Machine Gun Molly
“If Al Capone had had a daughter, he would have wanted her to be Monique Proietti.”
– La Petit Journal
One day in 1967, a petite housewife-turned-bank-robber was shot by police in a Montreal street, a bullet entering her chest just above her frilly push-up bra. Machine Gun Molly, Montreal’s most famous female gangster, was dead.
Monica Proietti, was a notorious Quebec bank robber, was only 27 when she planned her last big score. Wanting to retire to Florida with her children, Proietti set out on September 19, 1967, with two accomplices to rob a Montreal credit union. But the $3,082 score set off a high-speed police chase, which ended for Proietti when she was shot through the heart.
Monica Proietti was the mother of two children and old twenty seven years old when she died. This young mother was killed in a gun battle with the law.
I know that sounds like a story from the Wild West but this took place in Montreal in 1967. Monica came from a poor Montreal family, many of whom were involved in crime in some way; her grandmother served time in jail for receiving stolen goods, and reportedly ran a school for crime for the neighbourhood children.
Monica was known as Machine Gun Molly and was a known criminal – with a curious background. She was also known as “Machine Gun Molly”, “Mrs. Anthony Smith”, “Molly the Gun”, “Molly the Machine Gun”, “Monica the Gun”, “Monique Smith” and “Monique Tessier”.
She’d been married when she was only seventeen, probably hoping to escape from he impoverished family life. She was one of eight children and most of her family were involved in crime – even her grandmother had been in jail.