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Armed Robbery at Columbia Mall Jewelry Store; Police Seeking Suspects

The suspects got away with hundreds of thousands of dollars in jewelry after a brazen afternoon robbery, according to Howard County police.

Police are searching for three men suspected in an armed robbery Wednesday afternoon at a jewelry store in The Mall in Columbia.

The men got away with "hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of jewelry," according to the Howard County Police Department.

Police were called to Edward Arthur Jewelers at about 12:47 p.m. Employees told officers that three men came inside, displayed a gun and demanded jewelry out of a case, according to a news release issued late Thursday afternoon.

The employees gave the men the jewelry, and the suspects left the store. No one was injured in the robbery, police said.

Surveillance footage from mall cameras helped provide photos of the three suspects, which can be seen above.

The first suspect is described as a black man who was wearing a green plaid shirt and a black Grizzlies cap with a teal brim. 

The second suspect is described as a black man who was wearing a black and gray jacket and a black Cincinnati Reds cap with a red brim.

The third suspect is described as a black man who was wearing a gray jacket and a white Chicago Bulls cap with a black brim.

Police are offering a reward of up to $5,000. Anyone with information is asked to call 410-313-STOP (7867). Callers can remain anonymous.

News of an armed robbery in the mall came out more than 24 hours later because the county police department "typically [does] not send out an immediate news release regarding robberies," said department spokeswoman Elizabeth Schroen.

"Robberies are included in the daily bulletin the following day," she said. "If the investigators request a release for a robbery to distribute suspect photos or to announce a reward, we will send out the release at their request. The timing is based on what’s appropriate for the investigation."

This story has been updated to include additional comments from the Howard County Police Department.

