Jewelry swiped from Romney’s house |

Jewelry swiped from Romney’s house

by Jay Hamburger OF THE RECORD STAFF

Somebody stole between 15 and 20 pieces of jewelry from Mitt Romney’s Park City mansion, the Police Department said, describing that the person who took the jewelry appears to have had access to the house.

Rick Ryan, a Police Department captain, said the jewelry belongs to Romney’s wife, Ann Romney. The police did not immediately have an inventory of what was taken or the jewelry’s estimated value.

Ryan, though, said, the jewelry has a "high value."

The Romney house is on the 3800 block of Rising Star Lane, on the eastern edge of Park City. He has been a frequent visitor to Park City for years and used the house often while he led the Salt Lake Olympics.

According to Ryan, there was not evidence that somebody broke into the house. He said workers had been in the house sometime between Jan. 5 and Feb. 16 to work on a shower. The shower was in a bathroom next door to the walk-in closet where the jewelry was taken, Ryan said. The jewelry was in a box on a shelf in the closet, he said.

Ann Romney on Feb. 16 went to get the jewelry and discovered it was missing, Ryan said. The police received the report at 7:30 p.m. that day.

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"Certainly we want to talk to the people there doing the work," Ryan said.

The captain said the Police Department does not have a suspect.

Police investigators have asked Ann Romney’s jewelry consultant for a list of pieces that might have been taken and their value, but the inventory had not been provided to the police by midday Tuesday.

A spokesman for Romney did not immediately return a phone message seeking comment.

Romney is among a cadre of famous people who own vacation homes in the Park City area, and his presence has been especially notable in the last decade. Many people recall chance meetings with Romney around Park City while he helmed the Salt Lake Organizing Committee.

A Republican, he proved politically popular locally in a community that typically tends toward the Democratic Party. He served as the governor of Massachusetts after leading the Olympics. He unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for president in 2008, losing to John McCain. He was widely regarded as a top contender to be McCain’s running mate, but the slot went to Sarah Palin, the governor of Alaska.

The property-tax status of the house briefly distracted Romney in the early days of his gubernatorial campaign in Massachusetts.

A worker in the Summit County Assessor’s Office at the time switched the status of the house from a nonprimary residence to a primary one without Romney asking for the change. doing so, Romney received a break on the property taxes. The status was changed and Romney paid the taxes that were owed.

President Bush, meanwhile, held a Republican fund-raiser at Romney’s house in mid-2008.

Romney made his fortune as a venture capitalist before entering politics.

The Summit County Assessor’s Office values the house and property at a little more than $5.2 million.