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Jewelry store bandits in rush leave 4 year old son behind

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Philadelphia police arrested two jewel thieves they say robbed a South Street store with their four-year-old in tow, only to leave the kid behind. Whyy’s Susan Phillips reports.

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Apparently, the four-year-old just didn’t run fast enough. After his parents grabbed 15 rings worth about $50,000 they took off down South Street.  The owner of Platinum Ice Jewelry Store gave chase. Alleged thief, John Benson ran up 7th street holding his son’s hand. Then police say Benson turned and slashed the neck of the store owner and ran off without his son.

Philadelphia police Captain Laurence Nodiff says he’s never seen a jewel heist quite like this one.

Nodiff: “I think its unbelievable that you would take a child with you to commit a crime. I think its reprehensible that to make good on your escape you leave your 4-year-old behind.

The mother had run off in a different direction. Nodiff says the boy was able to identify his parents to police. The two were arrested this weekend and charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, and robbery.

Both mom and dad were already known to police. 47 year old John Benson has 24 prior arrests. Police had already arrested 31 year old Sheakia Stubbs three times. The Department of Human Services took custody of their child.

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