The Mob Hit
This is based on a true story. Names and locations used have been changed.
Frank Schmidt, one of my customers, was in for service on his Audi and we were standing next to the service desk just talking in general. “Yeah my son, John, has got one hell of a business. He has trucks running day and night all over the United States.”
Frank was very proud of his son and loved to talk about him and all of the success stories that he had achieved over the years. His son owned the best cars and all three of them were high-lined Audi’s. He had the biggest and best home in Barrington Hills, Illinois and all of the things that the average well to do person would ever want or need. It was hard not to be jealous of such a successful person, but I really wasn’t. I was on the other hand, getting tired of hearing the same stories over and over again. I was proud of my two sons also, but I have always kept that part of my life private.
Frank drove a diesel and had gotten his son interested in the car a few years ago. “After all, (Frank had said to his son) if you want the best then get an Audi.” That much Frank and I were in agreement on.
We finished the service on Frank’s Audi in short order. It had been washed and delivered to the service desk where we were standing and talking. Well, Frank was talking. I was listening.
Frank drove out of the service department exit door and as usual he sounded his horn and waved as he turned the corner heading back towards the Barrington Hills area. He was going to stop and visit with his grandchildren for a couple of hours, before going home. Don’t get me wrong, Frank was a good customer and would purchase a new car every year or so. But, he could lighten up on talking so much about his son. It was somewhat irritating to say the least.
The next morning one of my partners from the Sheriff’s Department stopped by for a quick cup of coffee. We were talking about his Mercedes-Benz and the rattle that he had in behind the dash. I had explained how much work it would take to get rid of the rattle. “George it will take us at least two and a half days to take it all apart, repair the rattle, and then put everything back in the proper places.” He was trying to make up his mind if he really wanted to have it all taken apart like that just for a rattle. I knew if he were paying for it out of his pocket, he would not have it done. His car was still under warranty and the factory would pay all expenses, including a free loaner car. “Well let me think about it a little longer. Okay?”
George’s police radio that was stuck in his belt pouch started to make a crackling sound as he received a message. “Unit 185, 190, 192, and 200. Respond to a possible vehicle explosion at the on ramp, number 62, leading onto the I 90.”
“Unit 185 is 10-4 and in route headquarters.” George answered the call and had turned and started to run towards his cruiser. “Sorry Fullington, I gotta go sounds like a real bad one.” He was backing out of the service entrance and had turned on his lights and siren as soon as he placed his car into reverse gear.
Little did I know that Frank Schmidt would not be talking about his son, John anymore after that call was dispatched.
When George, the deputy, arrived on the scene, he saw what was left of a new Audi sitting on the side of the on ramp at I 80. The car was still in flames and the roof and front seat had been blown off of the frame and was sitting in the grass approximately forty yards away. John Schmidt had been behind the wheel of one of his new vehicles and was on his way to work. As he passed an abandoned vehicle that had been parked off to the side of the on ramp, a radio controlled device sent a signal from the dash from inside the abandoned car. The device, similar to a radio controlled garage door opener had been taped to the dash and set for the frequency of the car bomb that was located inside John’s Audi, just underneath the left front driver’s seat. It is believed that an additional device was trigged by an unknown person that had been seen speeding away from the scene on a frontage road behind the direction that John had just exited off of.
Witnesses at the scene stated that they observed a red Buick speeding away moments before the explosion. One of the witnesses was sure that he saw New Jersey license plates on the red Buick.
John’s body had been torn to shreds when the bomb detonated. When the driver that was directly behind John, witnessed his body going through the roof of the Audi and seeing the human body parts breaking away, he went into shock and struck the rear of John’s vehicle. That driver will never be the same again.
Mrs. John Schmidt had just taken her eight-year old daughter to school and returned home ten minutes prior to the explosion. She was driving John’s car when she took her daughter to school. John had waited for her to return, as he felt more comfortable driving his own automobile.
The abandoned vehicle that had been left on the side of the on-ramp had been stolen from New Jersey three days prior to the explosion. The vehicle had not been there more than an hour. The engine and exhaust system were still hot to the touch.
After a long and involved investigation into John’s death and his trucking business, it was found that he had strong ties with the Mob. He owed a ton of money and was having trouble paying the debt.
This case is still open.
© James Samdavid1 Fullington
February 13, 2002
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