|Bill Sr (Wild Bill)'s Club|
Later on the same night that Bill Cutolo Sr disappeared, Joe Campy was at Bill Sr’s club. When Bill Sr never showed up to his own club where he was known to never miss an evening mingling with his own crew, Joe knew right away that he was never coming back.
Later that evening Jackie DeRoss made an appearance at Bill Sr’s club. From the way he was acting he confirmed Joe Campy’s worst suspicions. Jackie began by asking various people if they had seen Bill Sr, and then he did something that seemed even stranger and out of place. He began asking guys for their cell phones. He would page Bill Sr from their cell phones. Joe Campy knew this was not a sincere move, because two months earlier, Jackie DeRoss, along with another Colombo higher up, had approached Campy and asked him if he would participate in the murder of Bill Sr. This put Joe Campy in a very precarious situation. He did not know if it was a trick, where he would go back and tell Bill Sr, or if it was a trick for the Persicos to get him to do it, and then kill him anyways. He never committed either way and just kept his mouth shut. The Persicos, after not getting an answer from Joe Campy, came up with another plan. Allie Boy was getting ready to do an 18 month prison sentence for a problem he had in Florida. So they informed Bill Sr that he would be appointed acting boss. Bill Sr believed it. He even told a few people about it. So, the important Colombo administration meeting scheduled for the next day, was not only to make a few guys into the family, it was also supposedly to appoint Bill as acting boss while Allie Boy was away for 18 months. Bill Sr was put completely at ease by believing this news, and didn’t question any of the strange signs that had been happening.
The following day, Bill Jr located his dads’ car at a repair garage. He wanted to get inside it and have a look. The first thing he noticed in the car was a bunch of scuffs and foot marks that seemed to point towards a struggle in the front seat. Bill Jr also wanted to get into the car to take a look inside a secret compartment where he believed his dad was carrying 50K in cash. He couldn’t figure out how to open the compartment, so he would need to come back. In the meantime, Jackie DeRoss told everyone to stay away from the car. By now, the FBI and the police were also on the lookout for Bill Sr. The day of his dissapearance the NYPD organized crime task force had been following Bill Sr, but had lost him over by the repair shop where his car was found. The whereabouts of Bill remained a mystery.
The Persico’s were very afraid of Bill Sr because he was well liked by the rank and file and he made cash. Bill Sr was also very well liked by the other Crime Families in the Tri State area.
The Gambino Family backed him in the war, they wanted Carmine to step down as boss. They would much rather have done business with Bill Sr than the Persico’s.
Bill Jr had a Long Distance Phone card business with Vinnie Oceans from the Decavalcante Family. One backstabbing Persico friend was also in the business and that was George Tropiano. A couple years later I would be in the next generation of the same business and the FBI raided it and took boxes of material pertaining to Bill Sr. I boxed up George Tropiano’s crap in his desk and I’m sure it was thrown out. George hated Bill Sr behind his back, but when I was there George had cancer. Maybe he did the world a favor and kicked it.
There is no honor in the Cosa Nostra it is a fairy tale. There is a saying in Brooklyn that the quickest way to get clipped is to have a Persico owe you money.
There were rumors in Brooklyn that Bill Sr had skipped town because of a pending indictment, that he was in Italy or on an Island. Bill Jr knew this was crap and soon he was approached by the FBI.
Many people do not understand what it is like to be in his situation and they call him names and figure he is weak. Bill Jr would have been the next one in the Cutolo Clan to disappear.
Jackie DeRoss had said something off-hand a month before Bill Sr had vanished. He asked Billy Jr when he was going to get straightened out or made into the family. This was a way for the Persico’s to get rid of him much quicker. Bill Jr went to see Jackie DeRoss at his Flower Stand and Jackie knew he was very angry. I am sure Jackie figured he was ready to sling some iron.
Jackie pleaded ignorance but Bill Jr Knew he was full of crap because Jackie was the guy who took his fathers place.
Jackie had done a long stint and came back broke and he coveted what Bill Sr had put together while he was away. He became very jealous of Bill Sr as evidenced by his going to his wife’s home and demanding Bill Sr’s cash. He even looked under floorboards. Bill Jr had started wearing a wire by this time and this was all caught on tape.
One day Bill Jr went to his father’s Union office and Kitty told him that someone was in the office. What Bill Jr saw when he walked into the office was a grossly obese sweating Persico named Frank. Bill Jr exploded and started yelling at him. Frank “Piggy” Persico told him to relax that he was just doing what he was told by those higher up. Bill Jr told him to leave, so he made a call and then he left. I am glad to report that Piggy Persico is now where he belongs and that is in the ground.
So Bill Jr did what was best for him and his family, Most people will never know how hard a choice it is to break every rule that you ever knew. When guys make the choice to flip it is not just a spur of the moment thing. People who look down on people who do should put themselves in the shoes of those who do. Most people who read this blog will never have faced death or being around these treacherous people. Billy Jr made the only choice he could make.
I was around a guy who had his father killed by the Gambino’s for nothing but greed on Sammy The Bull’s part. The guy was around the Colombo’s and he was in the life. He knew who did the hit and yet he never did a thing.
You cannot beat these people like that. Next week we will close out the Father Son Columbo story with Part 3.