ROCHESTER, Wash. - Deputies are investigating an early Sunday morning home invasion robbery in Thurston County.
The incident happened before 2 a.m. in the 15900 block of Case Road in Rochester.
It seems an unlikely place for such a brazen heist, even for those who say they have witnessed crimes in this rural Thurston County community, 22 miles south of Olympia.
“Because you've always had the drug deals and the robberies," said Miranda Haxson, who is buying a home at nearby Scott Lake. “But hearing that someone is getting tied up in this neighborhood is really scary.”
A 64-year-old woman was spending the night with her two young grandchildren, whose parents were out of town, when two armed men allegedly broke into their home. They tied up the woman and ordered her grandchildren to look away. They headed for two safes and then fled with them.
The woman's son declined to talk on camera but told KIRO 7 Eyewitness News he has been growing legal medical marijuana here for about three years. But there has never been anything like this. The bandits didn't get much, he said. The safes contained mostly legal documents.
The fact that marijuana is growing here at all was news to his neighbors.
“No, I had no idea they were growing weed down the road,” Haxson said. She supported legalizing marijuana but worries it can attract dangerous people.
“It's just too scary to think about,” she said. “They really could have been hurt bad.”
The homeowner said he is contacting security companies to better protect his family. Catching the men won't be easy. His mother could not describe them.
Authorities are continuing to investigate the incident.
Anyone with information about the incident is urged to call the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office.