Chesco home invasion was a targeted attack, state police say

Posted: September 25, 2012

A home invasion that left a Chester County bankruptcy lawyer hospitalized with a gunshot wound Monday was not a random attack, Pennsylvania state police said.

Fred P. Barakat, 63, continued to recover from injuries sustained in the struggle Tuesday as investigators searched for three men believed to have barged into his Pennsbury Township house just before 6:20 p.m.

Troopers remained tight-lipped about many of the details of the incident, including what led them to suspect Barakat's attackers targeted him.

Two of the men were believed to be wearing masks. Barakat described the third as a 6-foot-tall white man in his 30s with short blond hair. All fled in a white or cream-colored Mitsubishi Diamante after a struggle, Trooper Corey Monthei said.

On Tuesday, no signs remained of the previous night's violence at Barakat's house, an isolated two-story Colonial on a private drive a quarter mile from rural Hillendale Road.

Neighbors in a cul de sac on Hillendale next to, but not visible from, Barakat's sprawling property left in their cars at midday in response to the influx of television news trucks.

One driver who did not give her name told reporters she was so unnerved by the crime that she was arming herself.

Family members said Barakat was to undergo surgery at Crozer-Chester Medical Center on Wednesday.

A consumer bankruptcy lawyer with offices in Chadds Ford and Wilmington, he has practiced in the area for 35 years, according to his website. His brother, Joe, is the Chadds Ford Township manager.

Contact Jeremy Roebuck at 267-564-5218,, or @jeremyrroebuck on Twitter.

Inquirer staff writer Harold Brubaker contributed to this article.

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