Bryan Burrough Q&A #14

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Bryan Burrough Q&A #14

Unread postby Liz » Sun Mar 30, 2008 9:52 am

ONBC: If Dillinger had been born in 1963, instead of 1903, how do you think his life would be different?

Bryan Burrough: Well, surprisingly, we’re living in a new golden age for bank robbers. There are guys out there who have robbed thirty and forty banks, and still haven’t been caught. If Dillinger robbed banks today, though, he would do it anonymously. Once you’re known to the FBI, you’re pretty much done. If Dillinger robbed banks today, maybe he’d been known as The Leaping Bandit or something, for his propensity to vault bank-teller cages.


***LIZ NOTE***: Be sure to check out the latest comment from Bryan in an email to me, which I just posted on Q&A #9.
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Unread postby Parlez » Sun Mar 30, 2008 11:25 am

The Leaping Bandit - I like that! :lol:
I just watched the movie, 'Catch Me If You Can', on TV last night ~ the true story of a young man who became a master forger and literally gave the Feds a run for their money. He eventually got caught but had his prison sentence reduced by going to work for the 'good guys', helping them find similar sophisticated forgeries and forgers.

I wonder, if Dillinger was around and pulling bank jobs in modern times, would something similar be arranged with the FBI? I doubt someone with such a charismatic (and dramatic) personality would want to remain anonymous. That didn't seem to be part of Johnnie's m.o. back in the day, although given the ineptitude of the people chasing him, the temptation to become flamboyant was probably greater then than it would be today.

Good question ~ lots of food for thought! :cool:
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Unread postby sleepy » Sun Mar 30, 2008 6:07 pm

Just a side note...the guy from Catch Me if you Can is from my home town. The local papers did interviews with him, when the movie came out.
Funny ol' world, innit?

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Unread postby Parlez » Sun Mar 30, 2008 6:24 pm

sleepy wrote:Just a side note...the guy from Catch Me if you Can is from my home town. The local papers did interviews with him, when the movie came out.

Cool! :cool:
I loved Leonardo in the role of Frank WhateverHisNameWas. At the end of the film they said he (Frank) was living a quiet life somewhere in the Midwest - do you happen to know where, Sleepy?
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Sun Mar 30, 2008 7:08 pm

Cath Me If You Can was a fun movie. Interesting connection, sleepy! We went to see The Bank Job last night about some small time crooks that became yeggs in England that tunneled into a bank vault. It is based on a true story that happened in 1971. (If you go see it look for Mick Jagger in a small, uncredited role...) I think the guys that pulled off that roberry became folk heroes. Perhaps some of our UK friends remember the caper?
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Unread postby Liz » Sun Mar 30, 2008 9:44 pm

Parlez wrote:
sleepy wrote:Just a side note...the guy from Catch Me if you Can is from my home town. The local papers did interviews with him, when the movie came out.

Cool! :cool:
I loved Leonardo in the role of Frank WhateverHisNameWas. At the end of the film they said he (Frank) was living a quiet life somewhere in the Midwest - do you happen to know where, Sleepy?


I loved that movie. And I thought Leo was great in it. I remember my DH saying he didn't believe it happened that way. Silly man. :banghead: I'm sure you can say differently, Sleepy.
You can't judge a book by its cover.

The only thing that matters is the ending. It's the most important part of the story.

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Unread postby Lady Jill » Mon Mar 31, 2008 1:14 am

Doesn't sound like banks are a very safe place to put your money any more.
And Leaping BankRobber? with a hoodie on no doubt.
No telling what's happening out there these days!

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Unread postby Endora » Mon Mar 31, 2008 3:29 am

I don't think he'd have lasted long today. Over here our every move is recorded on cctv, less so in the US I think, but disappearing would still have been hard.

On the other hand, can you imagine how handy Dillinger would have found it to have a mobile phone? :angel:
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Unread postby Parlez » Mon Mar 31, 2008 9:49 am

Endora wrote:I don't think he'd have lasted long today. Over here our every move is recorded on cctv, less so in the US I think, but disappearing would still have been hard.

