Two men were cited and released after attempting to allegedly steal catalytic converters in Merced.

Incident happened June 19, 2020.

Merced PD received a call of two subjects in the AT&T yard located on Wardrobe Ave. Officers surrounded the yard, and saw the suspects running into the school located next door. A search of the school was conducted and both suspects were located hiding in bushes on the school yard.

Even though both suspects were seen on video cutting catalytic converters from vehicles, and officers saw them running from the scene, they told the officers they were sleeping. The suspects claimed that they had stopped to sleep because it looked like a nice area and had fallen asleep in the bushes.

It was found that they had removed 9 converters from vehicles in the yard. Dennis Toney, 38, and Sean Pelton, 48, were both arrested. Pelton is known to AT&T employees. He has stolen catalytic converters from several AT&T locations in multiple cities, according to police.