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French Teens Break Into Police Barracks While Playing Pokémon Go

They were quickly caught.

Picture this: you’re in southern France, in hot pursuit of a rare Pokémon, maybe a Snorlax. You know it’s close, but just as you’re about to get in range, an impossibly high wall stretches up before you. It’s a police barracks. Real life has impinged.

There are two options here: you walk home, consoling yourself by racking up Pidgeys on your way back. Or you climb the wall and GET THAT SNORLAX.

Recently, two French teens did just that, the Local reports, scaling the wall of a former Gendarmerie in Saint-Hilaire, phones waving.

Police didn’t need a Pokéball to catch the pair. They were arrested, but quickly released: “Police decided it was a one-off incident,” the Local reports.

France got Pokémon Go on Sunday, and the country has since been swept up in the same catch-em-all fever other countries have been experiencing for weeks. People are crashing cars, sprinting through public parks, and invoking the wrath of politicians, some of whom fear the game encourages self-absorption and a lack of curiosity. (They are also provoking the wrath of Rihanna, who recently warned concertgoers “I don’t want to see any Pokémon up in this bitch.”)

Law enforcement, though, mostly just seems worried. “Don’t lose track of reality!” tweeted one police prefecture. Parisian firefighters offered their take: “Catch them, but not at the cost of your life!”

Every day, we track down a fleeting wonder—something amazing that’s only happening right now. Have a tip for us? Tell us about it! Send your temporary miracles tocara@atlasobscura.com.