NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The armed robbery of a jewelry store in midtown this week is the third in a series of incidents dating back to September, according to police.
The two suspects have stolen hundreds of thousands of dollars in merchandise from the stores, police said. In each case, police said they displayed a gun and demanded a bag be filled with jewelry and watches.
The most recent incident happened just before 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at Madison Jewelers on Broadway and 38th Street.
Surveillance video shows one man holding a small handgun, while the other hands a laundry bag to employees and orders them to fill it with valuable watches and jewelry.
“They go ‘move’ and I was just frozen,” worker Jennifer Plishtaev recalled. “He said, ‘Open it or I’m gonna shoot you.'”
The duo demanded the most expensive products, and when they realized the store didn’t carry Rolexes, they started cleaning out entire cases, CBS2’s Janelle Burrell reported.
“They emptied out an entire window of the Movados. They told me to give them some jewelry from the window and the cases,” Plishtaev told 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa.
One of the men also ordered her co-worker to empty a case of expensive Oris watches.
“We had over 60 watches in that case and each one is about a thousand dollars,” Plishtaev said.
Plishtaev and her co-worker said the two men walked out of the store shielding their faces with umbrellas and got into a van waiting about a block away.
According to police, the suspects made off with about $500,000 worth of goods.
The co-workers are just glad to have survived the ordeal, and know the valuables can be replaced.
“It’s funny now, but at that time it was just so scary,” Plishtaev said.
The store is now reviewing its security plan.
Police said the same suspects are responsible for two other robberies — one at Jewelry Patch on 7th Avenue in September and another at Kenjo Jewelry Store on West 57th Street in October.
Anyone with information is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS, visit www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or text tips to 274637(CRIMES) then enter TIP577.