BELLEVUE, Wash. -- Police arrested a man accused of impersonating a soldier and using a fake story about an engagement to steal a $100,000 diamond ring from a Bellevue jewelry store.
According to Bellevue police, a man in a military uniform went into Diamond, Inc. on Feb. 22 claiming that he was about to be deployed and had just become engaged. He said he was shopping for 3 to 5 carat diamond wedding rings.
Police say when the clerk showed him a 5.54 carat marquise diamond, the man grabbed it and ran from the store.
Here's what detectives say happened next:
"The store manager chased after the suspect, who got into a vehicle that was being driven by an accomplice. The store manager grabbed onto the suspect’s uniform as he was getting into the getaway vehicle. The manager was dragged down the street by the vehicle a short distance, and then the suspect punched the manager in the face, causing him to fall. The manager suffered non life-threatening injuries, and suspect fled the scene in the vehicle."
Crime scene investigators gathered fingerprints from the scene and sent them to the Bellevue Police Crime Lab. Those fingerprints came back as a 26-year-old Vancouver, Wash. resident who is NOT a member of the armed forces.
The Bellevue Special Operations Group traveled to Vancouver and arrested the suspect with the help of local police.
The suspect was taken to the King County Jail this week where he is being held for investigation of second degree robbery.
Investigators are still working to find the missing diamond and the getaway driver.