To Our Valued Customers

October 21, 2015

Dear Customers:

You may have heard about an incident that occurred at our Whitefish Bay store earlier this week involving Milwaukee Bucks player John Henson.

I want to begin by saying that everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and I deeply regret how the circumstances unfolded Friday and Monday. I appreciated the opportunity to personally meet with John Henson this week to look him in the eye, shake hands, and apologize for what he experienced.

Our goal at Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers is to treat every one of our valued customers with respect and the highest level of service. While this situation was the result of a series of unfortunate misunderstandings stemming, in part, from the vehicle involved, I’m committed to working with my staff to learn from this experience to be sure that all customers feel welcomed at our stores.

We thank you for your past patronage and the support we have received from our family, friends and community during a difficult time for everyone involved. I appreciate the opportunity to speak with you personally if you have any questions about what you may have seen or heard on the news about this situation. To provide a little more context, I have enclosed a copy of the background information we shared as part of our media statement earlier this week.

As a fourth-generation family-owned jeweler, maintaining the integrity of a traditional jeweler is important to us.  We appreciate your support as we continue to focus on offering our customers unique, one-of-a-kind jewelry and service that treats all customers with the utmost respect.

With gratitude,

Tom Dixon
Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers

Additional Background Information
On Friday, the store received multiple calls regarding how much of specific types of inventory were in stock and what time the store closed - a pattern of calls that has preceded other robberies. Based on concerns regarding these calls and following our regular protocol, we closed the store 30 minutes early and notified the Whitefish Bay Police Department. 

At that time, the Department began to patrol the area and recorded the license plate number of a vehicle the police department determined was suspicious, because its plates were issued by a dealer and were not registered to the vehicle on which they were displayed. 

Based on subsequent conversations between the Police and the dealer, the dealer indicated that it was likely the plates were stolen. The police instructed store staff to call if the vehicle showed up again. 

When store employees saw the same vehicle outside the store on Monday, they called the Whitefish Bay Police Department as they had been instructed to do the previous Friday. As the recorded dispatch call confirms, the employee identifies the presence of the vehicle as the reason for the call, and can’t provide the dispatcher a physical description of the people from the car without the assistance of another employee, because she did not see them.

Click here to listen to the 9-1-1 audio.

Watch "Our Issues" interview with Tom Dixon and Ralph Hollmon, President & CEO of the Milwaukee Urban League (MUL) as they discuss plans on how to move forward from this experience.