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Collector says rare Czechoslovakian minerals stolen
Michael Pimental hopes the community will help him in a different kind of treasure hunt.
Around 1 p.m. Wednesday, July 11, he discovered what he estimates as $5,000-$10,000 of rare minerals were stolen from his store, Eclipse Minerals, 645 W. Washington St., Suite 6.
Pimental said a thief or thieves took several pieces of moldavite, a rare, dull-green mineral found in the Czechoslovakia area that might trace from a meteorite.
The Sequim Police Department confirmed there was a theft and continue to investigate.
Pimental told the Gazette he was carving and cleaning stones in the back of his store when two men entered the store; one he described as a young man with a backpack, the other as an older man who "looked like a drug addict."
He caught the older man allegedly holding minerals, so he locked the doors and searched their belongings, but he didn't find anything.
After looking around the store, Pimental said he found some moldavite on the floor near its case, where several pieces were missing.
Pimental said the rock could be sold to other rock shops, private collectors and dealers, and online. He hopes people will be aware of that and call the police at 683-7227 if they see anything.
In 2009, a thief stole several thousand dollars worth of Imilac Pallasite meteorites from him but it was recovered when the thief tried to sell it.
He feels the moldavite is rare enough to be traced as well and he's willing to place a reward to get it back.
Pimental, owner of the store since 2010, moved from the back of the complex to the front in January.
He's collected minerals for 45 years and worked in the rock industry for 38 years, with the store serving as a culmination of his collection.
“I provide this to the community,” he said. “I work my whole life to share it and they just come in and steal it.”
“My trust has gone from big to (expletive) zero. They don't know what they have.”
Eclipse Minerals is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sundays.