The victim of a late September home invasion and robbery in St. Paul helped solve his own case after identifying the three suspects in rap videos posted on YouTube.
According to a search warrant affidavit, three men were going door-to-door with pamphlets in the area of Margaret Avenue and Winthrop Street on Sept. 25.
A 31-year-old man was home alone with his 2-year-old daughter when the suspects knocked on his door in the 600 block of Winthrop Street. The three men immediately threatened the man with a handgun, then forced their way inside, kicking and punching the victim as he fell to his knees.
The suspects demanded drugs and $200,000 cash.
One of the suspects told the victim "they've done this before and know what they're doing." The suspects zip-tied the victim's hands behind his back and pointed a gun at the 2-year-old girl's bedroom door, threatening to shoot if he didn't tell them where they could find money.
The victim said he doesn't use drugs and doesn't have much money, but the suspects were able to take $2,000 he had reserved for rent and a deposit.
The victim was moved to the basement and one of the suspects untied his hands, but moved his hands from his back to his front and tied them again with phone cords.
The suspects fled the home with $2,000 cash, a laptop, an iPad and two handguns. After they left the house, the victim was able to chew through the phone cords to free himself. He went upstairs, grabbed his daughter and stepped outside to call police. The ordeal lasted about three hours.
On Sept. 27, the victim called police and told investigators he had found the suspects in three different rap videos on YouTube. The victim said he was "100 percent sure" all three suspects were in the videos. He said he watched the videos and "definitely identified" all three suspects.
Police identified the three suspects as:
Theng Thao, 33
Teng Vang, 33
Chozon Yang Chang, 27
The suspects are known to police as members of the Mount Airy Boys and Oriental Ruthless Boys gangs.
Earlier this month, police executed a search warrant at home on Broadway Ave. in Robbinsdale, Minn. to seize weapons, stolen property and other evidence linking Thao, Vang and Chang to the St. Paul home invasion.