SITTING just outside her lounge room, a mum breaks down intears as she tells of how her Pakenham home no longer feels like her own.
Just after 11.30pm on Saturday 12 November, her Balmoral Wayhome was stormed by three brazen youths who physically assaulted her husband asthey tried to push into the home and get the keys to their family car.
Mum of three Sonia Gallangher recalled the horror when shesaw her eldest daughter Natasha, 13, emerge from her bedroom, panicking at thesound of her mum’s screams.
Three erratic, masked youths were advancing toward hers’ andher six-year-old twin sisters’ bedrooms.
But the young offenders, two described as Caucasian, theother of African appearance, didn’t make it far into the house.
Dad Aaron Gallangher grabbed the trio, pushing them out thefront door – but not before being belted over the back of the head with achain.
The terrifying home invasion was caught on CCTV installed bythe family a year ago after several theft attempts were made on the family’sproperty.
The family had arrived home from a birthday celebration fortheir six-year-old twins, Bella and Chala, but forgot to lock their car beforesettling for the night.
CCTV footage shows the three youths open up the door to Sonia’s Ford XR6 parked in the driveway, then attempt to open her husband’s car before advancing toward the family home.
With his fingertips covered by his hoodie, one youth opensup the front door and ushers his associates to sneak into the house leftunlocked after a family friend left moments earlier.
All three enter the home, and are immediately confronted byboth parents who were in the kitchen making food.
For the next 45 seconds, the three youths shoved the dad andjumped around the room demanding the keys to the unlocked car.
“What got me is that they kept coming closer,” Soniarecalled, telling she had to scream at her daughter to get back into her roomas she emerged with the youth crims just a few paces away. Chains were believedto be wrapped around the knuckles of at least one of the offenders who punchedthe defensive dad to the back of the head.
All three then fled out the front door as they discoveredthe loaded punch failed to take down Aaron.
CCTV shows him chasing the trio out the door.
Witnesses on Parman Avenue have reported seeing three youthsrunning toward a black Suzuki Swift readied with a getaway driver. They werepicked up, and sped away from the scene.
Sonia and her family have lived in the rental home forthree-and-a-half years, but the mum said it no longer felt like their own.
“I feel really violated and angry. This house doesn’t feellike mine anymore. I don’t like the lounge room anymore. I tried to put up theChristmas tree and put out presents to make it feel different, but it’s notworking,” Sonia said.
She said sleeping had been difficult since the aggravatedburglary, and had relied on heavy medications to rest.
Two police units responded to the family’s panickedtriple-zero call soon after the invasion.
Detectives were on scene the next morning taking evidence from the scene, and urged anyone with information to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.