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Why John Dillinger Is Being Exhumed

The exhumation is loosely set for September 16 in Indianapolis
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 1, 2019 12:22 PM CDT
This file photo shows Indiana Reformatory booking shots of John Dillinger, stored in the state archives, and shows the notorious gangster as a 21-year-old.   (AP Photo/The Indianapolis Star, Charlie Nye, File)

(Newser) – The plan to exhume John Dillinger's body is real, and could be spectacular—if it uncovers evidence of the Depression-era bank robber living beyond his reported death. So goes the suggestion by a man and woman who identify Dillinger as their uncle and say his 1934 demise was greatly exaggerated, WLS-TV reports. "I have been presented with evidence that demonstrates that the individual who was shot and killed at the Biograph Theatre in Chicago on July 22, 1934 may not in fact have been my uncle, John H. Dillinger," according to affidavits signed by Mike Thompson and Carol Thompson Griffith. With the FBI saying its agents indeed killed Dillinger, the media is trying to sort things out:

  • A poor match: The unsettling evidence "includes the non-match of his eye color, the ear shape and protrusion from the head, the fingerprints not matching, the existence of a heart condition, and the apparent non-match of the anterior teeth," per the affidavits.

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