93 / 70
      95 / 73
      92 / 69

      Masked men with toy guns storm young woman's home

      Door kicked during break in

      A juvenile and four men are behind bars for their alleged roles in a home invasion in rural Mission

      Investigators said the five may have targeted the victim for all the wrong reasons.

      The four men stood shackled before Justice of the Peace Homer Jasso.

      All of them charged with aggravated robbery for their involvement in a home invasion off Ashley Avenue just outside Mission.

      "We are seeing a trend where innocent homes are being hit in rural Hidalgo County that are not associated with criminal activity. And that does concern me."

      The 23-year-old female victim claimed three masked men kicked in her front door.

      "We believe that the home invaders were actually looking for human trafficking stash houses. They really believed that illegals were being held in that home and they were going to steal the load of aliens from that residence."

      It was a terrifying experience for the victim.

      Fortunately, Hidalgo County Sheriff Lupe Trevino said the men who appeared to be armed only had toy weapons.

      Investigators said Candelario Gomez, Frank Muniz, and brothers Jose and Jesus Reyes realized no immigrants were there.

      That's when they decided to steal other items like TVs and jewelry. Sheriff Trevino said human traffickers make large profits from transporting undocumented immigrants.

      "It varies from a couple of thousand to 15 to 20 thousand," he said. Deputies caught the group after they saw Gomez driving a pickup truck near the crime scene.

      Muniz, the alleged ringleader, and the others were all arrested at this apartment complex off Bentsen Palm. Sheriff Trevino said it is important for neighbors to look out for one another and to report suspicious activity to prevent future incidents like this from happening. If you would like to report a crime to the Sheriffs Office, you can call 668-TIPS.