Two men are suspected of stealing nearly $200,000 in gold jewelry during a smash-and-grab theft at a Riverside mall, according to police.

Adan Martinez Carvajal, 23, of Upland and Melchor Roquin Cabalar, 22, of West Covina each posted a $10,000 bond before the start of the weekend and were released from the Robert Presley Jail.

According to Riverside police Officer Javier Cabrera, the suspects allegedly targeted the JC Penney jewelry counter within the Galleria at Tyler Mall shortly after 11 a.m. last Wednesday.

Cabrera alleged that the pair walked directly to a display case and used a sledgehammer to break the glass. They then allegedly reached inside and grabbed as much gold jewelry as they could carry, and fled the store toward a residential neighborhood to the rear of the shopping center, the officer said.

A police helicopter crew reached the area within a couple of minutes and spotted Carvajal and Cabalar allegedly dumping items into a trash receptacle not far from the mall, according to Cabrera. Patrol officers were directed to the location and surrounded the men before they could get back into their vehicle, he said.

“The stolen jewelry, with an estimated value of $170,000, was found in their getaway car,” he alleged.

The men were taken into custody without incident and booked into the downtown Riverside jail on suspicion of grand theft, burglary and conspiracy.

No background information was available on either man.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *