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Md. Man Gets 18 Months In Neighbor's Tractor Theft

ROCKVILLE, Md. (AP) -- A Montgomery County man will spend the next 18 months in jail after being caught riding his neighbor's stolen $10,000 tractor.

The tractor, used for mowing grass, plowing snow and moving mulch, went missing from its owners' shed in Ashton in July 2012.

The Washington Post reports that Montgomery County detectives hadn't made much progress when the homeowners spotted the tractor in May 2013. It was being used by their neighbor, 44-year-old Michael Murphy.

Police say Murphy had filed off the tractor's serial and engine numbers, and had paperwork for a similar tractor he bought in 2006. But detectives later matched Murphy's tractor with the stolen one using a transmission serial number.

Murphy was convicted of theft this summer and was sentenced to 18 months in jail Friday.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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