Elderly woman beaten in home invasion

October 8, 2009 (JOLIET, Ill.) A neighbor heard the 89-year-old woman's faint calls for help and called police. The victim is hospitalized.

The woman is in stable condition as police continue to work to arrest the men responsible for her brutal attack.

"Everybody's locking their doors and watching everybody's house. We're a strong block, so we always try watching the houses for each other," said Jerry Barron, victim's neighbor.

Barron says his May Street neighborhood is living in fear ever since an elderly woman was viciously attacked by a home invader. Authorities say the woman fell prey to an unidentified attacker just days ago as she returned home from shopping.

"We're working hard, and we really need help from anyone in that neighborhood who saw anything to contact us," said Asst. Chief Mike Trafton, Joliet Police Department.

It happened Tuesday morning as the woman entered the home she lived in alone. That's when her attacker ambushed her, putting a pillowcase over her head before beating and kicking his 89-year-old victim.

Detectives say he then tied her up with electrical cords and packing tape before shoving her down her basement stairs. The intruder then ransacked the home.

"It shocks us. It shocks me. You are talking, basically, about a 90-year-old woman who didn't deserve something like this. And I don't know what would trigger someone to do something like this to someone. I really couldn't answer that," Trafton said.

The woman, who couldn't weigh more than 100 pounds, was discovered some eight hours later after a neighbor heard her desperate cries for help through a broken window.

Shocked neighbors say, despite her age, the widow was always active.

"She is always out working in her yard, and mows her own grass...and seems real active," said Sarah Prorok, victim's neighbor.

While paramedics treated the woman for severe head trauma, officers combed the South May Street area for clues as to who committed the daylight beating and robbery -- while a neighborhood remains concerned about their safety and that of their families.

"You don't think people are that crazy anymore. But I mean, they are I guess," said Kyle Leos, victim's neighbor.

Police have added extra patrols to make sure that residents are feeling safe. They add that they do not believe Tuesday's attack is related to several of the burglaries in the area. At this hour they say they have no suspects in custody.

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