Family tells of terror over fighting off gunmen

A FAMILY last night spoke of their terror after fighting off masked gunmen in their own home.

Two men pointing a gun and brandishing a six-inch bread knife demanded gold from the family of six after forcing their way into the Abingdon Road home at 9pm on Thursday.

Grandmother Nazira Braich cut her hand pushing the knife away as she ran to protect her crying two-year-old grandson.

Mrs Braich, 55, said: “I wanted to see my grandson. He was alone in the sitting room because my son was the one to answer the door.

“They had been playing on the computer. “I had to get to him because I was worried they might take him.”

Dad Jonathan Braich, 32, and his son Ethan had been playing in the living room when he went to answer the knock at the door.

The rest of the family – Jonathan Braich’s mum, his wife Victoria Braich, 27, and his two brothers Navdeep Sahil, 25, and Neil Braich, 26 – were in the kitchen.

They said the men were wearing hoods with scarves tied around their heads.

Jonathan Braich said: “The first man said ‘give us your gold’. My reaction was shock, and I tried to shut the door but they pushed through it.

“That was when he pulled a knife out, grabbed me by the neck and pushed me against the hall mirror.

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“The man behind then pulled out a gun and they both just kept shouting ‘give us your gold’.”

The masked men pushed Mr Braich through into the kitchen where the rest of the family were gathered.

His brothers Navdeep Sahil and Neil Braich both reached for weapons to protect themselves – a broom and a kitchen knife which was lying on the counter as their mum was cooking.

Mr Sahil said the gun was pointed at him and the trigger was pulled several times, but it did not go off.

The Ipswich-based soldier said: “It was like a pistol but we think it was a fake. It all happened too quickly, that was probably why I wasn’t scared.”

Mr Sahil said he was in Afghanistan last year and had faced far worse and been more afraid.

Nazira Braich pushed past the robbers to rush to her grandson.

Jonathan Braich said: “Ethan had been quiet in the living room but when they started shouting ‘give me your gold’ over and over he started crying. It scared him.

“We were just really worried they were going to take him hostage.”

The three brothers then chased the pair out of their house on to Abingdon Road.

Mr Braich said: “They have seen us, all of my family, and we haven’t seen them, so we wouldn’t know if we passed them on the street.

“I’m so glad we didn’t go out. We were going to go for a coffee somewhere leaving my wife, mum and son at home but at the last minute my mum said, ‘Stay, I’ll cook’.

“I hate to think what might have happened.”

Thames Valley Police is calling for any witnesses to the robbery to call 101.

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