Religion In The News

Car Mileage Blamed For Miami Death

by Elroy Willis -- December 8, 1998

MIAMI (EAP) -- A south Florida man attempted suicide earlier this week after selling his car to another Miami resident who was involved in a fatal accident later the same day.

The used BMW was sold to Jeffery Thompson of Miami, who was later killed when the car stalled in the middle of a busy intersection and was struck by an oncoming city bus.

Lawrence Cook, original owner of the BMW, decided to sell the car when the odometer was approaching 666 miles.

"I had a bad feeling about the car when the odometer started getting close to 666 miles," Cook said. "God's voice told me to sell the car at 650 miles, and rid myself of its evils."

"My husband is a God-fearing man and knows the meaning of 666, so I trust him," said Margaret Cook, wife and mother of three children to Lawrence.

"It was a brand new car and I really liked it, but for some reason the car didn't like me," Cook said. "I had trouble from day one and the dealer couldn't seem to fix any of the problems. God gave me the message that I needed to get rid of the car one morning while I was in the shower."

Cook placed an ad in a local newspaper and later sold the car to Thompson who thought he was getting a good deal on the nearly brand new BMW.

On his way home Thompson was killed when the car stalled in the middle of a busy intersection with the odometer reading 666 as his car was struck on the driver's side by an oncoming bus.

"I felt so bad that I had to do something," Cook said. "God surely couldn't have meant for that man to die instead of me, so I decided to take my own life to make up for his death. Jesus would have wanted this," he said. "I didn't tell Mr. Thompson about all the problems I had with the car, and my guilt was driving me crazy. I was ready to go to hell."

Cook tried to take his own life by shutting himself in his garage and inside his new Ford Explorer with the engine running. He was found unconscious by his 8-year-old son Steven, who managed to called 911 despite his confused and emotional state.

Cook is currently under psychiatric evaluation at Green Haven Home in Miami.


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