by: Greg Suskin Updated:
ROCK HILL, S.C. - A man with a gun forced his way into three homes in Rock Hill Monday night into Tuesday morning. In each case the victims heard a loud bang as the man kicked open their door.
"My first thought was somebody's got an ax out there beating on my house," said 82-year-old Lucille Rains.
The robber splintered her door on Barrow Street and pushed his way in at 1:30 a.m. Tuesday. She got out of bed and encountered him in her kitchen.
"He had on a ski mask, and he said ‘I want your money and your jewelry,’" she said.
He also had on dark clothes and gloves.
She tried to speak with him to see if she could recognize his voice.
She didn't but he told her why he was there.
"He said, ‘I don't want to shoot nobody tonight.’ He said, “I just want some money to feed my baby,’" she said.
Police covered the area and tracking dogs spread out across Barrow Street outside Rains' home.
Two hours earlier police think the same man and an accomplice hit a young couple's house on nearby Graham Street in exactly the same way.
They took money and a video game system.
The police report said they heard the same loud bang but through the speaker on their baby monitor from a back room.
Just before 5 a.m., there was a third home invasion not far away on Willowbrook Avenue.
There, another door was kicked in at the home of a woman in her 80s.
Channel 9 talked to her grandson who was installing a new front door on her house and he didn't want to be identified.
"She is shook up, and she's going to be traumatized for a little while," he said.
The grandson also said he didn't buy the robber's reason for his crimes.
"I think that's a bunch of baloney about needing to feed his kids. I think he has a drug problem," he said.
The robber told Rains he picked her house completely at random.
Police said it appears that is the case in each of the home invasion robberies.
When the robber left Rains' house, he paused and told her she could go ahead and call the police.
The robber who police said hit all three houses is believed to be a tall, slim Caucasian man.
There's no description of a possible second masked man who was only seen at the first home invasion on Graham Street.
Police have no specific information about either man.