Copyright Frank Stiles. All rights reserved.
This is a true crime story about two serial killers, Anthony and Nathaniel Cook, and Frank Stiles, the police detective who tracked them down. While cruising in their beat-up pickup truck, the Cook brothers terrorized the city of Toledo and Lucas County, Ohio during the years 1980 and 1981. The story made national news. Nine murders and various rapes, robberies, and assaults were solved, with at least three other murders still under investigation. The brothers were night stalkers who preyed upon young victims sitting in their cars or walking on the street. The arrest and detailed confessions from the brothers lay bare the cold-bloodedness of the stalkers, and how calculated and premeditated the murders were carried out, with little evidence or witnesses.
Greed and murder shattered the serenity of an affluent Ohio village and set police on a frantic quest to find the killers. The murders of 67-year-old Harriett Wernert and her 97-year-old mother, Velma Bush, in the confines of their own home shocked the quiet village of Ottawa Hills. It also demonstrated that evil can occur in any community. There had never been a murder in this small village, located on the edge of Toledo in northwest Ohio.The murders sent shock waves through the village as residents pressed local police for answers and scurried to find ways to protect themselves. Additional deadbolts and security systems were added, and some residents purchased guns.The village Chief of Police looked to the city of Toledo’s Police Department for help, and because of the authors’ investigative experience he was assigned to assist in the search for answers. The ensuing investigation, arrests, and trials of the three murderers, held simultaneously in three Common Pleas courtrooms, is packed with suspense.
A Toledo policeman, sitting quietly with his partner on night duty in their patrol wagon, is approached by a man who pulls out a gun and shoots him in the head at point-blank range, killing him instantly. Another cop at another time is hailed for “superhuman courage,” facing not one but three near-death confrontations and living to tell about them. And seven years ago, an undercover policeman on duty in central Toledo is shot and killed by a 15-year-old drug dealer.
These are some of the stories told here by Frank Stiles, a retired Toledo police detective who spent the better part of three decades investigating and helping to solve thousands of crimes. City Soldiers is his third book, offering more heart-pounding true crime stories, many of which he personally investigated.
For instance, the first story, “Miracle on Superior Street,” puts Stiles front and center as he chases after an ex-con rapist, robber, and two-bit shoplifter. Stiles catches up with the thief, and as they grappled, the thief shoves the barrel of his gun into Stiles’ gut and shoots. Keep reading to discover just what pure miracle saved the detective from certain death.