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Passing cars pick up some pot bales tossed from fleeing SUV

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CASA GRANDE, Ariz. >> An Arizona sheriff’s department says some of the marijuana bales that suspects tossed out of an SUV during a high-speed chase last week got picked up by passing vehicles.

Dash-cam video released by the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office shows many of the 21 bales of pot inside the SUV flying out a window and onto roadways during the March 4 chase. Several of the bales broke apart as they bounced on the pavement.

Sheriff’s Office spokesman Jim Knupp said Tuesday that 17 bales totaling 374 pounds of marijuana were recovered, and four or five vehicles were seen stopping to pick up the rest.

The chase spanned Interstates 8 and 10 near Casa Grande in south-central Arizona and several local roads. It ended when the SUV pulled off a two-lane road and stopped after driving over tire-puncturing sticks.

Two men were arrested on suspicion of marijuana trafficking offenses and fleeing police.

The Sheriff’s Office said the pursuit resulted from information gathered as a result of another chase in which a pickup truck was stopped earlier the same day. That stop led to the detention of nine people who were turned over to the U.S. Border Patrol, the office said.

Citing the need to keep investigative procedures secret, Knupp declined to how the information from the first chase led to the second.

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