A man who died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Saturday morning’s attempted armed robbery at a Woodbury jewelry store has been identified by police as Thomas Eric Jones, 54, of Minneapolis.

Meanwhile, a second suspect — a 46-year-old Minneapolis man — who was arrested in the case has been released from the Washington County jail without being charged pending further investigation, said Fred Fink, head of the criminal division in the county attorney’s office.

According to Woodbury police, an officer on patrol about 9:30 a.m. near the intersection of Tamarack Road and Radio Drive noticed suspicious activity in a strip of retail shops that includes Johnson Jewelers. Owner Karen Johnson had been opening up for the day when the robbers allegedly grabbed jewelry and forced her to the floor at gunpoint. She was not injured.

The officer interrupted the robbery and heard a gunshot from inside the store.

Officers found Jones dead, while the second suspect fled in a sport-utility vehicle.


Jim Anderson