When Bellevue Police arrested a car thief in December, he was driving a stolen car loaded with plunder from car prowls. They found a woman’s $20,000 diamond ring in his pocket, but detectives had no easy way to find the owner from among thousands of stolen jewelry reports across the state.
This week, after combing through crime databases with new information from the thief and a jewelry appraiser, who recognized the ring, Police identified the ring’s owner returned it to the Bellevue woman Wednesday.
The ring was taken in November, when the thief broke into the victim’s car, parked near her home. The woman reported the theft of the ring and several other items on Dec. 2. She eventually she received partial payment from an insurance settlement, but the loss to her personally was still considerable.
The Bellevue Police Department’s Special Enforcement Team began tracking the suspect in December in connection with other cases. SET made the arrest on Dec. 29.
Tips for discouraging thieves:
1. Keep all your doors and windows locked, both in your home and vehicle.
2. Don’t leave anything of value in your car, no matter where it is parked.
3. Keep track of serial numbers on high-dollar items like computers, DVD/CD/MP3 players, videogame machines and appliances.
4. For valuables such as jewelry, with no identifying markings, take photos and store them in a secure place. This will help with identification after the fact, and your insurance company will thank you.
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