HAMMOND – Four men from Texas are behind bars after police say they barged into a Hammond jewelry store, smashed display cases with a sledgehammer, and made off with about $69,000 worth of jewelry.
Hammond Police say the quartet of suspects are believed to be part of a multi-state criminal organization that specializes in armed robberies of jewelry stores.
Around 5:15 p.m. on February 13, employees from Kay Jewelers on Palace Drive in Hammond dialed 911 to report that the store had just been robbed. Three men wearing hoodies had smashed display cases with a sledgehammer, grabbed handfuls of jewelery, and fled the scene in a white Toyota Avalon with Texas plates.
A bystander who witnessed the robbery photographed the getaway car as it sped away.
By 6 p.m., Hammond Police officers were coordinating with the Baton Rouge Police Department to stop the getaway car after it was spotted on I-12.
Fourty-three-year-old Ellis Gholson of Houston, 21-year-old Kameron McCoy of Houston, 22-year-old Frederick Gibson, Jr., of Fresno, Texas, and 29-year-old Travion Walker of Houston were arrested and taken into custody. Each man has been charged with one count of armed robbery.
“Had it not been for officers’ quick response, assistance from the Baton Rouge Police Department, as well as an attentive bystander, this case may have gone unsolved. It is a combined effort between local law enforcement agencies and citizens that helps stop crimes like this,” HPD Chief Edwin Bergeron, Jr., said.