Gold heist suspects arrested

Vancouver police have recovered gold carvings stolen from the Douglas Reynolds Gallery during a smash-and-grab Monday afternoon.

Two men have been charged, according to a press released police issued Thursday morning.

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The gold heist took place in broad daylight shortly after 1 p.m., July 14. A man entered the gallery, located on Granville Street between West Seventh and Eighth, with what staff described as a hammer.

The man smashed a display cabinet facing the window and made off with a collection of gold carvings. Gallery director and owner Douglas Reynolds, who rushed over in flip flops when he learned of the robbery, told the Courier about 30 different gold carvings, mostly Haida, were stolen. The total retail value was under $100,000.

“My staff said [the robber] literally ran in, smashed, grabbed, and as he ran out, they locked themselves in for safety,” said Reynolds, who wasn’t present during the heist. “He was out and gone and nothing could be done.”

Staff at the Granville Hairdressing Academy next door to the gallery heard the glass case smash but weren’t sure what made the sound.

“We thought our sandwich board had fallen down,” said instructor Alecia Granger.

Reynolds opened the gallery in 1995. He remembers three robberies during the first year, but not so much as an alarm in the middle of the night since.

“I guess in hindsight I guess breakable glass is good because it means everyone is safe,” said Reynolds. His staff locked the door the moment the culprit fled with the gold.

The robber was seen fleeing in a waiting getaway car. Not long after, police located the suspected getaway vehicle in the area and took the driver into custody.

Detectives then identified a second suspect in connection with the robbery. Early Wednesday morning, police searched the suspect’s rooming house. Several stolen carvings were located.

Harold Jason Amos, 41, of Vancouver has been charged with armed robbery, disguise with intent, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, possession of a firearm contrary to an order and possession of stolen property.  

The alleged driver, 51-year-old Scott Robert Deckert of Vancouver, has been charged with one count of armed robbery.

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