FILM RIGHTS AVAILABLE

FILM RIGHTS AVAILABLE
FILM RIGHTS AVAILABLE

Murders

The Touhy’s killed the following Capone beer peddlers in retaliation for the murder of Matt Kolb. The suspected gunmen were Tommy Touhy and "Broken Nose" Fogarty

Nicholas Maggio
Anthony Persico  
Elmer Russel (described as a waiter)
Fred D’Giovanni (member of the Capone Organization)

Joe Provenzano (member of the Capone Organization)

Tubbo Gilbert, the worlds richest cop, 1933


Jake the Barber 1933


Roger Touhy and Matt Kolb had their own plans for Chicago's labor unions.

   Roger Touhy and Matt Kolb had their own plans for Chicago's labor unions. Prohibition, gambling and the ability to avoid big political payoffs and long drawn out beer wars had made them rich. By 1932, they had the money, and the firepower to take over the entire Chicago Teamsters organization without having to split any of it with Capone.
   Unlike Capone, they didn't need to terrorize their way into each local union before reaching the Teamsters International office. They had a direct and trusted contact in the International office with Edward Chicken McFadden, an old time labor terrorist with deep contacts into the Teamsters International leadership.
   McFadden picked up the name Chicken when he organized a shakedown operation known as the Kosher Chicken Pluckers Union. He had an arrest record dating back to 1901 that included intent to rob, police impersonation and labor slugging. He had been a business partner with a labor mobster named "Big Tim" Lynch, controlling the Chauffeurs and Teamsters Union together, until Capone had Lynch killed. Capone took over the union and chased McFadden and his contacts into the waiting arms of Roger and Tommy Touhy. In early 1932, when Capone started his major push against the unions, it was McFadden who set up a meeting between the Touhys and Patty Burrell, the Teamsters International Vice President. Burrell called a meeting of all the locals threatened by the syndicate and gave them a choice; they could stand alone against Capone and lose their unions and probably their lives, or they could band together and move their operations into Touhy's camp.
   Most of the bosses already knew Roger and decided he was the lesser of the two evils. They pitched into a $75,000 protection fund that was handed over to Tommy Touhy. In exchange, the union bosses were allowed to keep their locals, and the treasuries that came with them, and live under the Touhys' protection.

Despite the fact that the only new testimony was shaky at best,

   
Capone

 Despite the fact that the only new testimony was shaky at best, the jury took less than four hours to decide their guilt and six hours to decide the penalty. Half the jurors wanted to impose the death penalty and half wanted life in prison. Ultimately Roger was sentenced to ninety-nine years in Joliet State Prison.
   When the verdict was read, Roger gagged, coughed violently, vomited, and had to be carried out by deputies while the courtroom exploded in cheers.
   In a separate trial, Isaac Costner and Basil Banghart were also found guilty for their role in the Factor kidnapping and given ninety-nine years each. Costner screamed double-cross and said that the federal government promised to let him off with five years if he testified against the Touhys in the Factor case. The government denied any such promise, saying that they had no interest in making deals for the Cook County States Attorney's Office. The day Roger Touhy went to prison, the syndicate, led by Rocco DeGrazio, moved into his section of Cook County and never moved out again.
   Now that Roger and the others were convicted, John Factor had a problem; he was going to be extradited, or so he thought.
   But the U.S. Department of State made no moves to extradite him and Factor was free. He had beaten deportation. However, the conviction against him by the English courts was ordered to remain in effect until he was tried before a Royal Bench in England and that day would come sooner than he or anyone else realized.

Next, the state called Eddie Schwabauer to the stand.


