I mean, you hear about this sort of thing on crime reconstruction programs or the news, or see it in the paper, but you never think it’s going to happen to you. It was such a special day as well.
We had just been out for a meal to celebrate my eighteenth birthday. My mum and dad had invited my grandmother, and we had been to a local Italian restaurant for a meal. I remember we had the taster menu – not that it matters when you consider what happened when we get home.
I had worn a new black leather pinafore dress that I had bought, with matching leather boots. Purple is one of my favourite colours, and I wore a roll neck sweater and leggings to keep me warm. My mother was wearing a brown outfit, while my gran was wearing black and white. You’ll need to ask them exactly what they had on – most of that sort of detail I’ve forgotten now.
Anyway, we got back to the house, and I went into the house with my grandmother while mum and dad locked the car up. I unlocked the front door, and my gran went in first. The first hint I had that something was wrong I suppose was when I could not switch on the hall light, but honestly I thought the bulb had just blown. Then I walked into the front room, and they grabbed me and my gran.
All I knew was the hand over my mouth, and the rough voice telling me and my gran to shut up and do as we were told. We were both pushed down on the floor in front of the settee, and told to put our hands behind our heads and shut up. I know gran tried to say something, but then she was slapped and told again to shut up.
I heard mum and dad coming in, and mum’s scream from the hallway. I knew then there were at least three people there, for I could feel something against my head and I could see someone standing behind gran. Mum was forced into the room and pushed onto the floor on the other side of gran. I’ve no idea where my dad was then.
One of the men told all three of us to shut up and do as we were told, and everything would be all right. Then something was tied over my eyes, and my head was pushed down onto the settee cushion. I could hear my gran crying beside me, but I was too scared to do anything about it.
Everything was deathly quiet – that scared me most of all. Then I was taken by the arm, and someone whispered in my ear to stand up and come with them.
I was walked around for a few minutes, then my hands were pulled behind my back and I could feel my wrists been placed together. I asked what was happening, but a voice told me to just shut up and stand still. I then felt something pass around my wrists and the two been pulled together, and I realised my hands were been tied together.
I twisted my head, and pleaded for them to stop, but they just said one more time to be quiet. It hurt while they were doing it, but eventually I felt rather than saw that they had stopped. I tried to pull my wrists apart, but whatever was holding them together was very tightly tied. Then I felt some sort of rope against my arms and chest, and them been pulled together, and suddenly my arms were held tightly against my side.
Some way away, I heard my mother asking what was happening, but no answer was given. I was then told to sit down, and someone helped me to sit on the floor. I felt something up against my back, like a chair, but I could also feel the carpet on my bottom, so I knew it was the floor. The next thing I felt were my ankles been pulled together, and I realised that someone was tying my feet so that I could not move. I also thought I could my mother asking what was happening, and someone was walking around, but still I had no idea where my dad was, or even what was happening.
Whoever was tying me up had finished tying my ankles, and had started to tie something around my legs. I could tell it was above my knees, because my knees were bent up and then laid back down when they had finished. I tried to see if I could move, but whatever was holding me was too tightly bound for any movement to take place.
I could hear something happening nearby, but I really had no idea what was happening for the moment. This voice then told me to open my mouth, and I felt some sort of cloth been placed in my mouth. Something was then tied behind my neck – I could feel the knot against my hair. It felt like silk or something, but it was packed and stopping me from saying anything.
I wanted to get free, and started to struggle – but then what ever was covering my eyes was taken off. After I blinked for a few minutes, I could see my mother and my gran and I really was too terrified to do anything after that. All I could do was sit still and wait for the nightmare to end…………..
Do I have to relive all this? I know you have a job to do, but even so………
All right – it was my daughter’s eighteenth birthday, and we all went out for a meal at Giovanni’s. My daughter still likes to dress as if she was 16, so she had on this black and purple combination. I had on a fawn coloured roll neck sweater, long cardigan tied at the front, and a matching skirt with gold thread embroidery. It was you might call a “fish tail” skirt – long at the front and back, and short at the sides. I t was cold, so I wore a pair of straight black leather boots.
I invited my mother as well – she hadn’t been out in a while, and it was a family occasion. We had a lovely meal, and then came back to the house. My daughter and mother went to turn the lights on, while my husband and I parked the car.
Well, we didn’t know what was happening when we cam in – until I closed the front door, turned round and screamed as I saw a masked man holding a gun to my husband’s head. Someone grabbed me from behind, and told me to shut up. As my husband was taken off towards the kitchen, I was pushed into the front room.
I saw both my daughter and my mother on the floor, facing the lounger with their faces pushed down into it and their hands behind their head. I was very roughly pushed down next to my mother, and told to do the same as them. Someone – I presume it was the leader of this gang of ruffians – told us all to keep quiet and we would be all right. My daughter gasped, and when I glanced over I could see that a scarf was been tied over her eyes. A few moments later, another scarf was tied over my eyes, and I presume then over my mothers.
