Masterminds - The Graduate   View more episodes

Aired at 02:30 PM on Thursday, Jun 10, 2010 (6/10/2010)      View all transcripts from this day

Transcript

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00:00:434 >> Narrator: James quinn was raised in a crime-ridden public housing project in youngstown, ohio.
00:01:25>> The region of youngstown, ohio, is heavily industrialized, had a lot of auto industry, and there was a heavy mob presence.
00:01:36>> Narrator: By day, quinn works at the local pizza joint.
00:01:39But by night, he and his gang, the wedgewood rats, do what they truly love.
00:01:47>> Wedgewood rats were involved in a lot of what would be considered juvenile-type crime.
00:01:53>> They were just looking for whatever they could steal -- televisions, stereos, cash they could find -- anything that they could fence.
00:02:00>> Narrator: But jimmy quinn doesn't want to be a small-time hood forever.
00:02:04>> He wanted to be part of organized crime in youngstown.
00:02:07He saw them as, you know, very prominent individuals, very wealthy, having a lot of control and a lot of power, and they wanted to be just like them.
00:02:17After they were involved in their burglaries, they would pay tribute to organized crime and would take money back to the leaders.
00:02:26>> Narrator: Seeing a tential money-maker, the mob boss assigns one of his men to train quinn.
00:02:32>> Sam fossessca was an old-time mobster.
00:02:35Quinn knew that if he was accepted by fossessca as a professional, that that would improve his chances of being accepted by the mob.
00:02:43>> Jimmy quinn learned a lot of his burglary techniques from sam fossessca.
00:02:48He was a very sophisticated burglar in that he focused his talents on the alarm system.
00:02:54>> Narrator: Fossessca quickly discovers quinn is an excellent student.
00:02:58>> Quinn was good with explosives.
00:03:00A lot of it was simply through studying with people like sam fossessca.
00:03:07>> Narrator: But just as quinn's getting ready to do his first big job, a burglary his gang pulled off earlier catches up with him.
00:03:16>> There was a grocery store that had been broken into, and the police department developed information about quinn being involved in the burglary.
00:03:24When the austintown police department executed that search warrant, they recovered a journal that would actually spell out who participated in the crime, where they participated in the crime, what were the proceeds and the items that were stolen.
00:03:39>> Narrator: Police confiscate the diary, but assume its contents are nothing more than the fantasy of a mobster wannabe.
00:03:49With authorities no longer on his tail, quinn and his gang are assigned their first high-end heist.
00:03:57>> There w a lot more valuable things they can steal doing jewelry stores.
00:04:04>> Narrator: Quinn's rats get right to work breaking in to copploe jewelry in youngstown.
00:04:10>> They would litera the safe from the wall, tip it on its back, drill a hole in the door of the safe.
00:04:17>> Narrator: He then uses his own innovative techn to safeguard his prize.
00:04:23>> He would run a hose in and would fill the safe with water.
00:04:27The water would protect the jewelry inside the safe.
00:04:31>> You then fill up one of the holes with plastic explosive, and then you attach an extension cord with the wires exposed.
00:04:39You run it along the wall until you get to a plug-in.
00:04:43You then plug it in to the wall.
00:04:45The electricity will ignite the explosive, and it'll blow the door.
00:04:51And if the door has been properly buffered, it will just pop it up, and then you can clean out whatever's in the safe.
00:04:59>> Narrator: The gang scores $400,000 in pristine jewelry.
00:05:05The rats now go on a spree, hitting hundreds of jewelry stores throughout ohio.
00:05:11>> They live for the moment.
00:05:13I think that they were thieves.
00:05:15They were thieves at heart.
00:05:16They were thieves when they were in high school.
00:05:18They were thieves when they were IN THEIR MIDDLE-20s.
00:05:21>> They got such a taste for it that the adrenaline rush was so much that they couldn't stand not to be breaking in somewhere.
00:05:29>> Narrator: Searching for his next big score, quinn heads to lexington, kentucky, to check out the jewelry collection at the headley-whitney museum.
00:05:39>> It's sort of a hidden gem here in our community.
00:05:42It's located in a rural area.