Ethel Touhy


   Next, the state called Eddie Schwabauer to the stand. Tubbo Gilbert, of the Cook County States Attorney's Office, and Jake the Barber had long since gotten to Schwabauer and bribed him to lie on the witness stand, which he did and did well. He testified that on the night Factor was kidnapped he was doing guard duty in Touhy's yard. This wasn't true. Weeks earlier Touhy had fired him for being drunk on duty. Still, Schwabauer said that on the night in question that the Touhy household was uninhabited all night. Schwabauer's testimony directly contradicted Touhy's defense that he had spent most of the night sitting on his front porch with his wife and her girlfriend, Emily Ivins.
   Schwabauer's mother, Mrs. Clara Sczech, who according to Touhy was "a poor, middle aged, bedeviled, bewildered woman," testified next. Sczech was a maid in a house in Glenview, Illinois rented in Eddie McFadden's name for one of the union bosses. There, she claimed she saw Basil Banghart and someone who looked like Roger Touhy. Her precise words were, "I'm not sure whether I seen him there or not." Then, pointing at Touhy, a man she had known for at least five years, she said "This here fellow looks quite a lot like him, still there is not quite so much resemblance."
   She ended her testimony with a lie, saying that after Factor was released by his kidnappers, McFadden told her that she was no longer needed to clean the house. The implication being that the house was where Factor was held during his kidnapping.
   Buck Henrichsen testified next. He appeared completely relaxed, having spent the past seven weeks before the trial living in protective custody at Chicago's finest hotel, the Palmer House, courtesy of the States Attorney.
   Roger didn't know anything about Henrichsen's testimony until the day he took the witness stand. Of this unexpected testimony Touhy wrote, "I didn't expect Buck Henrichsen to shove a knife between my ribs and twist it. I had never done anything but good for him....Henrichsen couldn't meet my eyes when Crowley called him to the witness stand. He was ashamed."
   Henrichsen testified that Roger ordered him to find a house in Glenview for Eddie McFadden to rent, and that on the night Factor was kidnapped, he had seen Touhy at Jim Wagner's saloon drinking with Schafer, Kator, Banghart and the others who were now accused of the kidnapping.
   His testimony of course was false. Regardless of their validity his words proved to be very damaging to Roger's case. As far as the jury knew Henrichsen was a former police officer and simple night watchman around Roger's home who had no reason to lie about his employer on the witness stand.
   After Henrichsen's testimony, Roger demanded that his lawyer, William Scott Stewart, place him on the stand. Stewart refused. This led Roger to sign an affidavit requesting a new lawyer. Insulted, Stewart refused to go on with the trial. Eventually he resumed but only after Judge Feinberg threatened to jail him. When Stewart refused Feinberg's order and simply didn't show up for court the judge sent his bailiff to Stewart's home and escorted him back to the courtroom in handcuffs.
   Touhy recalls, “As the trial moved toward a close, I was fed up to the Adam's Apple with our lawyer. So were Kator and (Schafer). Somebody had told me that Stewart had gone to lunch with Crowley and that he had chatted with Tubbo Gilbert during a court recess....Stewart, although he knew I was innocent,  wouldn't listen to me...the squabbling between us  was endless.”
   His fate was now in the hands of a man he didn't trust.

After three weeks of testimony, the jury retired.


