Theft at Thomas James & Bechtold Jewelry

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A local jewelry store owner wants your help tracking down who got away with thousands of dollars of jewelry.

It started out like any other Wednesday but that changed when two men walked into Thomas James & Bechtold Jewelry.

“The gentleman was looking for a birthday present for his wife and, we were assisting him and we were watching and he had a relative with him, supposedly. And the relative was kind of walking around and we typically watched that pretty carefully,” Thomas Faini said.

As he walked around, he also reached around the counter.

In just seconds Faini says 30,000 dollars worth of jewelry disappeared from the store.

“It was the exact perfect moment. And he waited for it. That’s when he took it,” Elizabeth Zokaites said.

The woman in the surveillance footage is Elizabeth Zokaites.

“When I, when I realized that the tray was gone, I was like, oh my gosh. And they were the last people in the store too. So it was, it had to be them, but I was just like, oh no, I felt so bad,” Zokaites said.

Store owner, Thomas Faini is sharing his story so other jewelers are on the lookout.

“They looked pretty experienced. Once we got to look into the camera footage, you look at the videos, you can see, they knew what they were doing,” Faini said.

Typically before entering the store you would ring the doorbell and the camera would take a shot of your face. These two suspects didn’t even ring the bell.

Faini is currently working with police to help identify the suspects. He says what’s most important though, is that no one got hurt.

“I feel very blessed because it could have been violent. I mean, if you’d have confronted them, who knows what kind of weapons they may have had with them and it could have been nasty,” Faini said.

The jewelry store is in the process of making changes to avoid another burglary. If you recognize either of the individuals in the footage, call police.

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