A mechanic fond of building go-carts for neighborhood children killed himself after two boys he tied up at his home escaped, and police found a detailed plan for their sexual torture and murder. William Edwin Shaw, 56, shot himself with a rifle after the 10-year-old and 12-year-old escaped early Saturday, investigators said.
Shaw turned his garage into a torture chamber, officials in North Adams, about 90 miles southwest of Detroit, said.
Investigators talked to Shaw last week after an Ohio boy reported Shaw molested him when he lived in the North Adams neighborhood, Hillsdale County Sheriff Gerald Hicks said Tuesday. Detectives had interviewed 15 to 20 boys before Saturday.
County prosecutor Michael Smith said the older boy taken captive by Shaw told police that Shaw had molested him for about a year, forcing him to touch his genitals.
The boys were Shaw's friends and slept over the night they were tied up and dragged to his garage, Hicks said.
After Shaw's suicide, investigators found a note pad in a file cabinet in his mobile home detailing a 29-step process of torture, mutilation and murder of the two boys, who were named in the plan.
State Police Sgt. Curt Robertson said officers found a homemade contraption to confine the boys and restraint devices made of boards and wires.
The boys evidently slept at Shaw's home many times, Hicks said.
The boys told police Shaw awakened them shortly before 1 a.m., tied them up and took the 12-year-old to the garage in a wheelbarrow. The older boy escaped when Shaw went to get the 10-year-old. The younger boy promised to help search for the other boy and managed to escape as well.
The allegation of sexual abuse from the 13-year-old Toledo, Ohio, boy prompted the sheriff's department investigation of Shaw, Hicks said.
Hicks wouldn't say when the boy was molested or exactly when the investigation began.