Stolen rings returned to OC jewelry store by man claiming to be thieves' father after incident caught on video

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Thursday, July 2, 2020
Man claiming to be jewelry thieves' father returns stolen rings
Two stolen rings were returned to a Villa Park jewelry store by a man claiming to be the father of the two women who took the jewelry.

VILLA PARK, Calif. (KABC) -- Just before closing Saturday, Jewelry Designs By Steven in Villa Park reported a theft by two women caught on camera.

Surveillance video shows Haven Gramlich helping them when she notices one of their bags open.

"I see a ring in there and I was like, oh excuse me, I'm gonna need that ring, that's our ring. And she's like oh my gosh, I'm so sorry, so sorry," Gramlich said.

Eventually they attempt to pay for something, bringing out wads of cash with a Visa gift card that declined. We're told they said they would go get more money at the bank, and when they left, the store confirmed at least one $10,000 ring was missing.

"So, as they're leaving, I grab my phone and run full speed, full speed towards the direction they were at," said Gramlich.

She spots them in a silver SUV with a male driver and starts taking pictures. To hide the rear license plate, she says the vehicle reverses into oncoming traffic and gets away.

Three days later, owner Steven Hurley found an envelope that had been pushed through the mail slot with two rings inside, plus a note from someone claiming to be the women's father. He explains they got the rings by mistake and because they were scared by Haven chasing them, they ran away.

"I just couldn't believe it. It was mind blowing," Hurley said.

Since then, they've received a couple of calls from the so-called father, apologizing.

"Thank you, you know, that's awesome that we got the rings back, but I think that they were honestly scared that they were gonna go to prison. That they were gonna get caught finally. Because they knew exactly what they were doing," said Gramlich.

"I have a tendency to feel sorry for the dad cause I heard him talking to Haven on the phone and he sounded very sincere, but it sounds crazy that he didn't know what was going on," said Hurley.

Whatever the case, they're just glad to have their merchandise back.

"Them getting caught, or almost getting caught might have taught them not to do it anymore, so if they do hit areas all around here, maybe some businesses are saved cause they did learn their lesson," Gramlich said.

They've now been given the option to press charges.