America’s Auction Channel Employee Arrested in Jewelry Theft Scheme

CrimeJan 06, 2022

America’s Auction Channel Employee Arrested in Jewelry Theft Scheme

The employee was in charge of jewelry intake and allegedly gave stolen items to her boyfriend to pawn.

An employee of America’s Auction Channel and her boyfriend have been charged in a scheme that involved the theft and pawning of $100,000 and $200,000 worth of jewelry from the network.
St. Petersburg, Fla.—Broadcasting out of Florida, America’s Auction Channel hosts live auctions, televised and live-streamed six days a week, offering everything from jewels and gemstones to coins and fossils to the highest bidder.

When jewelry worth between $100,000 and $200,000 was noted as missing, the authorities were called.

After an investigation, America’s Auction Channel employee Monique Bigelow, 36, and her boyfriend, Reco Wallace, 34, were arrested and charged by the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office with “scheme to defraud.” 

Bigelow was in charge of receiving and intaking the company’s jewelry, as per court documents, and was allegedly misreporting the amounts and values to remove items from inventory and keep them for herself to pawn.

The alleged siphoning off of items went on for six months, beginning in May 2020 and continuing until November 2020.

 Related stories will be right here … 

Court documents state that a manager was able to identify several pieces of jewelry that had been pawned as belonging to the company. Neither Bigelow nor Wallace was given permission to pawn the items, the manager said.

The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office started the case by investigating Wallace after he had been recorded making “exorbitant amounts of pawn transaction,” as per court documents, including several “unique” pieces of jewelry.

Investigators spotted Wallace driving a 2007 Chevrolet Impala registered to Bigelow and later made the connection.

Wallace has been arrested several times for a variety of charges, including robbery and grand theft of a motor vehicle, as per sheriff’s office records.

The two were taken to the Pinellas County Jail on Dec. 27 on a charge of scheme to defraud. They are being held on $100,000 bonds.

America’s Auction Channel did not respond to National Jeweler’s request for comment on the case, but company founder and owner Jeremiah Hartman told the Tampa Bay Times that Bigelow was first hired in 2016 but then laid off, possibly by a department head, though he did not recall it being for an “atrocious” reason. She was rehired in the summer of 2018.

Another employee had lost his job after being falsely accused of stealing the missing jewelry, said Hartman, who urged fellow business owners to “trust, but verify.”

Hartman started the network in 2001 as a jewelry auction channel but later expanded its offerings.
Lenore Fedowis the associate editor, news at National Jeweler, covering the retail beat and the business side of jewelry.

The Latest

Supplier BulletinJun 24, 2022
AGTA GemFair™ Denver is the Place to Be in September!

Sponsored by AGTA

Recorded WebinarsJun 24, 2022
Vegas Jewelry Recap: The Editors Weigh In

Watch the webinar in which National Jeweler’s editors talk about jewelry market week trends and their predictions for the rest of 2022.

MajorsJun 24, 2022
Banter by Piercing Pagoda Celebrates Pride with ‘SayGay’ Necklace

All proceeds up to $25,000 will benefit the It Gets Better Project, a nonprofit that supports LGBTQ+ youth.

Brought to you by
Discover The Extraordinary Italian Jewelry In Las Vegas!

Experience all the Italian Jewelry market has to offer in Las Vegas.

CollectionsJun 24, 2022
Piece of the Week: Marie Lichtenberg’s Hidden Message Locket

It’s a reminder that life is best lived with discretion.

Weekly QuizJun 23, 2022
This Week’s Quiz
Test your knowledge of the latest jewelry news with this quick test.
Take the Quiz
TechnologyJun 24, 2022
Cloud-Based POS Software Jewel360 Launches for Jewelry Retailers

The end-to-end software allows for real-time control over all sales, inventory, repairs, customer communications, and marketing.

