Cops: 3 teens 
heisted guns, 
ammo in Fruita

Mesa County sheriff’s deputies and Fruita police officers inspect a stolen truck at H and 24 Roads on Tuesday, where three young people were taken into custody. The police found guns in the truck and were investigating a robbery of the guns froma Fruita home.

A trio of teenagers burglarized a Fruita home Tuesday and stole firearms, ammunition and other items before fleeing in a pickup truck, the Fruita Police Department said.

“We don’t believe they were going to use them against anyone,” Fruita Police Chief Mark Angelo said of the arsenal allegedly stolen during the incident.

Angelo said he couldn’t immediately comment on what led his detectives to reach that conclusion because of ongoing investigation.

Officers were called around 10 a.m. Tuesday on a report of a burglary at 1189 Woodland Court, while the person who had called 911 provided officers the license plate number of a white Ford pickup that left the area, a news release said.

The reporting party also identified one of the suspects.

Mesa County sheriff’s deputies stopped the truck in the area of 24 and H roads.

Suspected stolen property from the Woodland Court home included a .22 caliber rifle, a .410 caliber shotgun, various boxes of ammunition and two laptop computers, police said. Three people inside the truck—a 17-year-old boy, a 14-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl—were detained and interviewed.

While the girl was released to her mother, the boys were jailed Tuesday night at Grand Mesa Youth Services Center on no-bond warrants including failure to comply and failure to appear.

Charges specific to the burglary haven’t been determined, Angelo said.

The chief said he couldn’t answer other questions because of the active investigation.

Emergency police radios indicated one of the boys involved was scheduled to appear for sentencing in an unrelated criminal case on Tuesday morning at the Mesa County Justice Center.

Staff and students at Appleton Elementary School, 2358 H Road, were told to “shelter-in-place,” a safety precaution ordered around 10:35 a.m. Tuesday, according to District 51 spokeswoman Christy McGee.

The white pickup the trio were using belonged to the father of one of the boys, Angelo said.

A hand-written message scrawled in apparent black magic marker on the truck’s tailgate, “Goodbye, America,” predated Tuesday’s incident and was believed to be unrelated to the case, the chief said.


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