Armed robber wanted in diamond store theft

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Police say a crook stole hundreds of thousands of dollars in jewelry from a Galleria area store. They say the robber shoved a gun in the face of an officer working security, and then took that officer's weapon. The thief hit the diamond store on Westheimer Wednesday morning.

"They're kind of disturbed right now," said HPD Sgt. JM Bedingfield. "You know, everybody's shaken up anytime you get robbed.

The store owners of Exotic Diamonds are still trying to figure out how it could have happened. Around 11:30am, the suspect came into the store while an HPD officer was working security in the store at the time.

Police say the suspect had a gun, pointed it at the officer and disarmed him. Sources say he then smashed the display cases with a gun and snatched as many Rolexes and as much other jewelry as he could, grabbing more than $300,000 worth. He stuffed what he stole into a bag and then ran out the back exit.

"He left out the back side of the building, travelling down that way," Sgt. Bedingfield said. "K9 tracked him for approximately 200 yards and then lost the scent."

Police say they are looking for a young male, around 5'7", last seen wearing a blue hoodie. Police believe the suspect may live in the area because he left on foot and no one saw a getaway car.
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