Sunday, May 16, 2010
Legendary Chicago Mob Hit Man, Harry “The Hook” Harry Aleman, 69 Has Died
Galesburg, IL—Serving 100 years for a 1973 union official hit gave Harry Aleman a miserable but well deserved life. An Illinois Department of corrections spokesman announced that Aleman died of an undisclosed illness while in prison here.
Aleman’s life both in and outside of prison is a first rate Hollywood tale. Nobody but Aleman knew for sure but the hit man was blamed for well more than a dozen killings.
If the mob wanted you rubbed out they sent the ubiquitous Mr. Aleman who’d unceremoniously kill you. Several of Aleman’s victims were shot dead as they waited to be served in their favorite Chicago area lunchtime eatery.
Others were dispatched by being shot in the head with a .22 pistol equipped with a silencer at or near their homes.
Because of police and judicial corruption Aleman was free to kill again and again.
In 1972 Teamster steward, William Logan was shot-gunned to death. Part of the motivation to kill Logan may have been because of Logan’s in-laws wanted to end abuse and a child custody dispute between Logan and his wife.
Harry was arrested and indicted for the Logan killing after he was identified by less than perfect witnesses and tried for the crime. Aleman was tried by the late Cook County Judge, Frank Wilson at a bench trial. Most fixed cases in Chicago never involved juries. This case was fixed by Chicago cop turned fixer-lawyer, thrned government witness Bob Cooley for a mere cash payment of $10,000.00 to the judge.
Cooley who’d later write a book, When Corruption Was King, simply told FBI and Justice Department officials just how he was able to fix the case. That book is currently in development as a motion picture in Hollywood.
Aleman who was actually acquitted was tried again for the murder and this time convicted. The courts would later rule that there was no double jeopardy since fixing the first trial guaranteed the outcome.
The irony here was had that murder case gone to a jury the weak evidence most likely would have caused a jury to acquit anyway without a fix.
In 1990 outside his Peoria, Arizona vacation home Judge Wilson shot himself dead in an apparent suicide over Bob Cooley’s revelations. The hapless judge was facing ruination and a certain term in a federal prison for fixing the case.
Cooley was the basis for numerous federal prosecutions under Operation Gambit that dealt a heavy blow to a significant portion of the Daley/Burke Crime Family Cabal in Chicago.