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Jewelers Security Alliance Announces Special Thanksgiving Weekend Burglary Warning November 24, 2020 (0 comments)


New York, NY—In the last two months, Jewelers Security Alliance Crime Alerts have reported a wave of jewelry store burglaries across the United States. Different gangs have hit from coast to coast. Historically, JSA has seen that burglars especially like to hit on holiday weekends. Many cases involve entry from the roof or from a neighboring store, and it is especially dangerous if there is a vacant neighboring store. 

Recent cases include stores in Plano, TX (smashed glass door and showcase); Island Park, NY (entry from roof of neighboring store, cut hole in wall); Vernon, CT (cut through drywall of adjacent business); Lake Oswego, OR (entered adjacent empty business, lowered through ceiling); Grand Island, NE (cut through cement wall); Savannah, GA (cut through roof); and Santa Fe, NM (cut glass door, break through wall).

Despite COVID-19 cases are rising sharply and some areas implementing new restrictions on store capacity, JSA warns that as the Thanksgiving weekend approaches, jewelers in every state and every small town need to follow proper burglary procedures. Pay special attention to any alarm conditions, power outages, or tampering with the electric junction box at their store and follow JSA’s Burglary Prevention Recommendations below:

1. Jewelers should confirm with their alarm company that their alarm system will provide protection from entry from the roof, side walls and all possible points of entry, in addition to alarm protection for the doors, windows and safe, which may include motion and vibration sensors.

2. All jewelry premises need adequate line security for their alarm system, and need to test their system from time to time. 

3. An empty store or unprotected premise adjacent to a jewelry store presents an especially attractive target for burglars to use to enter from a sidewall. Some retail jewelers have installed steel plates or mesh wire on common walls they share with adjoining stores to make sidewall entry more difficult.

4. Police and jewelers must respond to all alarm signals promptly, and examination of only the ground floor doors and windows is not sufficient. The roof, sidewalls and all possible points of entry must be examined, including through neighboring premises.

5. Electrical junction boxes need to be examined regularly since some gangs cut or disconnect electrical systems to disable alarm systems and cameras. Gangs may experiment days before a potential robbery in order to test the alarm and electrical systems. 

6. Make sure your firm’s alarm company call list is up-to-date, with adequate responders even during vacation periods, holidays and weekends. Jewelry personnel should never enter the jewelry premises alone in response to an alarm signal, but should await to be accompanied by police. 

7. Do not position a safe on an outside wall or a wall of a neighboring office or store that would allow burglars to break through a wall and penetrate the safe without even entering the jewelers premises.

8. TL-15x6 and TL-30x6 rated safes are not adequate protection from today’s burglars, who can purchase inexpensive cutting devices from Home Depot or Lowes that can cut into and penetrate these safes. JSA is also seeing safes being torched, so a torch resistant safe provides better protection. JSA never sees safes with the U.L. rating of TRTL 30x6 being entered. 

9. Burglars may remove camera surveillance equipment when leaving the store. It is recommended to have your surveillance images also sent and stored in the cloud or to a remote location in addition to any images saved at the store.

10. Don’t leave merchandise out at night in showcases. Leaving any merchandise in showcases is a magnet for burglars. Even if all merchandise will not fit in a safe, lock low-end merchandise away and out of sight in a closet or drawer. If burglars are attracted and break through walls and windows, and smash showcases, the damage to the store and possible business interruption can be more costly than the loss of the low-end merchandise. Furthermore, burglars often take enough low-end merchandise that is left out overnight to amount to a significant loss. 

11. Don't cover showcases with cloth or other material when the store is closed. It is safer when potential burglars case your store to see empty, exposed showcases rather than covered showcases. 

12. It is best to use interior lighting when closed as long as you put away all goods. Criminals casing the store will see that the showcases are empty, and police or anyone passing by will be better able to see intruders. 

13. Make sure your inventory is up to date in case of a burglary, and do not keep your diamond grading reports in the safe with the diamonds. Keep them separate so the burglars won’t get the certificates. 

14. Jewelry store burglars case stores in the days and weeks before they hit. Jewelers should take special note of all suspicious activity, and record the details (license plates, etc.) in a store suspicious incident book. If there is suspicious activity, report it to the police and request extra patrols at your store.

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