Silence followed. I could hear something going on elsewhere, but to be honest I had absolutely no idea what was happening. I though I could hear my daughter complaining about something, but with my eyes covered I really had no idea what was happening. My mother was quietly crying beside me, and I wanted to hold her and comfort her. Then someone grabbed my arm and I was pulled to my feet.
I was led around for a while, and then someone whispered in my ear to do as I was told. My hands were pulled behind my back, and I realised I was going to be tied up. To be honest with you, at that point I was more worried about my mother than my daughter, but I suppose it is strange what happens in those situations. I asked what was happening, and the voice just told me to shut up and do what I was told.
I’m sorry, where was I? Oh yes – I felt my wrists been crossed and tied together behind my back, and then some rope been passed around my waist pinning my wrists into the small of my back. Then something was passed around my arms below my breasts, and whatever it was pulled tightly to hold my arms to my side. It was then wrapped around above my breasts, and pulled tight again. I then felt it been passed around my upper body repeatedly, each time pinning my arms more tightly to my chest and body.
When they had finished, I couldn’t move my arms from my side at all. Hands were placed on my shoulders, and I was helped to sit down on what I presumed to be the floor given I was sitting on some sort of rug. I then wondered what had happened to my husband, and whether or not this was something to do with his job.
My feet were taken hold of, and I could feel that my ankles had been crossed because the feel of leather against leather is unmistakable. There was a muffled gasp, but I had no idea at that time what that meant. Something was passed around my ankles, and I realised that my legs were now being tied. After a few moments, they were tied together so tightly that there was no way I could move them apart. Whatever was going on, these people meant business.
Someone pushed my legs up, and I felt my skirt been folded back. This made me squirm a bit, but a hand was put on my shoulder and I was told very firmly not to move. Something was passed around my legs below my knees, and I could feel my legs been pulled together. The same thing then happened above my knees. My legs were then gently laid down, and I could feel my skirt been pulled down.
The voice then told me to open my mouth, and I shook my head. There was no way I was being gagged by them. Someone grabbed my nose, however, and when I was forced to open my mouth to get some air I felt a cloth been stuffed into my mouth. Something firm was then put into my mouth over this, and my hair been lifted up as whatever this was had a knot tied at the nape of my neck. I realised I could also hear someone crying, but I had no idea who it was.
The scarf around my eyes was taken away, and I blinked to get my sight back. I realised I was at on the floor of our front room, with my back against one of the chairs. Then I looked over, and there was my daughter sitting against the opposite chair.
She had her hands tied behind her back, and rope around her chest holding her arms against her side. Her legs were tied together by the ankles, and above her knees, and a knotted scarf was tied into her mouth as a gag. She sat there, looking at my and quietly crying, and I had never felt so hope less in my entire life. I looked over to where I knew my mother to be – and I was shocked at what was happening.
I had to sit there and watch as my mother was sat down and her legs were tied in three different places. The man who did it had to fold her dress back, and it was a shock to see her stockings held up by a garter belt. When he had finished, at least he had the decency to fold her skirt back down, but they then stuffed a piece of cloth into her mouth, and tied a knotted scarf into her mouth to hold that cloth in place. I silently thanked god that, whatever was in my mouth, that was it and nothing else was there.
The other thing I had no idea of was where my dad was. I couldn’t see him anywhere in the room – although I could now see what was happening to my gran…..
It was a lovely family night out – my granddaughter had just turned eighteen, and it was a special occasion. Both her and her mother liked to dress younger than they actually are, and they looked lovely in their outfits. I guess they got that from me – I was wearing a white silk blouse, black leather jacket and skirt with a zig-zag cut fringe, and knee length suedette boots.
Well, we went to that lovely Italian restaurant, and when we got back I went in first with my granddaughter. I went into the front room first, and someone grabbed me and put a gloved hand over my mouth. When my granddaughter came in, she was treated in the same way, and we were both told to shut up before we were pushed on the floor in front of the couch. I heard my daughter scream, and then she was brought in and pushed down next to me. We were told to keep our hands on our heads, and scarves were tied over the eyes of my daughter and granddaughter. Knowing the same way would happen to me, I relaxed as much as I could when the scarf was tied over my eyes. I’d already been slapped once for asking what was happening, and once was enough. I couldn’t stop crying.
Kneeling there was hurting me a lot, but I was too scared to move much. Obviously my son in law wasn’t there, but I had no idea where he had been taken. For that matter, I had no idea where my granddaughter had been taken – I had felt her brush against me, and then nothing. A few minutes later, I felt my daughter’s dress brush against me and heard her grunt as someone took her, but after that nothing. There were some muffled voices coming from behind me, so I guessed they were still in the same room, but nothing else.
Suddenly, there was a hand on my shoulder and a voice told me to lift my head up and put my hands behind my back. I asked if I could stand up, and there was a hand under my arm helping me. I stretched my back as best I could, but my hands were taken behind my back and I could feel rope being tied around my wrists. I knew the feel – I still remember helping my own mother to hang a new washing line in the back garden.
Having tied my wrists together, I felt a longer length of rope being tied around my arms and chest, both around my lower chest and above. Whoever these people were, they obviously meant business, as I couldn’t move my arms or hands.
