Robbers Armed With Hammers Take $60,000 Of Jewelry From San Jose Shops


Horrifying surveillance footage shows the moment a gang of hammer-wielding thugs swiped upward of $110,000 in jewelry from a California mall.


Nine men stormed a San Jose shopping center January 3 and began smashing glass display cases at three stores as terrified employees ran for cover.

The thieves, whose faces were obscured by masks and hoodies, made off with gold necklaces and other valuables; they remained on the loose Monday.

It was the latest in a series of smash-and-grab attacks throughout California that critics blame on justice reform initiatives and soft-on-crime approaches to misdemeanors.

Last week’s brazen burglary – which police characterized as a ‘takeover robbery’ – happened in Santa Clara County, where District Attorney Jeff Rosen is a ‘nationally-recognized leader in criminal justice reform,’ according to his online bio.

Eric Orozco – whose store Heart of Gold was targeted in the heist – said he lost between $50,000 and $100,000 of merchandise in the robbery.

The infuriated businessman is now joining the chorus of Californians demanding stricter punishment for the state’s criminals.

Orozco, who spent a decade building his business, said being robbed was an eye-opening experience.

‘I talked to police and this is where I learned they’re too soft,’ Orozco told DailyMail.com. ‘The police told me, ‘we kind of have to let the thieves keep stealing because once they get to court, if there hasn’t been enough stealing or damage, they’re going to get too short of a sentence and they’re going to be out and stealing again.’

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‘That was just mind blowing. They’re letting me know they’re going to let these guys come and rob me and other stores so they can rack up the amount of theft [needed to prosecute].’

Orozco’s dad suffered a head wound during the robbery after he and another man chased the thieves away.

At nearby Joyeria Guerro, employees heard thieves shouting ‘get on the ground’ before they raided the store and stole about $10,000 in jewelry, owner Rocio Gomez told The Mercury News.

‘They heard the men say, ‘Close the doors, get everything inside!’ And that’s when we started screaming,’ she said.

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San Jose Police Department spokesman Sergeant Christian Camarillo said he had ‘nothing else to share’ about the case Monday, but told DailyMail.com that the culprits will face felony charges if arrested.

His colleague Steve Aponte described the crime as a ‘takeover robbery.’

‘A takeover robbery is very different from a standard smash-and-grab or what we’ve seen recently with retail mall thefts,’ Aponte told NBC Bay Area.  ‘These individuals actually forced their way into the store. And by saying takeover robbery, they demanded everybody to get on the ground.

They forced people who were present, including staff members, to do their will. And in doing so, they were able to take over, break the glass, take away the stuff that they wanted to take.’

The criminals involved are said to have cased the same shopping center days prior to the attack, and at one stage tried to rush its doors – only to be locked out by staff.

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