Two University students were robbed at gunpoint early yesterday morning by three masked men who invaded their house on Hill Street and stole several personal belongings.
The Ann Arbor Police Department is currently investigating the crime, but as of yet, the AAPD has not named any suspects, Srgt. Richard Kinsey said. He added that the crime may be connected to a recent string of burglaries in the area.
“We are looking into that possibility, but anything is possible. The most important thing is that this is very unusual. Home robberies like these are very uncommon,” Kinsey said.
Art and Design sophomores Tom and Willa, who did not want to release their last names, said they were sitting at their kitchen table when three armed men entered through the unlocked back door of their home at around 2 a.m. Both said they did not sustain any injuries.
Tom said they first heard the handle of the backdoor rattle, adding that the robbers were most likely testing if the door was locked.
One of the robbers then entered through the door, followed by two others who were all dressed in black with bandanas tied across their faces, he said.
Assuming the noise at the door was a housemate, Willa was approaching the door while Tom was talking on his cell phone when they both noticed the three men were armed with handguns, he said.
One of the armed men ordered Tom to shut off his phone as the robbers surrounded Tom and Willa.
The men then took off with the valuables on the kitchen table, stealing two laptops, two cell phones, a digital camera and a wallet, Tom said.
Immediately after the armed men left, Tom said he used the cell phone of a housemate living upstairs to call the police, who arrived just one minute later.
“All of our work, our valuables are just gone now,” Willa said.
Both Tom and Willa said they believe that the robbers targeted their house because the blinds were open, allowing the interior of their home to be viewed from the outside.
As a result, the robbers then could have easily planned a strategy to rob the house, Tom said.
Law School student Matthew George, who lives a few houses away and has visited the house before, said the robbers probably scouted out the premise beforehand.
Most student houses are structured like apartment buildings, with narrow hallways and small spaces, making them difficult to rob, he said.
But in the case of the house that was robbed yesterday morning, the interior is like a normal house, with open rooms and wide spaces that make it an ideal target for robbers, George said.
As a precaution, the University released a crime alert yesterday, warning students to protect themselves by locking their doors and walking with a trusted friend when outside.
– A house in the 500 block of Hill Street was robbed at about 2:05 a.m. yesterday.
– Three subjects entered the house with handguns and stole personal belongings from the occupants.
– Call AAPD at 994-2880 or DPS at 763-1131 with information about the burglary.
– A $1,000 reward is being offered