Posts Tagged ‘Murder’

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On October 25, 1957, Albert Anastasia’s murderous reign in the New York underworld closed under a barrage of bullets from two assassins at the Park Sheraton Hotel barbershop. As reporters swarmed and cameras flashed over Anastasia’s bloodied corpse, speculations began running rampant on the causes behind the first public execution of a Mafia boss in over 30 years. Was another conflict on the level of the 1931 Castellammarese War brewing? Was this related to the shooting of another tenured mob boss, Frank Costello, five months earlier? As expected, dozens were brought in for questioning. Perhaps most surprising among them was a tough local lightweight boxer named Johnny Busso.

Busso had turned pro in 1952 and built a strong following in the Northeast by being a tough out for any opponent. In June 1957, Busso scored an upset 10-round unanimous decision win over Larry Boardman, but then suffered an immediate setback in dropping a decision to Ralph Dupas in August. Busso’s next bout was scheduled for October 25 against Gale Kerwin at Madison Square Garden. The night before, Busso had a room booked at the Park Sheraton Hotel with his manager Andrew Alberti.

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Andrew Alberti (NYC Municipal Archives)

Boxing manager wasn’t the only professional title Alberti had. The 37 year old was a member of the Mafia and associated with the Anastasia crime family. Busso would later tell the NYPD that he received a call in his room the morning of October 25 from Alberti, who requested he come down to the hotel lobby to meet some colleagues. Alberti would later admit to authorities that he and Busso ran into Anastasia in the lobby and discussed Busso’s fight that night against Kerwin. However, Busso stated Alberti introduced him to “numerous” people and he could not recall if one of them had been Anastasia.

1957 was the year the underworld had enough of Anastasia’s antics. The former “Lord High Executioner” of Murder Inc. was rumored to have set his sights on becoming the fabled “Boss of Bosses” in the Mafia. He had begun meddling in the financial interests of other bosses, most notably wanting a piece of the Cuban gambling rackets held by Santo Trafficante and Meyer Lansky. With the sheer amount of soldiers under Anastasia, there was a fear that the Brooklyn boss was growing too strong.

“Albert Anastasia was doing so much wrong and it was up to his family to act,” Mafia informant Joe Valachi would recall years later.

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The plan for Anastasia’s removal allegedly went into motion from his underboss Carlo Gambino, Vito Genovese and Joe Biondo. According to an FBI report dated 1/3/63, Biondo and Alberti recruited a heroin trafficker Stephen Grammauta as the lead shooter. Organized crime writer Jerry Capeci would identify an Arnold “Witty” Wittenberg as the second assassin, and mobster Stephen Armone as an additional conspirator.

Anastasia’s movements had been tracked for months. The surveillance yielded the opening the conspirators had been waiting for — Anastasia ventured out twice a month to the Park Sheraton Hotel barbershop for haircuts. The hit team arranged for the weapons, .38 and .32 caliber handguns, to be placed in Johnny Busso’s hotel room before the hit.

At 10:20 am on October 25, Anastasia was at ease in the barber’s chair. He failed to notice two men enter the room clad in black gloves, fedoras and aviator shades. Anastasia’s back was to them as they flanked both sides of the chair and discharged their weapons. The 55 year old kingpin jerked out the chair as bullets ripped through him. A shot to the back of the head would be the coup de grace.

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Anastasia’s organization would be renamed the Gambino Family as it remains today. The murder would inadvertently lead to the national exposure of the syndicate when police broke up a Mafia summit meeting held in November 1957 at the Apalachin home of Joseph Barbara. One of the topics to have been addressed was the reallocating of Anastasia’s various criminal enterprises.

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No one was ever charged in Anastasia’s slaying. Andrew Alberti’s suspected role was enough for the New York State Athletic Commission to suspend his license as a boxing manager. In 1964, he committed suicide with a shotgun over being called to testify before a grand jury in a case involving fellow Mafia figure Carmine Lombardozzi. Stephen Armone passed away in Sicily in 1960. His younger brother Joseph would go on to become a caporegime in the Gambino crime family before passing away in 1992 at 74. The second shooter’s history, Arnold Wittenberg, becomes elusive after Anastasia. However, a public record does list him as passing away at 74 in 1978. Stephen Grammauta is reportedly still a Gambino family caporegime and will celebrate his 100th birthday on December 6.

The night of Anastasia’s death, Johnny Busso won a competitive 10-round decision over Gale Kerwin. Despite the story of the murder weapons being stashed his in hotel room prior to the crime, police were satisfied their interrogation showed Busso was not involved. Busso would achieve his greatest success in 1958 with decision wins over future Hall of Famers Carlos Ortiz and Joe Brown. He would lose rematches to both, including a 1959 decision to Brown in his only lightweight title opportunity.

Busso retired in 1961 with a record of 36-12-1 (15 KOs). He died at age 66 in 2000 following a long battle with cancer.

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Sources

NY Municipal Archives, Box 2, Anastasia Files 1957

New York Daily News, October 26, 1957

New York Times, November 10, 1964

Mob and The City, Alexander Hortis

Gangland News, October 1, 2001, Jerry Capeci

The Valachi Papers, Peter Mass

 

 

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bankroll-fresh

ATLANTA — Bankroll Fresh, one of the emerging rappers on the Atlanta scene, was shot and killed last night outside of northeast Atlanta’s Street Execs Studio.

Fresh, real name Trentavious White, was shot a little after 11 p.m. on Friday evening. According to Atlanta Police spokesman Donald Hannah, authorities arrived on the scene in time to witness “a large crowd of people fleeing the location.” By this time, associates of White had taken him to nearby Hughes Spalding Children’s Hospital, where he succumbed to his wounds before midnight.

