LAWRENCEVILLE -- Police believe an Atlanta man accused of robbing a Mall of Georgia jewelry store on Feb. 8 is responsible for at least four other area capers.
Investigators said they connected 23-year-old Steve Mapp to the series of robberies after noticing the similar method of operation. Crime analysis, witness and victim interviews and a "thorough review of relevant surveillance video" convinced them that they have their man.
"The output from these investigative tools produced enough probable cause for arrest warrants and a search warrant," said Gwinnett police spokesman Officer Brian Kelly. "The execution of that warrant further solidified the detective's case against the parties involved."
On Feb. 8, police said, Mapp and cohort Kamel Thompson, 23, used hammers to smash a display case at Gordon's Jewelers and make off with at least $150,000 worth of jewelry.
A store employee immediately recognized Mapp as the man who, just eight days earlier, snatched $27,000 worth of rings from a clerk in the same store, reports said.
During the duo's attempted getaway, police said, Thompson lost control of the Pontiac Bonneville he was driving and crashed into a tractor trailer, sending a duffel bag full of loot into the roadway and both men to Gwinnett Medical Center.
Thompson was released from the hospital Thursday and booked into the Gwinnett County Jail. Mapp remains hospitalized in fair condition, a hospital spokeswoman said Monday.
Police believe Mapp is also responsible for snatching a bank deposit bag from a T-Mobile clerk at the Mall of Georgia on Jan. 24.
The spree, authorities believe, began on Jan. 21 when Mapp busted into another display case, this one at the Gordon's Jewelers at the Gwinnett Place Mall, and made off with nearly $25,000 in jewelry.
Mapp is also accused of snatching a $1,350 Gino watch from an employee at It's About Time -- another Gwinnett Place store -- on Feb. 6 as the woman calculated the sale price.
Court records show Mapp is on probation in Gwinnett County.