Double Deal

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MICHAEL “CHIEF” CORBITT1

Ethical issues and who are suppose to be trusted public officials go hand in hand. Watching the news or reading the news paper there is a good chance you will find out information of a public official breaking the law or being extremely unethical. Which brings me to the topic of my paper of a known local story of Michael Corbitt.

Michael Corbitt born march 17th 1944 and died in 2004. He died of lung cancer in his Tampa home shortly after being released from prison. Michael Corbitt or Chief Corbitt as he would later come to be know, was the former chief of police for Willow Springs, IL. Not only was Corbett a trusted public official he was also a known associate of the Chicago outfit mob. Chief Corbitt would become famous for a career spanning decades in the politically and criminally connected underworlds.

Corbitt’s most well known crime would be for his involvement in the murder conspiracy of the Diane Masters case. Maters the wife of attorney Alan Masters who was a close friend with Corbitt. Diane was a member of the Moraine Valley Community College trustee board in Palos Hills, IL. She

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disappeared on March 19, 1982. Her body was found nine months later in the trunk of a Cadillac that was submerged in the sanitary and ship canal in Willow Springs.

Five months after serving five years in prison on extortion and racketeering charges, Mr. Corbitt, Alan Masters and a former Cook County Sheriffs Lieutenant were indicted for taking part in a plot to murder masters wife. All were convicted and Mr. Corbitt who later admitted pushing maters car into the canal was sentenced to twenty years in prison. In 1993 FBI agents visited him in prison and played a tape in which mob associates were heard overheard threatening to kill Corbitt and his son if he got in the way. It convinced Corbitt to help authorities in other cases. For his cooperation he was released from prison two years earlier in 1998. When he was released he started writing a book that told it all.

As we go deeper into discussions we will see what other serious crimes were committed by this highly connected public figure. I will also explain why I think chief Corbitt would violate the laws he has sworn to

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uphold. After reading several articles and his publication on this man I came to the conclusion that his crimes were propelled by greed which is the ultimate reason why public officials become unethical and sometimes cross the line into illegal.

Corbitt would partake in everything from fixing tickets, shaking down local trucking firms, to working as a bagman for Chicago organized crime. During Corbitt’s criminal career he became extremely close to a multitude of different gangsters on which one was Sal Bastone who he named the godfather of his only son Michael jr. Sal Bastone was listed on the FBI organized crime list and was a top figure in Chicago organized crime syndicate. I think to fully understand why Corbitt lacked ethics and turned out the way he was you need to understand his upbringing.

Corbitt’s childhood consisted of growing up poor in a suburban factory town just outside Chicago. His parents were factory workers, which is why they moved to summit from the city. Corbitt said his parents were hardworking stern disciplinarians who would often resort to physical

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punishment. Corbitt had two older sisters and was forced to wear there hand me downs as a result of the families finances. This led to many altercations with other children at school. The kids taunted him for wearing tattered and sometimes altered female clothing. I believe this and other factors forced Corbitt to be exposed to violence at a young age.

In the beginning of his childhood Michael Corbitt was a bit of a social recluse. Considered to have...
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