MANATEE - A Palmetto man was pistol-whipped by three men who broke into his residence early this morning, according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office. It was the third home invasion robbery in Manatee County this week.
The most recent home invasion happened about 2:09 a.m. in the 1000 block of 29th Street East, Palmetto, according to a news release.
Three armed men kicked in the residence's back door, demanded money and then hit the victim about three times with a gun. The intruders took a watch, an Xbox 360 video game system, a wallet, a purse and $15 in cash, the sheriff's office said.
They also demanded his vehicle, but as he was leading them outside, the victim ran to a neighbor's and called 911, according to the report.
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Paramedics treated the victim at the scene for minor head injuries. His wife and three children also were at home, but they never came into contact with the suspects.
Investigators used a helicopter and police dog to help search for the suspects, but they could not be located.
The other two home invasions this week happened early Monday: in the 1800 block of 46th Avenue Drive West, Bradenton, during which a resident was shot in the leg; and in the 1000 block of 14th Street East, Palmetto.