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Strangled

October 1, 2007 | 12:41 pm

 

1957_0930_shayne

Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 1957
Los Angeles

1957_0930_shayne_mug It's almost 3 a.m. and we're parked on 134th Street between Water Way and Central Avenue in Compton. In two years, there will be houses all along the north side of the street. It's hard to make out in the dark, but that's a big, orange Cadillac in front of us. Our victim is in there. Ready? Let's take a look. Keep your hands in your pockets and don't move anything.

That's him behind the wheel. Max "The Money Man" Shayne, 43. He's heavyset, bald and wears glasses. Strangled with a man's linen handkerchief, otherwise there's not a mark on him.

There's the cutoff end of a woman's silk stocking near the body. Pockets are turned inside-out and papers, business cards and an address book are on the floor of the car. He usually carries a stack of $100 bills, but his wallet is missing. He's got 20 cents on him. According to these business papers, he has a piece of two Anaheim cafes and carries $175,000 in life insurance.

Kind of a shady customer. Shayne was arrested in Berwyn, Ill., in 1937 for receiving stolen property and sentenced to a year in prison. He and his brother Irving are out on bail while they appeal a conviction for defrauding the Federal Housing Administration. Prosecutors said the Shaynes used the Money Man agency to arrange home improvement loans that were used to pay off bills instead.

His widow, Molly, says she wasn't aware of any threats and said he hadn't been worried about anything recently. Got a son named Sherwin and a daughter named Sheila.

We better get moving. Officers A.E. Wise and R.L. Brown of the Compton Police Department are making their rounds and they'll be here soon. Nothing more to see here, anyway.

To be continued.

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