UPDATE: 2 vans stolen from Atascadero school district found abandoned at church

Two Atascadero school district vans stolen early Friday in a break-in at a district building were recovered later that night thanks to a tip from the public.

At 5:35 a.m. Friday, police responded to a burglary at the Atascadero Unified School District transportation center in the 5300 block of Portrero Road, according to an Atascadero Police Department news release.

District staff members arrived in the morning to find someone had forced entry into one of the buildings and stolen school vehicles.

One vehicle was described as a white 2015 Ford F550 box van with district decals on the driver and passenger doors.

The other vehicle was described as a white 2003 Ford E350 passenger van with district decals on the driver and passenger doors.

A few hours after the department shared news of the crime, police received a call from the distrcit saying someone had contacted the principal at San Gabriel Elementary School with information on the theft.

Officers responded to the area and found the vans abandoned at Hope Lutheran Church near the school.

Police are still investigating the theft. Anyone with information should call the Atascadero Police Department at 805-461-5051.

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Lindsey Holden writes about housing, North County communities and everything in between for The Tribune in San Luis Obispo. She became a staff writer in 2016 after working for the Rockford Register Star in Illinois. Lindsey is a native Californian raised in the Midwest and earned degrees from DePaul and Northwestern universities.