Three arrested in home invasion

Published 2:47 pm Thursday, July 2, 2009

SEABOARD – For an 84-year-old Seaboard woman and her two granddaughters, Life Alert perhaps saved their lives.

Three suspects are behind bars, each held under a $253,000 bond, following their June 27 arrest for a June 22 home invasion in Seaboard. In that case, Seaboard Police Chief George Reed credits Life Alert – an emergency response company that sends help around the clock for medical problems, fire and home invasions – for protecting the three victims from serious injury, or even worse, death.

Chief Reed reported the arrests of two of the three males involved in the alleged crime. They are Jason Maurice Robinson, 18, of 131 Lincoln Park Lane, Rich Square, and Laron Chez Eason Jr, 21, of 71 Davis Place, Edenton.

Also arrested was 19-year-old Crystal Jo Little of 33 Burgess Lane, Roanoke Rapids. She was reportedly the driver of the vehicle used by the three suspects who forcibly entered the Seaboard home.

With the assistance of Halifax County Sheriff’s deputies, Reed arrested Little on Saturday at her Roanoke Rapids residence. Then, with the aid of Northampton County Sheriff’s deputies, Reed arrested Robinson and Eason on Saturday as they stood on a street corner in Rich Square.

All three were charged with 1st degree burglary, 2nd degree kidnapping, assault on a female, injury to real property and two counts each of attempted robbery with a dangerous weapon and assault by pointing a gun.

Initially, bond was set at $128,000 secured for each suspect. During their first appearance in Northampton County District Court on Monday (June 29), Judge Rob Lewis levied an additional cash bond of $125,000 on each for the burglary charge.

Meanwhile, another male suspect is sought in the case. He is 19-year-old Karon Antwain McDonald of 120 Paxton Lane, Edenton. Warrants, bearing the identical charges as previously listed, have been drawn for his arrest.

Chief Reed said he believes McDonald is wanted in Edenton and Elizabeth City on other charges. He added that Northampton County Sheriff’s Detective Brenda Burnette may also lodge charges against the same individuals for a series of break-ins.

The Seaboard crime occurred on the night of Monday, June 22 where the elderly woman was at home with her two granddaughters, ages 18 and 20, watching TV. That peaceful evening was interrupted by a door at the residence being kicked in followed by three black males, one armed with a shotgun, entering the home.

“When the door was kicked open, both of the young girls made a dash for the telephone,” Chief Reed said. “The suspects caught one of the girls, throwing her to the floor and pointing the shotgun at her head, but the other managed to reach the telephone, hid in a bedroom and called 9-1-1.”

Chief Reed added that one of the suspects also pointed the shotgun at the grandmother’s head and demanded money.

“She (the grandmother) told the suspects she didn’t keep money in the house; her money was in the bank,” the Police Chief said. “It was somewhere around this point that the grandmother pressed the button on her Life Alert. That action, I think, wound-up saving their lives.”

After making Life Alert aware of the situation, that company in turn contacted law enforcement. Meanwhile, the granddaughter hidden in the bedroom was on the phone with the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office.

“From that point, the suspects fled, apparently aware that the police were on their way,” Reed said.

Based on the descriptions of the suspects given by the victims as well as leads coming in from the community, Chief Reed was able to develop suspects in the case and make the arrests.

“I’d like to thank those in the Seaboard community that helped us make these arrests,” Chief Reed concluded. “And thank God for Life Alert. Without that in place, I cringe to think what could have happened in this case. Those women were very brave. They kept their cool when faced with dangerous individuals.”