A man dressed in construction clothes went to a Toronto jewelry store “as though he was there to do work” before attempting to zip-tie an employee and smashing display cases in a failed robbery attempt, police say.
Toronto police issued a news release Friday about a robbery investigation involving two incidents, the first of which happened on Aug. 21 in the Dufferin Street and Wilson Avenue area.
Police said a man dressed in construction clothes went to a jewelry store, grabbed an employee and “tried unsuccessfully” to zip-tie their hands.
He pulled out a hammer, began smashing display cases, and removed jewelry, police said.
The man then allegedly produced a knife and threatened employees.
A brief struggle ensued and the man dropped his toolbox, backpack and knife before leaving empty-handed, police said.
The second incident occurred on Thursday in the Yonge Street and Empress Avenue area, where officers responded to a call for a person with a gun.
Police said a man went to jewelry store for a pre-arranged meeting to make a large purchase. He reportedly spent time talking with employees before requesting to see a watch.
An employee handed him a watch at which point he allegedly fled the store.
Employees ran after the man and a “violent” struggle ensued when they caught up to him and the man produced a handgun, police said.
Security in the mall arrived and took the man into custody.
Police said at the time of the arrest, a replica handgun and the stolen watch were recovered.
A 26-year-old Toronto man is facing a number of charges including two counts of robbery with an offensive weapon. He was scheduled to appear in court on Friday.
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