An unidentified man smashed through the back of a display case at Rose Jewelers in Southampton Village and grabbed a necklace valued at $20,000 before fleeing the store by bicycle on Monday afternoon.
At approximately 4:32 p.m., the man walked into the jewelry store on Main Street and was greeted by two female employees who were behind the cash register. The suspect quickly walked past the employees and into store owner Jan Rose’s office—an occurrence that employees said is normal for her friends and even some customers to do.
But Ms. Rose said the man appeared surprised to find her inside the office.
“I think I caught him off guard,” Ms. Rose said Tuesday. “From the outside, he wouldn’t have known I was in there.”
From inside her office, Ms. Rose said, she has access to a small door that connects to a window jewelry display case. The suspect went into Ms. Rose’s office and—though startled by her presence—took out a hammer and a razor and broke the glass of the door. He then reached into the window and took a diamond tennis necklace. Then, the man ran back out through the front door, dropped the hammer and razor, and left on a bicycle.
“I’m grateful nobody was hurt,” Ms. Rose said. “It was a little scary. It’s a very small space where he came into my office—I don’t think he expected anyone to be in there.”
According to store manager Deborah Lapiana, the store has video footage of the suspect walking outside the store several times earlier Monday.
Ms. Rose said she was working with Southampton Village Police to find the man. He was identified as a white male between 5 feet 7 inches tall and 6 feet tall, balding, and was wearing a white sweatshirt, blue jeans, winter gloves and a dark-colored beanie at the time of the theft.
Anyone with information on the investigation is requested to contact Southampton Village Police. Detective Sergeant Herman Lamison, who is investigating the incident, could not be immediately reached for additional information.