Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Sammy 'The Bull' Gravano

Living by the Rules

Nick Scibetta was Gravano's brother-in-law, his wife's younger brother. Once a good kid, Scibetta developed a drinking problem and then got involved in cocaine. Soon he was involved in several "mob infractions." First he got into a fight in a nightclub that was owned by a mob associate. This was followed by an altercation with the son of a Gambino Family associate in which he had the man arrested afterwards. The final straw came when he insulted the daughter of Georgie DeCicco, the uncle of respected Gambino family member Frank DeCicco.

Frank DeCicco
Frank DeCicco

At this point, Gravano slapped his brother-in-law around. While Sammy tried to figure out a solution to the situation, word came down from Castellano that Nick Scibetta was to be hit. The order was given to Frank DeCicco with instructions not to inform Gravano. After DeCicco met with Milito and Joe "Stymie" D'Angelo, who Gravano described as his Luca Brasi (Don Corleone's enforcer in The Godfather), they decided it was wrong not to tell Gravano. DeCicco received Castellano's permission to tell Gravano, but was told in no uncertain terms that if Gravano opposed the murder he was to be killed on the spot.

When Gravano was told about the ordered hit, he was livid, "F*** Paul! I'll take Paul out first," he told DeCicco. Gravano looked upon DeCicco as an older brother in the mob. Twelve years his senior, DeCicco was one of the few members who had the respect of both the Castellano and Dellacroce factions of the family.

The diplomatic DeCicco sat Gravano down to discuss the situation. "You go to war with Paul and you're a dead man, guaranteed. Louie and Stymie will be killed. Stymie, for sure, if he goes with you, which he will. And in the end, your brother-in-law will still die anyway. So what good would it do?"

In Underboss, Gravano the obedient soldier claims, "I chose against Nicky. I took an oath that Cosa Nostra came before everything…"

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