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Giant jade gem returned to its Cache Creek home

It took manpower and floor reinforcements to haul the 3,000-pound jade boulder into the store.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Cariboo Jade and Gifts

An iconic jade boulder has finally been returned to its rightful home after it was stolen from a Cache Creek gem store in December.

Owner of Cariboo Jade and Gift Shop, Heidi Roy, is excited to have the giant gem back at her store, where it now sits on the shop floor.

"It felt like we were missing a piece," Roy said. "And now we feel like we are whole again."

On Dec. 19, 2020, the 3,000-pound, 5' x 3' gem was stolen from the front of the store, where it stood since 1987. It was found just days later, but wasn't returned to the store until it was refinished and they decided where it would be placed again.

Out of concern that it could be stolen again, Roy eventually decided to bring the jade boulder inside the store, which presented its own challenges.

The door was just wide enough for the rock to fit, and with reinforcements to the wooden floor and manpower to move it, it now lays on the floor of the store. A second heist would be even more difficult.

Roy said the two men responsible for the heist have been identified, and the equipment they used to move the rock was rented in one of their names, but the police informed her the Crown wanted more evidence before laying charges.

"Unfortunately, it seems with the justice system right now, it's hard to get charges to stick," she said. "It was disappointing."

Given the immensity of the rock, they never imagined someone would attempt to steal it. Now that it's moved, she's glad to have it back in the store.

In December, she received an outpouring of support from visitors who remembered visiting the store over the years. After it was found, she had people offering to lay concrete at its base when returned, others volunteered to haul the 3,000-pound gem.

"We didn't realize how far and wide it was beloved," Roy said. "It's nice to see kindness in time of tragedy."

— This story was corrected at 8:05 a.m., June 14, 2021 to say the theft took place Dec. 19, 2020.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Levi Landry or call 250-819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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