CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio-- Three brazen armed robbers posing as flower deliverymen tricked an unsuspecting grandmother to gain entry into her home, where they held her and her infant grandson at gunpoint.
The trio struck just before Mother's Day, and the 58-year-old woman opened the door, thinking she was receiving a delivery of flowers and balloons.
Instead, the men forced their way in after a brief struggle at the door. At least two had guns, and one of those was a rifle.
"We all welcome the beauty of flowers into our lives," says neighbor Brenda Joyner, "so we're all vulnerable to that tactic."
The robbers took their time, staying in the house for about a half hour as they looked for anything they could steal.
The grandmother told them where her wallet and purse were, but they wanted more including a Gucci belt that they stole.
According to the police report, the one robber watching the grandmother and the infant on the first floor told her, "the two robbers (upstairs) is (sic) more crazy, so just do what they say...don't make no stupid moves."
"What's concerning to me as someone whose lived her for twenty years," says neighbor Lois Powell, "is that it's been safe here, pretty much."
Fortunately, the grandmother and the baby were unhurt.
Neighbors expressed relief at that news, and hoped that people who might know something might come forward.
"None of us is immune to random violence," Joyner said.
Anyone with any information on the robbery should contact Cleveland Heights police.