PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – The owners of a local antique store say they’re out thousands of dollars after two women stole them, caught on camera.
The robbery happened at Antique Gatherings at 32nd Street and Shea Boulevard. Owner Amanda Wilson says one day a group came in and two women stole jewelry. They came back four days later. This eventually led to a foot chase between Wilson, Good Samaritans and Phoenix police. “These people knew what they were doing,” Wilson said.
Store surveillance video shows a group huddled around a jewelry box at Antique Gatherings. An employee opens the case and reaches to grab the items requested by the customer. This is when you see a woman stick her arm in and allegedly take several items while the others distract the worker. It will repeat after a few seconds. It was Wilson’s first encounter with them. “You get sick when you see people stealing. We don’t see it in real time and these people were very good and sneaky. They are obviously professionals,” Wilson said.
After noticing a few items missing, Wilson and his employees reviewed their security footage. Four days later, Wilson says the women returned to the store with the same goal. But this time he knew who they were. “He’s very cheeky; they came back for more as they walked in. I saw them on their way,” Wilson said. “We recognized them and went after them.”
Stephen McLean spotted the suspected thieves immediately. As soon as he started questioning them, they quickly left, but McLean and Wilson chased them while they called 911. “I was on foot most of the time,” McLean said.
Police eventually arrested 25-year-old Loredana Parolea and 19-year-old Christina Dumitru. “The end result felt fantastic,” McLean said. Wilson says they have a few thousand dollars. He hopes his ambition to catch women will save other small business owners from being in a similar situation. “Unfortunately in retail, that happens and we do everything we can to prevent it, and it was just a fortunate outcome that doesn’t usually happen,” Wilson said.
The two women were jailed and arrested on suspicion of shoplifting. They have since been released but are due to appear in court at a later date.
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