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'I'm traumatized' | Alexandria mother robbed at gunpoint in overnight home invasion

Police said the home invasion happened around 5:30 a.m. on Saturday in a gated community on Catlin Lane.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Police in Alexandria are investigating a home invasion in a gated community over the weekend. 

The incident happened before 5:30 a.m. on Saturday in the 1400 block of Catlin Lane in the West End community of Alexandria. 

"Suspects gained entry to the home through unknown means, brandished a weapon, and took valuables and a vehicle from the victim," police said. "No injuries were reported."

The victim, a mother who wanted to conceal her identity out of fear, said she woke up to the burst of her bedroom door. 

"I heard the bedroom door open aggressively so I opened my eyes to a black figure with a silver gun pointed to me," she said. "He grabbed my arm and basically told me if I screamed that he was going to shoot me and I was just terrified."

Her teenage daughter was asleep in another bedroom as she was placed on the floor with her arms tied in the kitchen. She recalled the gunman letting accomplices in as they rummaged through all of their belongings and stole many items including their car, contents of their safe, electronics, purse and ID, and even candy. 

"One got in my face pulled, up one of these stools while I was on the floor and repeated my name on the driver's license and told me if I called police after, that they would come back and kill me and my daughter," the woman said. "When they left, I was able to hop up and grabbed the scissors off the counter and cut my legs loose."

The victim shared surveillance video of two of the culprits who tried to get up on the balcony but failed. The timestamp was 4:38 a.m., just 50 minutes prior to the incident. She said eventually one made it up and broke through the balcony door. Another Ring video from a different vantage pointed to a possible three other suspects. 

"I'm traumatized, I'm not going to lie," she added. "I can't even function properly and I feel like not myself, like kind of dull."

Her family has been staying at a hotel hoping to move out. 

It is unclear if the house was targeted or random, but she questioned if their car may have been an attraction to bad guys looking for an opportunity. 

"We were a little bit naïve not having the proper security measures just because we thought we lived in a gated community," the victim added. "Get security if you don't have it in your home. If you have a sliding glass door, have a reinforced bar, be more aware and know your neighbors because they have to come together to provide a sense of community and comfort."

Other neighbors including Jacquelyn Williams knew about the incident after the property emailed residents. In the surveillance video, the same two people could be seen running past her home.

"To know they were that close to my home and it could have been me made me feel though now I have to look into having some type of protection outside of what I already have," Williams said. 

Descriptions of the suspects have not been released. 

Police are asking anyone with information related to this incident to reach out to APD Detective Stephen Riley by phone at 703.246.6225, email Stephen.Riley@alexandriava.gov or call APD’s non-emergency line at 703.746.4444.

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