There were muffled screams behind me, and I realised that whatever they had done to my daughter and granddaughter, they were both gagged and now able to see what had happened. Hands turned me round, and I was helped to sit on what I presumed was the couch – my legs were hanging off the edge of something, and it was the most comfortable I had been since we arrived home.
My ankles were crossed, and I felt more rope been tied around them. It didn’t feel too uncomfortable, but I knew I wasn’t going anywhere in a hurry. More rope was then tied around my legs below my knees, and again above my knees. I tried to move around, but the ropes were too tight and I knew I was going nowhere.
I was told to lean over to my side, and I was helped to lie down on the couch. They even put a cushion on the couch arm to support my head. I wriggled around a little bit, trying to get myself as comfortable as I could, and wishing they had taken my boots off as I was starting to sweat a bit. The voice told me to open my mouth, but I asked if I could have a drink of water first. The voice said to wait, and I felt a rolled up cloth being pushed into my mouth.
I had to sit there and watch while they finished tying my own mother up. When my eyes had fully adjusted, I realised they had tied her hands and arms in much the same way as me, and she was sitting on the lounger. She turned her head from side to side – I’m sure she could hear both of us, but she was still blindfolded and couldn’t see what had happened to us.
Once they had tied her ankles and legs, they pushed her over onto her side on the lounger. At least she was lying down – her knees had been giving her trouble, and I was worried about how they would be feeling. I looked over at my daughter, but she was just sitting there with her head bowed, too scared to move.
I heard my mother talking to one of the two men that I could now see were in the room, and he said something back. He left the room, and I saw that he had stuffed a scarf into her mouth. She just lay there, waiting to see what happened next, until the man came back with a glass of water and some straws.
I was too scared to even look up, but I heard a clink of glass and I glanced up to see one of the men had brought a glass of water and some straws in. He came over to me, and asked if I wanted a drink of water. I nodded, and he reached to my mouth to pull out what looked to me like a knotted bandana. Coughing slightly, I thanked him as he held a straw to my mouth, and I took a drink of cold water.
He asked if I was all right, and I nodded. He let me have another drink, then took the straw out and placed the glass on the floor. He took the scarf, and told me to open my mouth wide. Realising there was nothing I could do, I opened up as he placed the knot back in my mouth and tightened the knot at the base of my neck.
After the man gave my daughter a drink, he came over and offered me one as well. I nodded, and he took what I later realised was my husband’s tie out of my mouth and removed a rolled up scarf. I gratefully took a drink, and asked where my husband was. The man told me he was with a colleague of theirs, and they were at his place of work. If we just sat quietly, he said, we would get out of this alive. Nodding, I didn’t resist as he pushed the scarf back into my mouth, and then placed a large strip of tape over it to keep it in place. It was at least a little more comfortable.
I could hear my daughter and granddaughter having a drink, but still had no idea what exactly had happened to them. I heard a voice saying they were going to take the cloth out of my mouth, and when they did so I felt a straw in my mouth. I took a long drink of water.
The voice then said they were going to gag me, then remove my blindfold. I nodded, as I felt the cloth been placed back into my mouth and pushed inside. There was a ripping sound, like one I heard a few minutes earlier, and something sticky was placed over my mouth. The blindfold was then taken off.
I blinked, and took a few minutes to get my eyesight back. Looking ahead, I saw my daughter sitting on the floor. Her wrists were bound behind her back, and ropes were around her arms. Her ankles had been tied together, and I could see ropes around her legs. Her mouth was covered with some sort of white tape – which I then realised was covering my mouth as well.
Looking to the other side of the room, I saw my granddaughter. She had not been as strictly tied, although there were ropes around her arms as well. Her ankles were tied side by side, and rope around her legs above her knees. She was gagged differently as well, with a knotted bandana in place.
We just lay there, looking at each other. There were two men standing in the shadows, who said that we just stay still and relax – nothing else was going to happen.
Hours passed – I dosed off a couple of times, and woke up with a start. Both my daughter and my granddaughter also slept at different times.
The last time I woke up, the dawn light was starting to come in through the windows. I also realised that the two men had gone. I started to try and shout out to the others.
I woke with a start at the sound of my mother trying to call out, and saw the light starting to come through the windows. I also realised that the men that had been watching us had gone. Looking around, I slowly realised that they had gone, and we were quite alone.
My daughter was sitting with her head down, so I slowly moved myself across the floor and pushed my bound feet against hers. She slowly lifted her head, and started to cry out when she realised that the men had gone.
The feel of my mother pushing against me made me come round. I called out to her, and she moved over to sit beside me – although it was difficult as I could see her legs were bound far more tightly than mine. Gran called over, I think to say that she was all right, but mum then rested her head on my shoulder and I knew we were going to be all right.
An hour or so later, we heard the front door open and the police came into the room. As they took the tape off my mother’s mouth, she spat out a scarf and asked where dad was. It turned out he had been taken to the bank by the rest of the gang, forced to open the safe, and left there bound and gagged as well.
It certainly turned out to be a family night I’ll never forget – much as I want to, and I really want to.