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7 ‘Smash-and-Grab’ Robbers Hit Texas Jewelry Store

Police are seeking help from the public.

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Police are trying to identify seven men involved in a smash-and-grab robbery at an Austin, TX, jewelry store.

The crime occurred at 6:48 p.m. on Feb. 13, the Jewelers’ Security Alliance stated in an alert.

Two men entered Marc Robinson Jewelers in the Barton Creek Square mall, and then several others followed suit and robbed the store, the Austin American-Statesman reports. One employee was threatened, but no injuries were reported.

The men then ran from the store and may have taken off in a vehicle, police said.

According to JSA: “The suspect with the plaid mask is described as late teens to mid-20s with a medium build, and the other suspect pictured alone was described as mid-20s with a medium to heavy build.”

The other suspects are described as “are described as in their teens who were wearing heavy clothing, gloves and masks,” according to the American-Statesman.

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If you have information, call the Austin Police Department Robbery tip line at 512-472-TIPS or JSA at 212-687-0328 or [email protected]

JSA offers the following advice related to smash-and-grab robberies:

1. Do not resist in a smash and grab robbery. In addition to sledgehammers and other dangerous tools, the suspect(s) may be armed with guns.

2. Showcases with burglary-resistant, laminated glass and special frames can withstand many blows with a hammer and can prevent or reduce large losses. JSA has not seen robbers take retaliatory action when laminated glass is used and robbers are unable to enter a showcase or are able to take only a small amount of merchandise from a small hole. Furthermore, robbers frequently cut themselves on small holes and leave behind valuable DNA evidence from blood.

3. Having an audible glass breakage alarm on your showcases can scare smash and grab robbers away, who are trying to remain in a target store for less than a minute.

4. Having buzzers on the door can help to keep out potential robbers.

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5. Hiring armed, off-duty police officers in the store is a deterrent to smash and grab robbers.

6. Spreading high end watch and loose diamond merchandise among several showcases, and not concentrated in one showcase, can reduce the amount of the loss in a smash and grab robbery.

7. Surveillance photos from eye-level cameras inside and outside the store provide excellent evidence for police. Ceiling cameras too often capture useless photos of the top of heads or hats.

8. Keeping a log book of suspicious incidents, and putting aside and saving surveillance video of suspicious incidents, can be a great help in subsequent investigations.

9. Sharing information and photos among local jewelers and police, and with JSA, regarding casings and suspects can help prevent crime and assist with investigations.

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Over the years, INSTORE has won 80 international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact INSTORE's editors at [email protected].

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