Family says armed thieves threatened their lives, family dog

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INDIANAPOLIS – It started with a knock at the door around 8:30 Tuesday night.

When 67-year-old Carlos Rivera answered the door, he found himself staring down the barrel of a handgun.

“The guy was standing there with a gun already like that,” Rivera said while pointing a finger to his face.

The armed intruder walked into the house in the 6800 block of Tall Timber Way on the west side of Indianapolis. He forced Rivera to get face down on the living room floor and told him not to look at him.

“A couple of times I tried to move my head and they kept reminding me, ‘don’t move,’” Rivera said.

Soon, more intruders came into the house. One held Carlos at gunpoint while another knocked on his grandson’s door.

“And when I opened the door, they had the gun already pointed at me like this,” said 13-year-old Jonah Deleon while touching his index finger to his lips.

Jonah and his 16-year-old brother joined their grandfather on the living room floor. Shortly after that, the bad guys threatened to shoot the family pit bull, Sugar.

“They said, ‘Grab the dog or else we’re going to shoot her,’” Jonah said. “So we grabbed her and held her down.”

Within a few minutes, the three or four robbers had gone through the house. They grabbed TVs, cell phones, gaming consoles, jewelry and some cash. Almost as quickly as it began, it was over.

Jonah, who had been lying on top of his iPhone, called his mom.

“I’m scared,” said Naomi Deleon. “I’m just glad that nothing (violent) happened.”

Naomi arrived home to find her house in a shambles. Her mother’s jewelry was gone as well as rent
money from under her mattress. The robbers had cleaned them out.

She and her family told Fox59 they can’t think of any reason thieves would target them.

The house looks just like all the rest in their west side neighborhood.

Was it truly a random crime? Could one of the kids’ friends have said something to the wrong person about their gaming consoles?

Or could it be that the robbers had the wrong house? That’s a possibility the family is considering.

“When they came in, they were talking about stuff we didn’t know about,” Jonah said. “They said, ‘Where’s the safe? Where’s the briefcase?’ And we didn’t know what they meant.'”

Jonah’s older brother tracked one of their stolen iPhones to the parking lot at Wishard Hospital. He called to tell police, but that’s where the trail apparently runs cold for now.

Whatever the motive, their mother is just glad she didn’t lose much more than was stolen.

“Just knowing that my kids and my father had guns to their heads,” Naomi said. “It could have been much worse.”

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