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Relatives look to establish if body in cemetery is gangster John Dillinger’s

They want to establish if he really was killed by FBI agents in 1934.

FILE – 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. Records show that Dillinger was admitted into the reformatory on Sept. 16, 1924. The body of the 1930s gangster is set to be exhumed from an Indianapolis cemetery more than 85 years after he was killed by FBI agents. The Indiana State Department of Health approved a permit July 3, 2019, that Dillinger’s nephew, Michael C. Thompson, sought to have the body exhumed from Crown Hill Cemetery and reinterred there.(AP Photo/The Indianapolis Star, Charlie Nye, File)
FILE – 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. Records show that Dillinger was admitted into the reformatory on Sept. 16, 1924. The body of the 1930s gangster is set to be exhumed from an Indianapolis cemetery more than 85 years after he was killed by FBI agents. The Indiana State Department of Health approved a permit July 3, 2019, that Dillinger’s nephew, Michael C. Thompson, sought to have the body exhumed from Crown Hill Cemetery and reinterred there.(AP Photo/The Indianapolis Star, Charlie Nye, File)

Relatives of 1930s gangster John Dillinger want his body exhumed from an Indianapolis cemetery because they question whether he was actually the man FBI agents killed in Chicago in 1934.

The Indiana State Department of Health released affidavits signed by Mike Thompson and Carol Thompson Griffith, who say Dillinger was their uncle.

They want the body exhumed for a forensic analysis.

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Indiana Reformatory booking shots of John Dillinger (Charlie Nye/AP)

The Chicago Sun-Times and WLS-TV in Chicago first reported on the affidavits supporting an exhumation permit.

The relatives say they have received “evidence” that the person who was killed at the Biograph Theatre in Chicago on July 22 1934, may not have been Dillinger.

The permit was approved in July.

A&E Networks says the exhumation will be covered as part of a documentary for The History Channel.

Both say in the affidavits supporting an exhumation and reburial permit the state agency approved in July that they have received “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”.

In their affidavits, both say that “evidence” includes that the eye colour of the man killed outside that theatre did not match Dillinger’s eye colour, that his ears were shaped differently, that the fingerprints were not a match and that he had a heart condition.

They say they want the body exhumed and subjected to a forensic analysis and possibly DNA testing “in order to make a positive identification”.

“It is my belief and opinion that it is critical to learn whether Dillinger lived beyond his reported date of death of July 22 1934.

“If he was not killed on that date, I am interested in discovering what happened to him, where he lived, whether he had children, and whether any such children or grandchildren are living today,” both say in the documents.

PA

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