Image: Christoper Capone
Elise Amendola  /  AP
Christopher Capone, who legally changed his last name from Knight six months ago, poses with dog Lucy at his home in Boston.
updated 3/13/2009 6:06:41 AM ET 2009-03-13T10:06:41

The lawyer for a Boston man who believes he is Al Capone's grandson has filed a motion for an attempt to get DNA samples so he can prove his familial tie to the famous Chicago gangster.

Attorney David M. Hundley filed a legal motion Thursday on behalf of Christopher Capone, formerly Christopher Knight, in Cook County Circuit Court asking that Mount Carmel Catholic Cemetery and the Archdiocese of Chicago guarantee Al Capone's body remains undisturbed pending possible disinterment.

The 37-year-old Christopher Capone, author of "Son of Scarface: A Memoir by the Grandson of Al Capone," had his name legally changed six months ago.

The real estate investor has tried without success to obtain DNA samples from known male descendants of the man known as "Scarface." Capone said he may request exhumation of the mobster's remains from Mount Carmel in the Chicago suburb of Hillside.

"He hopes to proceed through less invasive means but wants to keep disinterment as a possible option should those fail," Hundley said.

Hundley said his client's quest was like a search for birth parents by an adopted person.

Capone's publicist, Jeremy Marin, said Capone never knew his paternal grandparents and that his father, William Knight, told his son conflicting stories about his parentage before his death in 1974.

Knight's age at death was listed as 59, which would have meant Al Capone was 16 when his son was born. But William Knight's birth certificate is known to be a forgery, meaning his true age is unknown, Marin said.

Al Capone was suffering from syphilis when he had a stroke and died of cardiac arrest in 1947. He was first buried in a Chicago cemetery, but his body was transferred to Mount Carmel three years later.

More on Al Capone

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