This installment of Based on a True Story comes a story by J. Michael Niotta, PhD, Early Los Angeles Author & Crime Historian. He is also the great-grandson of syndicate boss Jack Dragna.

On February 6, 1950, Mickey Cohen’s house blew up. At 4:15am, a bomb blasted “a ten-foot hole in the front bedroom where Mickey normally slept.” The bombing was suspected to be the work of rival gangster Jack Dragna.

The Los Angeles Police Department issued a nationwide manhunt for Jack. Reports said he was in South America or that the black hand mafia had killed him. Yet, Jack walked right into police department and paid two traffic in person by check. Jack even gave an interview to the press and they printed the checks.

His friends’ daughter read headlines about Jack being killed or on the lam and then went home and he was sitting in their kitchen with her father just hanging out.