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Fred Goetz


J.George Zeigler, Freddie Goetz, Shotgun Ziegler, George A. Rhodes.
 Rapist, Robber, killer.
St.Valentine's Day Massacre suspected killer.
Fred Goetz is born get this,February 14,1897!
One wonders if he was blowing out the candles when he was machinegunning the Moran men in the Clark street garage.Strange coincidence indeed.Wonder if they partied afterwards.
Chicago born Fred was the son of Samuel Goetz and Ottilie Bensel, who both originated from Germany.

Army officer/University of Illinois graduate gone bad.Also connected to Ma Barker gang.
Fred Goetz lived at 7827 South Shore drive with his wife under the alias Mr.George B. Seibert and Mrs. Irene Seibert .
Mr. Seibert was a cultured gentleman who was an accomplished landscape gardener.
The landlady a Mrs. Leonora Smith described them as" fine people" and that Mr. Seibert was "a very brilliant and handsome man."

Goetz had been in the aviation branch of the army at Langley field VA. and was commissioned a second lieutenant.When the war ended Goetz entered the University of Illinois.He tried atheletics and was director of the university post of the American Legion.The reports that he had played varsity football was denied by university officials.He graduated in 1923 from the university with a good record.
His criminal record had begun while working as a lifeguard at Clarendon beach.


June 10,1925, University of Illinois student and supposed football player Fred Goetz is held under bonds of $5,000 for alegedly attacking a 7 year old girl by the name of Jean Lambert.The girl testified that Goetz drove up before her home at 5554 Lakewood avenue in his automobile, promised her candy and lured her into an alleyway.There he attempted to abuse her after nearly choking her unconscious.Goetz denied all of the charges.
October 5,1925, while in police custody after a botched robbery of Dr.Henry R.Gross,bandit Roger Bessner implicates Fred Goetz and his friend Hymie alias "The Romeo" for fatally killing Barney Hernandez who was Mr. Gross' chauffeur during the robbery. Detective Shoemaker claims Goetz probably was seeking some fast funds to pay for the $5,000 bond on his earlier rape case.Fred Goetz at the time has associations with Yellow Kid Weil and Morris Kleinman.

Fred Goetz as a lifeguard circa 1925. His criminal career begins with the attempted rape of a 7 year old girl.

Oct.18,1925 Fred Goetz is identified through mugshots as being one of the robbers who at gunpoint robbed Mr.Paul Izenstark of 587 Hawthorne place. Mr. Izenstark claims Goetz and his partners robbed him and his wife along with a friend (M.A Duff) of currency and jewelry valued at $12,000.His automobile was also taken by the bandits.Same modus operandi includes a woman following them in another car after the robbery.                                 

Oct.30,1925 State's Attorney Crowe ordered that immediate action be taken by his office in collecting the bond that was forfeited by Fred Goetz. Mr. Crowe orders his man in charge of bonds Mr.Andrew Bender to start a suit against Goetz's mother and father who scheduled some of their vacant property to cover their son's bond.Samuel T. Goetz and Mrs.Ottillie Goetz live at 1338 Eddy street.They later seperate she lives later at 1503 Ardmore avenue and Samuel T.Goetz moves to Cincinnati. Goetz had a sister by the name of Sophia.

1929 the Farmers and Merchants bank at Jefferson,Wis. was robbed of $352,000 in cash and bonds.Warrants for this robbery are put out against Goetz and Gus Winkeler and four others.
May 1932 under the name Rhodes, Goetz steals $5,380 in blank American Express checks.He managed to cash $3,000 worth of them at various Chicago banks and $2,000 at Detroit banks before the alarm flag went off.

Later, Goetz joins forces with the Karpis/Barker gang in kidnappings and robberies. He is sought for questioning by Melvin Purvis for the Kansas city massacre.




Token from 4811 West Cermak
During the hit on Goetz, the buckshot reaches this drinking establishment's windows.
(Mario Gomes collection)



 On March 20,1934, while standing outside a closed Cicero Hotel/Restaurant at 4813-14 West 22nd street called the Minerva, four shotgun blasts ring out. Goetz, 37, is shot in the head by killers in a passing automobile.The buckshot also hits the windows of 4811 West Cermak, then a saloon belonging to Fenton M. Mangan.The slugs narrowly miss hitting Mangan and several patrons drinking there at the time.The killer's car disappeared eastward into Chicago. Found with a $1000 bill in his pocket Goetz's body is taken to Frances Willard hospital. On his body (besides the $1,000 dollar bill), they find numerous cards with variations of his name for different clubs. In his leather belt they find six slender steal blades concealed within.This led police to believe that Goetz was ready for any escape if ever jailed. Police then search his luxurious apartment and find landscaping plans for a farm he had in Wisconsin and a cultured taste in books.


Clarendon Beach, Chicago. The place where Goetz once worked as a lifeguard.
(Mario Gomes Collection)

Goetz  also had various bank accounts and dabbled heavily in distillery stocks.
Goetz's car, an expensive coupe is found abandoned at 79th street and Cottage grove avenue.It is believed that his wife Irene who was being sought by police may have left it there.The registration in the car listed the owner as being J.George Zeigler 40 Chicago Avenue,Oak Park. (This address was found by police to be a filling station in which Goetz was receiving his mail).
His car was purchased from Joseph Bergl, a well known Cicero automobile dealer with connections to gangsters and who was apt at modifying gangster's vehicles in making them fast and bulletproof.

His body is taken to the coroners where his sister, Sophie E. Goetz, identifies his body. His cause of death is listed as multiple gunshot wounds of the head, face, neck and back. He was shot on the night of March 20th, but died on the 21st.

He body is laid out at the Muelhoefer Funeral chapel at 1458 Belmont.
He is buried incognito on March 24,1934, in his family plot at Irving Park cemetary.




First Posted August 2007