Four youths, ages 11 to 13, charged in Lexington burglaries, ice cream truck theft

Lexington police say they have arrested four juveniles, ages 11 to 13, who allegedly committed a series of burglaries and an ice cream truck theft in the Masterson Station-McConnell's Trace area.

Each was charged Monday with one count of second-degree robbery, two counts of first-degree burglary and two counts of second-degree burglary, police said Tuesday.

Police spokeswoman Sherelle Roberts said officers recovered a variety of missing items, including seven guns, three laptop computers and two computer gaming systems during their investigation. Additional charges are possible, Roberts said.

"The investigation is ongoing, but we can at least say that we believe these four individuals are responsible for these particular cases that happened in that area," she said. "We're continuing to look into the possibility of other situations."

The four youngsters were released to the custody of their parents Monday after being questioned at police headquarters, Roberts said. The four did not meet criteria for juvenile detention, she said.

Three of the juveniles were detained by a home owner Monday after they allegedly tried to enter his house on Trailwood Lane, Roberts said. The fourth was taken into custody later at police headquarters.

The case quickly expanded after officers determined that the first three juveniles matched descriptions from another theft Monday in which four youngsters stole a box of popsicles from an ice cream truck on Trailwood Lane, Roberts said.

The truck's owner told police that the juveniles ran after he found them inside his truck, and one of them shot in the owner's direction with a BB gun.

The investigation determined that the four were responsible for the burglary Monday on Trailwood Lane, the ice cream truck theft, and three earlier burglaries on White Oak Trace, Trailwood and McConnell's Trace, Roberts said.

The various cases date to early this summer, according to Roberts.

She declined to say whether the four youngsters are related or attend the same school.

Roberts said it isn't unusual to find a number of young juveniles involved in series of offenses.

"Unfortunately, ... we see young people of a variety of ages engaged in crimes," she said. "It is unfortunate that they are so young and engaged in this type of activity."