Update: Armed robbers hit Woodgrove jewelry store

NANAIMO – Two in custody following armed robbery of jewelry store at Woodgrove Centre.

Two men are in police custody following an armed robbery at Woodgrove Centre.

Nanaimo Mounties responded to multiple 911 calls shortly after 8:30 p.m. Thursday when two men in masks entered the shopping centre, went to the Michael Hill jewelry store, produced what was believed to be a firearm, then smashed display cases, grabbed jewelry and fled in a vehicle.

The vehicle, which turned out to be a stolen SUV, was later spotted on the Island Highway and followed to Ladysmith where two men were arrested and are now in custody at Nanaimo RCMP detachment.

“The vehicle was seen leaving the mall,” said Cpl. Jon Stuart, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman. “Members were able to get a description out right away, located the vehicle on the inland Island Highway and … pursued it down towards Ladysmith and shortly after that one male was located in the vehicle and another male was located on the street.”

Police also recovered property allegedly taken during the robbery and a firearm.

“There was a firearm recovered and there were reports of a firearm being used during the robbery,” Stuart said.

Police believe the two men arrested were the only suspects involved with the crime. They are facing multiple  charges, which have yet to be approved by the Crown. Both men are scheduled to appear before a provincial court judge Friday afternoon.

Threats were made against the employees, but no one was physically harmed.

Police are asking any witnesses to the robbery to contact the Nanaimo RCMP directly at 250-754-2345. Please refer to file No. 2015-29626.

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