Jake the Barber


   After three weeks of testimony, the jury retired. After only one day's deliberation the trial was dismissed by Judge Feinberg as deadlocked. A second trial was to begin in eleven days.
   The second trial was almost a duplicate of the first. The only exception was the testimony of Ike Costner and Basil Banghart whom Factor called to build up his story.
   Costner's testimony was part of a deal he made following his arrest in Baltimore in February of 1933 along with Basil Banghart for their part in a $105,000 mail truck robbery in Charlotte, North Carolina.
   Upon learning of Costner and Banghart's arrest, Tubbo Gilbert, Jake Factor and six deputies traveled by train to Maryland. Also joining them was Joseph P. Keenan, the Special U.S. Attorney charged by the Attorney General with stopping the rash of kidnappings that were plaguing the country. With Keenan's help, Costner and Banghart were released in Gilbert's custody and somewhere along the train ride back to Chicago, Ike Costner agreed to lie on the witness stand in return for a lighter sentence in the mail robbery case.
   "On the day that Factor and Gilbert brought the two witnesses back from Baltimore," Touhy wrote, "I was walking in the corridor leading from Judge Feinberg's courtroom to the prisoner's elevator during a recess. Ahead of me, I spotted Tubbo Gilbert and a man I never had seen before. I figured it might be another fake finger, so I hunched down my
head and hid my face with my coat collar. I heard Tubbo say 'The guy in the light suit, that's Touhy'...in my cell, I got the hell out of that light suit and put on a dark blue one. When I got back to the court, Costner was the first witness."
   Crowley asked Costner "And did you know Roger Touhy?"
   Costner went blank and didn't answer. Crowley asked again and Costner mumbled "Yes."
   "Please point to Mr. Touhy. He is present in the courtroom."
   Costner looked around the room desperately. He didn't have a clue as to what Roger Touhy looked like.
   Ray Brennan, who covered parts of the trial for the Associated Press, later said that Costner looked over at the defense table and stared at one of the Cook County deputies guarding the Touhys and was about to point to him as the man he suspected of being Roger when Stewart said very loudly, "Stand up, Roger."
   Touhy was mortified but stood up, expressionless.
   'Yeah, that's him," said a relieved Costner.
   "Did you know Gus Schafer?" Crowley continued.
   Again Costner went blank and again, remarkably, Stewart shouted "Stand up Gus," and Schafer stood up, a look of complete disbelief on his face.
   "Did you know Kator? Albert Kator?" Crowley asked.
   Stewart told Kator to stand which he did.
   Crowley asked Costner if he saw all three men at the apartment house and Costner said he had seen them there.
   "I have always been bitter," Roger wrote, "and always will be about Stewart's making me a clay pigeon for Costner to shoot down....Stewart said he regarded it as psychologically important with the jury to have a defendant admit his identity at once, rather than wait to be pointed out. Maybe so, but I don't believe Costner could have identified me without my own lawyer's help."
   Costner testified that he had come to Chicago at Basil Banghart's request because Banghart was eager to get money for Touhy's defense in St. Paul against the Hamm kidnapping charges.
   Stewart leaped to his feet and shouted "What! What lawyer?"
   "I don't remember, Banghart never told me his name."
   Costner said that it was Touhy's enforcer James Tribbles who pulled him into the Factor kidnapping in the first place.
   It was safe to accuse Tribbles because he was dead. They found him almost the same way they found Teddy Newberry, tied with chicken wire, beaten to a purple pulp and shot in the head and dumped alongside a ditch. Everybody blamed Tommy Touhy for the murder, but by then Tommy's legs had given out and he was confined to bed in a log cabin hidden away on Joe Saltis' estate in rural Wisconsin.
   Costner said that on the night Factor was kidnapped, Tribbles took him to a lonely, rural side road near The Dells where Roger Touhy, Kator, Schafer and Banghart were waiting. When Factor pulled out of The Dells' parking lot, Costner said that the club owner, Joe Silvers "put the finger on Factor."
   Costner went on to admit that he was "the good man" that Factor had spoken of during his testimony.
   When called to the witness stand again to face a grilling by William Scott Stewart, Costner was made to look like the liar that he was. His eyes darted from left to right and he rubbed his hands together and perspired profusely.
   Stewart asked Costner for the address of the apartment house in which he lived but he said he couldn't remember what it was.
   "Ok, can you tell us what city or town place it was in?"
   "No, I forget."
   "So you don't know the address, or street name or city name of the place where you lived for eighteen months, is that correct?"
   "I think it is." Costner said.
   To the rest of Stewart's questions Costner's replies were similar. His refrain was "I don't know," and "I don't recall right at this moment."
   When Basil Banghart was called to the stand, Crowley asked,
"What is your occupation, Mr. Banghart?" "Thief."
The jury laughed but Crowley was confused. "What?"
"I'm a thief. I steal...that's how I make my living." "And you're proud of that?"
   "Why not? You're a lawyer, lots of people say you people steal, I don't hear you apologizing to nobody." "I am not on trial here, sir."
   "Well, neither am I, son."
   "What was the last place of your residence?"
   "601 McDonough Boulevard South East, Atlanta, Georgia, but it wasn't permanent."
   Later in the day Crowley found out that 601 McDonough was the address for the Atlanta Federal prison and called Banghart back to the witness stand to explain himself.
   "Why didn't you tell us," Crowley demanded, "that you were in prison?"
   "Four walls and iron bars," Banghart replied, "do not a prison make."
   Crowley said, "So you escaped from prison, isn't that correct?"
   Banghart answered, "No. The warden says I escaped from prison."
   "And," Crowley asked, "What do you say?"
   "I say," replied Banghart, "that I left without permission."
   "The point is, Mr. Banghart, is that you are a fugitive, are you not?"
   'Yes I am. I am a fugitive."
   "From where?"
   "From justice."


