This study is 43 minutes long. It covers America’s best thief, Bill Mason. His trademarks were patience and planning. These are the trademarks of anyone who acts without permission.
“Coward” – when used by an LEO, means someone impossible to catch and track
unsup – unknown suspect
ME – Medical Examiner
vic – victim
POI – person of interest
“Make a square” – take 2 right turns
CI – confidential informant
1) In the game too long
2) Went back to Cleveland, his home, when on the run
3) Took same old job in Cleveland, while on the run
4) He took the cops’ deal and confessed to many crimes
5) The keeping of trophies
6) He tried “cowboying” his last job, with no preparation
7) Not listening to his instincts
The thief used mountain climbing equipment to scale high buildings. He specialized in robbing from the rich and famous. His name was Bill Mason.
After high school, he took a job as an apartment manager. There, he learned about keys, locks, and alarm systems.
All thieves need a fence in order to convert the stuff into cash. He used “47th Street” and said they’d take any stones he had. He would unset the stones to make it harder to ID them.
The key to his success, in his opinion, was in his preparation. He would qualify his marks. He would case the building and the alarm system, using different angles.
He used to weld a fish hook to a rated fish line. Typically, terrace doors leading to outside would be unlocked.
Speed or stealth? A decision or trade one sometimes had to make.
Robbery squads began to get annoyed. They formed a task force, the usual. He was put under surveillance. He was arrested. He didn’t say anything, no outrage. They search his home and found alot of jewelry.
The police offered him immunity on any burglaries he’d committed, provided he confess on one day. He got 77 days in jail for possessing burglary tools. He couldn’t do a parole so he went on the run. After a time, he went back to Cleveland.
The authorities began to notice a string of high line burglaries. A CI dropped a dime that Bill Mason was in town. The police began following him. When they had enough evidence, they arrested him and obtained a search warrant. They found alot of jeweley and equipment in his home. He was sentenced to another 3 years in prison.
In the end, he lost his nerve. He couldn’t do the time anymore. This seems to happen to many criminals around 50 or so. Mafia types seem to last longer.
David Damore – Assistant State Attorney
Joe Gerwens – Fort Lauderdale Police Chief