MERCED, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A man was arrested after he accidentally pepper sprayed himself while trying to steal thousands of dollars worth of jewelry from a store, according to the Merced Police Department.

Around 3:30 p.m. on Friday, officers were called out to a JC Penny store on Olive Avenue for a report of a robbery.

When officers arrived, they found the suspect, later identified as 39-year-old Stephan Stanley, being held to the ground by two men who had witnessed the robbery.

After speaking with the witnesses, officers say they learned that Stanley had used a hammer to break out a glass display case before grabbing several pieces of jewelry out of it.

After stealing the jewelry, officials say Stanley was confronted by two men who tried to grab a hold of him and stop him from leaving the store.

Officers say Stanley began to fight back against the two men, hitting one of them with the hammer.

During the fight, officers say Stanley tried to pepper spray the two men, but he accidentally sprayed it into his own eyes.

The two men were able to hold Stanley down until officers could arrive and place him under arrest.

Officials say nobody was seriously injured during the fight.

Stanley was arrested for robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, drug charges, and other offenses.

Anyone with any information about this robbery is asked to call Officer Jesus Lopez at 209-388-7782.