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Get those shovels ready, kids; the “Dig Up John Dillinger” party could be happening after all! It’s TOTALLY going to be the biggest event of the year; everybody who is anybody is gonna be there.

Yes, the good people at the Indiana State Department of Health just approved a new request this week to exhume the body of notorious gangster and native Hoosier John Dillinger!

The only roadblock now is an ongoing legal battle over the proposed exhumation. Assuming that the last legal hurdle gets cleared, Dillinger’s corpse could be pulled to the surface and examined by forensic experts by the end of the year.

Crown Hill Cemetery, where Dillinger is buried, opposes the exhumation. In a previous statement, cemetery officials said they had a “duty to ensure the safety and integrity of the cemetery.” 

Editor’s Note: Yes, you have a notorious gangster who murdered people highlighted on your map of the cemetery, but let’s not do anything to diminish Crown Hill’s integrity.

Crown Hill Map Featuring John Dillinger Grave Location.jpg

The date listed on the permit is for December 31, and ISDH says exhumation and reinterment must occur on the same day. So we’ll all meet at Crown Hill in the morning to dig up Johnny, grab a few photos, and then it’s off to the clubs to get drunk!

Fun Facts About John Dillinger and Crown Hill:

  • After Dillinger was shot down outside the Biograph Theater in Chicago, his family back in Indiana had him buried in Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis during a thunderstorm.
  • After the casket was lowered into the ground and Dillinger’s family left, as many as 5,000 bystanders flooded the cemetery to grab flowers and mud from the gravesite until the police forced everyone back.
  • Dillinger’s father became increasingly fearful the plot would be tampered with. He had the cemetery dig up John’s wooden casket and then had it reburied with 4 giant concrete slabs, each reinforced with metal, at different depths.
  • While most believe this was done to protect John’s body, others believe it was to ensure no one ever made an attempt to exhume the body. Conspiracists believe John Dillinger’s father had the grave heavily secured to protect the truth: his son was alive and well, having tricked the FBI into killing the wrong man.

(Dillinger Burial Facts Courtesy of

Hammer and Nigel have more on the renewed hopes to dig up Dillinger in the clip below.