“The Mob” has been alive and well in Youngstown, Ohio since the 1950s. Youngstown was the halfway point for mobsters traveling between New York and Chicago. Often called Mobtown, Crimetown, and Boomtown, Youngstown still has many mobsters and corrupt officials. If you have a skill they can use, you will be “recruited.”
Benjamin Holmes is an engineer who built customized mufflers to quiet professional racing cars enough to participate in the very profitable street racing scene.
A few mobsters and their crooked policemen propositioned Holmes to weld a muffler for a gun, a silencer. Wanting to know the legality of such a project, Holmes took their blueprints to lawyers whom he had once worked for, as an investigator. Holmes simply corrected the blueprints for his propositions but was not willing to actually build the silencers.
Not satisfied, the mobsters and their policemen accused Holmes of siding with their enemies. Consequently, Holmes’s home was firebombed, on Halloween 1979, with him in it. He was burned over 60 percent of his body and was hospitalized for several weeks.
One officer visited Holmes at the burn center and again asked about building silencers. Again Holmes refused and was charged with burning down his own home for the insurance money.
Holmes started carrying a tape recorder and was able to get that officer and others offering money and making threats; “What we have here is a failure to communicate.” Holmes made the mistake of taking his recordings to the local FBI, to no avail. He later found of that “The Mob” had infiltrated the local FBI. News of Holmes’s recordings got out and certain forces decided that he needed to die.