Couple in their 80s locked in basement during Oakland home invasion

An elderly victim of a home invasion robbery in Oakland said he's in shock after two suspects locked him and his wife in the basement and stole their valuables near Lake Merritt. 

The 87-year-old man asked KTVU not to reveal his identity or his address. 

He said he suspects the thieves targeted his home in Oakland's China Hill neighborhood on Friday about 2 p.m. because he and his wife are Asian, and they're in their 80s. 

He said they have lived there for 57 years and nothing like this has ever happened to them before.

Surveillance video showed a black sedan pulling up across the street from his home. One man got out of the car and walked towards a home.
Minutes later, a second man is seen pulling a mask down to cover his face as he crossed the street. They broke into the back of the home by using a ladder to access a second-floor kitchen window. 

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"I was shocked. My adrenaline was running. If I resisted, I have no idea what they would do to us," the elderly man said.

The neighborhood is full of beautiful old homes, and residents are on edge. 

"I'm still scared and also very hard to believe because this area is very nice," said neighbor Grace Kho.

The victim's 84-year-old wife was home alone at the time. He said the thieves ransacked each room, stole her Rolex watch, her purse and cash. 
He arrived home when the robbery was in progress.  

"As soon as I came in, they grabbed me. I was surprised. My reaction: I started yelling at them. What are you guys doing?" he recalled. 

He said the thieves stole his watch, wallet, and cash.  

After about 30 minutes, the suspects ordered the couple to go downstairs and locked them in the basement. 

The man and his wife waited until they heard the thieves leave before they came out of their garage and borrowed a neighbor's phone to call 911.

"It's emotional," said the husband. "I can still feel it. I'm not as calm as I normally am, and it's hard to believe it happened to me."  

The victim described the two suspects as being in their mid to late 20s, with a muscular build and about 6 feet tall. They wore all black with face coverings.  

Amber Lee is a reporter with KTVU.  Email Amber at or text/leave message at 510-599-3922. Follow her on Facebook @AmberKTVU,  Instagram @AmberKTVU  or Twitter @AmberKTVU.