Winter Haven, Florida – A search is underway for the suspects who used a child to commit a home invasion at a home on Hartridge Point Drive West on Wednesday.

"People do strange things," said resident Sharon Morel. "(It's) quite shocking to have a young kid looking distressed ... you'd want to help."

At around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, the victim heard a knock on the door of his home and looked out of the window.

He told 10 News that he saw a woman with a crying child so he opened his front door under the assumption that they were in distress.

Once the door was unlocked, two men pushed their way inside the home, pointed a gun at home and forced him to the floor before taking off with roughly $50 in cash and a laptop.

"It kind of played on his compassion to try to help something that might be in need," said Winter Haven Police Chief Gary Hester.

The victim said he did not get a good look at the men who stormed his home, but describes the female as a light-skinned black female, approximately 5-foot-1, wearing a light-blue shower cap and a gray tank top.


"We want to warn the public that they need to be very cautious about opening their doors even when they think they're doing the right thing," Hester said.

Police are asking anyone with information in the case call Heartland Crime Stoppers at 1-800-226-TIPS (8477). Callers can remain anonymous and could be eligible for a cash reward.

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