3 suspects arrested in connection with $5-million Beverly Hills jewelry heist

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Pedestrians walk past a boarded up Luxury Jewels of Beverly Hills on Wednesday, March 23, 2022 in Beverly Hills, Calif. Los Angeles police are warning people that wearing expensive jewelry in public could make them a target for thieves — a note of caution as robberies are up citywide. The police department's suggestion Tuesday, March 22, came as robbers smashed the front window of a Beverly Hills jewelry store in broad daylight and fled with millions of dollars' worth of merchandise. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)
Pedestrians walk past a boarded-up Luxury Jewels of Beverly Hills on March 23. Police on Wednesday announced the arrest of three suspects in connection with the robbery of $5 million in jewelry from the store. (Richard Vogel / Associated Press)

Three suspects have been arrested in connection with the brazen daylight robbery of $5 million in jewelry from a Beverly Hills store in March, authorities said.

Deshon Bell, 20, of Long Beach, and an unidentified minor from Long Beach were arrested Wednesday, the Beverly Hills Police Department said in a news release. Police said they recovered a 9 mm handgun and high-capacity magazine during Bell's arrest.

A third suspect, Jimmy Lee Vernon of Gardena, was arrested by California Highway Patrol officers during a traffic stop in Barstow.

The Beverly Hills Police Department and tactical teams from the FBI conducted simultaneous warrant services at three different locations in Long Beach, authorities said.

All suspects have been booked and await charges stemming from the robbery at Luxury Jewels of Beverly Hills. Bell was booked on suspicion of commercial burglary and conspiracy. The unidentified minor was booked on suspicion of commercial burglary. Vernon was booked on a federal criminal complaint of robbery.

Authorities said a fourth suspect, Ladell Tharpe, 37, of Los Angeles, was already in custody in an unrelated case and has been charged in a federal criminal complaint with robbery in connection with the incident in the 200 block of South Beverly Drive.

On March 22, police responded to calls of up to six sledgehammer-wielding burglars who smashed the glass windows and display cases and allegedly stole around $5 million in precious gems, designer watches and necklaces in broad daylight. The burglars fled within minutes, while the store was surrounded by Beverly Hills police cars. At the time, Police Chief Mark Stainbrook said the burglars hid their features with hoodies and masks.

According to Stainbrook, police used surveillance video from private and public cameras and eventually identified the getaway vehicle and suspects. Police said they coordinated with agents from the FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office to secure arrest warrants against three suspects.

Evidence connecting the suspects to the South Beverly Drive crime was recovered during Wednesday’s arrests, authorities said.

The investigation remains ongoing.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.