A jewelry store owner used a legally carried firearm to prevent a robbery to his store in southern California. Four men entered his store, located in Upland, last week in the afternoon and sprayed bear spray on all the occupants of the store. The store owner took out a gun and upon seeing it, the would-be jewel thieves ran outside, jumped in a getaway vehicle, and sped away.
Thanks to the prepared and quick-thinking store owner, no one was injured and no theft occurred that day.
Video surveillance from inside the store helped identify the suspects. All four suspects were later arrested and booked into the West Valley Detention Center on felony charges. Three of the four men had previous arrests. Dalon La Flora, 29, was a parolee from Los Angeles; Gerald Kay, 30, was a parolee from Fontana; and Jahaad Crawford, 30, was on federal probation and wanted for an outstanding warrant. Only Jonathan Williamson, 36, of Upland was not reported to have a previous record.
Throughout the course of identifying and finding the suspects, the San Bernadino County Sheriff’s Department – Chino Hills Station reached out to investigators and said they had reason to believe the suspects were also responsible for violent robberies that recently took place in the area. The Upland Police Department later learned that almost all the suspects from the attempted jewelry store heist were associated with a local gang.
According to a report from the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, smash-and-grab robberies such as this one involve an organized group swarming into a business, breaking glass countertops, and quickly leaving with the merchandise. This system sounds similar to the looting that was rampant in Portland and other cities last year. Maybe part of the solution to preventing crime isn’t more gun control for the masses, but more gun rights for the legally permitted.