Saturday, March 2, 2019

Odds & Ends

Yes, Capone had visitors while at Alcatraz
Alcatraz inmates were allowed one visit a month from their immediate family, or by other approved visitors. Like other families who lived far from Alcatraz, the Capones would often visit the last day of one month and the first day of the next, combining two short visits into one longer stay.

No, Capone was never paroled
On October 24, 1931, Capone was convicted of tax evasion and sentenced to 10 years in Federal Prison. He’d previously been sentenced to 1 year in prison for contempt of court for not showing up for a federal grand jury investigation. The total sentences of 11 years were to be served concurrently.

Capone unsuccessfully appealed his tax-evasion conviction to the U.S. supreme court and began serving his sentence in Atlanta Penitentiary on May 4, 1932. He was released from prison early, on November 16, 1939, but not by parole. Instead, the expiration of Capone’s sentence was governed by a time reduction for “good time allowances,” in accordance with the Judicial Administration Code of Federal Regulation (click on attachment to expand; see “2.30 Duration of period of community supervision”). Parole was not in effect for prisoners sentenced before July 29, 1932. Capone had been sentenced two months before that date.


No, Capone did not receive special privileges in any prison
This letter, dated June 14, 1934, was written by Al Capone to warden A.C. Aderhold of Atlanta penitentiary. The letter may seem to be a request for Capone’s special privileges to be returned, but that is not what he is asking. Rather, he is hoping that the warden will restore extended visitation arrangements once available for the family members of all prisoners living far away from Atlanta. These two documents explain the penitentiary rules.

AUDIO: Two Inmate’s Stories
“A fight with Al Capone,” and “Alcatraz, a good place to do time”

The following audio recordings are presented with the permission of David Ward, professor emeritus of sociology, University of Minnesota. Professor Ward was given a grant by the Federal Bureau of Prisons to study former prisoners of Alcatraz penitentiary.

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