Skip to comments.Hoffa Mystery Solved with help of Local Cop
Posted on 07/10/2007 8:49:43 PM PDT by johnnysokko
Hot on the Hoffa trail
Taylor cop thinks he has the answer to 1975 vanishing of union leader
July 1, 2007
BY JOEL THURTELL
FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER
Jimmy Hoffa's last car ride took less than two minutes.
On July 30, 1975, he rode one long block south from a two-story house at 17841 Beaverland in Detroit's tough Brightmoor neighborhood and turned right -- west -- on Grand River Ave.
He passed the greens of William Rogell Golf Course and a scenic footbridge, crossed the woodsy Rouge River, cruised past the brown brick Redford Granite Co. building and the Mt. Vernon Motel, made a U-turn and rode east a few yards on Grand River. He came to a brief stop in front of an iron service gate to Grand Lawn Cemetery.
The gates were opened, and Hoffa entered the cemetery. But the once powerful International Brotherhood of Teamsters leader did not enjoy any of these sights. He was dead, having received two bullets in the head from his trusted old pal Frank Sheeran back in the Beaverland house.
Now, whether Hoffa really met his end this way is uncertain. Sheeran, the only person who claims it went down like this, died four years ago of cancer.
But the scenario makes perfect sense to Jeff Hansen, a Taylor cop who grew up in the Brightmoor area and later worked the same streets as a Detroit police officer.
Hansen -- author of the Detroit-based fictional crime book "Warpath" (Spectre Publishing, 2004) -- has added a coda to Sheeran's claim that he killed Hoffa in the Beaverland house at the command of mobsters. Hansen claims to have solved the mystery of what happened to Hoffa's body. Rumors that Hoffa was buried under the New York Giants football stadium in New Jersey or under a Milford horse farm or maybe burned at a mob-controlled incinerator are baloney, Hansen says.
Hansen thinks Hoffa was cremated minutes after Sheeran dropped the murder pistol in the vestibule of the Beaverland house, either at Evergreen Cemetery at 7 Mile and Woodward, or more likely at Grand Lawn Cemetery at Telegraph and Grand River. His alleged proof: a pair of cremation ovens "a minute away from the Beaverland house" in the mausoleum at Grand Lawn, built two years before Hoffa vanished.
My drive from the Beaverland house to that gate lasted one minute, 37 seconds. I was not going fast. A minute from Beaverland to Grand Lawn? Possible. That doesn't make Hansen's hypothesis correct. He bristled when I called it "conjecture," but that's what it is. Fascinating conjecture, though.
Sheeran's story received wide publicity three years ago thanks to "I Heard You Paint Houses," a book by former Delaware chief deputy attorney general Charles Brandt. Brandt recorded long statements by Sheeran about his life as a Mafia hit man. Sheeran claimed he killed Hoffa at the command of Mafia boss Russell Bufalino. "Painting houses" referred to the blood left after people are shot. Sheeran also claimed to do "carpentry," meaning he disposed of bodies.
According to Sheeran, Hoffa had more than one enemy's house "painted." Lured to the Beaverland house by Sheeran, Hoffa had his own house "painted" when Sheeran fired two shots into his brain.
In 2003, Brandt videotaped Sheeran's deathbed confession to having murdered Hoffa on July 30, 1975.
A TV report on Sheeran's confession to Brandt started Hansen thinking about Brightmoor.
He'd worked as a cop in the old 8th Precinct, patrolling the streets around Beaverland and Grand Lawn Cemetery near Grand River and Telegraph. He wondered what Hoffa might have been thinking as the car came down Telegraph toward Grand Lawn Cemetery before he was shot. Hansen read Brandt's book. It was the first time someone had actually confessed to killing Hoffa.
Sheeran described the area around the Beaverland house accurately, noting the Rogell golf course and precisely locating the house where he said he killed Hoffa. But the book was missing a piece of the puzzle. How did the mob get rid of Hoffa's body?
The Hoffa file
Hoffa was a high-profile figure. He'd spent time in prison for jury-tampering. The Justice Department had restricted his union activities, even though he'd paid President Richard Nixon and his attorney general, John Mitchell, half a million dollars for a pardon. In 1975, he was threatening to reveal the mob's entanglement with Teamsters pension funds -- even though he himself turned the Central States Pension Fund into the Mafia's private piggy bank. Organized crime wanted to shut him up, wrote Brandt.
While the FBI was busy in May 2006 digging up a Milford horse farm, Hansen was thinking about Grand Lawn -- he had even called the Detroit FBI office and reported his theory.
He visited the cemetery and saw two crematory ovens in a mausoleum building. "It's like being struck by lightning," he said. "This cemetery was chosen because it's near the house."
Hansen said that Rod Milne, who managed the cemetery in 1975, told him, "We were doing cremations left and right" in 1975. Later, Hansen said, Milne recanted.
Milne's wife, Carol, said she doubts Hansen's theory, but admitted it might have happened. She wasn't sure if cremations were done at Grand Lawn in 1975. Hansen said he found a Grand Lawn interment log that records two cremations the day Hoffa went missing. Carol Milne said that often crematory workers didn't look at the bodies before they incinerated them. A burial transit permit could have been faked by a Mafia-friendly funeral parlor, Hansen thinks.
No need to take Hoffa to Giants Stadium or a horse farm at Milford.
Not a federal case?
So why is it important where Hoffa was killed and where his body went?
Charles Brandt explained that the FBI has spent many years and lots of money in the hunt for Hoffa, assuming that he was kidnapped (a federal crime) from the Machus Red Fox Restaurant in Bloomfield Township, murdered and his remains shipped somewhere out of state (another federal offense).
In all those years, the FBI has refused to release a complete, uncensored copy of the voluminous Hoffa file.
"Once they accept what Frank Sheeran said, the FBI completely loses jurisdiction of the case," Brandt said. "They would have no reason to hold onto the file. It's not a kidnapping. The murder occurred in the city of Detroit. Nobody crossed a state line. It's actually a Detroit homicide."
Contact JOEL THURTELL at 248-351-3296 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copyright © 2007 Detroit Free Press Inc.
Well, now that that’s solved maybe next he can finally put that JFK assassination to rest.
>>”Once they accept what Frank Sheeran said, the FBI completely loses jurisdiction of the case,” Brandt said. “They would have no reason to hold onto the file. It’s not a kidnapping. The murder occurred in the city of Detroit. Nobody crossed a state line. It’s actually a Detroit homicide.”<<
This part made me files this as unlikely conspiracy theory - a homicide as part of union corruption/ organized crime/ RICO etc would absolutely be FBI business.
If Tony Soprano killed somebody does this guy really think the FBI would have to stay out of it and publish all the details they know just because the body didn’t cross state lines?
He's not real. He's a tv character.
And, RICO didn't exist back then.
Jimmy Hoffa isn’t dead; he purchased the downed space craft from Roswell and is now managing the Union of Interstellar Trucking and Long Distance Hauling. I have it on good authority that his office is on Alpha Centauri 4, and I’ll be revealing all in my upcoming book - soon to be avaliable at $24.95 at all retail booksellers.
This is not to you personally but in general...before you accept that Frank Sheehan was the killer you might want to check out...Richard Klukinski aka The Iceman...a mafia hitman with at least 200 murders attributed to him. In the book...Iceman Confessions of a Mafia Hitman...he explains what happened to Jimmy Hoffa...how he killed him...makes more sense and more probable than Franks account...all The Iceman’s accounts have been verified or most of them based on information only he wouldknow...he even explains what happened to the body...check out the HBO special on him as well...I think he’s more credible than Frank...
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