Tuesday, March 11, 2014

How hard could it really have been to have gotten rid of a district attorney in the State of Pennsylvania? ... the Cash for Kids State.

How hard is it to get rid of a district attorney PA?  In my opinion, it’s easy to do, with help of Synchronized Crime. Below are exerpts of Yardbird.com's Bill Keisling, on former Allegheny County District Attorney Robert Duggan. Duggan, too, was allegedly involved in the gambling ring protection and payoffs scheme that I described in my earlier post.

At the bottom of this post is the link to other murders ... or suicides, as the authorities like to call cases with multiple stab wounds. Keep in mind that once a crime is labeled a suicide, it’s a closed case. Like the attempted murder of my son, being that the shooter committed suicide, McKeesport authorities from Mayor Lou Washowich on down the ranks were only too happy to accommodate the wishes of the Pittsburgh Diocese and close the case of my son's attempted murder, ASAP.

As a brief note:  The shot gun which killed Duggan was 6 to 7 feet away from his corpse.  He was found near ten foot tall pine trees.
The Allegheny County Courthouse during aPittsburgh February.
In his 1991 book, Maybe Four Steps, author Bill Keisling recounts the mysterious fate of Allegheny County District Attorney Robert Duggan:

"Robert W. Duggan was district attorney of Allegheny County, which includes Pittsburgh, from 1964 until his death in 1974. During Duggan's ten-year tenure as DA there were few prosecutions for gambling. Republican Duggan, however, was hardly the first or last corrupt Pittsburgh official. Duggan's predecessor in the DA's office was Democrat Edward "Easy Going Eddie" Boyle. Boyle is said to have lost at the polls to Duggan because, during the election campaign, the Republicans under governor William Scranton sent state police on a much-publicized raid of previously untouched Pittsburgh whorehouses, arresting 70 people in vice raids, underscoring just how "easy going" DA Eddie Boyle had been."

"Once in office, by most accounts, Duggan picked up where Easy Going Eddie left off. The main difference in both men's public service seems to be that Boyle's career was allowed to end at the polls, while Duggan's was terminated at the hands of a relentless prosecutor -- Richard Thornburgh."

"Historically, as in most communities, Pittsburgh's politicians sent around collectors to the bookies and the prostitutes and the purveyors of vice, insisting on a piece of the sin money for the political machines. It's the old protection racket. One observer told me that up into the 1950s, through the mayorship of David Lawrence (who later became governor of Pennsylvania), Pittsburgh's collectors turned the money over to the political parties. But in the 1960s, with the advent of television, the party system began to break down and each politician became a free agent, each having to raise money for, among other things, expensive television commercials. In the old days office holders were selected by party bosses. Television commercials suddenly provided the means of going over the heads of the bosses straight to the public. Television, the herald of democracy the world over, killed the political machines in the United States."

"District attorney Duggan used two collectors to raise money -- Robert Butzler, the rackets squad chief at the county detective bureau and, later, Samuel Ferraro, who followed Butzler as rackets squad chief. If you were a gambler and you wanted to avoid trouble with the law you paid the DA's rackets squad chief. If you didn't pay the rackets squad chief he'd arrest you and Duggan would prosecute, though this seldom happened, as the graft system by this time was so entrenched and well practiced."

"In Pittsburgh it's widely held that Duggan's undoing wasn't dishonesty, but a falling out he had with wealthy Republican matron Elsie Hillman. She had married Henry Hillman, holder of one of the world's great fortunes, and her contributions and whims could sway the decisions of senators and presidents."

"Duggan himself had been born into money, was comfortable among the country club set, controlled a family estate in nearby Ligonier Township, and enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Cordelia Scaife May, an heir to the Mellon fortune."

"The precise nature of Duggan's supposed falling out with Hillman remains in dispute. One observer said Duggan wanted his cousin named as US attorney, while Hillman wanted Thornburgh. This dispute, said the observer, caused bad blood. In the end, according to Pittsburgh political lore, Hillman offered Thornburgh the job only after he promised to go after Duggan."

"The Pollyannas among us suggest that Hillman and the other party bosses ran out of patience with patrician Duggan, who hung out at the club, remained above the fray and refused to do the party bosses' bidding. Some even suggest that Duggan didn't know what his collectors were up to, that he had money of his own and so didn't need graft, that Duggan was an innocent bystander who was persecuted for activities his party had sanctioned for more than one hundred years. Others say Duggan certainly knew what his collectors were up to, that the money they skimmed went into his pocket (or at least was meant to meet campaign expenses, such as television time)."

"In any event, Thornburgh went after Duggan. What followed was a cat and mouse game between the two prosecutors, a relentless pursuit. Fearing that Thornburgh was about to come after collector Robert Butzler, Duggan moved Butzler out of the way to a police chief's job in the suburbs while shifting the collection duties to Samuel Ferraro. As Thornburgh got closer, Duggan secretly married Cordelia Scaife May, whose wealth, observers say, was meant to mask the unaccountable graft money Duggan had been receiving for years. Thornburgh then subpoenaed records which he said proved Duggan's money was graft, and not May's. Collector Samuel Ferraro then was threatened with prosecution, only to be released after he agreed to cooperate with Thornburgh's investigation. With Ferraro agreeing to talk against Duggan, finally the day came when Duggan was indicted for failing to report income of $137,416 from 1967 through 1970."

