Car smashes shopping centre doors in brazen jewel heist
A PHONE call from the police saying thousands of dollars' worth of jewellery had been stolen was the last thing Shane Dougan expected on Sunday night.
His Boyne Plaza store, Boyne Jewellers, was the target of thieves, with the front windows being damaged and 22 watches stolen, worth $3637.
He said he was in shock when he saw the damage.
"We're a struggling little business, everyone is struggling in town," Mr Dougan said.
"My whole front window display is boarded up.
"Trying to keep business running is tough until you can get the glass replaced."
Clothing store Millers was also struck by thieves, with a quantity of costume jewellery being stolen.
Gladstone Police Sergeant Wayne Butcher said a vehicle was used to force open the door of the main centre about 7pm on Sunday.
He said the offenders then entered the two stores where the items were stolen.
He said the damage to the plaza and stores was in excess of $5000.
He said police arrested a 40-year-old Tannum Sands man on Tuesday afternoon and charged him with three counts of enter a premises and commit an indictable offence, stealing.
He is expected to appear in Gladstone Magistrate's Court on October 14.
However, Sgt Butcher said it was believed more than one person was involved.
"We're looking for any witnesses who were in the area of the Boyne Plaza between 6.50pm and 7.10pm," Sgt Butcher said.
"Anyone who observed any suspicious behaviour at the rear of the plaza should contact Crime Stoppers or police."
He urged anyone with CCTV or dashcam footage to come forward, or anyone with information regarding a small blue hatchback, possibly a Hyundai Elantra or similar.
He said instances like this were "very rare".
"Especially in a community like Tannum Sands, it's good to get an early result and make the community at ease," he said.