00:05:45>> He has to identify what type of alarms are in place, see where the phone lines are or whether they're loudmouth alarms.
00:05:56>> Narrator: He also learns the museum has its own private security force.
00:06:01>> He would actually go inside and just pretend to be a patron and scope out the inside.
00:06:08>> They haery unique decorative jewelry out there.
00:06:11The items they have are kind of one-of-a-kind.
00:06:13>> When you would look at a piece from the museum, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that this stuff is of significant value.
00:06:22>> Narrator: Quinn concludes that although risky, the score will be worth millions.
00:06:31When he pitches the heist to his mentor, fossessca likes what he sees.
00:06:37>> This would be a job that would probably get headlines around the country, and it would make a mark for him as a member of the mob.
00:06:48>> Narrator: With the job a go, quinn now recruits his best men.
00:06:53>> Quinn was the brains of the operation, helped dream this up, and ran the show.
00:06:59Fossessca had an intimate knowledge of how alarm systems worked.
00:07:03Napolitano was considered to be more of a worker bee kind of guy.
00:07:07He was used to carry stuff.
00:07:09Ted landers was the driver, and he was familiar with the roads and the getaway routes.
00:07:16>> Narrator: The team now heads south and prepares their gear in a lexington motel.
00:07:21>> They've used large drills, sledgehammers, bolt cutters, c-4 plastic explosives.
00:07:27As far as sophistication, they were prepared.
00:07:31They were organized.
00:07:33Definitely orgized.
00:07:34>> Narrator: After finalizing every detail, the gang is ready to strike.
00:07:41>> Landers drops them off about a quarter mile down from the museum.
00:07:48They sneak their way to the grounds.
00:07:49The place is very dark.
00:07:54>> Narrator: Fossessca quickly locates the museum's phone line and intentionally sets off the silent alarm.
00:08:01With the security company on its way, he connects a transmitter that relays a fake dial tone to the museum's phone.
00:08:10>> Sam had a tape system that he could plug in that would produce a signal that would read normal.
00:08:17>> They retreat in a wooded area adjacent to the rear of the premises.
00:08:22The group waits for the alarm company.
00:08:27The alarm company responds and does a complete drive-through, covering the front and back of the location.
00:08:34>> Narrator: When the security officer checks the museum's phone, he hears the fake dial tone and assumes the system is working.
00:08:43With the coast clear, quinn and his team now get to work.
00:08:50First, he disables the building's exterior alarms.
00:08:56Xt, he breaks in to the main building and searches for the central alarm system.
00:09:03[ Alarm blares ] >> that's when the loudmouth system went off.
00:09:08Fossessca, napolitano run.
00:09:10Quinn stays behind and literally knocks down the speaker, 'cause this thing's just blaring here in the middle of the night, in the middle of nowhere.
00:09:19>> Even when they had an opportunity to possibly get caught, quinn took the crime to the very edge just for the thrill of it, just for the adrenaline rush.
00:09:29>> Napolitano and fossessca came back.
00:09:32And at that point, napolitano is scared.
00:09:38>> Narrator: Quinn now disarms the central alarm system.
00:09:43But then the unexpected happens.
00:09:45>> The security person pulled up again.
00:09:48Of course, they scattered.
00:09:50They all ran when that happened.
00:09:53Napolitano was scared before.
00:09:55Now he's really freaking out.
00:09:57The security person did notice that entry had been made into the main building.
00:10:02He left.
00:10:06>> Narrator: Outside, the gang regroups.
00:10:09>> This is what we're doing, all right?
00:10:11>> Napolitano did not want to go back in the building, and so quinn has to badger him, calling him a chicken, to get him to come back in and help out.
00:10:25>> Narrator: But despite two close calls, quinn refuses to go home empty-handed.
00:10:30With his men finally in line, the gang targets the iron gate leading to the jewelry.
00:10:39>> It was necessary to move beyond brute force.
00:10:42They use explosives to gain entry.
00:10:45>> Three, two, one.
00:10:48Get that open.
00:10:51>> They use the pincers to literally pull the lock out of the door.
00:10:56>> Narrator: Quinn and his gang are finally in.
