John Russomano

by Jon Black

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Nationality: Italian

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John Russomano was the nephew of famed Harlem gangster, Giosue Gallucci.

On December 15th, 1912, a peace meeting had been arranged between Gallucci and Aniello Prisco. Prisco was killed at the meeting by two bullets to the head, fired by Russomano. The police later released him after they believed his story of self defence.

On February 18th, 1913, Russomano and his bodyguard, Capalongo, were shot standing in the doorway of his home at 329 E109th. Capalongo died instantly, Russomano was shot in the arm, breaking the bone. He later told police that he had not heard the shots, the police suspected the killers had used silencers to help them escape easily. Although no one was arrested for the killing, it was thought that the shooting was arranged by Amadio Buonomo in revenge for the killing of his friend Prisco.

35 Italians were arrested in late July 1913, in connection with policy games. Most were charged with aiding and abetting policy shops and some were charged under the Sullivan law. Russomano was arrested along with Gallucci and Joseph ‘Chuck’ Nazzaro, all were charged with carrying concealed weapons. Russomano managed to delay his trial until March 27th, 1914, when the General Sessions court would find him guilty and send him to Sing Sing for seven years.