WARREN (WWJ) – A fourth person has been arrested about 12 hours after an elderly Warren woman was tied up during a home invasion by masked suspects who apparently know her son.
Police say a fourth person believed to be connected to the home invasion was arrested at 8 p.m. Thursday without incident at the Applebee’s at 12 Mile and Van Dyke roads.
The incident happened around 5 a.m. Thursday at a home on Falmouth Drive, just south of I-696 near Hoover Road.
The 71-year-old victim told police that two intruders broke in, tied her up with some sort of straps, and then ransacked the house. During the robbery, the suspects also said the woman’s son’s name. The crooks made off with valuables, including the woman’s bank card — she gave up her PIN number after they threatened to kill her cat.
Police said when they arrested the suspects, late Thursday afternoon, they had stolen items on them that tied them to the crime. They said one suspect remains at large.
Talking to WWJ’s Mike Campell in the morning, the victim’s son, 39-year-old Bob Linton, described how he’d raced over when his mom called him for help.
“She said they’re two black males in their late 20s to 30s, they weren’t kids, and they were wearing surgical masks or, like, dust masks,” Linton said. “It’s nuts. It’s just absolutely nuts.”
Linton said the suspects were carrying flashlights and a baseball bat — and they took his mother’s most prized possession, the wedding ring her late husband had given her.
“She’s a 70-year-old woman, she had thyroid cancer, the ultimate victim,” he said. “It’s just so sorry that you steal from a veteran’s widow who’s got cancer, who lives by herself at home with her cat, and you came in with a baseball bat.”
After leaving the scene, Linton said the suspects went to cash in on the mere $150 his mother had in her checking account.
“They went to the Super Walmart at 12 Mile and Van Dyke and stole her money out of the ATM and then they, I don’t know how you scam people with Uber, but they got the Uber app somehow and they made a bunch of charges,” said Linton.
As for why the robbers would have used his name, Linton said he’s clueless.
“It’s weird because, I mean, I don’t know any criminals or anyone who would do this,” he said. “But I just assume they must have looked at her phone or something and seen the last text.”
Neighbors waking up were surprised to see police on their street, and even more surprised to hear what had happened.
“Yeah, it’s scary. That don’t normally happen, and we’ve been here for four years now,” Bianca Perry told WWJ’s Mike Campbell. “We haven’t had any kind of commotion like this in the four years we’ve been over here, so it’s a pretty good neighborhood.”
Police earlier released security camera images of possible suspects at the Walmart where this victim’s card was used.
Police said the four people in custody may be responsible for over a dozen other robberies in the area. Their names and other details were not immediately released pending formal charges.
Detectives will review the evidence and present warrant requests on Friday.