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$60,000 in Jewelry Stolen From Bethesda Store

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Three men stole thousands of dollars in jewelry from a Bethesda, Maryland, store Friday.

The men robbed The Jewelry Exchange on Old Georgetown Road about 5:45 p.m. Dec. 13.

One man pulled out a handgun and demanded a display case be opened and emptied.

“Told me to open it, take everything out and rushed me, ‘Hurry up! Hurry up!’” the store manager said. “And I was trying to go as fast as I could because I didn’t want to make him mad, and as I handed it to him, he handed off to the other guy who was shoving it in a bag.”

While the gunman and a masked man got the jewelry, another masked man acted as a lookout.

At one point, the manager tried to get an associate to call police, but the gunman prevented it.

“Turned around literally three times and mouthed, ‘Call the cops. Call the cops,’” she said. “Someone, an associate, did try, and he said, ‘Don’t do it.’”

The men got about 100 pieces of jewelry worth about $60,000 in three minutes.

“I was extremely scared but also numb, numb with fear,” the store manager said. “Nothing like that’s ever happened to me, and it felt like everything was going in slow motion, but at the same time I was scared if I didn’t move fast for him, didn’t know what would happen.”

Police said it was a low-key robbery.

“There were other customers in the store, so he had that handgun, let the employees see it, let the customers know he was armed,” said Montgomery County police Sgt. Rebecca Innocenti.

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