The Bootlegger



When Roger Touhy returned to the Valley he invested most of his small fortune into aused car dealership not far from the tiny house in the Valley where he was born.
   "My automobile business," Touhy said, "was bringing me in from $50,000 to $60,000 a year. But the big money was in alcoholic beverages. Everybody in the racket was getting rich. How could the bootleggers miss, with a short ounce of gagging moonshine selling for $1.25, or an eight-ounce glass of nauseating beer going for 75 cents?"
   The Touhy brothers, Johnny, Eddie, Tommy and Joe had already gotten involved in the booming bootleg business via Terrible Tommy O'Connor. They worked mostly as hired enforcers, but they occasionally hijacked a syndicate beer truck. It was almost natural that Roger join them and eventually he entered the bootlegging business. They entered the business through the back door, leasing a small fleet of trucks with drivers, from syndicate boss Johnny Torrio's enormous bootlegging operation. Using the money they earned from those leases, Roger and his brothers bought a franchise from Torrio for the beer delivery routes to rural northwestern Cook County, the area where Roger grew up.
   The beer delivery business could be lucrative as long as expenses were kept to a minimum, so the notoriously tight-fisted brothers opted not to pay for police protection. As a result, Chicago and Cook County police, probably working in a 50/50 split with Johnny Torrio, or at the least working under his orders, made a practice of stopping and impounding the brothers' trucks, probably kicking back half the fines collected to Torrio.
   When the expenses started to mount it occurred to Tommy Touhy that the police would never suspect a commercial vehicle of delivering booze. They decided to test the theory. The boys bought two used Esso Gasoline trucks-Esso being the forerunner to Exxon-and they made several successful shipments that way. It was a practice they continued to use even though most of the drivers the Touhys employed were off-duty cops. Virtually every truck the Touhys owned was disguised as a meat delivery truck. After that, their trucks were never stopped and the brothers shipped all their beer in commercial vehicles, either marked as gasoline, meat or coal delivery trucks.
   Ambitious and flush with cash from the beer routes, the brothers entered a bootlegging partnership with two north side Chicago hoods, Willie Heeney and Rocco DeGrazio, both of whom were amateur narcotics dealers who would eventually reach top spots in the syndicate under Frank Nitti and Tony Accardo. The Touhys and their new partners pumped out rot-gut beer from a rented garage and made enough money to open a short-lived nightclub a few doors down from their brewery. Using their profits from the brewery and speakeasy, Roger and Tommy opened a string of handbooks, and then used the cash from that to buy Heeney and DeGrazio out of the business.
   Now the prosperous owner of a beer delivery service, a small brewery, several handbooks and a car dealership, Roger asked Clara Morgan for her hand in marriage. She accepted and the couple married in a simple church ceremony in Chicago on April 22, 1922.
   For the next three years, the brothers worked to develop their various enterprises, building up their suburban beer routes and expanding into labor extortion and gambling, but like most other Irish hoods, resisting the easy money of prostitution. Then, in late 1925, as Johnny Torrio was just beginning to expand his criminal empire, the brothers leaped out of the small time by entering a partnership with Matt Kolb, a five-foot three-inch, 280 pound former ward politician, syndicate bagman and pay-off expert, who ran a $3,000,000 rot-gut whisky and needle beer brewery not far from Roger's car dealership.
