Al Capone: A Famous American Gangster

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One of the most famous American gangsters, Al Capone, also known as "Scarface," rose to infamy as the leader of the Chicago Outfit during the Prohibition era. Before being sent to Alcatraz Prison in 1934 for a tax evasion conviction, he had amassed a personal fortune estimated at $100 million as the head of the infamous crime syndicate. Early Years Far from being a poor immigrant from Italy who turned to crime for making a living, Al Capone, born January 17, 1899, was from a respectable and professional family. His father, Gabriele, was one of thousands of immigrants who arrived in New York in 1894. He was a 30 year old man, educated and from Naples, where he earned a living as a barber. His wife Teresa was pregnant and already raising two…show more content…
There were rumors that Capone or Frankie Yale killed Big Jim Colosimo, Torrio's boss, that year, making way for Torrio's rule. As Prohibition began, new bootlegging operations opened up and drew in immense wealth. In 1925 Torrio retired, and Capone became crime czar of Chicago, running gambling, prostitution, and bootlegging rackets and expanding his territories by the gunning down of rivals and rival gangs. Despite a brief pause when Capone married middle-class Irish girl Mae Coughlin and settled down as a bookkeeper, he was soon to return working for his old boss Johnny Torrio in Chicago. The death of Al Capone’s father took a turning point for him. As Capone's reputation grew he still insisted on being unarmed as a mark of his status. He never went anywhere without at least two bodyguards. He was always in the middle of the two bodyguards when traveling in car. He also preferred to travel under cover of night, risking travel by day only when absolutely necessary. With his business acumen, Al became Torrio's partner and took over as manager of the Four Deuces Torrio's headquarters in Chicago's Levee area. The Four Deuces served as a speakeasy, gambling joint and whorehouse under one roof. The…show more content…
With the help of his old friend Frankie Yale in New York, Al set out to smuggle huge quantities into Chicago. The events would lead to what became known as The Adonis Club Massacre where Capone had Yale's enemies brutally attacked during a Christmas party. Capone's bootlegging whiskey trail from Chicago to New York was making him rich. There was an incident involving Billy McSwiggin known as the “hanging prosecutor,” which was to prove a major setback for the unassailable gangster. McSwiggin was mistakenly shot and killed by Capone's henchmen during a shootout between rivals outside a bar. Capone was blamed but once again since there was not enough evidence he escaped arrest. However, the murder was followed by a big outcry against gangster violence and public sentiment went against Capone. High profile investigations against Capone failed which made the police angry and frustrated leading to them constantly raiding his whorehouses and gambling dens. Capone went in hiding for three months that summer but he eventually turned himself in to Chicago police. Because the authorities still didn’t have enough evidence, Capone continued to be a free

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