3 rob Modesto jewelry store, customers, then flee

Three armed robbers held up a jewelry store on Crows Landing Road in south Modesto early Wednesday, getting away with merchandise and cash, Modesto police reported.

A female and two males entered El Centro Jewelry in the 1900 block of Crows Landing about 10 a.m. and looked at a few display counters before pulling out handguns, said Sgt. Rick Armendariz, a police spokesman.

Officers responded to a burglar alarm at the store, but the robbers fled before they arrived.

Besides escaping with cash and jewelry from the store, police said, the robbers forced two of the store's customers to hand over personal belongings.

No one was injured and no shots were fired but the robbers were able to flee the scene in an older, dark- colored compact car with an undisclosed amount of cash and a large amount of jewelry, Armendariz said.

The first robber was described as a Latino adult, in his early to mid-30s, about 5-foot-10 with a medium build.

The second robber was described as a Latina adult, in her early 20s, medium height, black hair with green and red highlights.

The third robber was described as a Latino adult in his early to mid-20s, about 5-foot-8 with a thin build.

Police ask anyone who might have information regarding this incident to call Crime Stoppers at 521-4636. Callers may remain anonymous and are eligible for a reward. Tipsters can text information to Crime Stoppers by sending a text message to 274637. Type "TIP704" along with the message.

Bee staff writer Erin Tracy can be reached at or 578-2366.