00:11:00[ Glass shattering ] >> they hit the big prize.
00:11:07They hit the jewel room.
00:11:10They got $1.5 million in jewels.
00:11:15>> Narrator: James quinn and his crew have pulled off the biggest jewelry heist in kentucky history.
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00:15:05>> Narrator: After pulling off a 6 million heist, james quinn heads home to ohio to celebrate.
00:15:14>> His goal in life was to be known as a prominent criminal with links to organized crime.
00:15:19>> He's a very cocky individual, very confident, very proud of what he does.
00:15:24His ego is really, really inflated.
00:15:26He thought he was pretty slick.
00:15:28>> Narrator: And quinn is more than just slick.
00:15:31He's also lucky.
00:15:32After breaking in to a jewelry store in chesterland, ohio, he finds a key lying next to the safe.
00:15:39>> They discovered a very sophisticated safe system, but all they had to do was turn the safe key, open the door, and clean out the jewelry.
00:15:51The only thing that will stop them will be being locked up and being in prison.
00:15:55>> We were going to put an end to their escapade.
00:15:58We would form a task force to combat these criminals together as a group.
00:16:02>> The most effective way to solve crime is to bring our resources together.
00:16:08>> We've had anywhere between 12 and 15 different agencies that participated in the task force.
00:16:13There were some veteran officers from austintown that worked on the task force that were bright enough and smart enough to realize that they have something that might help us.
00:16:22>> They said, "we do have this collection of notes from the " jimmy quinn apparently kept a diarof the crimes that he and others were involved in.
00:16:33And we all kind of looked at each other and said, "you have " [ laughs ] >> Narrator: Officers had unearthed the diary taken years before, in the search of quinn's house.
00:16:44>> We broke the diary down.
00:16:45We went back and we were able to verify that crimes were, in fact, committed at these dates and times.
00:16:51Everything matched up, from the date and time to what was lost in the crime.
00:16:56>> It was a gold mine that was waiting to be discovered.
00:17:01>> Narrator: But unable to find quinn, police search his house.
00:17:06>> We noticed three or four mobile radios, similar to police radios, that were in a charging unit.
00:17:12>> We found pry tools, bolt cutters, pry bars, hand tools, screwdrivers, pliers.
00:17:16>> We knew that those were tools not for a hobby, those were for his trade as a thief.
00:17:23>> Narrator: Detectives also find a distinctive key in a display box.
00:17:27>> That key was specifically meant for a large vault.
00:17:31I think it was a trophy.
00:17:33I thk he was proud of it.
00:17:34It was just another way of quinn saying, "look what I've got, and " >> Narrator: Officers then discover a series of notes detailing the activities of all quinn's gang members.
00:17:47>> It just spoke into his personality, and it gave us further archived evidence of what the group had been involved in.
00:17:53And it was truly a godsend, because the last thing you think is an organized criminal keeping so much evidence behind that would link him to any crime.
00:18:02>> Narrator: Armed with this evidence, authorities prepare to move in on james quinn and his gang.
00:20:34>> Narrator: Using the evidenceuinn's house, police start interrogating his gang.
00:20:40>> Anytime you have more than one person involved, you always look for what you think isrson w has the most to gain talking to yois case, we decided it was the driver, ted landers.
00:20:53He was like 72 years old.
00:20:55He had enough knowledge of the system to understand that his best deal was to talk to us.
00:21:02We sat landers dn, very straight up with him about what was going on, why we knew he was involved, and landers basically spilled the beans.
00:21:12>>Was like dominoes.
00:21:13When you play dominoes, when one or two of them lean, they all started toted pointing the finger at each other.
00:21:20>> Napolitano did not want to cooperate with us.
00:21:23After he was indicted, he had a change of heart and basically rolled.
00:21:28>> They all started to rat on each other, so the term "wedgewood rat" came true full circle.
00:21:34>> Narrator: Police now move on the mastermind.
00:21:37>> Jim quinn was charged with engagingn corrupt activity, breaking and entering, with theft, and receiving stolen property.
00:21:45>> Narrator: Acting on a tip, police find further evidence against him.
