Jewelry store employee charged with staging fake robbery

A jewelry store employee and an acquaintance of hers were charged on Friday with staging a fake robbery of the store.

Prince William County police said that Reem Sami Awwad, 20, an Alexandria resident and employee of DMV Gold and Jewelry Exchange in the Manassas area of the county, reported a robbery to police.

A man had entered the store, displayed a knife, demanded money and jewelry and then assaulted her before fleeing with cash and jewels, Awwad told police.

During the investigation, police came up with a different account: Awwad planned the robbery. John Andre Ransom Jr., 24, an acquaintance of Awwad who also lives in Alexandria, played the role of the unknown thief.

Both were charged with grand larceny, and Awwad was charged with filing a false police report. Police said that the stolen goods and the money were returned to the store.

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Julie Zauzmer is a local news reporter.

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