FLEMING ISLAND, Fla. – Two men suspected in a jewelry theft at the Kay Jewelers store in Fleming Island may be part of a wider investigation, according to the Clay County Sheriff's Office.
Deputies on Thursday released surveillance images of two men accused of teaming up to steal a $4,200 gold necklace on Saturday from the store on County Road 220. Deputies said one distracted the clerk and the other grabbed the necklace.
"One appeared to be trying to preoccupy one of the associates while the other had looked at a necklace valued at just over $4,000, and in the process of them being in the store and departing the store, the necklace came up missing," said Deputy Chris Padgett, a spokesman for the Clay County Sheriff's Office.
Investigators said the two men could be involved in a similar jewelry theft at a Kay Jewelers store in Lake Wales, which is in South Florida.
According to the Clay County Sheriff's Office, these jewelry thefts could be part of a bigger probe.
“There’s information that our detectives have been able to gather that makes it appear that it actually could be up the East Coast," Padgett said. "So we do believe that this could potentially be part of a much larger investigation as it continues to unravel."
Last week, according to Jacksonville police, thieves made off with thousands of dollars' worth of jewelry from the Elegant Watches store at the Avenues Mall. The owner of the store told News4Jax that three necklaces worth about $15,000 were taken.
Padgett said the Clay County Sheriff’s Office is checking with the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office to see whether the incidents are connected.
Deputies said the men seen in the surveillance images from the Fleming Island Kay Jewelers spoke broken English and appeared to take off in a white, larger-style SUV.
Anyone who recognizes them is asked to call 904-529-6763 or email email@example.com. To submit a crime tip, visit claysheriff.com and go to the "See something, say something" banner at the top of the page. To remain anonymous, contact First Coast Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS (8477).
Records show the same Kay Jewelers store in Fleming Island was robbed in June and Clay County deputies announced in August that two arrests were made.