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December 21, 2006
The life and death of John Dillinger, the famous bank robber has some intriguing twists that read like mystery novel. He had the dubious distinction of having robbed more banks in one year than Jesse James did in his entire career. He was not unpopular with Chicagoans. In fact, they viewed him as a modern day Robin Hood. This inflamed the government and made them determined to get him. More determined than the fact he had robbed 6 banks, killed 2 cops and FBI agents, slipped 6 traps, and escaped jail 6 times all in the span of a year!!!A set-up had Dillinger and his girlfriend departing the Biograph Theater wherein an FBI agent identified himself and told him to surrender. Pulling out a gun and running towards the alley, the agent shot him.Coincidentally, Dillinger had had plastic surgery a few months before. Was it really Dillinger? Was the FBI agent double-crossed by the girlfriend? Seeing the corpse, his father claimed it wasn’t his son. Dillinger’s doctor denied he had a heart condition, as did the body in the morgue. On the other hand, the FBI said the fingerprints were indeed those of Dillinger. Yet, the weapon in their display case that was supposedly drawn on the agent had been manufactured 6 months after his death. Did he really brandish a weapon?While gangsters lived extravagant it was often cautious as well. It also invertible meant a gruesome and untimely death akin to making a pact with the devil. Compared to his peers, such was not the case with Al Capone.Eventually winding up in Alcatraz on charges of tax evasion, while the famed Elliot Ness worked on evidence of prohibition violations. At Alcatraz his days of running things from prison ended and he spent much of his time in the sick ward. Released early, he died in a hospital from syphilis.
Movies, television programs, and the news can be so graphic, but nothing compares to the photos from the bloody crime scenes and morgues. This is just some of the findings in the "Chicago Gang Wars" book I received on the tour. It is complete with actual newspaper articles and captions.
From journal Sentimental, Haunting Chicago