On this day, July 15, in 1976, three ne'er-do-well young men from rich families attempted the perfect crime by kidnapping and ransoming a school bus full of children in Chowchilla, Calif.
Fred Newhall Woods IV and brothers James and Richard Schoenfeld abducted 26 children and their bus driver and hid the bus in a ditch. The trio of privileged young men drove their 27 victims around in two vans for 11 hours before hiding them in a moving van buried in a rock quarry owned by Woods' father.
The victims dug their way out, and police found a $5 million ransom note on the Woods estate.
The trio were convicted of 27 counts of kidnapping and sentenced to life in prison.
- Scott McCabe