BESSEMER CITY, N.C. -- Police are stepping-up patrols in hopes of finding a man who is robbing people at gunpoint.
Shad Black had just come home with his fiancé and 8-year-old son, Colby, Sunday night when he heard his back door open. Colby went to look and found himself face to face with an armed gunman.
"I was going to get the cat and he just peeked around the door, and I just seen his eyes and the mask," the 8-year-old recalled.
For the next few minutes, the Blacks were terrorized by the man, who wore a mask covering his nose and mouth. He demanded money, and pointed the gun at all four of the people in the one-story, wood-framed house.
Donald Black was asleep on the coach and woke up after hearing screams.
"He was right beside me; he had that gun and said ‘give me your money,’” said Black. "He kept saying ‘I don't know which one I ought to kill first.’"
The gunman pushed Shad to the floor, threatened to kill him and struck him with the gun while kicking him in his ribs and on the face and neck.
The crook took a 32-inch TV, and smashed his fist into a larger one. Shad thinks that’s because it was too big to carry. He made off with more than $400 of the family’s money, including about $50 that 8-year-old Colby had been saving for Christmas.
"He held a gun to an 8-year-old's head, took his Christmas money-- I mean you tell me if he cares," Shad expressed, still sporting cuts and bruises from the beating he took from the gunman. "If we don't get him now, it’s going to happen to someone else. I don't think it’s going to stop."
As he left, he made two more threats to the family.
"He said if he heard any sirens he was going to come back and kill us," said Shad. "He was talking about killing-- he said he was going to kill one of us. He also told Andrea ‘I know where you work at the Subway.’" Donald recalled.
Police think this is the same man who severely beat a man early one morning just a few blocks away.
Friday, a man was beaten as he was walking back to his truck after warming it up.
Gray Helms told his next door neighbor, Lorrie Glaser, that a man approached him demanding money.
"He told the man he didn't have but $10, and the man said then ‘let's go inside your house,’" said Glaser. "His wife was inside, and he wasn't going to let that guy inside."
That's when Helms said that the man, who was wearing a gray hoodie with a medium build and standing around 5-foot-9 to 6- feet-tall, beat him with a black handgun.
"His doctor, who was working on his face told Gary, "He was trying to kill you." said Glaser.
Glaser said that she thinks she has seen the man fitting the description that the man police are looking for. She said he is a light-skinned man in his early 20's, clean shaven with a short haircut.
Police want anyone with information about the man to give them a call.