Chicopee, Mass. (WGGB) — A pile of gold these days can quickly turn in to a handful of green.
With gold around 17-hundred dollars an ounce, more people are cashing in at Hollister Jewelry in Chicopee.
“They’re looking to pay their bills or to use for everyday living expenses,” said Store Manager Brenda Guiel.
But in some cases it’s criminals looking to make some easy cash.
“To get a handful of jewelry, a handful of gold, no one is questioning gold right now so it’s where the quick easy money is,” said Springfield Police Detective Charlie Youmans.
Detective Youmans says they’re seeing more house break-in’s and the item they’re after is gold jewelry.
“It’s a whole lot easier to get and get rid of,” added Youmans.
It’s something they’re well aware of at Hollister, they’ve called the police several times for someone trying to sell them stolen items.
“There’s two of us in the store so one of us will call the police. If they tell us to buy it we will, then the piece is at the store and we have the person’s ID on file,” says Manager Brenda Guiel.
Guiel adds that every time they buy gold they make a copy of the items and the person’s ID and if they do end up with stolen gold?
“The owner can buy it back from us at the price we sold it for or it can go through law enforcement and we become a victim at that point because we’ve paid money for it and 9 times out of 10 we don’t get restitution,” says Guiel.
And getting stolen items back to the real owner can be tricky.
“If someone says it’s an amethyst ring but nothing else, that makes it so difficult to make sure what your looking for,” added Guiel.
The folks at Hollister say one thing you should do is take pictures of your jewelry incase you ever are a victim. Police say be smart with your gold, don’t leave it laying around, lock it up.