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PROVIDENCE, .I. (AP) — A Rhode Island police chief accused of stealing $714 from a stripper's pocketbook following a chase has been sentenced to serve six months in prison.

Former North Providence police Col. John Whiting was sentenced Friday to five years in prison, but 4 ½ years were suspended. The judge stayed the sentence while Whiting appeals.

Whiting was convicted in July of larceny over $500 and solicitation to receive stolen goods for taking the money in August 2011. Prosecutors say he rifled through the woman's car and purse after she fled as the remnants of Hurricane Irene hit the region.

Prosecutors say he gave another officer the money, telling him to spend it in Las Vegas. Whiting says he seized the money as evidence.

The police department says Whiting has been suspended.

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