By Michelle Graff
These surveillance camera stills are from the Feb. 23 burglary of a jewelry store in Collierville, Tennessee. The Jewelers’ Security Alliance said three suspects stole jewelry from the store’s safe after gaining access to the premises via an adjacent business. (Photo courtesy of JSA)
Collierville, Tenn.—Burglars broke into the safe of a Tennessee jewelry store after cutting a hole in the roof of an adjacent business and then breaking through a brick wall to gain access to the store.

According to the Jewelers’ Security Alliance, the burglary happened late in the evening of Feb. 23 at a store in Collierville, Tennessee, a Memphis suburb.

Three suspects cut a hole in the roof of a restaurant located next door to the jewelry store—identified in a local news report as Hammer Jewelers—after disabling the alarm system.

JSA said the suspects then proceeded to break through a 3-foot-thick brick wall to climb into the jewelry store and cut two holes in the safe. They stole diamonds ring, along with other jewelry.

Anyone with information is asked to contact JSA at 212-687-2758 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Collierville burglary is the third to occur in the Southeast United States this year that involved the suspects cutting through the roof, though JSA President John J. Kennedy said the three aren’t necessarily linked.

“There is no evidence that JSA’s latest burglary suspects are the same as the ones [who hit stores] back in December,” he told National Jeweler Tuesday. “There are a number of gangs out there doing burglaries.”

On Dec. 21, burglars entered a jewelry store in the Nashville suburb of Brentwood through the roof and stole jewelry that had been left out in the showcases overnight.

Nine days later, on Dec. 30, a jewelry store in Roswell, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta, had its vault cleaned out by burglars who dropped down into the store after cutting a hole in the roof.

JSA has a list of burglary prevention recommendations that includes the following.

1. Jewelers should check with their alarm company to see if their system protects all possible points of entry—doors, windows, the roof and sidewalls.

2. All jewelry businesses need to have adequate line security for their alarm systems, and their systems need to be tested from time to time.

3. Police and jewelers have to respond to alarm signals promptly and examine all possible points of entry, not just the ground-floor doors and windows.

4. Safes rated as TL-15x6 or TL-30x6 by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) are not enough today; inexpensive tools bought at any hardware store can be used to breach them. UL-rated TRTL 30x6 safes provide a much higher level of security, JSA said.

5. Have surveillance images sent and stored in the cloud or to a remote location so they are accessible if burglars remove camera surveillance equipment when leaving the scene, which they sometimes do.

TAGS:   Crime
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