Armed robbers tie up family in Whitestone home invasion


| mchan@queenscourier.com |

THE COURIER/Graphic image
THE COURIER/Graphic image

A Whitestone family was tied up when armed robbers broke into their home early Thursday morning.

Four armed robbers broke into a home on a quiet Whitestone street early Thursday morning, tied up a family and stole $87,000 in cash and jewelry, a police source said.

The victims — including two young girls, ages 7 and 10 — were sleeping during the 4 a.m. invasion on 163rd Street, police said.

The thieves, all wearing black ski masks, entered the home, bound the family and held them at gunpoint. They stole $65,000 in jewelry and about $22,000 in cash, according to a law enforcement source.

The family was then moved into a closet and were told to count to 100, the source said. The suspects fled in an unknown direction.

Sources said the father owns an electric company in New Rochelle.

No arrests have been made yet, and the investigation is ongoing, police said. There were no reported injuries.

It was unclear how the suspects gained access to the house.

Home invasions in the 109th Precinct are “extremely rare,” police sources said. The few that occur, they said, are usually drug related or involve homeowners who own a business and take large amounts of cash home.

Residents said the invasion has shaken the peaceful neighborhood.

“Everybody’s concerned,” said Alfredo Centola, president of the Malba Gardens Civic Association. “People are locking their doors, keeping their eyes open. We’re just alert.”

Neighbor Dolores Oliveri said the father is a “hard worker and a good husband.”

“They’re a nice family,” she said. “It’s a terrible thing.”

All four suspects are men in their 20s, and one was wearing red sneakers with a black Nike swoosh, said the NYPD.

Police released this video of one of the suspects:

Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

 

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