Cops: Man says son has cancer, then steals guns, TV, $17 in home invasion

Gwinnett police are searching for a man they say committed a home invasion Saturday.
Gwinnett police are searching for a man they say committed a home invasion Saturday.

Police are looking for a man they say robbed and beat members of a Gwinnett family in a home invasion after telling them about his son with cancer.

The man walked into a home Saturday on the 1000 block of Indian Way in Lilburn and demanded gas money so he could see his sick son, according to a police report. The man entered the home through the laundry room from the garage.

Patricia Ferris was in the kitchen when the suspect entered and pulled out a magazine from one of the two guns he had, police said.

It wasn’t until Ferris’ sister Rebecca Smith, came into the kitchen that the alleged robber spoke about his son. According to the police report, the suspect said he was not from the area, had a 7-year-old son with cancer and came to the neighborhood to get gas money to see him.

In between his storytelling, the accused robber let Ferris go use the restroom in the backyard. She instead tried to call 911, but was caught, according to the police report. The robber grabbed her cell phone, took out the battery and threw the phone.

He later stole $17 from the women’s mother Dorothy Towns when she went into the kitchen, according to the report. He then forced the three women into another relative’s room.

Phillip Ferris, Rebecca Smith and Patricia Ferris’ brother, tried to push the suspect out of his room, but was pistol whipped. The suspect stole Phillip Ferris’ guns and a TV before leaving the home.

The family told police the suspect had a skull mask and had a black slide gun and a black handled, silver gun. The do not know if the man left in a car.

Neighbors told police a silver SUV was outside the family’s home, but did not notice it before the incident. At one point during the incident the man made a phone call to who someone the family believes may have been a driver.