Dee April 01, 2011 at 01:42 PM
Surprise, surprise, surprise. They do it because they THINK THEY CAN and, in most cases, KNOW THEY CAN. First, they feel like they're entitled to take whatever they want for free and second, they know that the courts will just slap them on the wrist and say "naughty, naughty." Come on....why does everyone act like it's such a shock that this continues to happen and is, in fact, happening at an increasing rapid rate? Until our court system decides to get up off they lazy behinds and hold people accountable for their actions, there's only more to come.
mike April 01, 2011 at 10:23 PM
Shotguns under the counter would work even better as a deterrent.
Karen Walker April 01, 2011 at 10:38 PM
you better believe it , shot guns , yes blow their dam heads off , and maybe the next time someone thinks about doing something like this yhey will remember those other poor fools that got their heads blowed off.
Dee April 02, 2011 at 12:23 AM
Dave, you commented on no correlation between race and crime in your years of living in Columbia - in yourother article about the taxi driver being robbed. Here's yet another story -- and the photos speak for themselves. Go back and check your last 100 stories of crime in the Columbia area and then give us a chart of race and the crime. Can't wait to see what your report will show.
mike April 02, 2011 at 02:08 AM
I'm NOT a racist. But I'm not blind or ignorant either. There are a lot of very respectable, educated and productive black people. Especially in Columbia and Howard County. But...blacks commit more crimes. Period. I did not make it that way or necessarily want it that way. But it is true. There have been several 'pizza driver' robberies in the past few months. If I'm not mistaken, those perps were young black males. All this PCBS is annoying. If there's an 'elephant in the room' let's address it as such.
David Greisman April 02, 2011 at 03:03 AM
With an acknowledgement as to where the debate in the comments could head, I remind people to please keep it civil and to adhere to the terms of use. The Internet can let people ease their self-restraint in a way they might not in person.
Derrick Jordan April 02, 2011 at 03:13 AM
Who are you? Are you an expert on how black folks act? Were you scared of any black person you saw when you walked down the street? Did WE wrong you in any way to get you to be only bold enough to chime in on the internet where you feel safe from actual reprisal. These kids need help, not your ignorant racist banter while you hide behind that mask of a computer you type from. You see my face on here, what do you think? I make my money the honest way and have been doing so for 16 years. I'm just gonna say this, THEY...meaning us live right next door to you! By stating your ignorant opinion about blacks is only a confirmation that YOU are far more dangerous than these 3 will ever be and HCPD will handle this. Do you even know who gets punished the most in this country? Who gets unfairly treated during traffic stops when the other side can do the same thing and get off?!!! It's on video, go check out these things on youtube. There are police shooting where WE are shot 50 times versus where the other side can walk away and be taken in even though you could be carrying a bomb!? People of color have always gotten the shaft in this country, but yet you seem to think WE feel entitled and that the courts will just slap US on the wrist and say "naughty, naughty"? It's not even about black people, it about people of color...PERIOD! Some of my friends are Muslim, I can only imagine what you think of them. You must think we all look like and act a like.
Moira Kearney April 02, 2011 at 03:31 AM
Dee and Mike - neither of you seem very bright, but I'll condescend to help you understand why your comments are in error. The trend you're seeing is about class, not race. People of low socioeconomic status commit more petty crimes, like petty theft and robbery (keep in mind that theft on a grand scale that destroys the lives of hundreds of people, is almost entirely the territory of white upper class men like Madoff) and a higher percentage of blacks fall into those lower socioeconomic categories. Why is this so, you may ask yourself. Well, its got something to do with a couple hundred years of slavery and a couple hundred years of systematic racism that benefited every white person in this country today. Even if you're a white person like me and the first person in your family to arrive in the US was your grandfather, your family STILL benefited from a labor, consumer, and housing market that systemically discriminated against blacks. Piled on all of this institutional racism that resulted in higher rates of black poverty is a media all too eager to cash in on white fear and prejudice - why don't we have articles questioning why it is that upper class white men seem to have a penchant for deceit and theft on a grand scale? Why do rich white men commit so many white collar crimes? Could it be because history has concentrated wealth in the hands of white men, making it more likely that white collar crimes are committed by white men? Nah, whities are just evil, amirite?
Derrick Jordan April 02, 2011 at 03:58 AM
A few of my co workers were having this same discussion and you pretty much said the same thing he said. I talked about it with my folks and class is very much the main concern in which racism is born from. Look at all the mass muderers in this country and what do you see.....not a lot folks looking like me. It's sad that we live in a country that still hasn't come to terms with its own past.
Dee April 02, 2011 at 12:56 PM
Moira, Obviously you think you are bright -- however, to dismiss petty theft and robbery as if it were nothing is ridiculous. While Madoff took the money of those who were wealthy or had money to invest, these BLACK men robbed the sales clerks at gunpoint. These poor individuals could have been killed if they simply moved the wrong way -- but at the very least, are now scarred for life by the fear they encountered when these 3 black men -- who are dressed quite nicely by the way -- do not in any way look impoverished or down-trodden -- came brandishing guns and took what they wanted. They all look able-bodied to me. Why can't they go out and work to earn what they want instead of feeling that they are empowered enough by all of the "woe is me -- I'm a misunderstood black man -- my great, great, great, great grandfather was a slave - to just take what they want.
Dee April 02, 2011 at 12:59 PM
