Local News

Third arrest in Long Island jewelry store heist

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Three people are under arrest and a fourth person is being sought after a robbery and gun battle at a jewelry store in Valley Stream.

"I sensed something was amiss, and as soon as he produced a weapon, I produced mine and started shooting," store owner Andrew Papandrew said.

An armed robbery suspect was caught on tape as he jumped over the jewelry display counter on Wednesday night.

The store owner, who is out of frame on the video, begins shooting and the gunman runs away.

Papandrew says it all happened in the blink of eye. He was shot in the side and staring down the barrel of a gun. He didn't hesitate to return fire.

"I knew I'd been shot. I wasn't falling down. I wasn't having breathing problems, and I just continued to blast away at the guy," he said.

The owner of Papandrew Jewelers says it all started when a couple entered his store after closing looking to buy an engagement ring. Soon after they entered, a third man busted in and pulled out a gun.

Papandrew was robbed once before, so he was prepared.

"I had six years to think about what my reaction was going to be and I knew that I didn't want to be a victim again," Papandrew said.

When it was all over, Papandrew held one of the robbers until cops arrived.

Police arrested three people. Gloria Cortes, 20, denied the allegations, telling us she was "trying to get an engagement ring." Police also charged Bryan Kenner and Edward Hamilton.

Detectives believe the gunman could still be on the loose.

"I don't want to become the poster boy for vigilantism. I am just defending my life," Papandrew said.

The suspects are charged with attempted robbery and assault.

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Tags:
long island, nassau county, valley stream, robbery, local news, lauren defranco
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