Police are asking for the public’s assistance in identifying a jewelry thief who was caught on surveillance camera smashing displays and stealing from a downtown Victoria small business.

The traumatic incident took place at Francis Jewelers, a jewelry store located in the 600-block of Broughton Street at around 3:45 p.m. on Saturday, April 15th.

Police were told by staff that a man had entered the business holding a hammer. He then made his way behind the counter where he opened two display cases using the hammer and stole some of their contents.

While the suspect was stealing some of the jewelry, staff members picked up chairs on the opposite side of the counter to try to push the suspect away and pin him against the wall.

The suspect was eventually pushed out of the store by staff intervention, but managed to smash one more case and stole an expensive watch from it before being shoved out.

The suspect had successfully fled the scene by the time police arrived.

He did not use the hammer as a weapon towards any staff members during the robbery.

The whole incident was caught on surveillance video which VicPD have now released in the hopes it helps identify the suspect. Watch the video below:

WARNING: The following video contains profanity and potentially triggering violence

Police describe the suspect as a Caucasian man between the ages of 20 and 30-years-old, with a medium build and a beard. At the time of the incident, he was wearing a baseball hat, a dark-coloured hoodie, tan pants and black sneakers with white near the soles.

The video shows him carrying both a grey backpack and a black duffle bag with red straps at the time of the robbery.

Police ask that anyone who recognizes the suspect, call VicPD at (250) 995-7654. To report anonymously, call Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.