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2 officers eating lunch at mall foil $20,000 jewelry theft

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — Authorities say a North Carolina man who tried to run off with $20,000 worth of jewelry from a New Jersey mall store was captured by two police officers who happened to be eating lunch nearby.

Police say 19-year-old Shawn Nelson, of Rocky Mount, was trying on jewelry at the Newport Centre mall in Jersey City on Tuesday when he ran off with chains still around his neck.

Sgt. Hector Martinez and officer James Herkenham were in the mall during a break. They heard the commotion and took off after Nelson, who was arrested before he got out of the building.

Nelson is charged with shoplifting, drug possession and resisting arrest. The Associated Press was unable to locate a phone number for him.

The two officers work for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

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