Judge Gives Permission for Officials to Begin Clearing Homeless Out of Santa Ana Riverbed

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A crowd of homeless people, wearing hoodies and woolen hats in the morning cold, lined up along the Santa Ana River trail early Tuesday to collect motel vouchers before having to leave Orange County's largest homeless camp.

As they inched forward to an area manned by county officials, workers tried to answer questions and took notes to steer people like Michael Parenteau, 67, who has lived on the streets for 15 years, to services including housing, healthcare and transportation.

"I'm ready. This is my one chance if I want to get my life in order and get back on my feet," Parenteau said.

The retired carpenter clutched a rope as he led his terrier mix, Frankie, to join the waiting throng.

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