Police recovered over 50 shell casings at the scene. A motive has not been established. Hannah verified that Homeland Security was able to collect video evidence at the scene.

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Bankroll Fresh murder scene

Bankroll Fresh’s murder is the latest crime that has plagued an area known for its rapper-related studios. An April 2014 drive-by shooting attempt happened less than a mile away at a studio on Forrest Street. In July 2015, luxury cars outside of Rick Ross’ studio on Defoor Hills Road were shot up. Two men were were victims of a shooting in August 2015 after leaving 11th Street Studios.

Bankroll Fresh received his biggest national exposure with his 2014 breakout single “Hot Boy.” He has collaborated with mainstream artists like 2 Chainz and Jeezy, and released a self-titled album in November. His most recent video, “Poppin Shit,” dropped last month.

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Horrible news to wake up to this morning. I last saw Bankroll in October when I was able to be on stage and record him, Jeezy and Travis Porter performing their remix of “Walked In” at the A3C Festival. He was in a great mood and tried to make time for all his fans there.

The next 48 hours are very important to gathering the evidence needed to solve a crime like this. The other side of that equation is we’ll hear all the rumors, making it difficult to determine fact from fiction. There are folks in the city already claiming this was a hit. Others says it was over an argument with a entourage member, and 50+ shell casings found gives the latter theory some traction. However, we have no idea if Fresh was the intended target, nor whether all those casings were due to shooting from opposing sides.

KRS-One once said in a chorus, “If you want to get away with murder, kill a rapper.” Let’s hope Bankroll Fresh is an exception to the rule.

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Joey Bada$$ has been putting in a lot of video work to support for his well-received debut B4.Da.$$. “Like Me” finds the youngin’ caught in a deadly love triangle that also delivers social commentary on the trigger-happy mentality of some NY police. Joey co-directed this clip along with Nathan R. Smith.

In terms of vibe, you can put this in the same category as Method Man/D’Angelo (“Break Ups 2 Make Ups”), Lost Boyz (“Renee”) and the Roots (“Break You Off”).

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Right on time. While protests continue to rage around the U.S. following the decision not to indict the cop who killed Eric Garner with an illegal chokehold, NY emcees Maino and Uncle Murda’s “Hands Up” delivers some needed social commentary.

Emcees and entertainers aren’t obligated to speak on social issues, but there needs to be a different level of respect for those who do. Some might not have expected it from these two considering their street reps. However, remember the line from Andre 3000.

Is every nigga with dreads for the cause?/Is every nigga with gold for the fall?/ Naw, so don’t get caught up in appearance…

Mazaradi_Fox

Former G Unit affiliate Mazaradi Fox is dead after a ski-mask clad gunman fired into his SUV Friday afternoon in Queens.

The 42-year-old Fox (Jamal Green) was accompanied by three other people who were also hit in the slaying, which took place on the corner of 134th Ave. and Farmer’s Blvd. One 21-year-old man remains in critical condition from bullet wounds in the neck and shoulder. Another man, age 22, was wounded in the arm. Fox’s unnamed daughter is reportedly the fourth victim and received a grazing wound to the neck.

During the shooting, all parties ran from the vehicle with two making 911 calls. Fox collapsed near the vehicle and died at the scene.

Fox was released from prison on December 20 following a two-year sentence for attempted assault. He planned to resume his music career.

At press time, police are searching for a “dark Hyundai sedan.” The assailant, who was dressed in all black in addition to the ski-mask, could not be identified.

Source: NY Daily News

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DariusThomas

Montgomery police had charged a second suspect with the December 28 shooting deaths of rapper Doe B and Troy University student Kimberle Johnson.

Darius Thomas, 25, turned himself in on Wednesday night. He faces two counts of capital murder charges with co-defendant Jason McWilliams, 25, who turned himself in on December 30.

Doe B (Glenn Thomas) and Johnson were killed at the Centennial Hill Bar and Grill on December 28. Police believe the shooting of Doe B was over an undisclosed feud the rapper had with both men. Darius Thomas previously appeared in Doe B’s video “Let Me Find Out,” brandishing a firearm in the opening 11 seconds. Johnson was the only fatality of seven bystanders who were also shot. Before turning himself in, McWilliams took to his social media accounts to deny any role in the killing.

Both suspects are being held without bond at the Montgomery County Detention Facility. The Centennial Bar and Grill remains closed.

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Montgomery authorities have confirmed the arrest and capital murder charges against Jason Quan Williams for the shooting deaths of Hustle Gang rapper Doe B and Troy University student Kimberle Johnson last Saturday.

According to the Associated Press, the 25-year-old Williams turned himself in on Sunday and is currently being held without bond.

In addition to the deaths of Doe B (Glenn Thomas) and Johnson, six others were wounded in the shooting. Police are describing the shooting as the result of previous “feud” between Williams and Doe B.

Before turning himself in, Williams took to social media to deny any role in the killing. Over the past year, Williams has made several Facebook posts mentioning the deceased rapper.

FIRST OFF DON’T CALL MY NAME I AIN’T KILLED THA NIGGA ME N MY TEAM BOUT MONEY HATE ON A NIGGA WILL NEVA B MY MOVE BUT ITS OKAY MY NAME GET CALLED N A LOT OF SHIT ME N MY NIGGAS NOT CRASHDUMMYS WE CASHDUMMYS,

 

At press time, Williams is being held at Montgomery County Detention.