Jewelry heist part of 3-state theft ring

SALEM – An early morning burglary at Downtown Gems & Jewels last October was apparently part of a multi-state theft ring involving two Canton men recently named in an eight-count federal indictment.

Det. Dave Talbert of the Salem Police Department said he received notification Thursday about the indictment against Nicholas Moore, 23, and Arsenio Smith, 25, who are charged with conspiracy, transportation of stolen goods and sale or receipt of stolen goods across state lines.

According to a press release issued by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Ohio, the two men allegedly stole coins, jewelry and silver bars from businesses in multiple jurisdictions, including Salem, and then sold the stolen goods in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Illinois.

In the case of Downtown Gems & Jewels on East State Street, Talbert said $27,000 worth of coins and jewelry, mostly jewelry, was stolen. When the theft was reported, witnesses said they heard glass breaking and saw a man leaving the store carrying two bags and some type of object in his hand. A car then fled from the parking lot at a high rate of speed.

According to Talbert, a piece of evidence found at the scene connected the pair to the break-in. He didn’t know what brought them to Salem, saying he wasn’t aware of them having any connections to anyone in the city.

“We’re not immune to crimes like this,” he said.

While the theft in Salem didn’t have the highest dollar value, he said it didn’t have the least dollar value either. A business in Hartville, which falls under the jurisdiction of the Uniontown Police Department/Lake Township, had $642,000 worth of merchandise stolen.

The investigation was led by the Uniontown Police Department/Lake Township and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in conjunction with: the Salem Police Department; Stark County Sheriff’s Office; Lexington, Kentucky Police Department; Richland County Sheriff’s Office; Mansfield Police Department; Stow Police Department; Springfield Police Department; Wooster Police Department; Jackson Township Police Department; Uniontown Police Department; and Robinson Township Police Department.

Mary Ann Greier can be reached at