Armed Robbers Overpowered Guard at Door to Hit Jewelry Store

Armed robbers struck a luxury jewelry store in Burlington County, Penn., using hammers to smash display cases before grabbing hundreds of thousands of dollars' worth of gems and watches, police said.

Three men burst into Bernie Robbins Fine Jewelry on Route 73 in Marlton shortly before noon as an unarmed store guard opened the door for a fourth man, said Capt. Jeff Gural, spokesman for Evesham police.

One man drew a handgun and ordered the 12 customers and employees to drop to the floor. The three others began smashing cases containing watches priced at $2,000 and up, and within a few minutes had grabbed an estimated $727,000 worth of jewelry and watches, Gural said. No one was injured.

The men sped north on Route 73 in a white Mazda MPV they had parked in front of the shop, at the Promenade at Sagemore. The minivan was abandoned about a quarter-mile away in a drugstore parking lot.

Security cameras captured the robbery on tape, he said.

Rovinsky said employees were still taking inventory, and he disputed the police estimate of the value of the stolen goods. "It's nowhere near that amount," he said.

Gural said store managers had provided the value.