- Paperback: 400 pages
- Publisher: Checkmark Books (January 1, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0816045615
- ISBN-13: 978-0816045617
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1 x 11 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,812,709 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Encyclopedia of the Fbi's Ten Most Wanted List: 1950 To Present Paperback – January 1, 2004
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There are two criteria for making the Top Ten List. First, you have to be a criminal considered a particularly dangerous menace to society. Second, the FBI believes national publicity will assist in apprehending you. When an opening appears on the list, the FBI's Criminal Investigative Division pools all 56 FBI field offices for candidates. People are dropped from the list if: (1) they're killed or captured; (2) the charges against them are dismissed; and (3) they no longer fit "Top Ten" criteria.
Swierczynski's book is arranged by decade and then alphabetically. (An appendix lists Most Wanted since 2000). Since the Top Ten List started in 1950, you won't find the "classics" here - no Capones, Dillingers, 'Pretty Boy' Floyd, etc. Instead you'll find information on the life and crimes of such luminaries as James Earl Ray, Christopher Wilder, Al Nussbaum, Andrew Cunanan, Mike Wayne Jackson, Leo Burt, Ted Bundy, Angela Davis, Eric Rudolph and Usama Bin Laden. Some improvement, huh?!?
Each entry begins with a rap sheet with basic bio and criminal information followed by a description on that perp's career. Some descriptions are a paragraph long; others run to two-three pages. About 5% of the entries feature photographs of the crook in question.
THE FBI'S TEN MOST WANTED LIST, 1950 TO PRESENT can be read cover to cover or you can choose to pick a page and see who you came up with. Along with truly appalling criminal activies you'll come across some fascinating facts. For instance, ever hear of Ruth Schier? A kidnapper, she was the first woman to make the list, appearing in 1968. Who was the VERY FIRST criminal to make the list? Answer: Thomas James Holden, a bank robber. What was the oddest crime to net a Top Ten Listing? Well, Chester Davenport made it in 1954 for cattle rustling. Odd enough? By the way, he was apprehended ONE day after being listed. Oddly-named criminals include Herbert Hoover Huffman, Jesse James Gilbert and Jesse James Roberts.
Swierczynski's book should be cat nip to crime buffs and anyone interested in the darker side of humanity. Recommended.