CHINATOWN (CBSLA) – Authorities are searching for multiple suspects – one of whom impersonated a Los Angeles police detective — in connection with one robbery and two attempted robberies at two jewelry stores in the same Chinatown neighborhood over a four-hour period Tuesday.
It’s unclear if the three incidents are linked.READ MORE: DEA Warns Of Aggressive Scammers Texting Fake FBI Badges To Extort Money, Steal Personal Information
At 11:30 a.m., two suspects stole a $10,000 gold dragon necklace from a jewelry store located in the 800 block of North Broadway in Chinatown. The exact details of the robbery were not released.
One of the suspects, identified as 19-year-old Gerald Roberts, was caught minutes later, police said, and arrested on grand theft charges. However, the second suspect remains at large, along with the necklace itself.
“While he’s looking at the chain, the second suspect distracts the jewelry owner by asking to see another piece of jewelry,” LAPD Det. Kenneth Scott told CBS2. “The jewelry owner goes to show him that piece of jewelry, and the first suspect runs out of the store. The second suspect pauses, then he runs out as well.”
The outstanding suspect is described as black, 6-feet-tall and 190 pounds. He was last seen wearing sunglasses, a red polo shirt, blue jeans and black shoes.
Then, at around 3:45 p.m., a Hispanic man entered the same store, identified himself as an LAPD detective and asked to see the gold chain similar to the one that was previously stolen, police said. When the suspicious store owner asked for a business card, the suspect provided it, and then left.READ MORE: San Diego Woman Sues GoFundMe Campaign Creator Over Starbucks Barista Fundraiser
“The gentleman comes into the store and identifies himself as a Los Angeles Police Department detective wearing a Dodgers shirt, and, what we believe was a fake badge and a set of handcuffs,” Scott said.
Surveillance video of that man has been released. He is described as Hispanic, in his 20s, 5-foot-8 and 180 pounds. He was wearing a blue Dodgers baseball cap, a Dodgers shirt, an LAPD badge with handcuffs clipped to his hip, sunglasses and blue jeans.
Meanwhile, at 2:50 p.m., an attempted robbery occurred at a different store on the same block, police said. Two men carrying a semi-automatic rifle and a hammer got out of an orange Ford Mustang with paper plates and approached the store.
The wary owner immediately locked the front door so they couldn’t get in, police said. When the men realized the store was locked, they went back to the Mustang and its waiting getaway driver. As the Mustang pulled away from the curb, however, it collided with a ridesharing vehicle. The Mustang was last seen headed south on Alameda Street.
The two men were described as black, in their 20s, about 5-foot-3 and 150 pounds. There was no description for the driver.MORE NEWS: Driver Killed In Fiery Wreck On 60 Freeway In Hacienda Heights Despite 'Heroic' Efforts Of Good Samaritan
Anyone with information on the robberies should call LAPD detectives at 213-996-1860 or 213-996-1868.