VALPARAISO | A 30-year-old South Haven man was sentenced Tuesday to seven years behind bars after pleading guilty to a church burglary and auto theft.
Robert Penrose was sentenced by Porter Circuit Court Judge Mary Harper to seven years after pleading guilty to a felony count of aiding in a burglary and three years for auto theft. The terms are to run concurrently.
Penrose burglarized the Emmanuel Baptist Church at 760 McCool Road in March 2008, police said. Doors inside the building reportedly were kicked in and cash was stolen from the school office. A safe containing the collection from the previous Sunday reportedly also was stolen from the church office.
Police said they discovered a cigarette butt on the gymnasium floor, which was collected as evidence, dusted for fingerprints and tested for DNA.
Penrose also was linked to the May 15, 2011, theft of an SUV from outside a South Haven apartment complex.