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4-year-old girl held at gunpoint during home robbery

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INDIANAPOLIS (Dec 7, 2015) - Indianapolis Metropolitan Police are searching for three armed suspects who broke into a west side home and held a 4-year-old girl and her father at gunpoint Sunday night.

Police responded to a 911 call just after 10 p.m. Sunday in the 2100 block of White Avenue. It is believed a neighbor made the call after seeing three suspects kicking in a door to force their way into a house.

When police arrived at the robbery location, a 30-year-old man told officers he was in a back room when he heard a loud boom coming from the front of the house. He said he heard several males shouting “police” as they entered the home.

The man said he was holding his daughter in his arms when he stepped out into a hallway and came face-to-face with the intruders.

The victim told police the three suspects were armed with handguns. He described the three black males as being 18 to 21 years of age, about 5’8’’ to 6’0’’ tall. The victim noticed one of the suspects was wearing True Religion brand jeans.

The victim said he was holding his daughter as the suspects pointed their guns at him, saying “we will shoot you if we don’t find cash.”

“Any time they pointed that gun at him, they could have struck the little child,” said IMPD Officer Chris Wilburn.

The victim said the suspects rooted through the house, grabbing $200 cash from his pocket, a pair of True Religion jeans, and an Xbox One gaming system.  But the 911 call from the neighbor apparently cut the robbery short. The suspects quickly ran out the backdoor when they heard police arriving outside.

“This crime was thwarted because law enforcement were alerted very soon and began the process of arriving in an expedited fashion,” Wilburn said.

Barbara Gold, who lives nearby said she and other neighbors look out for each other. She said she spoke to the robbery victim a short time after the break in.

“He said he didn’t know who called them (police), but whoever called them, he thinks they might have saved his life,” Gold said.

Gold also said the 4-year-old girl appeared terrified a couple hours after the robbery.

Police found a stolen car in the alley behind the house. The car had been reported stolen to Lawrence Police on December 1. The robbery suspects presumably left the car behind when they ran out the back of the house. The car and two cell phones found inside it could prove useful in the investigation. The victim’s cell phone was also found in a nearby field, apparently dropped by one of the suspects running away from the house.

Police records indicate the robbery victim has his own history with police. Prior arrests dating back several years include drug dealing and possession, illegal possession of a firearm and multiple traffic arrests. Police could not say Tuesday if that history made the victim a target for the robbery, but it is part of the ongoing investigation.

Anyone with information that could help the investigation is asked to call IMPD or Crime Stoppers at (317) 262-TIPS.