   Earlier in the year A1 Capone, who was then still Johnny Torrio's chief of staff, told Kolb that he was out of business unless he paid 50 percent of his gross to Rocco DeGrazio, Roger's former business partner and Capone's new business agent on the north side. Although Kolb acted as bagman for Johnny Torrio, he despised Capone. Rather than work for him, Kolb called Roger and Tommy Touhy and by mid-year their partnership was in place. It was a simple arrangement: Kolb was the money man, Roger was business manager and Tommy was the muscle.
   It was Kolb who encouraged Touhy to move his operation out to the suburbs, largely because his brothers were already operating in the area and because Kolb understood that peace would never reign in Chicago as long as prohibition was in force. But Kolb also held considerable clout with the new County Sheriff, Charles Graydon, who had owned an ice packing business several years before. The brothers knew Kolb was right: peace would never reign in Chicago's underworld with so many different-and violent-street gangs vying for a limited amount of business. But that wasn't the case out in the rural northern portion of the county. In fact, when the brothers first started peddling the syndicate's beer they were stunned at the amount of business, both existing and potential, that was out there. Better yet, there was barely any competition for the market and there were scores of people willing to operate speakeasies if Kolb, who was worth a million in cash, put up the money to open them.
   By 1926, the Touhy brothers and Matt Kolb were operational in suburban Des Plains, a small but prosperous community where they started a cooper shop, brewery and wort plant. They expanded that to ten fermenting plants, working round the clock, each plant being a small brewery in itself with its own refrigeration system and ice-making machine with a bottling plant. The investment paid off. By the end of the year, the partners were selling 1,000 barrels of beer a week at $55 a barrel with a production cost of $4.50 a barrel.
   They sold their beer to 200 roadhouses outside of Chicago, mostly in far western Cook and Will County, north to the Wisconsin Lake region. Richer then ever, they hired more muscle men and with Tommy Touhy leading the assault, the brothers punched, shot and sold their way into a considerable portion of the upper northwest region of the city, "Our business"
  Roger said, "was scattered over a lot of mileage. A barrel here and a barrel there. Nobody realized that Matt and I were grossing about $1,000,000 a year from beer alone....I didn't become a giant in the racket, but you might say I was one of the biggest midgets who ever scoffed at the Volstead law."
   Since making wort-the main ingredient for beer as well as bread-was legal, Roger and Kolb claimed their entire operation was a bakery since "I was producing enough wort for all the bread baked in a dozen states. It was a big enterprise and I paid fifteen cents tax on every gallon I made."
   To counter Chicago's off-beer season-the winter months-they set up a slot machine business, placing 225 machines in gas stations, dance halls and chicken dinner stands. 'The only way to make money faster" he said, "is to have a license to counterfeit bills."
   They kept the local politicians happy, aside from bribing them outright, by doling out 18,000 free bottles of beer every week through one of Kolb's underlings, Joe Goebel of Morton Grove. The County President, Anton Cermak not only took the beer which he resold or gave away to the party faithful, but had Touhy print his name and picture on the front label.
   To keep the cost of police protection low, always a priority with the Touhys, they hired off-duty Cook County highway patrolmen. "Our local law," Roger wrote, "was mostly Cook County Highway Patrol. I figured out a way to keep the roads open for us, with top priority for our beer trucks. Whenever we had a job open as a truck driver or what not, I hired a cop right away from the highway patrol to fill it...we paid no man less than $100 a week, which was more than triple what the patrol guys got for longer hours."


