JPSO: jewelry thieves possibly ‘Gypsies’

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METAIRIE - The Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office is looking for two women who robbed a jewelry store that they believe could be members of the Roma ethnic group, also known as Gypsies.  The case is the latest to roll on the Wheel of Justice.

The women were captured on surveillance video stealing a gold chain at a Cash America Pawn location in Metairie.

While negotiating the purchase of $7,000 in jewelry, the women started arguing with a store employee, who demanded identification for such a large purchase, according to the JPSO.

The duo spoke English and Spanish to each other throughout the exchange, switching to a language a store employee believed to be Portuguese once they realized the employee understood Spanish.

After calling off the purchase and leaving the store, store employees realized that a gold chain worth $1,800 was missing.

One of the women can be seen on the surveillance video slipping the chain into her purse during the disagreement over identification, according to the JPSO.

“The employee believes these individuals are possibly associated with members of a nomadic ethnic group, Roma, also known as Gypsies,” JPSO spokesman Glen Boyd said in a press release. “The Jewelers Security Alliance recently has issued bulletins warning retailers of small bands of distraction thieves hitting jewelry stores and pawnshops around the country. Incidents involving jewelry stores have been reported in Ohio, Maryland, Texas, Louisiana, and Florida.”

Anyone who can identify the women or who has additional information regarding similar incidents is asked to contact Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office Property Crimes Detective Jody Kaough at (504) 364-5323.

Or you can call CrimeStoppers at 504-822-1111.  You don't have to reveal your name or testify, and you could earn a cash reward.

So far, 333 people have been booked after their cases rolled on the Wheel of Justice.

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