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Store owner frustrated with police follow up
jewelry store burglar
A hooded, would-be jewelry store burglar can be seen at the front door of the closed New York Diamonds on South Main Street with bolt cutters in hand, attempting to gain access to the store in the predawn hours on May 21. - photo by Photo Contributed

Longtime Manteca jewelry store owner Patty Reece of New York Diamonds has had it with the break-ins at her South Main Street store in the Walmart Shopping Center .

Reece said she is ready to find the culprits herself and has been scouring the roadways to find the thieves’ older Toyota that she has captured on her security cameras along with their license plate numbers.

Reece said she has provided all the information that was needed in the case to Manteca Police, but she has not heard back from them noting the department hasn’t been returning her calls.  She said she is not looking for special treatment, only a timely response and solution.

Reece said it was in the early morning hours of Monday, May 21, when her cameras caught two hooded men smashing her front glass door at about 1:25 a.m. They were stopped by a metal gate that pulls across the opening to the store.  Unable to gain entrance, she said, the video shows them giving up and leaving, then returning with a bolt cutter and steel pry bar at 3:42 a.m. causing further damage to her entrance but still unable to gain access. 

She added that her video clearly shows the older Toyota they were driving in front of her store as well as its license plate in clear view.  She said police were called by a night-time worker in the area who spotted the pair using their pry bar and bolt cutters to gain entrance.  The man said his friend warned him of the danger of trying to stop the advance of the duo on the store as they might get hurt themselves in the process. She did not have the broken glass door boarded up for the night but rather spent the next four hours sitting at her desk at the rear of the store waiting for sunrise when she could call a glass shop to replace her door.  

The cost of repairing the damage was about $700, she said, but far less than it might have been if they had actually gotten into the jewelry store.  She also tells of past brushes with would-be jewelry thieves during the closed night-time hours as well as armed robbers who have confronted her and her employees during the day through her many years in the store.  

She said she is hoping that Manteca detectives will return her calls and are successful in finding the culprits.

To contact Glenn Kahl,