Cont'd to Moira: When is the black race going to shut up about what happened years ago and start taking responsibility for making their way in life -- like the rest of us do. Look at the Japanese. We dropped the big bomb on them at Hiroshima -- yet they aren't runnig around America saying "You owe me. You killed my people." They work hard, they study hard, they EARN what they have. They in no way expect it to be handed to them. Since you obvioulsy pride yourself (which translates you think of yourself as) being intelligent (questionable), check the stats on the amount of black women living on welfare having baby after baby just so they can get more welfare funds vs. white women, asian women, etc. Oh, before you say it, let me guess -- these women have to be on welfare because "whitie" denied them a chance in life. Please -- are you saying that the brains of black people are formed/grow any differently than those of white, asian, hispanic ot other ethnic individuals? I don't think so. We have a black President for goodness sake. Where would he have been if he just said -- Woe is me. My great, great, great, great grandfather was a slave -- so I'm opressed -- so I'm just going to sit on my behind and make "whitie" take care of me. Get over it. The facts are what they are -- I didn't make them up.
mike April 02, 2011 at 03:05 PM
I'm trying to be respectful but also factual. I don't always know why things are the way they are, but try to make accurate observances based on statistics. 'Profiling', as a verb, can sound very offensive but 'profiles', like stats., are formed from facts, not feelings. I won't apologize for being born white. I'm also Irish and (usually correctly) profiled as a drunk. In my case, it's accurate. I pulled myself up from that and moved up and on. I'm sorry Mr. Jordan feels offended by some of these comments. Even though you proudly and respectably separate yourself from that demographic, it does exist. Look at the young black rap videos. It's cool to be a thug. It's promoted, practiced and sought. I will continue to be respectful of (the majority) of all races. I will hope for continued progress in race-relations. I am truly delighted to live in Columbia and see the 'color blind' children all playing together.
Mary B April 02, 2011 at 03:26 PM
The correlation between race and crime is a false; there is a correlation between socio-economic status and crime. Thank you Moira for already covering that point. Another point that has not been brought up is that fear of racially motivated crimes will become a self-fulfilling prophesy. Labeling African-Americans as criminals will cause resentment on their part and psychologically condone criminal behavior. Ex: If I am thought to be a criminal anyway, why not? Most criminals are not born into their behavior, but it is nurtured through their environment. If you are concerned about crime, do something about the environment that nurtures it. Acknowledge system-level poverty and racism and challenge its injustices.
mike April 02, 2011 at 03:38 PM
What a crock. I live in the real world and not in a psychology textbook. 'Since I'm getting bomb-searched at the airport, I might as well not disappoint them'.
Dee April 02, 2011 at 04:12 PM
Mary B - I agree with something you said: "Criminals are not born into their behaviour, but it is nurtured through their environment." The main sources of our environment as children are our parents. So, my parents (who were poor, by the way) nurtured me to be a hard-working individual who is honest and a law-abiding citizen - to never expect things to be handed to me on a silver platter. The criminals/low-lifes of the world were obviously raised by parents who brought them up to believe that they are entitled to take from others and sit around and expect everything to be handed to them because they were in a lower socio-economic class. Talk about self-fulfilling prophesy - so the more the African Americans tell themselves they were oppressed by the white man, the more it will be so???? Just how many more hundreds of years do we have to listen to the "woe is me, I'm a poor black man who was mistreated by the white man.: When will it ever be long enough for the crying and whining to stop? 100 years, 200 years, never? Enough already! The example of if I am thought to be a criminal anyway, why not?? What kind of logic is that? The why not is because wrong is wrong -- and you should have enough self-respect to NOT become what may or may not be thought of you. So an overwight person should say, well I'm fat and I'm going to have a heart attack anyway, so I'll go ahead and eat myself to death. Get real!
Dee April 02, 2011 at 04:19 PM
SEE YET ANOTHER ARTICLE - I REST MY CASE: COMPILED FROM THE DAILY POLICE BULLETIN... OAKLAND MILLS: ATTEMPTED ROBBERY Police are looking for a man suspected in an attempted robbery that ended with gunfire Monday afternoon, according to the Howard County Police Department. The victim, a 29-year-old man, was walking on a path near the 9500 block of Kilimanjaro Road at about 2:40 p.m. when the suspect approached him and "implied a robbery," police said. The victim tried to fight the suspect and was subsequently shot in the hand. He went home, called police and was soon taken to Union Memorial Hospital in Batimore for medical treatment. The suspect was described as a black male, 5-foot-8 with a stocky build, a mustache and a goatee, and wearing a black hooded sweat suit, and brown- and black-colored boots.
Dee April 02, 2011 at 05:01 PM
As Mike said above, the facts are the facts. Stats are what they are. I do not feel every black person in America is bad, just as I do not believe every white person is good. I do, however, live in the world of realism -- and the facts speak for themselves. Therefore, I am removing myself from this debate and letting the facts speak for me now and in the future.
Derrick Jordan April 02, 2011 at 05:47 PM
Mike, I don't have a problem with you....you have been respectful and I can appreciate that. But you have to understand that the media plays a HUGE role in the perception of groups of people. If all you hear is black robbed this and black killed this....you would think that black is a bad thing. Dee will never undestand that her words have been spoken before and at one point and at one time in this country, it was accompanied by cross burnings, men in white sheets, kidnappings, killings of a whole mass of black folks. You being Irish, I know you know what I'm talking about. It happens to all races and cultures, but to label a whole race because of what individuals do is WRONG! That is what Dee is doing and I don't care much for Karen's comments either. I just know that they are just as, if not more cowardly than the 3 suspects in this story. I show my face, but yet "Dee" will not address me nor even show his or her face on here or in public talking junk. She probably attends the gym I work at...let me find out. ;)
Erik April 02, 2011 at 08:20 PM
This store has incredibly nice employees, its a shame they were victims of a robbery. I'm glad however that the mall is so well secured to get photos of the suspects. Considering how rare these kind of extreme events are in the area I am glad to be living here.
Brandie Jefferson April 02, 2011 at 11:19 PM
