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Burglar broke into Sandy jewelry store, but couldn't get out, police say

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 12 2014 11:18 p.m. MST

SANDY — A man broke into a jewelry store through the ceiling Wednesday, but then couldn't escape because of a security door, police say.

The burglar broke into a neighboring business of Sierra West Jewelry, 60 E. 10600 South, and then entered the jewelry store through the ceiling, said Sandy Police Sgt. Jon Arnold. He then attempted to get out by trying to break through the shatter-proof glass door with a fire extinguisher, but failed.

Police arrived shortly after 6:35 a.m. when they were notified that the store's alarms had been activated.

"He had items in his pockets and was trying to get out with those items," Arnold said. "When officers arrived, they were able to see him and interact with him through the glass. He was cooperative and gave himself up."

Gene Richins, 31, was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of burglary, theft and criminal mischief.

Store owner Tim Branscomb said the door was installed to improve security after about $75,000 in merchandise was lost in a burglary about three years ago.

"We're very fortunate," he said. "We do have some major damage to the wall, the ceiling and one showcase, but we consider ourselves lucky."

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