Curious at to why that home was targeted for money...
Two jailed in home invasion

Resident able to call 911; suspects start 2018 behind bars

By Chris Berendt -


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Two men are behind bars following an early-morning home invasion at a Clinton home on New Year’s Day, during which they allegedly demanded money and fired at least one gunshot. One of the three residents was able to call 911 and alert authorities while the suspects were still at the home, leading to their swift apprehension.

According to reports from the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office, the Sampson County E-911 Center received a report around 4:49 a.m. Monday of a home invasion at 2043 Old Raleigh Road, Clinton.

When deputies arrived on scene, they were immediately flagged down by one of the residents, Maria Oppenheimer, who informed them that there were two suspects still inside the home along with her husband, Rafael Rivera-Bones. Deputies began issuing commands for the suspects to come out, reports state, as which time one suspect subsequently identified as Cristhian Josue Gutierrez, 22, of 510 Williams St., Clinton, quickly surrendered.

Deputies later took Elvis Migdonio Reyes, 24, of 340 Serenity Lake Road, Clinton, into custody as well. Reyes was reportedly found hiding under a bed inside the residence.

Investigation into the incident revealed that the two suspects — Reyes and Gutierrez — knocked on the front door of the residence and when the homeowner opened the door, she was pushed back in at gunpoint. One of the suspects fired a shot and demanded money, authorities said.

“A third occupant of the residence, Luis Perez, was immediately able to call 911 without being detected, which allowed for the immediate response,” a statement from the Sheriff’s Office read. “None of the victims were physically injured during the incident and the suspects were able to be taken into custody without injury as well.”

Reyes and Gutierrez have each been charged with first degree burglary, first degree kidnapping and robbery with a dangerous weapon. Reyes received an additional charge of possession of cocaine.
Reyes and Gutierrez were placed in the Sampson County Detention Center under bonds of $350,000 and $325,000, respectively, with an initial court appearances scheduled for Jan. 12. They do not have criminal records in North Carolina, according to a search within the N.C. Department of Public Safety database.