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Alabama man charged in theft of 70-tonne crane

CHILTON, ALABAMA (AP) – An Alabama man who called a wrecker service asking to have a 70-tonne crane pulled out of the woods is now charged with stealing the heavy machinery, sheriff’s officials said.

The owner of a towing service contacted the Chilton County Sheriff’s Office last Monday, saying the man had called claiming someone gave him the crane, and he wanted it removed so he could sell it for scrap, the agency said in a statement.

The wrecker service owner recalled moving the same crane a few years before and contacted its owner, who denied having given it away. The towing operator then called law enforcement. The man who wanted the crane moved fled before officers arrived, driving the rig into a ditch where it became stuck. The 26-year-old Clanton man was arrested last Tuesday on a probation violation and first-degree theft charges.