"Thornburgh's victory was extremely short lived. Within hours of his indictment, on March 5, 1974, Duggan was found shot to death on his family estate in Ligonier, the victim of a shotgun blast. The body was found on the grounds of the estate; somehow the shotgun ended up seven to ten feet from the body. Duggan, authorities said, apparently had been hunting before accidently or purposefully turning the shotgun on himself."

"The Pittsburgh Press asked, "Was the law closing in on Robert W. Duggan so inexorably that his only escape was suicide?"

"Upon hearing the news of Duggan's death Thornburgh told a reporter, "The terrible personal tragedy overshadows every aspect of this case. Anytime a guy perceives himself to be in a position that he thinks he has to take his own life, it's very sad. I've known tragedy in my own life. I know what it is."

"Thornburgh's crocodile tears aside, it's not all that clear that Duggan took his own life. For one thing, how had the shotgun ended up ten feet away from the body? For another, how had Duggan managed to shoot himself with the long-barrelled gun? "You don't shoot yourself with a shotgun with your shoes on," one investigator told me, pointing out that the barrel was so long only a bare toe could have fired the trigger."

"Speculation persists that Duggan had been murdered. Who had a motive for killing the indicted DA? Perhaps mafia bookmakers who'd been paying off Duggan over the years feared he'd talk. The suspects could even had included wealthy Pittsburghers, who'd been embarrassed by Duggan. We'll probably never know, as Thornburgh accepted Duggan's death as a suicide and closed the case. There was never a serious investigation of the supposed suicide, though such an investigation may have laid bare a century's practice of organized crime buying political protection."

"The point is, Thornburgh obviously wasn't interested in exposing the historical involvement of organized crime in law enforcement. He was obviously only interested in getting Robert Duggan out of the way."


Now that I have an element of credibility, let's go to the next step:

An Introduction to Synchronized Crime 101, from my angle of view through the years

Although I only coined the term Synchronized Crime in the past year or so, it's been around for decades.  Here's a brief synopsis as it allegedly applies to Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, and Western Pa, pursuant to the Zappala Family which, in my opinion, and after all of my investigation, has the features of a terrorist group, only without the need of dynamite and suicide bombers.  The terror that they made people feel was equally as real, none the less.

Enter Antonio Ripepi, an alleged underboss in the Pittsburgh Mob, along with his alleged Irish mobster friend from Glassport, PA, who, with Ripepi, allegedly opened up the sum total of gambling joints in Western PA, parts of Ohio, and West Virginia, some of which are still in operation.

Ripepi also allegedly made it easy for elected officials and law enforcement to not only play along, but to embrace the corrupt system with enthusiasm.  Essentially, what you had, not only in Pittsburgh, but in any Sicilian-dominated urban setting, was the corruption of elected officials and the top brass of law enforcement which just filtered down to the rest of the schmucks. Many community leaders and business executives also embraced the system, allegedly --- more on this aspect of alleged Synchronized Crime at a later date. However, for now, keep in mind that Synchronized Crime makes it very easy to cover-up clergy sex abuse crimes. From my years of investigating, it's my opinion that all the players are at the same table.

Here’s how it was explained to me by a gentleman, first name Gene, who married a woman who claimed to be Antonio Ripepi’s goddaughter. Each city with numbers writers or gambling devices (ei, video poker machines) bought protection by means of cash payments to police chiefs, district magistrates, and mayors on the local level ... according to Gene.

On the county level, everything was controlled through the district attorney’s office, including the collection of cash payments and the identification and tracking of illegal operations ... so said Gene.

In my hometown of Clairton, Synchronized Crime was a daily routine, when I was a youth, I grew up with friends whose dads were in the mob, yet who served as police chiefs, mayors, etc. When I was a kid growing up, I played in the backyard of Mayor Jack Matz, with his children. I played with the son of a former police chief and the son of a mobster. They would a;;do time.  They would all become convicts.  They were crooks and robbed decent citizens of an honest government. 

Don’t think for a moment that the crooks only stole from Clairton residents. Antonio Ripepi allegedly did an awesome job. Corrupt and rotten public officials, in conjunction with dirty cops, are still allegedly the norm in western PA, thanks to Antonio and the mob. As an observation, any town which allows video poker machines is more apt to be corrupt than not. 

There are two possible explanations for the existence of illegal gambling when it emerges in any town ... and only two. Either the elected officials and law enforcement are collecting a monthly stipend from the mob or else they’re leaving money on the table. Which do you think it is? 

The following obituary tells part of the story. By the way, Bazzanos, Ripepis and Zappalas are all related through marriage and allegedly so via the alleged family business.


Allegedly Yours,

Mike Ference