Quick-Thinking Couple Fends Off Would-Be Manhattan Apartment Invaders: Cops - NBC New York

Quick-Thinking Couple Fends Off Would-Be Manhattan Apartment Invaders: Cops

One woman was hit in the elbow by an air pistol shot as she tried to shut the door; the other sprayed one of the suspects in the face with a chemical substance

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Young Moms Fight Off Home Intruders in Harlem

    Two young mothers fended off home intruders with pepper spray as their young daughter was in the Harlem home. Wale Aliyu reports.

    (Published Friday, Nov. 9, 2018)

    What to Know

    • Four suspects knocked on the Manhattan apartment door of two women one day last month; they tried to force their way inside

    • The women fought back; one was hit in the elbow by an air pistol shot. The other sprayed one of the suspects in the face with a substance

    • Anyone with information on the attack is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS

    Two women managed to fight off four would-be home invaders who knocked on their Manhattan apartment door around dinnertime one day last month and tried to force their way in, police say. 

    Surveillance video shows the four suspects walk into the building on West 131st Street and Frederick Douglass Boulevard around 7 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 14. They head down a hallway in single file.

    Police say one of them knocked on the door of the 23-year-old and 25-year-old victims' apartment. When they opened it, one of the men told the couple wanted to speak with them; he tried to force open the door, cops say. 

    "I heard them saying to my wife, 'Can we talk?' and I'm like, who is going to knock on someone's door asking if we can talk?" one of the victims said. 

    The women pushed the door against him to keep him out, but he whipped out an air pistol and fired one shot at the 23-year-old woman, striking her on the elbow. The 25-year-old woman then sprayed him in the face with an unknown chemical substance; he backed out of the doorway and the victims slammed the door. 

    The four suspects then calmly took the elevator back down and walked out to West 131st Street. 

    It wasn't until News 4 showed the victims surveillance video of the suspects on Friday that they realized there were four attackers.

    "It's crazy because you now show me the video, and I never knew that was four of them," one of the women said, crying. "And it could have been worse for us. We have an autistic daughter." 

    "This is something I cannot talk about calmly," she said. "Look, this is bad. I have the shakes." 

    She wondered why her family was targeted, saying, "We're a gay couple? Or could it be they found out it was just three girls living here? I don't know but it's scary." 

    @_sarapizzi/Instagram

    The family has been left traumatized by the ordeal and are frightened to even leave their home.

    "We don't want to go outside. We don't even go outside, if we do, it's in the morning, then we close the door and nothing else, no more." 

    The couple has lived in the apartment for about three years and have no clue who the men are or why they tried to invade their home. Anyone who recognizes them is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

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