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INDIANAPOLIS - The body of John Dillinger, the notorious 1930s bank robber, will be exhumed from his Crown Hill Cemetery burial site in Indianapolis.
This month, the Indiana State Department of Health approved a request from Dillinger's nephew, Michael C. Thompson, to disinter the body and return it to its place at Crown Hill by Sept. 16.
There was no reason given for the request for exhumation
Aaron Seaman, general manager of Crown Hill, said they have not been contacted by the funeral home regarding the exhumation and a date has not been set. When reached by IndyStar Tuesday afternoon, Dillinger's great-nephew Travis Thompson said the family was declining to comment.
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Born in Indianapolis on June 22, 1903, John Herbert Dillinger Jr.'s family moved to Mooresville, where Dillinger committed his first recorded crime — a car theft.
Dillinger went from small-time crook to America's Most Wanted after a string of bank robberies and an ill-fated bank robbery left a police officer dead. His status as Public Enemy No. 1 made him a legend.
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On July 22, 1934, 15 FBI agents and members of the East Chicago Police Dept. killed John Dillinger as he left the Biograph Theatre in Chicago.
Dillinger's body was brought back to Mooresville, where nearly 10,000 people waited to view it. Funeral services were held at the home of his sister, Audrey Hancock, in Maywood. Dillinger is buried in Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis.
The Dillinger family had ordered two and a half tons of concrete placed on the coffin after it was reported that attempts might be made by "ghouls" to steal his body.
Not surprisingly, there have been theories that it was not John Dillinger who was killed outside the theater, but rather a double. Dillinger had dyed his hair, plucked his eyebrows to a fine line, wore a mustache and a scar on the left side of his face had apparently been removed by plastic surgery. His fingerprints had been removed by acid.
Follow Dawn Mitchell on Twitter: @dawn_mitchell61.
This article originally appeared on Indianapolis Star: John Dillinger's body to be exhumed from Crown Hill Cemetery