The small town of Lakeside is known for its quaint antique shops, roadside diners and close neighbors. This weekend the quiet area received quite a shock after learning one of their long-time residents was attacked.
It happened between 11:15 and 11:30 Friday night in the 8700 block of East Road in Lakeside, north of New Buffalo. Police say a masked man broke into the home of 61-year old Ann Dawson. She was tied up, beat up and robbed.
The suspect punched her and broke her arm.
Dawson was not found until Saturday morning. Her relatives contacted police and Dawson was rushed to Lakeland Hospital and then transferred to Ann Arbor because of the seriousness of her injuries.
News of the brutal attack has this normally carefree community on edge.
Gene Royce has worked at Lakeside Antiques for 10 years and says violent crime has never been a concern.
"There hasn't been anything like that that has happened here that I can recall. It's very alarming," Royce said.
Jenny Kehoe, 19, is Dawson's neighbor.
"I was really shocked," she said.
Kehoe has lived in Lakeside all her life and says the attack on Dawson has her on high-alert.
"It made me worry more that we should lock our doors and our cars and just watch out for things more.”
A friend of Dawson, who asked not to be identified, says that she had to undergo surgery Monday for her broken arm and will have to have an operation on her eye as well. The friend adds that despite everything Dawson has been through, she is in "good spirits."
Dawson did tell police and friends she did not know her attacker. And she was able to give police a basic description of the man. He is described as a white male in his 20s, between 5’7” and 5’8” with brown eyes and a thin build. They are telling people in the area to lock their doors, and watch for anything suspicious.
Michigan State Police Detective Sgt. Douglas Kill, out of the Niles Post, says they are not sure if Dawson was targeted of if this was a random attack.
If you have information about this crime, call Michigan State Police at (269) 683-4411.