A group of thugs posed as utility workers and forced their way into a North Philadelphia house at gunpoint Thursday afternoon, then beat and robbed a couple inside, police said.
Chief Inspector Scott Small said one of the occupants of the home, on Sedgley Avenue near 5th Street, answered a knock at the door around 4:30 p.m. and found three or four men dressed in utility worker uniforms outside.
The men then forced their way in at gunpoint and bound a 54-year-old woman and her 67-year-old boyfriend inside, beat them both and robbed them of about $300 cash and a cell phone, Small said.
Small said both victims’ faces, noses and mouths were badly bruised and bloodied during the attack. Though he was bleeding from the face, police said, the man refused medical treatment. His girlfriend, whom police said was beaten more severely, was taken to Temple University Hospital, where she was in stable condition and being treated for a possibly fractured cheekbone. She also suffered bruises to her wrists and ankles from the plastic ties the home-invaders used to bind her, Small said.
"It's sad they had to do that much injury to [the woman]," Small said.
Police said there were obvious signs of a struggle throughout the otherwise tidy house, and the victims’ blood stained several surfaces inside. Detectives were at the scene dusting for fingerprints and checking area surveillance cameras for a glimpse of the perpetrators Thursday night, Small said.
Police said they were unsure whether the house was targeted or chosen at random, and that there were no signs of any illegal activity in the home.
The incident remains under investigation. Tipsters should contact East Detectives at 215-686-3243, the police tip line at 215-686-TIPS (8477), text a tip to PPD TIP (773847) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.