Two teenage boys accused of forcing their way into the home of a Smithville woman and then assaulting and robbing her late Wednesday night were taken into custody while at school Thursday.
Lieutenant Matt Holmes of the Smithville Police Department told WJLE that the two boys are currently in state custody at the Juvenile Detention Center in Cookeville and have been named in petitions accusing them of committing delinquent acts. The crimes of which they are accused of committing include especially aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery, aggravated assault, and felony theft.
Because the two boys are juveniles, Lieutenant Holmes would not disclose their names. The name of the victim is also being withheld.
According to Lieutenant Holmes, the incident occurred around 11:30 p.m. on Wednesday, September 18 at the woman's Smithville residence. He said the victim, who lives alone, heard something outside and when she opened the door to look outside, the two boys, who were wearing hockey masks forced their way in and assaulted her. " Upon investigation, I found out that the victim heard a noise outside the back of her residence," said Lieutenant Holmes. "She looked out but didn't see anyone. She went to open the door. As she cracked the door open, two masked men forced their way into the residence. One of the suspects tackled her to the ground, pepper sprayed her multiple times, and tried to insert a wash cloth in her mouth to keep her from screaming," he said
"One of the suspects ransacked the house and stole a 38 caliber revolver and multiple other items," he said. The total value of the stolen items came to around $600.
The woman, though injured in the attack with cuts, scrapes, and bruises, was apparently not seriously hurt and declined medical attention. She remains terrified and still suffers from affects of the pepper spray attack.
Though the two boys were carrying razor knives at the time of the attack, they apparently did not use them on the woman.
"We worked the case until about four in the morning (Thursday) and started back again later in the day," said Lieutenant Holmes. We went to Walmart and were able to trace the sale of the hockey masks back to the juveniles who had bought them prior to the incident," he said.
" We located them (the two suspects) at the high school and placed them under arrest in the classroom on Thursday. Our fear was that they may have brought the gun to school but as it turned out they did not have the gun at school. It was found at their home," said Lieutenant Holmes.
"We found in the attic of their residence the two hockey masks and a loaded 38 caliber handgun and other items that were taken from the victim's home. We also found some pepper spray," Lieutenant Holmes continued.
He said the boys live together in the same household but are not related. Neither of the boys is related to the victim. The two boys live in the same area of the city as the victim but police would not disclose the name of the street or neighborhood where the attack occurred.
Lieutenant Holmes, who was assisted in the investigation by Detective Brandon Donnell and Corporal Travis Bryant said police believe the two boys committed the crimes hoping to find money and drugs.
The two boys also allegedly tried to break into another residence in the same area the night before on Tuesday but were unable to make entry.
Lieutenant Holmes urges citizens to call police if you hear or see anything suspicious near your home or in your neighborhood. "If anyone hears something outside, never open your door. Call police and have us check it out," Lieutenant Holmes concluded.