A group of robbers targeting a California jewelry store got a lot more than they bargained for when the owners fought back during a brazen smash-and-grab.
Surveillance video shows four men disguised in ski masks entering the store. One customer immediately fled as the first robber smashed in a jewelry case.
The incident happened in broad daylight at Princess Bride Diamond in Huntington Beach.
A second thief made his move, but was stopped by the store’s co-owner, who charged at him with fists flying. At the same time, a female jumped in and started kicking one of the robbers.
Then, co-owner Sarah Baca picked up a heavy chair and hit one of the thieves.
Baca says she and her brother, along with another employee, didn’t hesitate to fight back. After seeing so many reports of jewelry store robberies, they were determined not to become another statistic.
“We’ve actually been trained to not do anything and to just let them take what they need. But I feel like because it’s my brother and I here and it’s like our livelihood, we felt the need to take action,” Baca said.
The brother suffered bruising after the robbers hit him in the head and shoulder with a hammer, Baca said.
In another incident at a jewelry store in San Jose, California, thieves with sledgehammers made off with $750,000 in diamonds and high-end watches. In Beverly Hills, smash-and-grab robbers got away with $5 million worth of jewelry.
In this latest attack on Baca’s store, the robbers got away with just three rings.
There have been more than 35 smash-and-grab jewelry store robberies reported in California over the last year. Experts recommend not fighting back and calling 911.