In May 1874, a sheriff’s posse descended on a remote, rough-hewn adobe cabin in Rancho La Brea, six miles west of Los Angeles, and captured the West’s most-wanted bandit, Tiburcio Vasquez, in a hail of bullets. In his twenty-year career, Vasquez is said to have stolen the equivalent today of millions of dollars, much of it he spent in pursuit of his insatiable compulsion for seduction – in fact, it was a sordid sex scandal that led to his betrayal. News of the famous gang leader’s arrest became the first national story reported out of the future Sunset Strip. In a quirk of history, Vasquez’ career as a celebrity gang boss foreshadowed those of twentieth-century Sunset Strip mobsters Bugsy Siegel and Mickey Cohen.
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