(Part-2) Dying thief who stole Minnesota museum's 'Wizard of Oz' ruby slippers will likely dodge prison

Federal sentencing standards indicate 4 1/2 to 6 years, but Martin's previous background might result in a lengthier sentence. But his health “is simply too fragile,” prosecutors wrote in court. According to another prosecution file, all sides agreed he should pay $23,500 to the museum, even though he cannot afford it.

Terry Jon Martin, 76, stole the slippers from the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, in 2005. He succumbed when an old mafia acquaintance persuaded him the shoes needed actual gems to justify their $1 million insured value, his counsel wrote in a report to the federal court before his Duluth sentence.

After the fence told Martin the rubies were false, DeKrey stated, he returned his old mafia partner the slippers and said he never wanted to see them again. The attorney said Martin never heard from him again. Martin has refused to identify any other thieves, and no one else has been prosecuted.

The FBI never revealed how it found the slippers. In 2017, a guy approached the insurer telling him he could assist retrieve them but sought more than the $200,000 prize. The next year, an FBI operation in Minneapolis found the slippers. Federal authorities estimate the shoes' worth at $3.5 million.

To return to Kansas from Oz in the 1939 musical, Garland's Dorothy had to click her ruby slippers three times and say, “There's no place like home.” Only four original pairs exist from her filming wardrobe.

Martin took one set from Hollywood memorabilia collector Michael Shaw, who lent them to the museum. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Smithsonian Museum of American History, and private collector have the other three.

Born 1922, Garland was Frances Gumm. She resided in Grand Rapids, 200 miles (320 kilometers) north of Minneapolis, until her family relocated to Los Angeles at age 4. In 1969, she died.

The Judy Garland Museum, at her home, claims to have the world's biggest Garland and Wizard of Oz collection.