Victim attacked by robbers posing as police officers, police say
Marijuana plants found inside victim's home
HIALEAH, Fla. – Two men were arrested Thursday morning after posing as police officers and ambushing a man outside his home in Hialeah, police said.
The robbery happened about 7 a.m. in the area of West 62nd Street and 18th Avenue.
According to police, two armed men wearing masks forced the man back into his home, where his wife and 16-year-old daughter were still inside.
Police said the daughter was hiding inside a bathroom and called police while the robbers were beating up her father.
"There are two robbers in my house. They have guns," the daughter Ashley is heard whispering on the 911 call in between tears. "Please come, please."
LISTEN: Full 911 call
Police said the Hialeah SWAT Team members were conducting a detail nearby and responded to the home almost immediately.
The suspects identified as Jorge Valdes, 30, and Fernando Fernandez, 27, were found at an apartment complex nearby and were taken into custody.
A woman who lives at the complex said she was about to head out when she was ordered by officers to stay inside her home.
"They made me stay in my house for an hour and 15 minutes already," neighbor Mayra Martinez said.
Martinez said she saw one of the men run by her apartment before he was arrested.
"He dropped the money in front of my apartment, so all the money is over there on the floor," Martinez said.
Police said officers went inside the victim's home to make sure no other suspects were inside, when they discovered that the home was being used a marijuana grow house.
Police said Lazaro Espinosa, 49, and his wife will be charged with drug trafficking.
They said they believe the suspects knew what was going on in the home and targeted the homeowner.
A fake police badge, a bullet proof vest and gloves were among the items recovered by police.
Martinez said crimes like this normally do not occur in her neighborhood.
"This is the first time I've seen something like this," Martinez said. "I've been here since 1974 and I've never seen anything like this."
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