Armed men stormed into a Santa Rosa home Thursday morning, jolting awake a sleeping family and tying up a pregnant mother and her two children.
The masked men demanded marijuana and cash but the family had none, Sonoma County Sheriff's Sgt. Carlos Basurto said. The unknown intruders left with jewelry after ransacking the Moorland Avenue home, according to the family, gathered outside of their single-story house hours after the event.
Basurto said the men also took an airsoft gun and a cellphone.
“We have a good family, they came to the wrong place today,” said brother-in-law Jesus Alcazar of Rohnert Park.
The home is on the other side of Moorland Avenue from a small horseshoe neighborhood where authorities last year seized about 1,100 marijuana plants from the backyards of 32 homes. The Sheriff's Office, aided by the FBI, launched the Sept. 26, 2012 raid after a complaint led to a sheriff's helicopter to survey the area, spotting pot plants in just about every backyard.
Jesus Alcazar said he and his family suspect the robbers had heard about marijuana in the neighborhood, but chose the wrong house.
“Nobody has marijuana here,” he said.
Alcazar was not present during the robbery but recounted the event on behalf of his brother and sister-in-law. The extended family sat outside the house Thursday morning after Sonoma County sheriff's investigators had left. They sat outside the broken door left behind by the robbers.
The family dogs started barking at about 6:30 a.m., about a half hour after Pedro Alcazar left for work, said his brother Jesus Alcazar.
Three men burst through a back door, some wielding guns and all in masks, breaking through a lock and pulling off the door frame.
A fourth man waited outside.
Just four feet inside the door, Albina Valencia and her children, 7 and 13, had been asleep until the men burst into their home and started their demands.