Eliot Ness

Eliot Ness

Stories about Eliot Ness

    Law Officer. He was the Federal Bureau of Ivestigations lawman who brought gangster Al Capone to justice. Born in Chicago, Illinois, he was educated at the University of Chicago, graduating in 1925 with a degree in business and law. He initially worked as an investigator for the Retail Credit Company of Atlanta, Georgia, working in their field office in Chicago, where he conducted credit investigations on persons applying to banks for credit loans. In his spare hours, he took courses in criminology at the University of Chicago, eventually earning a Masters Degree in Criminology. In 1926, his sister's husband, Alexander Jamie, an FBI agent, influenced him to enter law enforcement, and Eliot joined the Treasury Department, working for the Bureau of Prohibition in Chicago. Ness was assigned the job of getting Capone into jail. With corruption among law-enforcement agencies rampant, Ness decided to create a reliable team, ultimately selecting just 9 men for the team. Raids against stills and breweries were quick to follow, and when Capone tried to bribe Ness's agents, Eliot seized the opportunity for some favorable publicity, leading the press to nickname the team "The Untouchables." In 1931, his team was able to get Capone convicted of 22 counts of Income Tax evasion and over 5,000 violations of the Volstead Act. Capone was sentenced to 11 years in prison. In 1933, Ness was promoted to Chief Investigator of the Prohibition Bureau in Chicago, and a year later, for all of Ohio. When Prohibition ended in 1935, he then took a job as Director of Public Safety in Cleveland, Ohio. He cleaned out police corruption in the city and attacked illegal gambling. However, his failure to find a serial killer the press called the Cleveland Torso Murderer overshadowed his success, and in 1942, he was involved in an auto accident while intoxicated; the press's criticism caused him to resign his job. Moving to Washington, DC, Ness then worked for the federal government, but in 1944, he left to become Chairman of the Diebold Corporation, a security safe manufacturing company in Ohio. In 1947, he ran unsuccessfully for mayor of Cleveland, and went to work for the North Ridge Industrial Company in Coudersport, Pennsylvania. His book, "The Untouchables" was published shortly before his death of a heart attack in 1957. On September 10, 1997, the ashes of Eliot Ness, his wife, Betty, and their son were returned to Cleveland, Ohio, where he had worked for so long to make a better city

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    Created:
    20 Apr 2014
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    22 Feb 2015
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