JUNKYARD THERAPY: This Shot-Up Cadillac Says ‘Crime Doesn’t Pay’

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The backstories of junkyard cars can be interesting, and this bullet-ridden Cadillac Coupe DeVille looks to have a good one.

This one is marked as a 1980 Cadillac Coupe DeVille, which is confirmed by its lack of fender identification of a V6-8-4 or HT4100 engine. In other words, it’s from what is just about the best year of this body style, which was available with an uncomplicated and unrepentantly guzzling 6.0-liter engine.

It’s on this canvas of glorious consumption that this Coupe DeVille sits with holes in the windshield and lead in the seats.

Find a vintage Cadillac DeVille with BestRide’s local search.

Ominously, “crime doesn’t pay” is scribbled down the sides…


…and on the hood. There’s a clear message here, and if the block letters don’t drive the point home…


…then the bullets through the windshield will.


Those bullets were mostly aimed at the driver’s seat, and some made it to the rear as well.


My buddy was looking for blood but found none. The absence of gore means this car was likely presented as a theatrical prop, in the same vein as the smashed cars that would show up on the high-school lawn around prom time to show us all what would drunk driving looks like.

Still, why also shoot up the door? There’s a persistence to this particular art project that at a minimum shows commitment.


This Coupe DeVille seemed pretty weary overall, and so the bullet holes are less a shock to their backdrop than the last straw in a long and well-used life.

The instrument panel’s cracked top is absolutely typical for the time. The steering wheel is cracked too.


The heavy contoured indentations are a cut above the contact-paper “wood” on most of this Coupe DeVille’s contemporaries. The light switch is especially luxurious with two chrome rings, where most lessers got by with a shiny outer ring and a fake-wood dot in the middle.

And ah, this one has the beautifully named automatic headlight function – the Twilight Sentinel. A car that comes with a sentinel, nice.


It’s not often you see a shot-up car with a clear aim for the driver’s seat. This one feels more after-school demonstrator than something more real, but maybe that’s just me hoping for the best.


Find a vintage and bullet-free Cadillac DeVille with BestRide’s local search.