Andrea and Howard Aho were minding their own business when a loud crash exploded into their home. By the time Andrea could look out of the bathroom where she was standing, it was too late.
The armed intruder, Ervin Demilton Roland-Bey (pictured above), had a gun pointed at her head. Howard yelled at Roland-Bey to leave the house, but instead he forced both of them to “sit and stay still,” reports 11Alive.
In a separate, more detailed report from Macomb Daily that you can read here, it was explained that Roland-Bey was fleeing from police in Clinton Township, Michigan, for being one of three suspects in an armed bank robbery.
After the car was hit with a spike strip and disabled, the three individuals — two men and one woman — fled on foot.
The other two were arrested but Roland-Bey broke in to the Aho’s home and took the couple hostage.
That’s where it starts to get weird.
Roland-Bey, realizing it was the end of the line, put the barrel of his firearm under his chin and said that he was going to “end it all.”
While many couples in that situation would have held each other and waited for the blast, Howard Aho stepped up and begged the intruder not to kill himself.
Then he and Andrea prayed with the suspect and convinced him to speak by phone to the police. Roland-Bey then allegedly asked Howard to hide the gun in the back of his home. Aho complied.
While speaking to police, Roland-Bey agreed that he would not hurt anyone and then peacefully surrendered, shaking the hands of both Andrea and Howard and walking out to meet the police.
Clinton Township Capt. Richard Maierle praised the couple for their poise in what was a nerve-wracking situation.
“They had the presence of mind, keeping calm, and defused a very volatile situation,” he said, adding that the couple would be receiving a formal citizen commendation.
Roland-Bey will be facing charges of kidnapping, first-degree home invasion, four counts of second-offense possession of a firearm while committing a felony, and two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon.
The kidnapping charge, notes Macomb Daily, comes with significant prison time, up to life imprisonment.
Considering these home invasion scenarios often end in tragedy — either on the victim end or the criminal end — it’s remarkable that Andrea and Howard Aho were able to end the situation in the way that they did. Do you believe prayer has power?