Saturday, November 17, 2012

LA:Eastern New Orleans family is badly shaken after home invasion, shootout

A shootout with military-style guns just feet from her sleeping 8-year-old daughter and 1-year-old son was the last thing a New Orleans dentist expected when she woke from a restless sleep Wednesday about 3:30 a.m. in her eastern New Orleans home. As the 34-year-old woman checked on her husband, who was up late working on his computer, the couple was startled to hear their home alarm system suddenly beep: A window in their garage gym had been opened.

Her husband, also a dentist, pulled up his computer surveillance footage from the family's security cameras surrounding their property in the 5600 block of St. Helena Place. The couple watched in horror as three masked men dressed in black worked to pry open their window. One of the men held a 3-foot-long assault rifle. A fourth man stood guard behind the house, outside the back door.

The husband ran for his guns. "Go call the cops," he told his wife, trembling. She dialed 9-1-1. But it would be a long 15 minutes before police arrived, she said later.

"We were so scared, we were shaking," said the wife. Fearing another attack, she and her husband, 38, spoke with The Times-Picayune on condition of anonymity.

The robbers popped off the window within about five minutes. Once inside the garage, one of them opened the door leading to the kitchen.

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