“It could easily have been me”
INDIANAPOLIS – It was a Friday night in November, 43 years ago, that Brian Kring had a date with a fellow Burger Chef on Crawfordsville Road at Speedway.
“As we drove her home, which was a little before midnight, we passed the Burger Chef and she said she remembered she hadn’t seen Jayne’s vehicle there, the Vega,” Brian Kring said. “One of the employees called and said their van broke down, I remember that very well, and guess because of that I told them I would come back and help them shut down. “
Kring was 17 and a student at Ben Davis High School who worked flipping burgers at the fast food restaurant.
Jayne Friedt was his manager. Ruth Ellen Shelton, Daniel Davis and Mark Flemmonds were his colleagues.
They should all have been at work when Kring returned shortly after midnight to help them shut down.
“I drove to the back of the building, I guess to go to the other side to park, and when I parked in the back, the first thing I noticed was that the back door was ajar and I decided to go in the back door.
âI walked in there and didn’t see anybody, and pretty much I checked the whole store, the walk-in freezer and everything, and there’s no one there,â Kring recalls. “When I was walking around I walked into the manager’s office and noticed the safe was wide open, the cash drawers were laid out, and after that I called someone and they told me. said to call the police. “
While the Speedway police were on their way, Kring said he was joined by another employee, stopping after taking a night off because he said his van was not working.
“Danny Davis was not supposed to close that night so he asked his mom if he could stay and close because of the employee who had the van broken down he was supposed to come in and close,” he said. Kring said. âShortly after I got there, this employee introduced himself to the Burger Chef.
“As soon as he found out I had called the police, he left.”
At first, officers speculated that employees had cleared cash registers and fled, a theory that was horribly refuted when the four bodies were discovered in a wooded area in Johnson County two days later.
Flemmonds was killed because he came to work to cover up the girl Kring had a date that night.
Friedt’s car was discovered in a park near the Speedway Police Headquarters.
Daniels and Shelton were both shot.
âI always thought it could easily have been me,â Kring said. “I could easily have missed them by five minutes, thirty minutes, getting closer to this whole situation.”
“It really hit me last November 17the probably the worst of all years because there are just a few things I just don’t understand because I just have a few questions about why certain things haven’t been investigated to my knowledge.
Investigators speculate that the employees fell victim to a team of three to five men who robbed fast food restaurants, especially Burger Chefs, and shot people in Indianapolis.
Three of the suspects died in the 1980s, although investigators know that a man admitted his role in the murders to a relative.
Three years ago, one of their associates told Fox 59 News that he was not with his friends the night of the theft of the Speedway Burger Chef, that he had taken two polygraph tests, that he did not He had no knowledge of the activities of other crew members and doubted the case would ever be resolved.
“What do you think happened to these children that night and why? I asked Kring.
âOh, that was drugs,â he said. âSomeone owed someone. Either one of the two people.
âSomething that should never have happened that was botched and I believe someone recognized someone or someone tried to take away whoever came in and hurt that individual or whatever.
âThere was a known drug dealer in the area who only used young children to sell drugs and it seems like it’s all about young children and that’s the thing that bothers me the most and we don’t know not even if it’s under investigation. “
In 2018, the ISP said it was submitting evidence for updated forensic testing.
If you have any information on the Burger Chef murders, call Crime Stoppers at (317) 262-TIPS.
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