Arrest of Francis 'Two Gun' Crowley

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

House call

In the spring of 1931 gangster Vincent Coll and a contingent of disgruntled gunmen broke off from Dutch Schultz's gang and waged war against their former boss. Over the course of the summer the Dutchman's boys started popping up dead. Eighty-years ago today however, Schultz gunmen delivered a crippling blow to their foe.

Coll gang members Louis and Fiore Basile and Patsy Del Greco (center of photo) were holed up in one of the gangs Bronx hideouts. With them was a man named Joseph Paronne (whether or not he was part of the gang is unknown) nad a couple of women and some children. At approximately 9:30pm the doorbell rang. One of the gang answered the door and four or five gunmen pushed their way into the apartment and sprayed the room with gunfire. Del Greco and the Basile Brothers were the main targets and took the majority of the lead. Patsy was killed with three shots and Louis Basile with four. His brother Fiore was severely wounded with bullets over the heart and in the left arm. Trying to escape, one of the women ran into the line of fire and was killed when a bullet pierced her head. The other woman and Paronne received non-life threatening wounds. The killer’s main target however had not been on the premises for two days. How the killers found out where the Coll gang was has never been ascertained but chances are there was a traitor in the midst.


John D. said...

Traitor, eh? Makes me wonder if that woman wasn't killed by accident. Maybe she had outlived her usefulness to Dutch and his gang.

Pat Downey said...

Possibly, but when the Mad Dog himself bought it a week later, the guy with him was given a free pass to walk out of the drug store.