"Terrible Tommy"




   Sometime around 1915 "Terrible Tommy" O'Connor brought Tommy Touhy, and his brothers, Johnny, Eddie and Joe into the fold of organized crime.  O'Connor was an interesting character. Both he and his brother, "Darling Dave" O'Connor, once studied for the priesthood in their native Ireland. Terrible Tommy ended up as a graduate of the Valley Gang. Many even say that he was the true leader of the gang before Druggan and Lake converted it into a Capone satellite.
   The O'Connors were primarily burglars, and, like the Touhy brothers, ran a taxi service as their cover since it allowed them a legitimate reason for being in any neighborhood at any time of the day or night. It was the O'Connors who introduced Tommy and the older Touhy boys to their true love, nitroglycerin. The Touhy boys used nitro to blow safes while they were active criminals between 1900 and 1924.
   O'Connor was also dubbed "Lucky Tommy" because he seemed to always get away. But Tommy's luck ended one muggy Chicago night, when he and others burgled the safe at the Illinois Central Station and in the process somebody shot and killed the night watchman, Dennis Tierney, an off-duty Chicago policemen.
   Although O'Connor and a hood named Jimmy Howard escaped, one of O'Connor's men, Harry Emerson, was captured. Emerson informed the police that it was O'Connor who fired the fatal shot that killed young Officer Tierney. He offered to tell that story in court in exchange for consideration and the State's Attorney agreed.
   On November 12, 1919, O'Connor was arrested on robbery charges and promptly offered to cut a deal with the police. He would finger Harry Emerson as the cop killer but the States Attorney turned down Tommy's offer. O'Connor, who had dozens of childhood friends on the force, heard about the deal that Emerson had cut and decided that Emerson had to die before he went to trial.
   O'Connor offered $200 to a childhood friend named Jimmy Chjerin if Chjerin would take the money to a hood named "Big Joe" Moran as a down payment for the assassination of Harry Emerson. Chjerin refused the offer, telling O'Connor that he had promised his father he would go straight.
   "The Peacock of the underworld," as the papers called Chjerin, was a tough guy with a long record which included a stint at Bidwell Prison. He got away with most of his minor crimes because the cops liked him, and because his father Dominick Chjerin was a municipal court bailiff and saw most of the beat cops several times a week. The Peacock's father tried to keep his son out of trouble but when that failed, he fixed the records for him or called in a favor from the cops to let his son walk away from a charge.
   But the cops and judges were growing tired of looking the other way. Jimmy the Peacock, they said, was out of control. Then Jimmy impregnated his girlfriend. In an effort to do the right thing he married her. When their child was born Jimmy the Peacock swore to his father and wife and infant son that he would change his ways and go straight. This is why he turned down Tommy O'Connor's orders to take the murder money to Big Joe Moran. The only problem was that O'Connor didn't take disobedience in the ranks lightly. O'Connor was worried that the next time Jimmy the Peacock got into trouble he might tell the cops what O'Connor had asked him to do.
   The Peacock didn't worry about it very much. The cops had O'Connor on a rock-solid charge of murder with an eyewitness.
   Then, friends bailed out Terrible Tommy O'Connor.
   On January 21, 1919, Jimmy Chjerin was sitting in the back seat of a stolen Model-T Ford with Tommy O'Connor. A Valley hood, Louie Miller, was sitting in the front seat. The three of them were laughing and joking when suddenly O'Connor stopped laughing, turned to Jimmy the Peacock and pumped three shots from an army service revolver into the young man's temple. Jimmy the Peacock died immediately. O'Connor barked at Miller to drive to Stickney, a town just south of Chicago and find an empty ditch where they would dump the body. Miller did as he was told.
   Six months later Jimmy The Peacock's young widow turned on the gas in her coldwater flat, killing herself and her infant daughter and Jimmy the Peacock's father swore revenge against O'Connor. Using his own criminal connections, Jimmy's father had O'Connor's driver, Louie Miller, kidnapped from a Montrose Avenue saloon and brought to police headquarters where, after a beating, he swore that he had seen Tommy O'Connor gun down Jimmy the Peacock. Detectives picked up Tommy O'Connor and booked him for murder.
