THIEVES with sledge-hammers carried out a broad daylight attack on a jewellers in Brighouse.
The owner of Niemantas Jewellers in Commercial Street tried to move precious rings out of the way as the robbers smashed the windows of the store at 9.45am yesterday.
They escaped with jewellery in a silver Audi believed to have been stolen from Pudsey in Leeds on Wednesday.
The car, with false licence plates DV57 VTH, had been seen in Brighouse the day before the robbery, and was found abandoned afterwards in Lane Head Court in Brighouse.
Detectives said there were three male thieves. Two were wearing hooded tops.
Owner of the jewellers Steven Niemantas said: “I was just fitting a battery in a customer’s watch when I heard banging so I got up to see what was happening.”
He said two men were using sledgehammers to smash the windows of the store where there were diamond rings on display.
“I was trying to push the rings on the floor so they couldn’t reach them,” he said.
One of the men burst through the locked door and swung the hammer before leaving and escaping with the others.
Yesterday Mr Niemantas was still working out exactly what the robbers took and how much it was worth.
The same store was robbed three years ago.
Detective Inspector Ashley Hewitt said Brighouse was busy when the robbery happened and urged anyone with information to call Calderdale CID on 01422 337085 or 0845 6060606 or CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.