Police: Armed home invaders still at large
WEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. (WSVN) -- Police are still searching for the perpetrators who allegedly forced their way into the South Florida home of two elderly women, beat them and robbed them.
The incident occurred Thursday afternoon in the area of Southwest Third Street and 87th Path in West Miami-Dade.
According to police, 91-year-old Berta Garcia and her 63-year-old daughter, Karla Vigon-Montenegro, were home when they heard a knock at the door. "They heard somebody knock on the door," said Miami-Dade Police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta. "When they asked who it was, they stated that they were making a delivery."
Neighbors said the two men claimed they were delivering medication. "They were saying they were from [a] pharmacy," said nearby resident Dafne Quiroga.
When the women opened the door, two armed men, one of whom was wearing a mask, rushed inside. "They forced their way inside," said Zabaleta. "They were able to tie the victims up, they battered the victims, and then they took an undetermined amount of cash."
After almost an hour, authorities said the 63-year-old woman loosened the tape and managed to call police. Both women were transported to an area hospital. Their condition remains unknown at this time. Friday afternoon, the women had still to return to their home.
The robbers fled the victims' residence in their white 2010 460 LS Lexus, Florida tag #993-XUJ. Police said they located the luxury sedan 24 hours later at a parking lot, a few blocks from the women's home.
Neighbors are shocked by the home invasion. A woman who did not want to give her name said, "In New York, we have the New York mentality, and I don't open doors for anybody. Someone would have to call me to make an appointment in anticipation to open the door."
A man said this neighborhood has always been safe, but he still takes precautions. "We have security cameras on our home," he said speaking through a translator, "but this has always been a very calm neighborhood."
Quiroga said she is now concerned for her children's safety. "I told him that it's so dangerous that they cannot even go outside and play, nothing, cause somebody can come and grab them," said Quiroga. "You know ... it's very sad, because even though I'm watching [them], I won't let them go out and play."
Miami-Dade Police are advising residents to beware of opening the door to strangers. "Look through the peep hole. If they can't identify themselves, don't open the door," said Zabaleta. "Call police, let us come out and investigate this."
Police continue to investigate.
If you have any information on these men, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a reward.
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