Girl cut by masked man in Indian Head Park home invasion, police say

INDIAN HEAD PARK, Ill. (WLS) -- A girl was attacked Wednesday night inside her home in southwest suburban Indian Head Park, police said. Investigators continued searching for the suspect Thursday.

Officers responded around 6:45 p.m. to a report of a home invasion on Briarwood Court. When they arrived, a 12-year-old girl who lives in the home told them she had been cut by a masked man she encountered in her kitchen.

The girl said she had been home alone when she heard noises on the first floor. When she went downstairs to check it out, she came upon the man, who pulled out a knife and cut her right arm before running away. Police said the wound was minor.

Officers searched the area, but did not find the suspect.

Kerry Willis lives next door. When he came home Wednesday night, he saw officers on his block.

"There was a squad car - one squad car - with a spotlight. They told me to go inside and basically lock the doors and keep the windows shut," Willis said. "It's pretty alarming. I've been here 10 years. It's kind of concerning."

The home invasion was an eerie reminder of what happened in the community five years ago, when a teenage girl was stabbed to death after walking in on a burglary at her home. In that case, a man was convicted and is serving time for that murder.

People who live in the neighborhood described the area as quiet and safe when ABC7 Eyewitness News spoke with them Thursday.

"It's really surprising, because we never think that it would happen in a community like this," said Joanne Navalany, a neighbor. "Everybody knows each other. We say hello to each other when you're walking down the street. It's a very friendly community."

"I think most residents today, no matter where you live, are keeping their doors locked because so many incidents like this have occurred throughout the Chicagoland area," said Jan Cull, a neighbor.

Investigators have not said whether anything was taken from the home. It's unclear how the man got inside. There were no signs of forced entry.

Some nearby schools warned parents about the incident and added security, but police tell residents there is no immediate threat.

Concerned residents are urged to attend a town hall meeting at the Village Hall at 10 a.m. Saturday.
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