The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office has stated that on Sunday afternoon, a man from Santa Maria was arrested when deputies caught him with a carload of avocados pilfered from a Nipomo ranch.
Authorities said they believe the man was stealing Hass avocados and then selling them to legitimate businesses and restaurants in the area. Deputies apprehended the man after receiving a call from the manager of Suey Ranch, located on Bull Canyon Road in Nipomo.
The manager noticed over the last few weeks that his fence had been repeatedly cut near the property’s entrance gate, the Sheriff’s Office said. He suspected that someone was stealing avocados from the ranch and set up game cameras.
When deputies arrived, they found the suspected thief driving near the entrance gate. He turned and fled onto the ranch when he saw the patrol units, officials said. Medrano’s vehicle was discovered unoccupied, and authorities said they found him hiding in thick brush.
In the vehicle, deputies found wire cutters and about 730 Hass avocados worth about $620, constituting a felony offense.