Invasion victim's family reacts to arrests

Theresa Gomes
Theresa Gomes

By Zahid Arab - bio | email

SALT LAKE-- (KHNL) There are new developments as police arrest three men Tuesday who are suspected of being involved with an invasion style robbery that left a victim in critical condition.

This happened about 2-weeks ago in Salt Lake.

19-year-old Timothy Lapitan is still in critical condition at Queens Medical Center and while his family says he's barely hanging on, they're hopeful the arrests are a step in the right direction.

It was a scene of shock and terror. Five masked men entered this Aliamanu home, demanded everyone get on the floor and that's when 19-year-old Timothy Lapitan stepped in.

"My brother pushed them out the door because they had guns on my mom. And that's when he got shot," said the victim's sister Theresa Gomes.

The men fled and there's been no sign of the gunman until possibly now. Sources say a man was arrested over the weekend on unrelated charges but believe he may be the one who fired the shot that critically injured Lapitan.

On Tuesday, police also arrest another three suspects at this Salt Lake home. Sources identify them as a 19-year-old, 17-year old and 16-year-old who are all related. All three are being held on suspicion of first degree robbery.

"Justice will serve them. They did what they did and I pray to god it doesn't happen to their own family because we are suffering, my brother is suffering," said Gomes.

Gomes says her family's focus isn't on the arrests, it's for her brother to be completely healed.

"It's a long long road head pretty much, he's going to need a lot of therapy, rehab," said Gomes.

Conscious but not able to talk, weeks later Lapitan is still on life support, but his family says he's a fighter.

Lapitan's sister says telling the story of what happened is like something out of a movie, but knows its reality every time she visits her brother in the hospital.

The three suspects are being held at the main police cellblock.