In researching this genealogy, the author was surprised to discover a personal link to the Albany, New York, 1933 kidnapping of John O’Connell, Jr. — one of the crimes of the century. The O’Connells were prominent leaders in Albany, with connections all the way to the governor’s office.
To finance the crime, the kidnappers robbed the Rensselaer County Bank, leaving behind a dead cop and a town set on revenge. The investigation became so intense the mobster called Dutch Schultz murdered two suspects. The prime suspect, Manny Strewl, was beaten while in police custody.
This account closely reconstructs the crime based on now declassified FBI files and newspaper accounts of the day.
The foreman of the jury, the author’s grandfather, was handpicked by the O’Connell family.