Stolen Championship Ring, Taken After Car Break-In at Fresno Gym
FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) —
Greg Panelli flashes a big smile as he describes his pride and joy.
"When people see it, their first thought is, 'Is that a Super Bowl ring?" says Greg Panelli.
While it's not a Super Bowl ring, the ring --with red turf on one side, his name and number on the other-- is about as close this former Eastern Washington University quarterback will get.
His team won the NCAA Division 1 National Championship.
"We beat Delaware down in Frisco, Texas," he says, with a smile.
But the ring is now gone.
"I really bust my butt to get to that point, to have that taken away is a shot below the belt to me," he says.
Like many others, he and his fiance had been working out at GB3 in North Fresno, on Nees and Palm, Monday night.
His fiance had the ring in her purse.
She had stuffed the purse, under the driver's seat.
The couple wrapped up its workout, and realized moments later, that its SUV had been vandalized.
"I went around the passenger's side," Panelli says, "and just saw the window peeled back and just looked at her and said, 'Somebody broke into the car.'"
Obvious items were gone, including credit cards and debit cards.
Those are replaceable.
But Panelli's ring, is not.
No one saw the break-in; there are no cameras outside the gym or buildings in Park Place Shopping Center.
There is one camera on a neighboring building.
But a representative for Tutelian and Company, which owns the shopping center, says the images were likely not very clear.
As a result of this break-in, Tutelian has ordered increased security patrols in the shopping center, and it's urging the gym to warn people about leaving valuables in their cars.
A worker at GB3 told KMPH News there have been at last three break-ins over the last week.
Panelli admits he's heard time and again that people should not leave valuables in cars.
"Sometimes people forget. [We] won't be leaving valuables in the car anymore," he says.
Panelli and his fianc are offering a reward for the return of the ring, no questions asked.