On the other hand, can you imagine how handy Dillinger would have found it to have a mobile phone? :angel:

Aye - a mobile phone and a really fast getaway car! :lol:
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Unread postby suec » Mon Mar 31, 2008 10:32 am

Parlez wrote:
Endora wrote:I don't think he'd have lasted long today. Over here our every move is recorded on cctv, less so in the US I think, but disappearing would still have been hard.

On the other hand, can you imagine how handy Dillinger would have found it to have a mobile phone? :angel:

Aye - a mobile phone and a really fast getaway car! :lol:


Apart from mobile phone tracking. And your point about cctv is an interesting one, Endora. Then there's just the little matter of police speeding cameras being developed for facial recognition. The world isn't getting any smaller. There's just a lot more in it, technology -wise. No doubt the criminal minds can circumvent this kind of thing but I can't say I like where it's all heading. In fact, it pokes my paranoia into life. :blush:
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Unread postby nebraska » Mon Mar 31, 2008 2:48 pm

suec wrote:Apart from mobile phone tracking. And your point about cctv is an interesting one, Endora. Then there's just the little matter of police speeding cameras being developed for facial recognition. The world isn't getting any smaller. There's just a lot more in it, technology -wise. No doubt the criminal minds can circumvent this kind of thing but I can't say I like where it's all heading. In fact, it pokes my paranoia into life. :blush:


In my small town, there are police video cameras at each end of main street so they can watch people. I know the argument is that it assists the law in catching and prosecuting criminals, and I can certainly understand the use of videos inside a store which is essentially owned privately although the doors are open to the public. But I also have my paranoia poked into life by the idea of cameras on a public street just to watch what people are doing! The potential for abuse is enormous and I feel violated by the presence of the cameras.

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Unread postby suec » Mon Mar 31, 2008 5:08 pm

The potential for abuse is enormous and I feel violated by the presence of the cameras.


You have summed up my feelings exactly, nebraska!
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Unread postby gemini » Mon Mar 31, 2008 8:41 pm

You ladies have reminded me of a story I read where some prominent officials were caught accidentally in compromising positions, not with the wife etc, by the cameras used at traffic lights that photo you for running the intersection lights. Something was said about adjusting the cameras to only catch the plates and not the passenger.
Then on the latest CSI programs they show all the video cameras in stores, street corners, and many public places like banks so Dilliger would have had to hide his face these days and not be known. He would be the ski mask bandit. Bye bye notoriety.
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Unread postby Parlez » Mon Mar 31, 2008 10:14 pm

What's amazing to me about all this surveillance technology is that when, say, a convenience store is robbed and the perpetrators are caught on camera, the images are so bad and blurry noone can recognize them anyway. That's the way is it around here anyway. I always feel bad for the store owners or shopkeepers who probably paid a pretty penny to have those cameras installed, and in the end they don't do much good. Go figure. :eyebrow:

Does anyone remember the original movie, 'The Thomas Crown Affair', with Steve McQueen and Faye Dunaway? I can picture Dillinger pulling a bank heist today the same way Thomas Crown did...as the mastermind who remains anonymous but still has a distinctive flare.
"Belay that! ...Do something else!" ~ Hector Barbossa

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Unread postby Lady Jill » Mon Mar 31, 2008 11:25 pm

nebraska wrote:
suec wrote:Apart from mobile phone tracking. And your point about cctv is an interesting one, Endora. Then there's just the little matter of police speeding cameras being developed for facial recognition. The world isn't getting any smaller. There's just a lot more in it, technology -wise. No doubt the criminal minds can circumvent this kind of thing but I can't say I like where it's all heading. In fact, it pokes my paranoia into life. :blush:


In my small town, there are police video cameras at each end of main street so they can watch people. I know the argument is that it assists the law in catching and prosecuting criminals, and I can certainly understand the use of videos inside a store which is essentially owned privately although the doors are open to the public. But I also have my paranoia poked into life by the idea of cameras on a public street just to watch what people are doing! The potential for abuse is enormous and I feel violated by the presence of the cameras.


Yes, I can understand what you all are saying. How about this. . .the last time I was in Scotland in a rental car, I got home from my trip and found out an "eye" had seen me speed in a zone and gave the car a ticket!! which in turn showed up on my rental car lease.
I just don't see how ciminals could get around today as then.
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