There are some pretty fierce-sounding gangster names in the history of American white-collar crime. You’ve got your “Greasy Thumb,” your “Pistol Pete,” “The Butcher,” and “Big Tuna,” just to name a few. I gotta believe that some of these guys imagined their thuggish names in print or reveled in the thought of becoming a household name. But the latest tax criminal out of South Florida clearly didn’t give his nickname much thought.
“The Squirrel” borrowed an acquaintance’s phone to call the FBI and inform them that a nearby IRS building would “go up in smoke” in two hours. The police traced the call to the phone’s owner who thought the perp’s name was “The Rabbit,” (obviously not a memorable enough name) but when he was found, he was quick to correct the authorities, telling them that his true moniker was actually The Squirrel (because that’s so much better, right?). I can imagine him spelling it out for the FBI and making sure they got it right. Maybe this is just me, but if I’m caught and I’m going to go through the trouble of correcting my thug name, I’m going to come up with something a little better than “Squirrel.”
And, although he did confess to placing that call to the FBI, the lawyer in me sees at least a couple harmless interpretations of the phrase “go up in smoke.” Maybe he saw a vision of the place burning down and he called to warn them. Maybe. By the way, Florida seems to be a gathering place for not just anti-tax folks, but the serious IRS-haters and tax criminals. I’m still not sure why.
If this article has inspired you to work on your own nickname, you might want to check out this gangsta name generator, although I personally have to question the results as mine came out “La Llorona,” which I think means “the crybaby” (feminine form). Gangstaname.com generated a more accurate name, I think: “Machete Masta Crab Whacka.”