Police search for hotel jewelry robbers

DANA POINT Surveillance video shows two men entering a jewelry store inside the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel hotel in Dana Point.

One of the suspects pulled out a handgun. Authorities allege he told the two female clerks that he would not hesitate to use it. If he did not get what he wanted he said he would kill them.

The other suspect with a light blue hooded sweatshirt remained at the door as a lookout, as the other one picked out jewelry to put in a small black bag.

"They took large loose stones, rings with large diamonds and other jewelry with diamonds or precious stones," said Orange County sheriff's spokesman Jim Amormino.

Authorities allege the suspects, who were wearing what appeared to be baseball gloves, took 25 to 30 pieces of jewelry worth as much as $100,000.

It's just before 1:00 p.m. Sunday when the robbery occurred. The hotel was busy with guests.

The suspects spent about just under two minutes in the store. When leaving they headed to an alleyway, where authorities say their getaway car was waiting.

The vehicle is described as a blue Mustang convertible with a tan top. It was possibly driven by a third person.

Authorities are trying to determine if these suspects, who are believed to be in their 20s, are connected with another robbery six weeks ago at the same jewelry store.

"There was a theft where a male African American walked in and he was very well dressed. He stated he wanted to make a large purchase for his fiance. Once he was shown a very nice diamond ring, he grabbed the piece of jewelry from the clerk and ran off," said Amormino.

In this recent case, authorities say several witnesses saw the suspects, but didn't know it was a robbery. Officials hoping surveillance video will help track down those responsible.

"I doubt if it was the first time they did it and unless we catch them I doubt it will be the last time," said Amormino.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Orange County Sheriff's Department at (714) 628-7170.


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