MISHAWAKA, Ind. -- The St. Joseph County Sheriff had strong words for the masked intruder that sent a 68-year-old woman to the hospital during a home invasion in Mishawaka Thursday night, calling the suspect a coward for preying on an elderly.
Police say the woman had bruises and cuts all over her face after a masked man pushed his way into her Mishawaka home at the 58000 Block of South Mason Street and demanded cash just before 5 p.m.
In broad daylight, a man wearing dark clothing and a mask walked right through the front door and attacked the 68-year-old woman, who sat in the living room of her own home Police say the man was wearing a brown winter coat with the hood pulled up over his head over blue jeans.
"Wow, like what the heck!" Neighbors like Ashlee Rorie is just one of several in the neighborhood left stunned by the brazen violence carried out against the defenseless elderly woman.
"For someone to come into an elderly lady's home and assault her this way is, in my opinion, a coward," says St. Joseph County Sheriff Michael Grzegorek.
The woman told police she was in the yard with her dog and left the front door unlocked after she came back inside the house. The woman says that is when the man walked inside, assault her and took her money.
Rorie, who grew up in the neighborhood, says she still cannot believe anyone would want to hurt her neighbor, "She is a really nice lady. Whenever we saw her out, she would always wave at you, she'd always smile".
The woman did not report the home invasion right away because the man threatened to come back if she did. Her daughter was the one that called police after she talked to her mom and noticed something was wrong. Later the woman was taken to the hospital by family.
"She went to the hospital to get checked out, but her injuries don't appear to be life threatening. However, she is 68-years-old," says Grzegorek.
Neighbors, like Rorie, say they just hope police catch who did so everyone can have some peace of mind.
Police say they canvassed the neighborhood looking for the man, going door to door asking neighbors if they had seen anything unusual, but nothing turned up.
Police say they are following up on new leads, but still have no suspect.