A man whose home was broken into during curfew on Sunday morning said the intruders were armed with handguns and a machine gun.
“I was awoken around 4:30 a.m. by a gentleman who was standing over me with a gun to my head. He had on a hoodie and it appears as though he had a ski mask on over his face. Then he…tapped me to get me up and then he said, ‘This is a robbery.’”
The Nassau Guardian spoke to Tario Bowe, 37, at his family’s Hill Park Estate home off Bernard Road. The incident unfolded as police enforced a national curfew from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.
The curfew has since been extended to 24 hours.
Bowe said after encountering the first armed burglar, he was escorted to his nephew’s bedroom.
“The door was open so they already gained entry. When he took me into the room with my nephew, I noticed there were two other people in the room at the same time. Two persons had [handguns], and the other one had a machine gun.
“They had on ski masks because I couldn’t make out their face or the color [or] their skin type.”
Bowe said he and his nephew were tied up during the ordeal. When the armed men asked about who else was in the home, Bowe said he had to think quickly.
“There were children and other people in the house too, so I thought that [it] was best to just say that [the two of us were] in the house.
“They then tied me up [and] tied up my nephew as well, and that’s when they robbed us of the items.”
The men left the home with wallets, passports, jewelry and the keys to Bowe’s silver 2008 BMW, license plate AK4615.
He said the men threatened him before leaving.
“Before they went outside they told me that if we moved they would shoot us, so I didn’t move,” he said.
“They went into the car, but couldn’t start the car because it is a push start.
“They lifted me up while I was already tied and they pulled me outside with no shoes on and it was raining. So, I was tied and still having to make my way to the front of the house. I showed them how to start the car.
“After they started the car they got into the vehicle [and] told me that I needed to hurry go inside the house or they are going to shoot me.”
Still tied up, Bowe ran back into the house and called police.
He said he is shaken up after the incident, and expected to be safer during the curfew.
“I actually felt as though it would have caused persons to feel more secure… I felt as though…we would be more secure knowing that nobody was going to be on the street.
“I feel as though the criminals took advantage of the curfew system because they came at 4:30; they had that planned to get a [getaway vehicle]…they had to get away right in time for curfew to [end].”
The man said property owners share some of the blame for the break-in, accusing them of doing a poor job maintaining the vacant property next to his home.
“This whole area, we were having problems getting persons to clear this down,” he said.
“This property owned by people around us and they aren’t taking care of their property.
“The neighbors complain because they saw other people in the bush… I saw someone hiding in the bush too by the neighbor’s house. I made them aware and then I contacted the police about that matter.”
Police had no one in custody in relation to the incident.