EditorsJun 23, 2022
Antique Show Observations From a First-Time Attendee

Associate Editor Lenore Fedow shares her impressions of the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show and a few of her favorite finds.

Brought to you by
3 Reasons to Offer Estate Buying at Your Store

Provide your customers with a seamless selling solution by partnering with Windsor Jewelers, Inc.

GradingJun 23, 2022
AIGS Launches Grading Report for ‘Santa Maria’ Aquamarine

The Asian Institute of Gemological Sciences aims to set a color standard for the trade name.

SourcingJun 23, 2022
Rough Diamond Sales Rise Again for De Beers

Sales were up 36 percent year-over-year in June and are pacing 24 percent ahead of last year at this point.

AuctionsJun 23, 2022
Auction House Freeman’s Appoints First Rep in Florida

Kate Della Monica, a senior specialist in the Jewelry and Watches department, will relocate to the Sunshine State.

Lab-GrownJun 22, 2022
LVMH Luxury Ventures Sinks Money Into Lab-Grown Diamond Start-Up

LVMH’s investment arm has taken a stake in Lusix, a lab-grown diamond company based in Israel.

AuctionsJun 22, 2022
Here’s How Two 100-Plus-Carat Diamonds Did at Auction

Sotheby’s New York put a colorless diamond and a fancy deep orange-brown diamond up for sale last week, with mixed results.

MajorsJun 22, 2022
Swarovski Names First Non-Family CEO

Retail veteran Alexis Nasard will step in as CEO on July 4.

SourcingJun 22, 2022
Edward Asscher to Remain WDC President for Another Year

The organization also extended the terms of Vice President Feriel Zerouki and Treasurer Ronnie VanderLinden.

ColumnistsJun 21, 2022
State of the Majors 2022: Reflections on Resilience

After suffering a professional setback, columnist Peter Smith reflects on our ability to bounce back even when the hits keep on coming.

IndependentsJun 21, 2022
Jeweler Tommy Glatz, Known for Being Creative and Kind, Dies at 68

Glatz owned and operated Glatz Jewelers in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania for more than 40 years.

Events & AwardsJun 21, 2022
24 Karat Club of Southern California Will Honor These Industry Leaders

The organization will present three awards at its annual dinner, dance, and gala in October.

MajorsJun 21, 2022
David Yurman Hires Chief of People, Strategy

Former McKinsey partner Emily Yueh marks new president Evan Yurman’s first hire.

TrendsJun 17, 2022
Britney Spears Wore Over $500K of Stephanie Gottlieb Diamonds at Her Wedding

The New York jeweler also made the pop star’s wedding bands.

AuctionsJun 17, 2022
5-Carat Paraiba Tourmaline Ring to Hit the Auction Block

It’s predicted to sell for up to $484,000 during the Bonhams Hong Kong Jewels and Jadeite auction on June 22.

Events & AwardsJun 17, 2022
WJA Foundation to Offer Tech Scholarships for Women of Color

The recipient will receive up to $17,500 toward a tech-focused certification or program of their choice.

CollectionsJun 17, 2022
Piece of the Week: Gemella’s ‘Stella’ Necklace

It’s as versatile as it is glamorous.

Supplier BulletinJun 16, 2022
HiBid Is A Jewelry Lover’s Best Friend

Sponsored by HiBid

TechnologyJun 16, 2022
Cartier, Amazon Suing ‘Influencer,’ Sellers Over Counterfeit ‘Love’ Jewelry

The alleged scheme involving fake “Love” bracelets, necklaces and rings was designed to circumvent Amazon’s counterfeit detection tools.

MajorsJun 16, 2022
Helzberg CEO Beryl Raff to Retire

Chief Financial Officer Brad Hampton will take over as the retailer’s new CEO.

CollectionsJun 16, 2022
Kirk Kara Unveils ‘Rayana’ Collection, New Bridal Styles at Luxury Show

Its new collection with subtle swirl designs draws inspiration from the family’s Armenian roots.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy