Fort Worth police are investigating a terrifying crime on the far south side of town near Crowley. A pregnant woman and her husband were held at gunpoint in their home with their three young children sleeping down the hall.
NBC 5 has learned that the home invasion robbery, which investigators believe was random, may be connected to several other armed robberies across Tarrant County.
The home invasion happened last Thursday in the middle of a string of armed robberies across Hurst, Weatherford and Fort Worth. The Hurst and Weatherford robberies targeted cell phone stores. Now detectives in Fort Worth are looking into connections, to see if they can tie all the crimes together.
Late last week, Chad Killen's wife and three young children had gone to bed and he stepped outside for a cigarette when a man with a gun rounded the corner.
"As I'm putting my hands up like this, I'm getting down like this to take off after him,” Killen said, gesturing outside his front door. “I'm gonna bolt after him. And as soon as I got the courage to do so, two more come around the same corner with guns drawn."
Killen says the two men and a woman forced him inside and went to get his pregnant wife, holding them at gunpoint in the living room, with the kids still sleeping down the hall.
Killen is a martial arts instructor and says it took everything not to charge at the robbers.
"I thought of angles where I could attack her, get her gun, shoot him and the one in the bedroom but then you're having gunfire where my babies sleep 20 feet away," Killen said.
After they'd stolen all they could grab, phones, wallets, electronics, the gunmen marched Killen and his wife into the bathroom.
"They said you move you die and I just looked at her and said I'm sorry, I failed you, I love you," Killen said.
The robbers left without hurting anyone, but on the way out the door, they stole the family dog, a Yorkie named Hannah.
"When they took our dog, that is on a whole other level of psychotic," Killen said.
But despite the loss and trauma, Killen has a surprising response to the people responsible.
"I want to hurt them and I want to hug them," he said.
He's a man of strong faith, who believes compassion is the only way to end the cycle of violence.
"I want everybody to have the opportunity to know Christ and I want everyone to start loving each other more," Killen said.
It's a prayer he'll take with him as he and his family move on to a new home and better days.
There was a second armed robbery outside the apartment complex right after the Killen family was held up. Surveillance video shows the robbers get into a dark-colored truck and take off.
That’s the same description for the suspect vehicle in the two cell phone robberies in Weatherford and Hurst. Police have arrested two men and a woman charged in those two crimes, but it's not clear yet if they'll be tied to the home invasion case.
There is a GoFundMe page set up to help the Killen family, if you would like to donate, click here.