Jackson family robbed at gunpoint - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Jackson family terrorized during home invasion

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Jackson police confirm two 17-year-olds have been charged in the weekend home invasion and armed robbery of a Jackson family. Jackson police confirm two 17-year-olds have been charged in the weekend home invasion and armed robbery of a Jackson family.
Evelin Mendez says her family was celebrating Mother's Day hours before seven armed men burst through the doors of their N. Canton Club Circle early Saturday morning. Evelin Mendez says her family was celebrating Mother's Day hours before seven armed men burst through the doors of their N. Canton Club Circle early Saturday morning.
She says 12 adults and two children were asleep when the men kicked in the door around 2 a.m. She says 12 adults and two children were asleep when the men kicked in the door around 2 a.m.
Jackson police have made two arrests in the case. Jackson police have made two arrests in the case.
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Evelin Mendez says her family was celebrating Mother's Day hours before seven armed men burst through the doors of their N. Canton Club Circle early Saturday morning. Now, they're arming themselves with extra security and trying not to live in fear.

"We can't sleep. If something happens, you know, we wake up like crazy. We are scared," explained Mendez.

She says 12 adults and two children were asleep when the men kicked in the door around 2 a.m. They were held at gunpoint while their home was ransacked for nearly three hours. The men and women were held in separate rooms.

Mendez says she watched as the robbers played video games, drank juice, and tried to rape her aunt and sister. She says some of the family members were beaten and kicked, and the armed men even threw dozens of eggs at them.

"He say don't say nothing, just be quiet and we want to just cry but we can't do nothing," recalled Mendez.

She says the robbers kept in contact with each other by using cell phones, while demanding cash and guns.

"We don't have nothing. So, I don't know why they came in just to hunt for money," Mendez said.

Mendez says she and some of the others moved to Mississippi a year and a half ago from Guatemala. They'd only been living in the house a week.

"We are an honest people. We just came here to work and have a better life for everybody, for us, and we don't hurt nobody until they come to hurt us," Mendez said.

The armed thieves left the house with only a small amount of money and a few other items. Then they stole the family's three vehicles – a Honda Civic and two SUVs.

The 14 victims inside the home say they were targeted because they're Hispanic and police tend to agree.

"Some of the members of the Hispanic community are known to work and collect cash for payment. A lot of times you have multiple individuals living in one dwelling. So, they are known to have amounts of cash on them," explained Jackson Assistant Police Chief Lee Vance.

Jackson police have made two arrests in the case. Marquis Harris, 16, and Lenaris Smith, 17, are charged as adults with three counts of auto theft, one count of armed robbery and burglary of a dwelling. The teens made a court appearance Monday morning and were denied bond.

Mendez says she has to be strong for her family and is leaning on her faith, but she does have something to say to the group who terrorized her loved ones.

"Leave the people alone. Like I tell them, they can work. They can speak English. They are American people, please just work. It's easy," said Mendez.

Copyright 2013 MSNewsNow. All rights reserved.

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