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A second gun in the attempted assassination of FDR, Florida, Feb 1933?


Paul Rigby
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From Kenneth Allsop’s The Bootleggers: The Story of Chicago’s Prohibition Era (London: Arrow Books, July 1970 reprint), pp. 243-4:

“It has always been accepted that Cermak’s death was accidental, that he was hit by a bullet fired by Guiseppi Zangara, a deranged anarchist, who was later electrocuted. No, said Touhy. In the crowd near Zanagara was another armed man – a Capone killer. In the flurry of shots six people were hit – but the bullet that struck Cermak was a .45, and not from a .32-calibre pistol used by Zangara, and was fired by an unknown Capone man who took advantage of the confusion to accomplish his mission.”

Was an autopsy performed on Cermak?

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From Kenneth Allsop’s The Bootleggers: The Story of Chicago’s Prohibition Era (London: Arrow Books, July 1970 reprint), pp. 243-4:
“It has always been accepted that Cermak’s death was accidental, that he was hit by a bullet fired by Guiseppi Zangara, a deranged anarchist, who was later electrocuted. No, said Touhy. In the crowd near Zanagara was another armed man – a Capone killer. In the flurry of shots six people were hit – but the bullet that struck Cermak was a .45, and not from a .32-calibre pistol used by Zangara, and was fired by an unknown Capone man who took advantage of the confusion to accomplish his mission.”

Did Allsop provide any citation for his claim about the bullet being from a 45, was from Roger Touhy? When did Touhy (who died in 1959 supposedly say this and to whom? How did he come to know this? Why would such a plot use weapons of different caliber?

Was an autopsy performed on Cermak?

I would presume so.

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From Kenneth Allsop’s The Bootleggers: The Story of Chicago’s Prohibition Era (London: Arrow Books, July 1970 reprint), pp. 243-4:
“It has always been accepted that Cermak’s death was accidental, that he was hit by a bullet fired by Guiseppi Zangara, a deranged anarchist, who was later electrocuted. No, said Touhy. In the crowd near Zanagara was another armed man – a Capone killer. In the flurry of shots six people were hit – but the bullet that struck Cermak was a .45, and not from a .32-calibre pistol used by Zangara, and was fired by an unknown Capone man who took advantage of the confusion to accomplish his mission.”

Did Allsop provide any citation for his claim about the bullet being from a 45, was from Roger Touhy? When did Touhy (who died in 1959 supposedly say this and to whom? How did he come to know this? Why would such a plot use weapons of different caliber?

Was an autopsy performed on Cermak?

I would presume so.

All good questions. In order:

a) Allsop does not provide a citation for the .45 calibre - frustratingly. Hence my question marks.

B) Ibid., p.243: "After Touhy's death, Saul D. Alinsky, the sociologist who was a member of the Joliet Prison classification board at the time of Touhy's commitment there, came forward and made public a story that he said had 'been commonly known for many years in many circles in Chicago'..."

c) Touhy, a gangster, claimed to have been in alliance with Cermak to defeat the Thompson-Capone alliance.

d) Use of different calibre bullets/handguns - this would only be risky if autopsies were common and compotent (or, at least, not subject to political interference a la JFK's). Hence my question about Cermak's. I don't know the answer.

Paul

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All good questions. In order:

a) Allsop does not provide a citation for the .45 calibre - frustratingly. Hence my question marks.

It make's you wonder doesn't it?

:cheers Ibid., p.243: "After Touhy's death, Saul D. Alinsky, the sociologist who was a member of the Joliet Prison classification board at the time of Touhy's commitment there, came forward and made public a story that he said had 'been commonly known for many years in many circles in Chicago'..."

c) Touhy, a gangster, claimed to have been in alliance with Cermak to defeat the Thompson-Capone alliance.

So the info is at best 3rd hand 'X' told Touhy who told Alinsky who told Allsop, assuming none of them were making it up or misunderstood what they were told there is the question of who told 'X' or did he have direct knowledge?

d) Use of different calibre bullets/handguns - this would only be risky if autopsies were common and compotent (or, at least, not subject to political interference a la JFK's). Hence my question about Cermak's. I don't know the answer.

Use of different caliber guns would be an unnecessary risk/complication

The 1st hit of a Google search for cermak autopsy yields the following

“…autopsy on Mayor Cermak by Drs Meyer and Tice (made public after Zangara’s electrocution) which stated that the cause of Mayor Cermak’s…”

That was from a paper published the following year:

John Joseph Kindred, “Insanity in its Medico-Legal Relations to Some Notable Criminal and Civil Cases”, American Journal Psychiatry, July 1934; 91: 137-146

The 1st page of the paper (which doesn’t contain the quote) can be seen on the page linked below. If you are willing to part with $ 7 you can read the whole thing.

http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/cgi/pdf_extract/91/1/137

In any case an autopsy was performed we even know:

- the last names of the doctors

- approximately when it was released. Zangara was executed March 20, 1933 the paper was presented at a scientific meeting held May 29 – June 2 that same year

- were and approximately when it was performed Cermak died in Miami on March 6 http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9022145/Anton-J-Cermak

Presumably you can get a copy by filing an FOIA request or perhaps even by asking the Dade County Medical Examiner’s Office though they make no mention of how access records from before 1956 and say you need to go there on the page linked below.

http://www.miamidade.gov/medexam/transcrip...ords_bureau.asp

Edited by Len Colby
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So the info is at best 3rd hand 'X' told Touhy who told Alinsky who told Allsop, assuming none of them were making it up or misunderstood what they were told there is the question of who told 'X' or did he have direct knowledge?

Fair summary. In answer - I don't know.

Use of different caliber guns would be an unnecessary risk/complication

The 1st hit of a Google search for cermak autopsy yields the following

“…autopsy on Mayor Cermak by Drs Meyer and Tice (made public after Zangara’s electrocution) which stated that the cause of Mayor Cermak’s…”

That was from a paper published the following year:

John Joseph Kindred, “Insanity in its Medico-Legal Relations to Some Notable Criminal and Civil Cases”, American Journal Psychiatry, July 1934; 91: 137-146

The 1st page of the paper (which doesn’t contain the quote) can be seen on the page linked below. If you are willing to part with $ 7 you can read the whole thing.

http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/cgi/pdf_extract/91/1/137

In any case an autopsy was performed we even know:

- the last names of the doctors

- approximately when it was released. Zangara was executed March 20, 1933 the paper was presented at a scientific meeting held May 29 – June 2 that same year

- were and approximately when it was performed Cermak died in Miami on March 6 http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9022145/Anton-J-Cermak

Presumably you can get a copy by filing an FOIA request or perhaps even by asking the Dade County Medical Examiner’s Office though they make no mention of how access records from before 1956 and say you need to go there on the page linked below.

http://www.miamidade.gov/medexam/transcrip...ords_bureau.asp

Excellent info, for which constructive response you have my thanks. I'll pursue later this week and update.

Paul

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