ASHEVILLE — A large emerald is missing from the Asheville Museum of Science, which reported the gem stolen late last month, more than three weeks after it was last seen.
On Jan. 24, a museum representative reached out to the Asheville Police Department to report a larceny. Somebody had forcibly stolen an emerald, which the museum valued at $10,000, according to a police report. The museum didn't report the gem stolen until nearly a month after it was last seen. The last known secure date of the emerald, which was previously on display in the museum's gem and mineral collection, was listed as Jan. 1 in the police report.
The museum provided the Citizen Times with a prepared statement via email, and declined to comment further on Thursday afternoon. In the museum's statement, Executive Director Anna Priest said that the museum hadn't been broken into and that nothing else had been taken.
"The AMOS gem and mineral collection has immeasurable historical significance and the theft of the emerald is a sad loss," the museum statement reads. "One of the challenges for any museum is the tension between securing works of value while also making sure they’re available for the public to enjoy."
Priest also said that the museum is working to increase security measures.
Police didn't have any updates regarding the investigation into the reported larceny Thursday. The status of the case was listed as "closed/leads exhausted" on the January incident report.
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