   On January 8, 1921, acting on a tip from the Chicago Tribune, the police grabbed Louie Miller at his sister's home. He was wearing only underwear and was clinging to the edge of the second floor window when the police dragged him inside and hauled him downtown for another beating and more questioning. Again Miller gave a sworn statement that it was Tommy O'Connor who killed Jimmy the Peacock and once again the cops arrested O'Connor for Jimmy the Peacock's murder. This time they had him. But O'Connor was able to post the $45,000 bail, which was the largest bail ever required in Chicago at that time. O'Connor disappeared as soon as he was released.
   On March 23, 1921 Detective Sergeant Patrick O'Neill got a tip that O'Connor was hiding out at the home of his brother-in-law, William Foley, at 6415 South Washtenaw Avenue. Five detectives circled the house and O'Neill called inside for Terrible Tommy to surrender. O'Connor burst through the door, guns blazing and yelled "Well, I'll get one of you anyway!"
   Officer O'Neill was standing in the center of the yard and was taken off guard by the suddenness of the attack. O'Connor cut him down before he could point the pistol in his hand. Detectives Tom McShane, Joe Ronan and William Fenn started shooting the very second O'Connor raced out the door and assumed that they shot O'Neill by mistake. Badly rattled the detectives stood over O'Neill's body weeping "Joe! Joe! Oh God!"
   O'Neill would lie in his own blood for fifteen minutes, twisting in agony before the ambulance arrived and rushed him to St. Bernard's hospital where he died. Meanwhile, Tommy O'Connor leaped over a fence at the rear of his sister's yard and ran down 63rd and Western where, at gunpoint he leaped into a checkered cab and was driven a mile before leaping out. He commandeered another car driven by William Condonn who drove O'Connor to Stickney where one of his men ran a saloon. There he was provided with clothes and food.
   The search for O'Connor was one of the greatest manhunts in the history of the city. The search by an angry police force went on for days in the city and the suburbs, but the cops came up empty. Then a report arrived that O'Connor had been seen at the Crystal Palace dance hall on the far south side. Cops raided the place while O'Connor was dancing the shimmy with some girls.
   "Throw 'em up, Tommy!" the cops shouted.
   There was chaos. The hall emptied quickly, some of the dancers were pressed against the wall and searched but O'Connor once again slipped away to freedom. It was rumored that O'Connor was dressed in women's clothes so as to make an easy escape.
   The cops finally caught up with O'Connor on July 25, 1921. He was arrested with a Valley hood named Jimmy Gallagher in Minneapolis after an unsuccessful attempt at robbing a Pullman car on the Chicago Great Western passenger train bound for Omaha. As an extra embarrassment, the most wanted man in America was captured by a switch operator named W.L. Woods who was only armed with a hammer at the time.
   A squad of heavily armed detectives was sent to St. Paul to bring O'Connor back to Chicago. It was an illegal transport, but since O'Connor was a two- time cop killer, no policeman in Chicago or St. Paul really cared about his civil rights. However, the state of Minnesota was charging O'Connor with an earlier payroll robbery and wanted him to stay in their state to stand charges. But the Chicago cops took O'Connor out of the city with such speed that the City Attorney, Floyd Olson, formally charged the Chicago Chief of Detectives with kidnapping. He sent three carloads of his detectives to bring O'Connor back but they were turned away at the city border.
   On the way back to Illinois, O'Connor told the cops "It wasn't my revolver that killed him. He [Officer O'Neill] was shot down by his own pals. It was a mistake of course, but they shot him and after that mistake they ran away and put the blame on me. Do you wonder why I ran away? What chance did I have with every policeman in the city out to get me dead or alive? Me, the con, only a hundred and thirty-eight pounds? I never shot anybody, at least not to kill, in my life."
