Schrenker tells of gold in Coosa River

Published 4:16 pm Friday, October 15, 2010

By KATIE HURST/ Staff Writer

HARPERSVILLE — Shelby County may see its fair share of treasure hunters after a claim from former Indiana money manager Marcus Schrenker this week.

Schrenker, who parachuted into Harpersville in January of 2009 in an attempt to fake his own death, has claimed he left a bag of gold in the Coosa River near where he parachuted.

Schrenker revealed the information during his Oct. 12 divorce hearing and said the bag contained 1,400 ounces of gold, according to newspaper reports.

Testimonies also revealed that he had written about the bag of gold in letters to his wife, Michelle, while he was in prison. The gold is estimated to be worth about $2 million.

Authorities believe Schrenker parachuted into Harpersville in an attempt to fake his own death, leaving his plane in autopilot to later crash in the Florida panhandle.

Schrenker was accused of meticulously planning his escape by driving to Harpersville from Indiana to store a motorcycle and supplies at the U.S. 280 East Mini Warehouse before his flight.

Cpt. Ken Burchfield of the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, said their deputies played a small role in the case when the storage unit was discovered in Harpersville.

“We’re not going to know if there’s any gold,” he said. “There’s no way to know. Obviously if we’d found any we would have seized it.”

Schrenker is currently serving a 10-year prison term in the Indiana Department of Corrections for felony counts of fraudulently selling securities. This term is to be served consecutively with a four-year sentence in federal prison for crashing his plane.