After retiring in 2003 from a highly decorated career in law enforcement, Lt. Tom Gratz had a tale to tell. Harley C.I: A Detective Story is the result.
On Friday, October 19, from 6p.m. -7p.m. Brian Hartz and Tom Gratz will be at the LaGrange County Public Library for the book A Detective Story.
In the early 1990’s, Gratz and his longtime partner in the Allen County Sheriff’s Department’s Criminal Investigation Division investigated and brought to justice one of the most prolific burglary rings in the state of Indiana had ever seen. In a span of just a few months, the Wells Street Gang, as they were known, stole tens of thousands of dollars in cash and merchandise and caused nearly as much damage to property during the type of brazen crime spree more common to the mean streets of Chicago or New York than the cornfields of Indiana.
The C.I.’s unorthodox methods worked, though, culminating in a wild car chase and the arrest and prosecution of the gang members. The resulting narrative is an engaging, humorous, small town police procedural equal part Donnie Brasco and Fargo.
When Gratz needed someone to help tell the story of Harley and the Wells Street Gang, he turned to veteran journalist Brian Hartz, who grew up in northeast Indiana and has worked at newspapers and magazines around the world. Hartz took Gratz’s bare-bones account of the investigation and turned it into a novel that will fascinate true-crime fans interested in how a complex, long-term, multi-agency police investigation really works.