UPDATED: 12/6/2012 – 4:22 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) – Burglars wearing disguises broke into a designer shoe store on the Gold Coast early Thursday morning and stole up to $1 million worth of merchandise.
CBS 2’s Suzanne Le Mignot reports the suspects shattered the door at the Jimmy Choo boutique on Oak Street. Sources said the theft appeared to be the work of a burglary ring.
Police said three men placed thick cardboard over the glass windows to minimize the noise from using a sledgehammer to break the windows and get inside.
The store features high-end shoes, handbags and other accessories with price tags in the hundreds and even thousands of dollars each.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger Reports
While sources told CBS 2 the thieves grabbed over $1 million worth of purses and shoes, the Jimmy Choo vice president of finance Steven Speaks said only about seven to eight bags were stolen, worth about $15,000 total.
But sources said the burglars took about 30 purses, which are sold for thousands of dollars each. Sources also said the thieves took every pair of shoes they could gather, along with the cash register.
Speaks called the incident “very unfortunate.”
Oak Street Council managing director Liz Kores said, “It was a brazen act, and I think it was very bold. … Jimmy Choo is a wonderful brand, and a very exciting name, so I think it’s something that was probably very enticing.”
Kores said, during the holidays, Oak Street shops ramp up security on the street.
“We hire private security that is here during the day. We also have plainclothes [police] officers, thanks to the 18th District,”
Sources said uniformed officers are also assigned day and overnight detail on Oak Street.
Steve Dubey, owner of Dreidels & More, located next door to Jimmy Choo, said “People should not be afraid to shop – especially local merchants – and stay off the Internet, and support people in the city. We need you.”
Sources said two men were captured on surveillance video inside the Jimmy Choo store. Both were wearing what looked like construction outfits.
As of Thursday evening, no one was in custody for the heist.