“Brooklyn’s Most Wanted” parades an impressive perp walk of 100 of the Borough’s most notorious, ranking them meticulously from bad to worst. From crime bosses to career criminals to corrupt politicians, pedophile priests to Ponzi scammers, this is not your usual crime chronicle. You want labor racketeering, Ponzi scheming, hijacking, murder, loan sharking, arson, illegal gambling, money laundering? Fugetaboutit!
Take this guide tour through gangland that rips open the underbelly of Brooklyn, the broken land, to see what spills, from the South Brooklyn Boys to the Soviet thugs of Brighton Beach’s Little Odessa.
Want to know what Billy the Kid, John Wilkes Booth and the Son of Sam all have in common?
Anthony “Gaspipe” Casso, Al Capone, Frankie Yale, Paul Vario, Roy DeMeo and so many more malicious malcontents and maniacs stalk these pages, as author Craig McGuire rank a rogues’ gallery of the best of the worst from Brooklyn’s crime-ridden past and present.
This includes more than a century of screaming crime blotter headlines, spotlighting epic cases, like The Brooklyn Godmother, The Sex Killer of Brooklyn, The Nurse Girl Murder, The Long Island Railroad Massacre, The Thrill Kills Gang, and many more. From “Son of Sam” to “Son of Sal,” “Little Lepke” to “Big Paulie,” “The Butcher of Brooklyn,” “The Vampire of Brooklyn,” “The Gang Who Couldn’t Shoot Straight,” even “The Man Who Murdered Brooklyn Baseball,” they’re all here.
Much more than Murder Incorporated, this book features kingpins and lone wolves alike, with a line-up featuring many of the multi-ethnic mobs mimicking the original La Cosa Nostra– the Russian Mafia, the Albanian Mafia, the Polish Mafia, the Greek Mafia– in fact, this book contains more Mafias than you can shake a bloody blackjack at.
The author’s proprietary Notorious Brooklyn Index analyzes criminal activity, socio-economic type, notoriety, relation to Brooklyn and more for a final score that’s far from conjecture—though it will undoubtedly spark debate.
Welcome to Gangland, U.S.A.–A.K.A. the bloody, brutal killing grounds of Brooklyn, New York.
Watch your back!
“Never has anyone put together a look into so many of Brooklyn’s worst. This is a great read I highly recommend.” – Thomas Dades, retired NYPD Detective and Bestselling Author of “Friends of the Family: The Inside Story of the Mafia Cops Case”
From The Book:
What makes one crime more notorious than all the others?
Is it the hey-I-know-that-bank setting? The you-couldn’t-make-this-stuff-up motive? The are-you-kidding-me cast of characters? The that-could-be-me innocents with guns to their heads?
All of the above?
Little did John Wojtowicz know that on the morning of Tuesday, August 22, 1972, when he and two armed accomplices stormed the Chase Manhattan Bank at 450 Avenue P and East Third Street out on the edge of Gravesend, that they would be the the center of a hostage crisis unfolding on live television.
He was just trying to pay for his boyfriend’s sex-change operation.
The botched Brooklyn holdup led to a dramatic 14-hour hostage siege captured in a compelling Life magazine article, “The Boys in the Bank,” by P.F. Kluge and Thomas Moore.
That led to the provocative 1975 film “Dog Day Afternoon” directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Al Pacion, John Cazale, and Charles Durning. And that led to six Academy Award nominations in 1975, winning the Oscar for Best Screenplay.
Those of us from Brooklyn know that nowhere is the summertime slaughter on the senses as insufferable as when we descend into the depths of the Dog Days. I imagine that when Wojtowicz walked down Avenue P that morning he saw those familiar waves of shimmering heat drawing up from the Brooklyn blacktop.
In the Northern hemisphere during the summer months at sunrise that Orion’s hound, the Dog Star of Sirius in the constellation Canis Major, is visible just above the Eastern horizon. The ancient Greeks lamented such glimpses of the Dog Star, for they knew of the infernal heat sure to follow.
Anyone from Brooklyn knows how strange things can happen during the Dog Days of summer.
While based on the events of that Dog Day afternoon, the film departed from reality in key aspects, as itemized in a rant written by Wojtowicz and submitted to The New York Times upon the film’s release.
The more recent 2014 documentary, “The Dog,” hewed closer to the fantastic facts provided by Wojtowicz , who died before its release.
Flash back to August 1972. Wojtowicz, 27 years old, was a married man and Vietnam veteran living a double life of lies. A gay man exploring his sexually in New York’s underground at a time when the Gay Rights Movement was taking shape, Wojtowicz decided to rob a bank to pay for his boyfriend’s sex-change operation.
Now there is a backstop plot for a movie, and the plot only thickened from there.