands of dollars of cash stuffed in a duffel bag.

The victim owns a bar on South Street in Philadelphia and police think the suspect may have followed him home to execute this carefully planned holdup.

"We just feel the way it was conducted, he knew exactly what to do," said Muniz.

"I can't even fathom it. Imagine you're taking your child to school in the morning and the guy's in the back seat and pointing a gun to you, to your head and your child's head," said neighbor Diane Marotta.

Police say the family is shaken, but no one was hurt.

"An incident had happened at his work before. After that he was in serious car accident. God bless him. He's the guy with 9 lives," said neighbor Antonette Miranda.

Investigators say in a terrifying situation like this one, the victims did exactly the right thing.

"Cooperation is very important and as traumatic psychologically as this may be, no one was harmed physically," said Deputy Chief John Dalesandro.