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Teen burglars caught passed out in car at crime scene

SACRAMENTO, CA (Reuters) - Note to burglars -- don't fall asleep outside the place you just burglarized with your vehicle full of the loot. A pair of 17-year-olds in the Central California community of Winton were arrested and released to the cus...

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A pair of 17-year-olds in the Central California community of Winton were arrested and released to the custody of their parents on Friday after passing out in a haze of marijuana smoke outside of a construction site, their blue SUV packed with copper wires and other items from the property, police said. BrainerdDispatch.com Illustration

SACRAMENTO, CA (Reuters) - Note to burglars -- don't fall asleep outside the place you just burglarized with your vehicle full of the loot.

A pair of 17-year-olds in the Central California community of Winton were arrested and released to the custody of their parents on Friday after passing out in a haze of marijuana smoke outside of a construction site, their blue SUV packed with copper wires and other items from the property, police said.

The youths also had a loaded gun, which investigators determined had been stolen in March of this year, said Jason Goins, Undersheriff for the Merced County Sheriff's Department.

They were spotted in their car by a sheriff's deputy shortly after midnight on Friday, Goins said.

"There was a strong odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle," Goins said. "They were passed out and he had to wake them up."

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The youths, whom Goins said were gang members, were arrested on suspicion of participating in a criminal street gang, possessing stolen property and having a loaded firearm in the vehicle.

"We've run across it before - people who are intoxicated or high on drugs passed out at the scene," Goins said. "It's not common but it does happen."

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