Digging Up John Dillinger: Did The Gangster Escape The FBI's Dragnet?
Could John Dillinger, one of America’s most notorious Prohibition-era gangsters, have escaped an FBI dragnet?
The FBI said they gunned him down outside a movie theater in Chicago in 1934. Government officials say to this day there are reams of evidence that proves Dillinger was shot to death outside Chicago’s Biography Theater, July 22, 1934.
A tombstone at Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis, Indiana, has borne Dillinger’s name since July 26, 1934.
Dillinger’s niece, Carol Thompson, doesn’t believe it.
Carol says she has plenty of documentation to build the case that someone besides Dilliner was shot to death outside that movie house on that hot night in July ’34, and someone other than her uncle John is buried in the Crown Hill Cemetery.
Carol says she has paperwork proving whoever’s buried under that tombstone doesn’t match her uncle’s eye color, fingerprints, anterior teeth, or ears. And, she says the shape of the corpse's head and ears are all wrong.
"It is my belief and opinion that, if the FBI killed the wrong man outside the Biograph Theatre, it is also important to identify the man in the grave at Crown Hill Cemetery," Thompson writes.
Dillinger’s nephew, Michael Thompson, wants to be sure. Thanks to the Indiana Health Department's approval of an application to reveal Dillinger’s body, submitted by Thompson, any doubts you might have about the integrity of the FBI should be laid to rest (pun intended) early in 2020.
Dillinger’s remains will be disinterred, as the lawyers say, December 31, 2019. All that’s left of the body said to be Dillinger’s will be laid back to rest the next day, January 1, 2020.
And then hopefully, we’ll know for sure. Did the FBI get their man, or did Dillinger dodge their bullets, and evade capture for who knows how many years?
Of course, if it's true the FBI lied, that begs a new question: whatever became of John Dillinger?
A first-time killer. His dead wife. Her loving mother. And two homicide cops who won’t quit.