restricted access 45 “Do You See This Gun?”
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245 Working on the theory that Benny Goldblatt was the weakest link in the chain of untold evidence, I laid a trap for him. I summoned him to the apartment. When he entered the door he was surprised and alarmed to find me sitting at a table on which lay a revolver, with a vacant chair before me. I beckoned him into that chair. Italked casuallyforawhile, atno timetaking myhandfrom the gun. I handled it carelessly, but at all times made sure he could look into the barrel. I made no threats, indicated no displeasure, but I was sure he was unpleasantly aware of the weapon in my hand. Benny kept glancing nervously at the gun, and finally couldn’t sit still in his chair. Automatically he would keep leaning out of range. “Benny,” I said finally, “do you see this gun?” “Hell, yes,” he exploded, “who wouldn’t? I wish you’d let the damn thing alone; you’re giving me the jitters.” Benny was on the witness stand and didn’t know it. “When I find the man who has the keys to the car Gus Winkeler was driving the day he was killed,” I continued as if I had not been interrupted , “I’m going to unload this thing in his filthy carcass.” “For God’s sake, Georgette,” he pleaded, livid with fear, “don’t do that. Put the gun down, Georgette, and I’ll talk to you.” “Okay,” I said, placing it within easy reach. “Get going.” “I’ve got the keys,” he announced. “I’ve had them all the time.” 45 “Do You See This Gun?” 246 al capone and his american boys “Getbusy,”IsaidthroughclenchedteethasIgrabbedthegunagain. “Explain that away before this thing goes off.” Goldblatt was standing and shaking in fear. “Don’t shoot,” he begged. “I didn’t drive Gus over there. Someone else did, and they gave me the keys later.” “Don’t hand me that stuff,” I said, resorting to a bluff. “I happen to know you left the Lincoln Park Arms with Gus.” “Yeah, that’s right, I did,” he stammered, backing toward the door, “but I left him.” “Sure you did,” I said in a low voice, pointing to the gun. “Sure you left him—after he got out of the car and someone filled him full of lead. Then you left him. Now get out of my sight, you dirty rat, and if I ever see you again, I’ll blow you to hell.” But I never did see him again. OnlyafewdayslaterIreceivedatelephonecallfromthemannamed Jack,sometimescalled“Schnozzle,”whohasbeenmentionedbefore.He was one of Gus’ most trusted employees. He said he wanted to see me, but since most of the boys were laying low I would have to meet him someplace, as he did not want to be seen. I agreed to meet him in Cicero. Jackhadalwaysbeenamysterytoeveryone,andIdonotbelievethat even Gus knew his last name. He never discussed his past. When I met him he was partially disguised, dressed in laborer’s clothing. “Georgette,” he began, “who do you think killed Gus?” “Why, Verne Miller,” I replied, since I had never revealed my real opinion to anyone. “You’re wrong,” he replied, “and we’ll prove it to you in a few weeks. Them damn Dagoes took him, and we can prove it. We’ve been watching Lefty Louie Campagna’s house, and we’ve found out plenty, but right now there’s nothing much we can do because Jack White and the rest of the American boys are hiding until the heat cools off. “But don’t you worry; we’ll get some of those Dagoes yet. Now you just watch yourself, and above all, be nice to Ralph Pierce—he’s dangerous. “Why,doyouknow,PiercetriedtoputGusonthespotthatSaturday he took him to the syndicate meeting, just before he was killed.” “Do You See This Gun?” 247 “Are you sure?” I gasped, as a flood of recollections swept over me. IrememberedhowanxiousPiercewastogetmy husbandawayfrom hisfriends!Irecalledmyownagitation,causedlargelybyPierce’sbehavior and the growing danger to my husband. “Positively,”hereplied,“andthey’dhavedoneittoobuttheycouldn’t get rid of the chauffeur. You ask Murphy what happened. He knows all about it.” When we parted I thanked Jack and promised to meet him the following week. As soon as I got home, I summoned the chauffeur. “Murphy,” I began, “you thought a lot of Gus, didn’t you?” “I sho’ did, Miz Gawge,” he said, starting to cry. “Mist’ Gus was the bes’ friend I evah had.” “Well, then Murphy,” I continued, “I want you to tell...


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Subject Headings

  • Crime -- Illinois -- Chicago -- History -- 20th century.
  • Murder -- Illinois -- Chicago -- History -- 20th century.
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