‘I honestly thought I was going to die’: Edmonton home invasion victim recounts terrifying ordeal
The victim of a violent home invasion in northeast Edmonton is sharing what happened during that terrifying day.
Police were called at approximately 2 p.m. on Monday to a house near 25 Street and 133 Avenue after reports of a home invasion. A 31-year-old man was taken to hospital with a gunshot wound. He remains in hospital in serious but stable condition.
Tracey Christoffer has lived in the house since August but nothing could have prepared her for what happened that day.
Christoffer said she was relaxing when two masked men barged into the house.
“They just told me to shut up and get up,” she said.
“They took me down to the basement, guns to my head. [They] threw me on a couch that was in there.”
Christoffer said her daughter’s friend, the 31-year-old shooting victim, was in the room and came to her defense.
“He went after them. They were beating him with a metal club and then the gun went off. It went off again and that was when he was shot,” she said.
Christoffer said the she can’t remember much of what the men said during the violent ordeal.
“I was under a cushion screaming. I honestly thought I was going to die,” she said.
Also running through Christoffer’s mind was the fact her eight-year-old granddaughter was in the house.
“I begged them to not go into where she was. She was home sick,” she said.
“There were men in my house with guns. I’ve never even seen a gun in real life until Monday.”
Three people have been charged in relation to the incident: Alison Burns, 19, Keith McDermott, 34, and Steve Paxton, 46. Police won’t comment on the relationship between the suspects or the suspects and the victim.
Christoffer said she has never heard the suspects’ names before, but the arrests, unfortunately, bring her little comfort.
“I can’t leave the house. I haven’t eaten. I haven’t slept,” she said. “If I unlock that door, something will happen.”
Christoffer said she is hoping for justice as the suspects go through the justice system.
“They’ve destroyed my life. My whole family has been changed,” she said.
“Every minute of every day, I close my eyes, I see it. Sometimes it just seems surreal, like I just watched a bad episode of ‘Criminal Minds’ or something. Then I realize, yeah it did happen.”
Christoffer said she is taking each day at a time, but she admits it has been difficult coping with the violent encounter.
“I’m just focused on breathing right now. I haven’t stopped [shaking] since it happened. I shake all over, all the time.”
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