   He said the same thing in court but nobody was listening then either. On September 24, 1921, O'Connor was found guilty of first degree murder and was sentenced to be hanged. The date of execution was set for December 15, 1921. When the judge read the verdict, there was a cry from O'Connor's father who was sitting with his other son, Darling Dave. Since his time working as a hood with Tommy, "Darling Dave" O'Connor had become a LaSalle Street investment broker. However, he lost his license for immoral conduct in 1919. "It's the wrongest [sic] verdict in the world," he told reporters about his brother's sentence, "we couldn't get justice, we couldn't get justice."
   On October 15, 1921, Judge Kickham Scanlan denied O'Connor a new trial and the decision and the death sentence stayed. O'Connor was ordered to be held in the criminal courts building until his hanging. From his cell there, he could hear the scaffolding of the hangman's platform being built.
   On December 15, 1921, a man was seen driving his car to a street outside of the criminal courts building where O'Connor was being held. The man parked and then walked up and down the street outside the jail and then tossed a package into an open window. Most believe it was the guns O'Connor would use to escape that day.
   O'Connor may not have needed the guns since it's commonly agreed that either he bribed his way out of his death cell or was simply let free by guards; one way or the other, his daring daylight escape was spectacular.
   Tommy Touhy, who hung out with Darling Dave O'Connor at a saloon on Hoyne and Madison Streets in the Valley, boasted openly about providing the two guns for Tommy O'Connor's fabulous escape from prison. He even claimed that he had engineered the entire incident. However, another story was that the guns were smuggled into the jail by way of a pork chop sandwich. The guns were intended for another prisoner, but the jail's cook, William Fogarty, a convict himself, gave the weapons to Tommy's cellmate, a man named Charles McDermott.
   Since it was a Sunday the prisoners were allowed to walk in the yard for their exercise. The guard on duty in the yard was David Strause who later reported that LaPorte and O'Connor stood up close to him while O'Connor said he was ill and needed a pass to the hospital.
   When the guard bent over to write the pass, Laporte and O'Connor jumped him from behind and then O'Connor whipped out a pistol and stuck it into the guard's ribs while Darrow took his keys.
   The other prisoners in the yard saw the escape and crowded around but O'Connor turned his gun on them and ordered them back into their cell blocks. Then, O'Connor and his four men ran down the stairs and overpowered guards Charles Moore, Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Wetta. They were all bound and gagged but not before Wetta managed to yell out, "Prisoner escaping!" alerting the other guards on duty.
   On the run now, the prisoners scaled a wall by jumping on a shed and then over the 9-foot wall. Laporte, a heavy set man, broke both of his ankles as he fell and was quickly recaptured.
   Darrow and McDermott fled in a different direction than O'Connor. They were recaptured by the police within a half hour. O'Connor escaped by leaping onto a passing car's running board. As he jumped, the clerk of the jail, Austin Jacobson, grabbed his coattail but let go when O'Connor spun around and pointed the gun at him. After the car turned the corner Tommy O'Connor was gone.
   When questioned by police about the escape, Dave O'Connor, Tommy's father said "We knew the power of God would save Tommy and show the police and all the people that were against him that he was innocent. We're going to have a merry Christmas at our home now."
   On December 17, 1921, the body of a man was found under a bridge three miles north of Palmyra, Wisconsin in rural Jefferson County. He had been shot with a .32-caliber revolver. The police theorized that O'Connor had forced his way into the man's car and then made him drive out across the state line. There, O'Connor found it more expedient to kill the man rather than face a kidnapping charge. The body was stripped of its clothes and wallet and left face down in the mud.
   Then a note arrived from Milwaukee in Tommy O'Connor's hand "Chief: Don't send anybody after me. I am innocent. Much obliged to Struass. I am gone but my friends will reward him/Good luck to you all. I will be posted by friends and will shoot the first man who comes near me."
   The Chicago police assumed O'Connor had hidden out in St. Paul and then slipped over the Canadian boarder before traveling to Ireland. However the last place that Tommy O'Connor was seen alive was in that tiny village of Elkhorn, Wisconsin, on December 10, 1922.