A Chilliwack family is recovering after two armed men stormed into their house Saturday evening and demanding money.
Just after 11 p.m., the men—one armed with a handgun, the other with a machete-like knife—kicked open the door of a house in the 44000 block of Bayshore Drive.
According to Mike Kha, who lives with his wife and two children in a downstairs basement suite in the home and whose parents and brother live on the house's top floor, the men rushed upstairs and ordered the three adults there to lay flat on the ground. They then began asking about suitcases and "paper"—or cash.
"They had a phone on them and were yelling into it saying they got the wrong house," he said of the thieves.
Kha and his wife Theresa were in Vancouver at the time of the home invasion. But their children—aged four and six—were downstairs and being cared for by a babysitter.
Kha said a barking dog alerted the thieves to the presence of more people in the basement. The thieves headed downstairs, apprehended the babysitter and smashed his phone. Fortunately, he was able to talk the home invaders into allowing the children to remain in their rooms, Kha said.
Even though the homeowners didn't have any suitcases of money lying around the house, the robbers did make off with thousands of dollars worth of high-end computers, phones and camera equipment used by Kha's wife, a professional photographer.
But although they left with a substantial haul, the bungling thieves clearly weren't experts. One of the men, Kha said, "was trying to put his hands around our babysitter's neck and his pants kept falling down."
Kha—the president of the Unsworth elementary school parents advisory council—believes the thieves likely confused his house for another just down the street.
While he said the neighbourhood is peaceful and nice—several RCMP officers are residents—Kha says one house "sticks out like a sore thumb." The occupants of that house drive the same type of vehicle as the Kha family.
Police also believe Kha's home was mistakenly targeted.
"I can't imagine a more terrifying experience for these people," RCMP spokesperson Const. Tracy Wolbeck said. "It's going to take them a long time recover from this mentally."
Police say one of the suspects wore a baseball cap. He was described as being of medium build, with brown hair and stubble on his face. The second man was about six feet tall and wore a black hooded sweatshirt and sweat pants.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the RCMP at 604-792-4611 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477(TIPS).