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Reward offered by PineForest Jewelry after massive robbery

LEFT: Jim Chaik of PineForest points out where the burglar broke the window, and squeezed between bars. RIGHT: Three empty display cases attest to the huge loss.

NORTH CHANNEL – A single burglar managed to get past barred windows and alarm systems, to break into PineForest Jewelry on Uvalde Road last Saturday morning.

According to owner Jim Mills, the burglar was in the store for over 2 hours, filling a bag with gold and jewelry. He also took an M1 rifle. Mills estimated the loss at between $300,000 and $400,000.

Surveillance video showed the man approaching the building, squeezing through a narrow window opening he made by breaking glass, and then methodically opening jewelry display cases and taking what he thought was most valuable.

Strangely enough, at one point the man left the store, stole Mills SUV and drove it away, only to return it about two hours later. No explanation was available for this action.

Mills has described the burglar as large build, Caucasian or Hispanic, with tattoos on his lower back and ankle. There is a $1000 reward for information and conviction.