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New London, Minn., teen gets probation for stealing church chalice, garage burglary

WILLMAR -- Darien Cole Frank, 19, of New London, was sentenced Monday to 20 years of probation and 365 days in jail on a first-degree burglary charge for burglarizing a garage in Willmar in June and on gross misdemeanor and misdemeanor receiving stolen property charges for possessing a gold-plated chalice stolen in April from Our Lady of the Lakes Catholic Church in Spicer.

As part of his sentence handed down by District Judge Michael J. Thompson in Kandiyohi County District Court, Frank was given credit for 109 days already served in jail. The remaining 256 days of jail time was stayed.

Frank was also ordered to pay a total of $3,300 in fines, with $2,750 stayed for two years, plus pay $1,951.72 in restitution, write apology letters to the church and the homeowner, keep a job and follow the recommendations of a chemical use assessment.

The stolen property complaint was filed April 18, after church employees reported the chalice missing. A Kandiyohi County sheriff's detective recalled seeing a religious-like cup in a vehicle while executing a search warrant for another case.

Photos were taken of the cup, which was still in the vehicle impounded in the county's evidence garage. The church staff members positively identified the cup as the missing chalice.

Sheriff's deputies were granted a new search warrant and recovered the chalice, which was valued at $1,150. Frank told investigators he got the cup from a friend so that he could have a "pimp" cup.

The burglary charge, plus a motor vehicle theft charge, was filed after June 11 when a vehicle was reported stolen from an attached garage of a home in southwest Willmar. The owners of the residence were at home when the theft happened. The car was recovered in Hibbing. Frank admitted to taking the car.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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