Glendale Galleria robbery suspect

A photo of the suspect who allegedly stole a $85,000 bracelet from Romano's Jewelers, captured by mall security footage. (Courtesy of Carlos Torres / December 21, 2013)

Window shopping took a different turn Thursday after a man visited a jewelry store inside the Glendale Galleria, asked to see an $85,000 diamond Rolex bracelet — then disappeared with it in a flash.

Police are now seeking the public’s help in finding the man and the bracelet, which was stolen at about 6:40 p.m. from Romano’s Jewelers, according to Glendale police spokeswoman Tahnee Lightfoot.

The custom-made, one-of-a-kind bracelet, lined with princess-cut diamonds, was inside a glass display case, which had to be opened by an employee, store supervisor Carlos Torres said.

When the man requested to get a closer look at the bracelet, an employee opened the display case, removed the bracelet and showed it to him.

That’s when the man grabbed the bracelet from the employee’s hand and ran out of the store, police said.

One of the store employees ran after him, Torres said, but she retreated because she felt she might be in danger.

“Right now, people are getting more desperate and desperate every day,” Torres said.

The store’s employees are shocked and saddened by theft, but were continuing to “push through” the holiday season, Torres added.

Store management, he said, is now considering hiring security officers for all of its branches.

Customers who ask in the future to see high-value jewelry pieces will be required to show identification before a display case is opened, according to Torres.

Employees, he said, have been advised to report any suspicious activity to mall security.

The man was described as African American, between 20 and 25 years old, 5 feet 7 and between 130 and 160 pounds. He wore a black beanie, dark shirt and black leather jacket.

He was last seen running through the JCPenney store in the mall, located in the 200 block of South Central Avenue.

Anyone with details about the jewelry theft is asked to call Glendale police detectives at (818) 548-3127.

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Follow Veronica Rocha on Google+ and on Twitter: @VeronicaRochaLA.

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