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Man gets 7 years for stealing construction equipment, church van

A 36-year-old Chicago man has been sentenced to seven years in prison for stealing construction vehicles in west suburban Aurora and selling a church van that wasn’t his.

In October 2011, Daniel R. Flowers rented a Ford A-64 wheel loader and a Bobcat Skid-Steer from an Aurora business, but never made any payments and never returned the vehicles,¬†according to the Kane County state’s attorney’s office. The Ford was later found at a towing yard; the Bobcat was never found.¬†

Flowers pleaded guilty in April this year to possession of a second division vehicle and possession of a stolen vehicle for taking the construction equipment, prosecutors said.

While he was awaiting sentencing in June, Flowers met a woman at a church in Aurora who asked about buying a van in the church parking lot. It belonged to the church pastor, but he gave it to her for $400, prosecutors said.

Flowers, of the 1400 block of North Long, pleaded guilty to a felony count of theft in August for that transaction.

Citing previous theft and battery convictions in Flowers’ criminal history, a judge sentenced him Friday to four years for the charges related to construction equipment and three years for the van theft. He also must pay $33,800 in restitution for the equipment and $1,100 for the van.