Alphonse Capone, better known as Al Capone or Scarface, was an infamous gangster who ruled over Chicago’s organized crime during the second half of the 1920s. Born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1899 to two Italian immigrants, young Al never respond- ed well to authority. Facing a life of low-paying jobs, he joined a street gang and began a life of crime.
After moving to Chicago to avoid a murder charge, Capone eventually became the head of Chicago’s crime families. With his mob at its prime, Capone bought off city officials and virtually ran the streets of Chicago. On February 14, 1929 he ordered the shooting of Bugs Moran, a rival gangster. In what is known as the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre, Capone’s men killed a group of seven people, but Moran was not in the group. The much-publicized event prompted law officials to renew efforts to tackle the problem of organized crime.
Unable to convict Capone on any mob-related criminal acts, the federal govern- ment began looking at other ways to convict him. The Internal Revenue Service gathered tax evasion information on Capone. On November 24, 1929, Capone was sentenced to eleven years in Federal prison for tax evasion. He was jailed at Alcatraz from 1934 to 1939. Capone’s health was never the same after leaving jail. He died of a stroke and pneumonia on January 25, 1947.