00:21:51>> In the kitchen of quinn's residence, there was a pantry.
00:21:54Inside the pantry was a shelf.
00:21:57Inside that shelf was a false bottom.
00:22:01Inside the false bottom was probably about $250,000, $300,000 worth of jewelry.
00:22:11Our evidence on jimmy quinn was very strong.
00:22:14>> Narrator: At trial, james quinn is found guilty of all charges and sentenced to a total of 18 years.
00:22:23>> No matter how good you think you are, no matter how smart you think you are, no matter how careful you are, there will always be somebody out there who will be able to catch you.
00:22:37>> Jim quinn considered himself a mastermind.
00:22:40His goal in life was to be a prominent criminal.
00:22:43Those were the people he idolized.
00:22:47>> The only lifestyle jim quinn really knows is committing thefts, committing burglaries.
00:22:52He's very good at what he does.
00:22:53He's very skilled.
00:22:54And I foresee him having a long profession as a burglar once he's out of prison.
00:23:00>> I guess if you want to play like the big time, then you're going to pay like the big time.
00:23:05And that's what happened to him.
00:23:07--Captions by VITAC--www.vitac.
00:23:15narrator: TONIGHT ONSPEEDERS: These jersey girls wanna get the party started.
00:23:19man: YOU THOUGHT I WAS A stripper ?
00:23:22woman: ARE YOU SINGLE ?
00:23:23narrator: AND A HIGH-SPEED CHASE In vermont has this cop on the hunt for a motorcycle madman.
00:23:28man: CHURCH STREET, Church street north, north on church.
00:23:31narrator: THEN IN A chicago suburb, a bike cop teaches this student a lesson.
00:23:35man: YOU DIDN'T HAVE Your seat belt on, did you ?
00:23:38woman: YES, I DID.
00:23:39man: RIGHT, YOU THINK I'M BLIND, Or what ?
00:23:41narrator: ALL THIS AND MORE Traffic stops-- woman: MAKE YOU WANNA Smack your mother.
00:23:45narrator: AND EXCUSES-- man: THIS CAR IS A RENTAL CAR.
00:23:47I got it, 'cause I crashed my car.
00:23:49narrator: FROM ACROSS The country.
00:23:52woman: THE COP WAS HOT.
00:23:53narrator: RIGHT NOW ONSPEEDERS.
00:23:54Closed Captions Provided bytruTV Eric: I'm eric weir.
00:24:04I'm a patrolman with the belmar police department.
00:24:11Belmar is a great place to work.
00:24:12It's a nice resort town on the jersey shore.
00:24:16I enjoy the beach.
00:24:17I like being a local police officer in new jersey.
00:24:22narrator: BELMAR IS A quiet, little town with wide, open roads, and those roads are also wide open for speeders.
00:24:28Eric: We're set up on the west end of 16th avenue, and we're looking for people leaving belmar, and we're out here trying to slow 'em down.
00:24:36That guy's doing 43.
00:24:38Let's get him.
00:24:44( police sirens ) 1-4-9 Belmar, 10-44.
00:24:56woman: HI.
00:24:58Eric: Hi, license, registration, insurance, please.
00:25:02woman: WHAT IS GOING ON ?
00:25:10Marissa: Did we do something ?
00:25:12Eric: I'll tell her after I get the documents.
00:25:14Anna: I think I should know right now.
00:25:16Eric: I pulled you over for doing 43 in a 25 on 16th avenue.
00:25:20Now, also, who on this side of the car was smoking a cigarette, threw the butt out the window when I pulled you over ?
00:25:26That wouldyou ?
00:25:27Okay, yeah, I mean, that's also littering.
00:25:29Anna: I have this.
00:25:30I don't know if it helps.
00:25:32Eric: A business card ?
00:25:33Anna: Yeah, it's my uncle.
00:25:35Eric: Oh, yeah ?
00:25:36narrator: THE DRIVER TRIES The "my uncle is a cop" excuse, but officer weir wasn't born yesterday.
00:25:43Eric: Call your uncle up right now.
00:25:46Let's talk to him.
00:25:47Anna: No, I don't have his number.
