Man visiting Bay Area to sell vintage Rolex is robbed 

click to enlarge A Washington state man who flew to the Bay Area in order to sell a valuable Daytona Rolex watch made in 1978 was assaulted and robbed in Bernal Heights. (The watch pictured is a Daytona but not the stainless steel version stolen Tuesday). - GETTY IMAGES FILE PHOTO
  • Getty Images file photo
  • A Washington state man who flew to the Bay Area in order to sell a valuable Daytona Rolex watch made in 1978 was assaulted and robbed in Bernal Heights. (The watch pictured is a Daytona but not the stainless steel version stolen Tuesday).

A Washington state man who flew to the Bay Area to sell a high-end watch was assaulted and robbed Tuesday night inside a vehicle near the Alemany Farmers' Market site in Bernal Heights, police said.

The 67-year-old victim lost two watches and his wallet, cellphone and laptop during the assault, which was reported about 7 p.m. The watch he had intended to sell was a vintage Daytona Rolex made in 1978 that is worth "quite a bit," Officer Tracy Turner said.

Similar watches were priced at tens of thousands of dollars on eBay.

The victim reportedly flew into Oakland International Airport on Tuesday to meet a potential buyer he had met online, Turner said. As part of the deal, the suspect told the victim he wanted to have the watch appraised by a local jeweler. He reportedly agreed to reimburse the victim for his travel costs.

The victim was picked up from the airport by a man in a silver SUV and driven near to where the farmer's market is held at 100 Alemany Blvd. The market operates only on Saturdays.

Once there, two more men reportedly entered the car and began punching the victim.

The thugs reportedly drove around in the SUV for a few minutes before robbing the man and tossing him out of the vehicle.

They fled and have not been found, Turner said. The victim reportedly declined medical attention.

Police are now searching for the silver Daytona Rolex, which has a white face with three smaller black dials.

Rolf Klotz, owner of Klotz Watches & Clocks at 2166 Market St., said such a watch is worth between $30,000 and $40,000, and that the 18-karat gold versions can fetch $50,000 to 60,000.

"Anyone into Rolexes wants a Daytona," Klotz said. "It’s the history [behind the brand], and there's a limited production."

Klotz said reports of thievery involving the coveted watches are "nothing new."

The victim could only provide vague descriptions of the suspects to officers, Turner said.

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