by Sia Nyorkor
KWCH 12 Eyewitness News
9:15 PM CST, January 12, 2013
Thieves crash a stolen car into a jewelry store and get away with some silver and gold.
It happened this morning in Hutchinson and police are still looking for three men tonight.
In the surveillance video a car comes barreling through the front of R. Westphal Jewelers, three masked men get out, they start smashing jewelry cases and stuffing items into bags. Then they run away.
The whole heist took just 19 seconds.
Owner Richard Westphal is stunned.
"I was in shock, I'm kind of still in shock, I could not believe when I heard there was a car in my jewelry store, it was inconceivable," he says.
The alarm company called the jeweler early saturday morning after the alarms and motion detectors went off.
Fresh tire marks and an oil spill show where the car stopped after it crashed into the building. It was right in front of the jewelry cases.
As the thieves made their getaway, they dropped some of the jewelry. Police were able to recover a crow bar and a duffel bag.
The store is still doing inventory to find out exactly how much was stolen--- but workers say the thieves didn't get the good stuff.
"They were able to get away with some sterling silver pieces but unfortunately for them my dad is really intelligent. My dad has been doing this for 37 years, so they didn't get anything that would really make their day, except for ruining the front of our store," says daughter Julie Westphal.
Westphal says the damage to the store is in the tens of thousands and could slow down business. As he works to rebuild, he wants his customers to know their jewelry is locked in a safe.
"With jewelry, we feel like we're kind of a target because it's easily marked and it has great value and it's portable and hard to trace," he says.
He's hoping the evidence the thieves left behind will lead to an arrest.
Police say the thieves used a stolen car from Wichitata that went missing last Wednesday.
Anyone with information is asked to call CRIMESTOPPERS 620-694-2666
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