SEATTLE — Police are looking for a man who stole an ancient mammoth tusk from a downtown Seattle art gallery.
The theft was caught on store surveillance cameras and right in front of the store owner.
Now changes are being made to how business will be run in the future.
Twelve thousand years of history were ripped out in seconds.
“It’s five to six feet long and fits perfectly on your shoulder,” said Kathy Lee, owner of Fossil and Stone.
“I am heartbroken. I spend more waking hours here than at home, so I consider it my second home.
On Tuesday, security video captured the moment a man walked into Lee’s shop and immediately she said something didn’t seem right.
“I had a bad feeling, so I was armed with my pepper spray and my Taser. Our other team member had his bat ready,” Lee said.
On the video, the man seemed transfixed by the giant tusk.
Then, without warning, the man grabs the defense and locks down a side entrance.
Lee said she followed the man, firing pepper spray in an effort to recover the defense.
“My adrenaline was so high it didn’t hurt and I sprayed pepper spray on the car, inside the car,” Lee said.
The man fled in a car which she later learned had been stolen.
The loss of the relic hurts Lee greatly and it is because his own father restored the tusk while carving and carving many other gallery artifacts.
“It was called a sanctuary. And I’ll keep it peaceful and I’ll keep it strong,” Lee said.
For this reason, all customers should be notified. Lee also plans to hire an armed security guard.
Lee said she refuses to let history repeat itself.
“I’m not giving up. I want to stay here. I’ve been here for 10 months and I want to be here for 10 years,” Lee said.
The theft was the store’s second in just a month. The store had also been robbed.
Lee said she was convinced the two robberies were related.
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