Suspected jewelry burglar may have targeted another store

Posted at 11:24 PM, Sep 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-15 08:03:50-04

Deputies in two counties are trying to track down a man suspected of stealing high priced jewelry from two stores less than a month apart.

According to deputies in Hillsborough County, their investigation started September 6th when the man stole more than $23,000 worth of jewelry from the Mirage Diamonds and Fine Jewelry Store in the Brandon Town Center Mall.

In that case, the employee chased after the jewelry burglar; he got onto the hood of the getaway car and flew off the car as the burglar sped away. Deputies said the employee remains in serious condition at the hospital. Authorities said the getaway car was a newer model 2 door silver Camaro.

MORE: Employee injured trying to stop suspected jewelry burglar

Then on Wednesday evening, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office released a new surveillance picture of the suspected jewelry burglar. According to deputies, the surveillance picture was from a similar case in Pasco County. 

The Pasco County Sheriff's office said they could only release some information about their investigation. According to the Pasco County Sheriff's office, they are investigating a grand theft retail case, which occurred on August 9 at the Crown Diamond Jewelers store inside the Gulf View Square Mall.

Hillsborough County deputies believe it's the same suspect.

"It bothers me that this gentleman is hitting some jewelry stores in the area," an employee at Crown Diamond Jewelers said.

The employee did not want us to use her name, but she agreed to describe what happened inside the store on August 9. She was the employee helping the suspected jewelry burglar.

"The gentleman came in. He was very quiet. He waited his turn. He walked up to the counter. He asked to see some high end items," the employee said.

She said she showed him a men's 14K gold bracelet worth a few thousand dollars and that's when she said he bolted from the store.

"I went 'oh my God', you know. 'Oh my God', I know…I was upset," she said.

The employee said that has never happened before.

"We have no trouble in this store at all, no trouble in the mall, no trouble in the stores. No, no. It was a shock that this happened to us," she said.

If anyone has information about these cases, contact the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office or the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.