“After helping to put Al Capone behind bars, lawman Eliot Ness came to Cleveland, where he did battle with a vicious killer. ... Even Ness was stumped trying to apprehend the ‘torso murderer’ responsible for a series of ghoulish killings. ... The authors have done Ness justice." —Wall Street Journal
In 1934, the nation’s most legendary crime-fighter–fresh from taking on the greatest gangster in American history–arrived in Cleveland, a corrupt and dangerous town about to host a world's fair. It was to be his coronation, as well as the city's. Instead, terror descended, as headless bodies started turning up. The young detective, already battling the mob and crooked cops, found his drive to transform American policing subverted by a menace largely unknown to law enforcement: a serial murderer.
Eliot Ness's greatest case had begun.
Now, Max Allan Collins and A. Brad Schwartz–the acclaimed writing team behind Scarface and the Untouchable–uncover this lost crime epic, delivering a gripping and unforgettable nonfiction account based on decades of groundbreaking research.
Ness had risen to fame in 1931 for leading the “Untouchables,” which helped put Chicago’s Al Capone behind bars. As Cleveland's public safety director, in charge of the police and fire departments, Ness offered a radical new vision for better law enforcement. Crime-ridden and devastated by the Depression, Cleveland was preparing for a star-turn itself: in 1936, it would host the "Great Lakes Exposition," which would be visited by seven million people. Late in the summer of 1934, however, pieces of a woman’s body began washing up on the Lake Erie shore–first her ribs, then part of her backbone, then the lower half of her torso. The body count soon grew to five, then ten, then more, all dismembered in gruesome ways.
As Ness zeroed in on a suspect–a doctor tied to a prominent political familypowerful forces thwarted his quest for justice. In this battle between a flawed hero and a twisted monster–by turns horror story, political drama, and detective thrillerCollins and Schwartz find an American tragedy, classic in structure, epic in scope.
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.70(d)|
About the Author
A. Brad Schwartz is the author of Broadcast Hysteria: Orson Welles's War of the Worlds and the Art of Fake News, based in part on research from his senior thesis at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He cowrote a documentary about the War of the Worlds broadcast for the PBS series American Experience. He is currently a doctoral candidate in American history at Princeton University.
Table of Contents
Coauthor's Note xiii
Prologue: Untouchable 1
Part 1 Public Safety
Chapter 1 The Dark City 9
Chapter 2 An Impossible Mission 21
Chapter 3 Showdown 35
Chapter 4 The Mad Butcher 51
Chapter 5 This Is a Raid! 63
Chapter 6 The Butcher's Meat 75
Chapter 7 Perfect Victims 89
Part 2 The Unknowns
Chapter 8 Hero of the Hour 103
Chapter 9 A Modern Dracula 121
Chapter 10 Who Will Be Next? 141
Chapter 11 Doctor X 155
Chapter 12 Butcher Paper 169
Chapter 13 Good Riddance 183
Chapter 14 Mystery Man 197
Chapter 15 Right-Hand Man 213
Chapter 16 A New Suspect 229
Chapter 17 The Right Man? 237
Chapter 18 That's the Man 247
Chapter 19 Whatever Became of Eliot Ness? 263
Chapter 20 The Heat Is On 275
Chapter 21 EN-3 285
Part 3 Private Sector
Chapter 22 Social Evil 301
Chapter 23 The Old Restlessness 319
Chapter 24 Vote Yes for Ness 327
Chapter 25 Head Man Ness 339
Chapter 26 You Should Write a Book 355
Chapter 27 Valuable Citizen 363
Epilogue: A Modern Myth 377
An Informal Afterword 397
Acknowledgments: A Tip of the Fedora 401
Source Notes 413