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Deputies nab Turlock suspect in Delhi home invasion
Jaime Alejandro Blancas

A Turlock man has been arrested for a Delhi home invasion that law enforcement believes was connected to the drug trade.

The Merced County Sheriff’s Department suspects the Delhi home near Palm Street and Cassidy Court was targeted by a group of robbers because they had two pounds of marijuana in the home, said sheriff spokesman Deputy Delray Shelton.

Deputies were dispatched to the home around 10 p.m. Monday after a caller reported seeing three Hispanic men enter the home after donning ski masks and arming themselves with guns, Shelton said.

Inside the home was a family of two adults and three children, Shelton said.

As the first deputy approached the home a shotgun was fired toward the rear of the house and the three suspects fled out a back door. It’s unknown if the suspects were firing at someone in the house or if it was a warning shot. No injuries were reported.

Deputies were able to stop a vehicle parked across the street from the home from leaving and detain the driver.

The driver, identified as Jaime Alejandro Blancas, 27, of Turlock was questioned and later booked into the Merced County Jail on suspicion of first-degree robbery, conspiracy, and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

A .40-caliber gun was found hidden under the dashboard of the vehicle, Shelton said.

Blancas had a receipt on him for a recent purchase of tactical gear, Shelton said.