Barker-Karpis Strike Again: The Bremer Kidnapping
In December 1933, the Barker-Karpis gang accepted another kidnapping job. This time, at the suggestion of fixer Harry Sawyer, they would target bank president and heir to the Schmidt Brewing fortune Edward Bremer for a ransom of $200,000. Unlike Hamm, Bremer was less a political kidnapping and more personal. Karpis said, “I don’t know what Sawyer’s beef was, but he sure didn’t like Bremer.” (Maccabee, pg. 187). There were disagreements over alcohol, but even Bremer, who worked with FBI agents to solve his kidnapping, wouldn’t reveal what these were. But the Bremer kidnapping wouldn’t be as smooth as the Hamm job. Karpis felt the plan was a bad move right off the bat, but went along with it anyway (hindsight proves his instincts correct; he was brought to court for Hamm and Bremer kidnapping charges. He pled guilty). The gang and their associates were arguing just days before it happened.