A New York jewelry wholesaler was robbed at gunpoint just moments before he was to pay a call at a Cantrell Road jeweler shortly before 1 p.m. today.

The salesman had flown into Little Rock today to make calls on several stores. Shortly after parking to visit Kenneth Edwards Fine Jewelers at 7811 Cantrell, a masked gunman who’d apparently been following him smashed the windows on the driver’s side of his car and demanded his jewel case. He threatened to kill the salesman, who turned over the jewels and the keys to his Chrysler. The man was gone in minutes.  The salesman then went inside and told store owner Ken Shelton what had happened.

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“It was heart-breaking,” Shelton said. “All he could do was express the fact that he had three small children at home and he could have been killed. He was very shaken.”

Shelton said he had no idea the value of jewels that were stolen, but said wholesalers often transport substantial amounts. Police said the crime was similar to recent jewel robberies in other cities, but Shelton said the man robbed today was a wholesaler, not a courier delivering purchased jewels to customers.

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