00:25:49It's my sister-in-law's uncle.
00:25:50Eric: Thank you.
00:25:52woman: HE IS A GOOD-LOOKING COP.
00:25:53Kristen: Honestly, I thought he was a stripper !
00:26:00Anna: Men in uniform are hot.
00:26:01Eric: They said they thought I was a male stripper ?
00:26:03Wow, I guess that's a compliment, you know ?
00:26:06Anna: He said I was going 43 in a 25, which is true, and then he said, " and they denied it, so-- Marissa: It's biodegradable.
00:26:19Jacquelyn: Yeah !
00:26:21Eric: Not gonna write the littering ticket.
00:26:24narrator: NOT THAT THE GIRLS Care about cigarettes.
00:26:27They have a different kind of butt on their minds.
00:26:34Eric: So you thought I was a stripper ?
00:26:40Unfortunately, I'm not gonna start stripping.
00:26:42I'm just gonna give you the ticket, and I'm gonna leave.
00:26:44Anna: You could pass for one.
00:26:46Jacquelyn: You're a good-looking cop to be honest.
00:26:48Eric: Well, thank you, thank you very much, I appreciate it.
00:26:52Thank you.
00:26:53I truly appreciate that.
00:26:54Now, I pulled you over, you were doing 43 in a 25.
00:26:57That's a residential area.
00:26:58And then you threw the cigarette butt out of the window.
00:27:01I mean, that's littering.
00:27:03I'm not gonna write you for that, but I wrote you a ticket for speeding, okay ?
00:27:0743 In a 25, all right ?
00:27:09Jacquelyn: Are you single ?
00:27:10Eric: No, I am not single, but thank you very much.
00:27:14It's a compliment.
00:27:15Anna: The cop was hot !
00:27:17He should've started stripping.
00:27:18Eric: They thought I was a stripper.
00:27:21I'm a police officer, and I pulled 'em over for speeding.
00:27:24I'm not gonna take off my clothes.
00:27:26Anna: Bye, officer !
00:27:28Marissa: Bye !
00:27:33Greg: I'm officer sheldon.
00:27:34I'm a patrolman for rutland police department.
00:27:40When I stop a vehicle, I don't always know that I'm gonna issue a ticket.
00:27:43When I approach the operator, their attitude, in many cases, is what determines whether they get a ticket or not.
00:27:52narrator: IT'S SUNDAY AFTERNOON, And officer sheldon is on patrol.
00:27:56Greg: We're up on north main street, 35-mile-an-hour zone.
00:28:00I'm trying to keep people within the speed limit.
00:28:03Looks like we got one.
00:28:0873 In a 35.
00:28:17He knows I'm going after him.
00:28:18I think he might be trying to run on me.
00:28:2110-80, Motorcycle, south on lincoln avenue.
00:28:25( sirens ) Turning onto williams street, turning onto williams.
00:28:37Church street, church street north, north on church.
00:28:51Get off the bike slowly !
00:28:53Get on the ground, on the ground !
00:28:56narrator: OFFICER SHELDON Follows procedure and draws his gun.
00:29:00Sandra, we got him on church street, in front of number 10 church, 6-9 and myself.
00:29:04man: DO YOU HAVE ANY I.D.
00:29:06On you ?
00:29:08man: NO, SIR.
00:29:09Greg: Sit right there, just sit right here.
00:29:11Turn around a little bit like this, so I can talk to you a little bit.
00:29:15man: CAN I TAKE This helmet off ?
00:29:17Can you unbuckle it ?
00:29:21Greg: What made you run, ryan ?
00:29:22Ryan: Suspended license, unregistered bike.
00:29:25Greg: You realize you went through about four or five stop signs, okay ?
00:29:29Why were you going so fast on main street ?
00:29:31Ryan: I worked a long day, it's sunday, I just-- Greg: 73 In a 35, guy.
00:29:35You're twice the speed limit.
00:29:37Ryan: You don't realize that on a bike.
00:29:39I don't know if you ever rode.
00:29:41Greg: Did you ever realize the cars you're going by were like this, man ?
00:29:44Did you ?
00:29:45Ryan: Kinda, yeah.

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