A woman was seen stealing a $15,000 ring in Key West. Police have arrested a suspect

Gwen Filosa
·2 min read

Key West police said they’ve caught the woman accused of stealing a $15,000 diamond ring from a Duval Street jewelry store last month.

Jannet Novelo-Aqela, 43, who is listed as having a Tallahassee address, was arrested Wednesday on a felony charge of grand theft and taken to the county jail on Stock Island.

She was released the same day after posting a $25,000 bond, jail records show. It was unclear whether she had a lawyer.

According to the arrest warrant, the case was made based on tips that came in after Crime Stoppers of Miami-Dade and the Florida Keys put out a flier with a photo of the woman police said swiped the ring from Gold Silver Creations, 128 Duval St., on Feb. 10.

The woman asked to try on the ring and then switched out one of her rings with the pricey diamond, the store manager told police. The manager followed the woman as she left the store and took photos of her.

On Feb. 24, Crime Stoppers tweeted a flier with photos of the woman accused of the theft along with the stolen ring.

Crime Stoppers of Miami-Dade and the Florida Keys tweeted this flier on Feb. 24, 2021, saying the woman in the photo stole a $15,000 diamond ring in Key West.
Crime Stoppers of Miami-Dade and the Florida Keys tweeted this flier on Feb. 24, 2021, saying the woman in the photo stole a $15,000 diamond ring in Key West.

On March 1, a tipster called in to say the woman in the flier was Novela-Aqela and gave police a phone number.

That same day, someone called Key West Police Detective Darnell Sealey to say a woman was sitting in the bar at the Outback Steakhouse on North Roosevelt Boulevard wearing the ring pictured in the Crime Stoppers flier.

Sealey went to Outback but the woman with the ring had left. The caller, though, had followed the woman to the parking lot and got the license plate number of the Toyota Sienna she left in.

That license plate number led police to an apartment on Stock Island where Sealey said they found a 2013 Chevrolet Sonic that is registered to Novelo-Aqela.

The warrant did not detail Novelo-Aqela’s arrest or say whether the ring was found.

The arrest was made the day after the store manager picked Novelo-Aqela out of a photo lineup police showed her.