I had made the decision not to get involved in this discussion, hoping that the community would regulate itself which, to an extent, it has. Thank goodness. However, I'm a numbers person, and I can't have these "facts" posted on my site without any statistics to back them up. Blacks make up about 12 percent of the population; it would be quite a feat if, with those numbers, we (or all non-white ethnicities combined, for that matter) were the majority of recipients of welfare programs. According to Census SIPP data, about 60 percent of food stamp recipients 15 and older were white in 2005. The balance of recipients were from all different races. And, according to the Census, regardless of race, woman receiving food stamps have, on average, the same number of children. (The average number of children differs by less than a half of a percent). Hopefully no one will use these numbers to jump to any conclusions about any race, either.
Michael April 03, 2011 at 05:23 PM
Per the 2010 census, the racial makeup of the U.S. is as follows: 63.7% white, 16.3% Hispanic, 12.6% black, 4.8% Asian, 2.6% other. Below is a link to 2009 FBI statistics on crime and race. The racial breakdown includes Hispanics among the white crimes. http://www2.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2009/data/table_43.html This chart shows that almost 30% of those arrested for crimes are blacks, who make up only 12.6% of the population. It would be interesting to see the percentage of white crime that is committed by Hispanics. I'm sure that is also broken down somewhere. Make of it what you will.
Derrick Jordan April 03, 2011 at 10:04 PM
BYE BYE!!!!!
Janice Washington April 04, 2011 at 02:19 PM
I'm a Howard County resident & proud to be one. My number one concern when it comes to anything & everything are my children who happen to be 1 & 3. I have a babysitter who often takes my children to the Columbia Mall for lunch or to play (since the weather has been so cold). I am thankful that the pictures are out there & hope that these men are caught. I'm not sure why everyone is turning this into a racial thing, but I do know that despite the color of skin that these men have, anyone who decides to bring guns into a public place & commit a crime that involves guns where there are small children who could have been victims should pay a very heavy price. I too am glad that nobody was hurt & speaking as a mother hope they find these animals soon!
InformMe April 04, 2011 at 04:54 PM
Both Brandie and Dee's statements are incredibly misleading, if not completely false. According to a 2008 DHHS report on the characteristics of TANF (welfare) recipients, 35% of all welfare recipients on a national scale are African American; 35.2% are white. In Maryland, 81.4% of welfare recipients are African American and 16.7% are white. Source: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ofa/character/FY2008/tab21.htm 12.9% of the total U.S. population and 27.1% of Maryland residents are African American. 72.4% of the U.S. population and 63% of Maryland residents are white. While historic and systemic racism are factors in these and other racially disproportionate statistics, it is just as ignorant to solely blame white people for these issues as it is to blame racial inferiority. There are clearly a number of factors that contribute to these numbers, and scapegoating whites for the problems of blacks or claiming that all blacks are lazy, etc. is divisive and has not and will not improve our society. It is also intellectually dishonest to pretend that these statistics don't exist or misrepresent them as Brandie and Dee both did. Until we can get past this nonsense, and attempt to address the underlying causes of racial disparity, our community will continue to suffer.
Dee April 04, 2011 at 05:18 PM
InformMe - Did I lie about the amount of African American's on welfare? You stated that in MD 81.4% of the welfare recipients are African American. So let's hear your reasoning as to why 81.4% are African Americans in Maryland -- since other states don't seem to have such a high percentage. Is it perhaps because of the extreme liberalism in this State? Our unemployment rate is not as high as a number of other states whose percentage of welfare recipients are much lower. And for Derrick - to answer an earlier question you posed, YES I was assaulted and robbed in front of my then 5-year old daughter who was so scared by the events that she had to seek therapy because of the fear it instilled in her. For one and a half years after the event she was (a) scared to death every time we walked by a black man and I had to try to reassure her that only the black man who assaulted me was bad, and (2) having nightmares that mommy would be killed and she would be left alone. While getting ready for bed one night I walked into the living room only to find her hiding under the coffee table because of the fear. To top that off, I've had one care stolen twice and another car stolen once. The first time it was by young black men who were by no means deprived of anything -- they actually attended a very expensive, very prestigious private school. The second time it was by a black man who then proceeded to rob the local jiffy lube while in my car. 3rd time by another black man.
Brandie Jefferson April 04, 2011 at 05:24 PM
Yikes. This is still going. InformMe, please believe that I did not intend to, or actually misrepresent anything. This is federal data, not Maryland state data, from Census SIPP data tables. I was responding solely to Dee's comment about women having babies to get access to more social services. The data, as I noted, is 6 years old. If something substantial has changed, I was not aware and not intentionally ignoring it. If you feel it's worth continued discussion, feel free to bring more current data relating to food stamps to my attention. Otherwise I am reverting to my moderator role.
DW April 04, 2011 at 07:17 PM
I think all of you are incorrect! It is the same person doing all the crimes, therefore NONE of your statistics apply. Everyone needs to shut up about your facts, who cares. Some bad kids did a bad thing, they weren't caught, so, they then robbed the man on the trail. They probably stole some pizzas because robbery makes a man hungry. Oh, they needed to take some money from him too because he wasn't carrying soda on this delivery and the sodium from the pizza makes a man thirsty. They have been so busy with the robberies, they have no time for a job, or school for that matter. So eventually they will get into an altercation with an "up and coming" who will mortally wound them and the cycle starts all over with another crew. By the way, these folks are multi-racial, multi-cultural, and a bit inbred. So there you have it. Ps. Vote for Gay marriage and giving illegals free education because if you don't...... They will steal your ice cream!!

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