From the Richmond Times-Dispatch, 9/11/1944, p. 7, c. 1

Drained Basin Yields No Clue In Slaying
Gun, Billfold Sought in Krengel Case

A thorough search of the bottom of the settling basin at the Tredegar Iron Works yesterday morning furnished detectives with neither the weapon which killed John Ernest Krengel nor the billfold of which he was believed to have been robbed.

By the drainage of the basin which held more than three feet of water, police had hoped to find definite clue which would lead them to the solution of the murder mystery, now five days old. Last night the C. and O. drained the canals leading into the basin and for three hours yesterday morning, the Department of Public Works Employees pumped the water out of the basin.

Detective Chief Garton said that if the weapon or billfold had been tossed into the canal by the slayer of Krengel, aged pattern maker at the plant, it would have washed into the basin. But at noon yesterday, detectives admitted that their search of the basin and canal was fruitless.

Chief Garton said that members of the Fingerprint Bureau were concentrating on the fingerprint angle as a solution, asserting they had by no means given up hope that they could not be found.

He also announced that Lieutenant Haake and Detective Sergeants Kelly and Brown have been indefinitely assigned to the case.

Krengel’s body, bludgeoned and shot, was found early last Wednesday in the supply building at the Tredegar plant. His billfold, in which he customarily carried from $1,500 to $2,000, according to police, is still missing as is the weapon, thought to be a .22 calibre pistol.

Police already have advanced the theory that the slayer was well acquainted with Mr. Krengel “or else they could never have lured him from the hop to the supply building.”

Chief Garton said the murder “is so brutal that I feel sure if anyone knows of anyone who has been seen with a .22 calibre pistol within the plant they will come forward and tell us, especially since we will keep their names confidential.”

A $500 reward has been offered by Tredegar for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of the slayer.

Bulletins carrying information about the slaying and the reward have been sent to police departments all over the United States, blanketing most heavily the area within 1,500 miles of Richmond.

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