A small San Francisco jewelry store is offering a $5,000 reward to anyone who can help police track down the burglars responsible for stealing more than 100 vintage gold and costume jewelry pieces.
Monkey On Chestnut was burglarized by two men on April 1, according to the store’s owner, who’s shared surveillance images of the perpetrators with the media and posted images of the stolen jewelry on Facebook.
“This theft threatens my ability to continue my business and is devastating to dozens of jewelry owners whose family pieces were on consignment at my store,” shop owner Robert Hemphill said.
Hemphill has traveled the world looking for the most unique pieces. Most are one-of-kind items, some on consignment, nearly all irreplaceable.
Surveillance video appears to show the men carting in tools it's believed they used to break into a dry cleaning business last week, tearing a hole through the wall to get into the Monkey on Chestnut.
“My mind was boggled that someone would break a hole through my wall, not through the window, to get into my store,” Hemphill said.
Hemphill said the burglars knew exactly what they were doing, snipping the lines to the alarm in mere seconds before cleaning out cabinets full of gold and vintage jewelry worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.
He said he thinks the thieves had been casing his store.
The jewelry store owner said he hopes someone recognizes the burglars or the jewelry. The suspects left with bags full of valuables, Hemphill's life's work snatched away.
“I have lost 10 pounds this week,” Hemphill said. “It's devastating. How can you lose so much value and prospectively the loss of my business? I may not be able to recover. I really need help.”
Hemphill said the reward would go to the individual who provides information leading to the return of “the majority” of stolen merchandise.
Anyone who recognizes the burglars or the jewelry should contact police.