Updated news on the Gambino, Genovese, Bonanno, Lucchese and Colombo Organized Crime Families of New York City.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Crime History: Colombo crime boss shot!

On this day, June 28, 1971, New York crime family boss Joe Colombo was shot at a podium during a Italian Unity Day celebration.
In response to the FBI's new interest in Mafia activities, Colombo formed the Italian-American Civil Rights League. The group helped create a rally that attracted more than 100,000 people, including prominent politicians and entertainers to a festival in Columbus Circle in New York City.
Colombo was getting on the stage to address the crowd when Jerome Johnson, a black street hustler disguised as a photojournalist, fired three shots into his head. A second man appeared from the crowd and shot Johnson dead, then fled.
Rival Joey Gallo was suspected of ordering the hit. The factions had been warring since the Gallos kidnapped and released Colombo 10 years earlier.
Colombo's shooting was never solved. On May 22, 1978, he died at his Blooming Grove, N.Y., estate.



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