SUNRISE, FLA. (WSVN) - A suspect accused of setting off firecrackers to get away with a pricey watch at a Zales in the Sawgrass Mills Mall has been arrested.
Sunrise Police worked hard to identify the man who stole a Rolex at the Sawgrass Mills Mall. Officials managed to connect several cases before they arrested the suspect, Kevin Triana, in South Carolina on Sunday.
Surveillance cameras inside the Zales jewelry store showed the thief as he spoke with the store clerk on Dec. 31.
Officials said Triana asked to try on a Rolex watch priced at $11,400. He then could be seen using his cellphone before a loud noise that sounded like gunshots occurred outside the store.
Camera showed the moments everyone ran to take cover, including the man wearing the Rolex.
“It was a combined effort to set off a distraction, and you could almost see it in the video where he’s on his phone and as that communication goes off, the fireworks are set and he’s out of the store,” said Sunrise Police Officer Louie Fernandez in January.
A similar incident happened at the Dadeland Mall at a Mayors jewelry store with the said mode of operation.
The same crime also happened at the Florida Mall in Orlando as well. Surveillance video in the mall showed two accomplices; one who was waiting outside and another running away with an expensive watch.
Police said Triana is responsible for all three robberies.
After the robbery at the Florida Mall, officials said Triana tried to pawn the watch at a pawn shop in Little Havana. Clerks there notified police.
According to police, Triana was driving north on Interstate 95 and going to malls to commit the same crime. He was arrested at the Haywood Mall in Greenville, South Carolina, Sunday.
“We received information from Florida [Department of] Law Enforcement that Mr. Triana was in the area of the Greenville mall, and worked with them to locate and identify Mr. Triana,” said Greenville Police Lt. Jason Rampey.
Police said they found fireworks in his car. Triana was then arrested, along with Ivan Maldonado.
Sawgrass Mills employees who were terrified during the explosive robbery said they are glad the thief is off the streets.
“Now I have the security that someone is taking care of us,” said employee Viviana Castellanos. “They are doing something to protect us.”
Triana and Maldonado will be extradited to Broward County. Triana faces several charges.
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