Return to the Scene of the Crime: A Guide to Infamous Places in Chicago

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9781581820133: Return to the Scene of the Crime: A Guide to Infamous Places in Chicago

Return to the Scene of the Crime: a Guide to Infamous Places in Chicago"", by Richard Lindberg, is an uncensored neighborhood-by-neighborhood map to the back alleys and boulevards of Chicago where some of the most infamous events of the city's criminal past occurred. Capone, Dillinger, and other organized crime figures have left an indelible imprint on the Windy City. ""

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About the Author:

Richard C. Lindberg grew up in Chicago's Norwood Park neighborhood. His nine books include "Chicago by Gaslight: A History of the Chicago Netherworld, 1880-I 920, The White Sox Encyclopedia, "and "The Armchair Companion to chicago Sports. "He is the former editor of the "Illinois Police and Sheriff's News "and served as head writer and senior editor for the Edgar Award-winning "Encyclopedia of World Crime."

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Sickened by the fetid odor emanating from the mint-green Cadillac, and horrified by the site of the mutilated human remains stuffed inside the trunk, Chicago police officer George Petyo quickly turned away. Covering his nose while desperately trying not to cough up his lunch, Petyo called the morgue. Send the wagon, I have a dead man here, he said, his voice cracking. For several days, the cops had been aware of the illegally parked and abandoned car with the flat tire on Lower Wacker Drive. Two parking tickets were tucked under the windshield wipers, but it was that awful smell that finally convinced the curious cop to check things out. The vehicle was registered to one William Kearney, one of the aliases used by the avuncular juice collector William Action Jackson.

In his younger years, Jacksons associates in the Chicago mob called him Fat Boy, a cruel sarcasm that he deeply resented.

The Cicero gambler, procurer, and part-time loan shark weighed three hundred pounds. He drove expensive Cadillacs and ordered custom-made, white button-down shirts tailored to fit his enormous girth. The mere sight of this plodding gorilla pulling up to the curb instilled fear in borrowers who had failed to keep up with their juice loan payments to his boss, Mad Sam DeStefano. The fleshy gangster finally shed the embarrassing nickname after he was released from prison in 1951. He had served four years for armed robbery, and the boys in the Chicago outfit finally accorded him a level of respect he believed he was entitled to all along. They began calling him Actionat least to his face.

In mob circles, things have a way of coming apart fast. Alliances are usually only temporary, and the man who is your friend today may stick a shiv in your back tomorrow. Action Jackson respected the code of silence. He was not a betrayer of the trustor a rat, as it is commonly understood in mob parlance. But Fiore FiFi Buccieri, lord high executioner of the outfit, believed otherwise.

Jackson, a married man with two children, was scheduled to appear before Federal Judge William Campbell in late September on charges of helping to steal $70,000 worth of electrical appliances from the Burlington Railway yards in Cicero, and Buccieri was starting to get the shakes. There was no telling what this Fat Boy might say if he wilted under the pressure in open court. For two weeks the Chicago Police had been seeking Action Jackson for questioning in the unsolved slaying of Ralph Del Genio, a truck driver for the Chicago Bureau of Sanitation, who by no small coincidence lived down the street from Jackson in Cicero. Del Genio was in debt to DeStefano, an impossible predicament for anyone to be in for long. It was the fifth unsolved murder linked to organized crime within two months, leading to nervous speculation that the city would soon explode in a bloodbath.

Buccieri fixated on Jackson. He was convinced that Action was tipping off the FBI about juice loan activities in the Western Suburbs. Suspecting betrayal, FiFi acted with ruthless abandon. Jackson was lured to a Southwest Side meat-rendering plant to face his destiny. There, Buccieri, James Turk Torello, Jackie the Lackey Cerone, Dave Yaras, possibly DeStefano, and other unnamed goons were lying in wait. After securely binding his hands and feet, the outfit heavies impaled Jackson on a meat hook. Howling in pain, Jackson pleaded for mercy. They answered him by whacking the bulky gangster in the kneecaps, before applying a cattle prod to his genitals. Are you a rat? they asked. Jackson shook his head no. His sweat and blood formed puddles on the floor of the plant. In Hollywood, Florida, about a year later, Torellowhile the FBI secretly listened inhappily reminisced with his mob pals about the techniques of torture applied to Jackson and his stubborn refusal to fess up. I still dont understand why he didnt admit he was a pigeon.

Jackson had nothing to confess, because he had flatly refused to cooperate with the Feds. He was an outfit guy, not a rat. Why couldnt the G (the Government) understand that? For two harrowing days, Jackson precariously clung to life. His killers inflicted unimaginable tortures, until finally the shock and loss of blood proved to be too much. As they loaded Jackson into the trunk and wiped the blood from their hands, Buccieri glibly remarked, Jeez, Im really sorry the big slob died so soon. No one was arrested for the murder of Action Jackson. It was just another unsolved hit, among a thousand unsolved gangland hits, dutifully recorded by the Chicago Crime Commission, record keepers of that sort of thing since 1919.

However, this latest example of syndicate handiwork was something all together different. Veteran law enforcement officers, who had examined scores of crime scene photos and had come to view such daily horrors with cynical detachment, were shocked by the savagery of the deed. They talked about it in low, hushed tones for many years to come. Lest anyone daydream about mob lifethe after-hours allure of wise guys, nightclubbing with glamorous showgirls, and driving showy Cadillacsthe black-and-white morgue shots of Action Jackson offer convincing proof that the wages of sin can have a terrible price attached. Each day, thousands of motorists rush by this desolate crime scene, which is engulfed in shadows, dust, and road grime. When the snow and cold and winter winds buffet the streets above, the underground intersection offers the homeless temporary shelter from the storm and a place to bunk in an uncaring world.

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Book Description Cumberland House Publishing,US, United States, 2008. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Illustrated. 224 x 178 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Return to the Scene of the Crime: a Guide to Infamous Places in Chicago, by Richard Lindberg, is an uncensored neighborhood-by-neighborhood map to the back alleys and boulevards of Chicago where some of the most infamous events of the city s criminal past occurred. Capone, Dillinger, and other organized crime figures have left an indelible imprint on the Windy City. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9781581820133

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Book Description Cumberland House Publishing,US, United States, 2008. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Illustrated. 224 x 178 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Return to the Scene of the Crime: a Guide to Infamous Places in Chicago, by Richard Lindberg, is an uncensored neighborhood-by-neighborhood map to the back alleys and boulevards of Chicago where some of the most infamous events of the city s criminal past occurred. Capone, Dillinger, and other organized crime figures have left an indelible imprint on the Windy City. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9781581820133

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