Police recover more than $1 million in stolen watches

Police recovered more than $1 million in watches Friday believed to be from a statewide series of robberies, including a September heist where armed suspects drove through a walkway at the Fashion Valley Mall.

The suspects in the robberies are also believed to be involved in an armed robbery at the Barona Casino in November in which $60,000 to $70,000 was taken.

Detectives received information that a large quantity of Rolex watches were being stored at a Park West apartment, according to San Diego police Lt. Andra Brown.

Investigators determined the cache was from robberies that took place took place between August and October in Costa Mesa, San Jose, Palm Desert and locally, Brown said.

In each incident, Ryan McKnight, 34, and Robert Chavira, 40, used sledge hammers to smash jewelry cases then scooped up high-end watches, Brown said.

In the San Diego case, the two parolees allegedly drove a vehicle through the walkway of the Friars Road shopping center before smashing a display case at the Ben Bridge store.

McKnight and Chavira were arrested Nov. 9.

   
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