$600K in jewelry stolen from a French Quarter hotel room

$600K in jewelry stolen from a French Quarter hotel room

POSTED: Tuesday, March 18, 2014 - 4:13pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 2:43pm

A couple is re-thinking their frequent, lavish trips to New Orleans after they say someone stole more than half-a-million-dollars' worth of jewelry as they slept in their French Quarter hotel room. WGNO News Anchor Vanessa Bolano speaks exclusively to the victims.

Joel Cavalier and his wife, Laurie, live in Biloxi, but the two are in New Orleans often.

"Often, yes, about every two or three weeks," says Cavalier.

The couple was last in town this weekend. They were picking up Laurie's Christmas gift, a custom made $500,000 diamond ring. Unfortunately, Laurie enjoyed it only a few hours.

"Laurie got up about 5:20 that morning and went downstairs, and she was surprised to find the French doors were wide open. She came upstairs and she said, 'I hope they didn't leave the front door open,' and we went back down and the jewelry, three pieces of the four pieces, were gone," explains Cavalier.

NOPD detectives are investigating. They've combed through clues, and fingerprinted the hotel room. Cavalier says the heist happened early Sunday morning. He says the ring and two other diamond bracelets, valued at about $100,000, were stolen from their hotel room as the two slept.

"It happened, you know, sometime we think between 12 and 2am," says Cavalier.

The couple was staying in The Carriage House at The Maison Dupuy. Cavalier says a strategically placed surveillance camera was supposed to be working.

"We later learned this morning that the camera was not operable at all and they had no idea how long the camera has been not working," says Cavalier.

WGNO paid a visit to The Maison Dupuy and spoke with a manager who had "No comment," and would not confirm whether they are reviewing security protocols.

Cavalier says, "It puts a bad, you know, taste in our mouth about coming back to New Orleans obviously. You know, we're, every little bitty noise frightens us."

If you know anything police are urging you to give them a call. The couple thinks it was an inside job, but police say the investigation is ongoing.

Cavalier says the two diamond bracelets are insured, but there's some question as to whether the $500,000 ring is. The couple had just picked it up on Saturday and were in the process of finalizing paperwork with the insurance company. 

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She is so afraid she cannot sleep. I hate to see such petty people get your tourists so frightened they won't even return. That causes everyone in the city to suffer. Somehow the camera pointing directly to the back door , which has various extra floor\ceiling locks that you would have to know what your doing to undo it quickly, added with the fact the Cavaliers stay in that room every time they stay at that property. Just please if u have any info contact the police .. who dat...

I just want to say I know what happened and its ridiculous!! The Cavaliers have season passes to the plays over in NO and the whole family loves every chance we get to visit the city, we even spent thousands of dollars to go see the Saints in Miami for the SB, we love the city, tradition, how we all shared a bond coming back blow for blow from Katrina, just everything ... point blank we love visiting your city . . . . well now a point blank barrel is all my mom is seeing every night all night.

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