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Jewelers eNews Special Report from Jewelers Mutual

Rolex smash-grab-and-run crimes on the rise

Jewelers Mutual is alerting jewelry businesses of a spike in crime specifically targeting Rolex watches.

Because a geographic pattern relating to these incidents is not evident, Jewelers Mutual is advising jewelry businesses in all areas to be on high alert. If you carry high end watches in your inventory, you are a target!

Recently reported Rolex crimes against jewelers:

  • August 26, 2014 - Criminals enter a Virginia jewelry store, smash three showcases, and make away with 27 Rolex watches.
  • August 18, 2014 - Armed robbers target a store in Northern California and make off with an undisclosed number of Rolex watches.
  • August 6, 2014 - Criminals enter a Maryland jewelry store, smash the cases, and flee with 25 Rolex watches.
  • July 27, 2014 - Thieves enter a Massachusetts jewelry business, shatter the cases, and get away with 32 Rolex watches.
  • July 22, 2014 - Armed robbers steal 40 Rolex watches from a jewelry store in Southern California.
  • July 18, 2014 - Robbers target a jewelry business in Texas where they smash through two Rolex cases.
  • July 10, 2014 - Two Rolex watches are stolen in a grab-and-run incident in Oklahoma.
  • June 25, 2014 - Robbers enter a Texas jewelry store where they smash cases and steal an undisclosed number of Rolex watches.
  • June 23, 2014 - Criminals carry hammers into a Mississippi jewelry store and proceed to smash cases and take Rolex watches.

What you can do

Jewelers Mutual is sharing the following safety and security tips to help in the deterrence of crimes such as those described above:

1. Identify when you are being cased. Refresh your staff on casing behaviors, and document any suspicious activity in a suspicious-incident logbook. Review the logbook on a regular basis and make sure all staff has access to it. Report any and all suspicious behaviors to the police and mall security, especially if you see a pattern in individuals at the location.

2. Confirm your surveillance system is operating and recording. Review your surveillance footage in the Rolex display areas of your store to detect any casing activity. Retain the footage for a minimum of four weeks, as recommended by Jewelers’ Security Alliance.

3. Consider hiring a guard (preferably an off-duty armed police officer). Use an unpredictable schedule to deter criminal activity. Also, station extra staff near the Rolex display at your location.

4. Use burglary resistant glazing material for your high end showcases. The material should be applied on the tops and sides of the cases.

5. Lock showcases when not in use. Make it a habit to lock the showcase after removing or returning items, even if you are walking away for a short time. When handling merchandise, replace an item and lock the showcase before going to a second showcase for an item. Unlocked showcases make it easy for thieves to grab items and run out the door.

6. Display high-value merchandise away from the exit. Luxury watches, large-carat jewelry items, and other high-value pieces should be distributed among several cases located as far as possible from any means of egress. As an additional precaution, arrange obstacles such as other showcases or furniture between your high-value merchandise and the exits.

7. Serve one customer at a time. Give each customer your full attention. When you can focus on one customer at a time, you deliver exceptional customer service and deter thieves from targeting your store.

8. The layout of your store is important. Jewelers Mutual recommends that store owners consider designing the store so that customers must walk around showcases to reach the door rather than have a straight path to the exit. This simple measure helps customers view even more jewelry as they walk around the showcases and improves store security.

9. Become a member of any local crime prevention network. Stay out ahead of crime by sharing crime alerts with other jewelry businesses in your area.

10. Use a private showing room. When possible, consider showing high value, high target merchandise in a private showing room. These rooms should have excellent surveillance coverage. Consider involving a manager or another sales associate when showing items over a certain value.

To learn more aobut Jewelers Mutual’s Jewelers eNews Reports, contact Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company at or 800-558-6411.


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