SANTA MARIA – Just after noon on Sunday, a masked man wielding a crowbar attempted to rob the fine jewelry department at Macy’s in the Santa Maria Town Center.
Anthony Lee Arguijo, 39, of Santa Maria, entered the department store several minutes after 12 p.m., wearing a hooded sweatshirt and ski mask. Only his eyes were visible, as he began staring at numerous store employees.
According to police, Arguijo walked to the fine jewelry department, where he attempted to smash two glass cases, both containing diamond rings, bracelets and necklaces, with the crowbar. However, the safety glass didn’t break after several failed attempts by the suspect.
When confronted by Macy’s loss prevention team, Arguijo allegedly threatened the plain clothes security officers with his weapon and fled the store on foot. Loss prevention officers gave chase and were joined by an on-duty park ranger, at which time they caught up to the suspect and detained him at Main and Broadway, police said.
Arguijo was arrested at the scene, where he was still in possession of the ski mask and crowbar. He was booked at Santa Barbara County Jail on charges of attempted robbery.
Although no one was injured in the incident, employees working at Macy’s during the botched robbery were visibly shaken and took extended breaks before returning to the jewelry department to continue working their scheduled shifts, according to witnesses.
Damage to the jewelry cases is estimated at $900, police said.
Santa Maria Times: Man Arrested in Robbery Attempt at Macy’s