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Siouxland Strange: The allure of the pretty, pretty diamonds

Siouxland Strange: The allure of the pretty, pretty diamonds

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Jewelry-store shoplifter caught

The allure of the pretty, pretty diamonds was just too much for him. 

An Omaha man has been charged with stealing $52,000 worth of rings and diamonds from two Sioux City jewelry stores in 2019.

Ryan Johnson was arrested Oct. 16 on two counts of first-degree theft and is being held in the Woodbury County Jail on a $15,000 bond.

According to court documents, Johnson entered Kay Jewelers at Southern Hills Mall on Feb. 1, 2019, and asked to see two diamond rings, valued at $14,000 and $8,000, and took them outside to look at them in natural light. Once outside, he fled with the rings.

On March 28, 2019, court documents said, Johnson went to Helzberg Jewelers at the mall and asked to see two diamond rings, valued at $12,000 and $8,000, and a loose diamond valued at $10,000. When the items were removed from the display case, Johnson snatched them and fled the store. The theft was captured on surveillance video.

In September 2019, Johnson was sentenced in Omaha to 366 days in jail on one count of theft by unlawful taking for stealing rings from an Omaha Jewelry store. According to court documents, he was suspected of a similar theft in Madison County, Nebraska, and had pawned at least one of the rings in Denver.

O'Brien County gun shoplifter also caught

A Sioux County man pleaded not guilty Oct. 22 in federal court to stealing a dozen guns from an O'Brien County gun shop earlier this year.

A grand jury indictment filed Oct. 21 and unsealed Oct. 22 charges Derrick Jager with conspiracy to possess a stolen firearm, possession of a firearm by a drug user and two counts of possession of a stolen firearm.

Maria Cade was charged with one count of possession of a stolen firearm. She also pleaded not guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Sioux City.

No ages or cities of residence for Jager and Cade were listed in the indictment.

Jager is charged with stealing 10 handguns, a rifle and a shotgun during three separate burglaries at the unnamed gun store on March 1, March 29 and April 1. According to the indictment, Jager was part of a conspiracy with other individuals, both known and unknown to the grand jury, to steal guns and other valuables and resell them.

Two of the stolen guns were later recovered: a handgun in Sioux Falls and a shotgun from Jager's home.

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