‘Papa’s not breathing!’
Gambino boss Frank Cali, aka ‘Franky Boy’, is assassinated as he has six bullets pumped into his body and is run over by a truck outside his Staten Island home, Feb 13
He was then reportedly run over by a blue pickup truck that fled the scene around 9.15pm Wednesday night
Cali’s murder is the first hit on a Mafia boss since John Gotti arranged the assassination of then-Gambino head Paul Castellano in 1985
Slaying of the Sicily native is ends 35 years of truce in the underworld of organized crime in NYC
No arrests have been made and an investigation is ongoing to establish the authorization for the hit
Gambino crime family boss Francesco ‘Franky Boy’ Cali has died after being shot six times and run over by a pickup truck in front of his home in Staten Island on Wednesday night
More than three decades of Mafia peace has been shattered by the murder last night of high powered mob boss.
Gambino crime boss Francesco Cali aka “Franky Boy”, was assassinated in front of his Staten Island home Wednesday night in a stunning gangland hit that recalled some of the most infamous Mafia killings in city history.
Cali, 53, was shot several times and run over by a pickup truck in front of his brick mansion in the lavish Todt Hill neighborhood at about 9:20 p.m.
Cali’s wife and young children were inside the house and one man, believed to be a family member, ran outside, collapsed and cried, ‘Papa! Papa!’
Frank Cali is the first mob boss to be slain in New York City since John Gotti ordered the murder of then-Gambino boss Paul ‘Big Paul’ Castellano in 1985 at Sparks steakhouse in Manhattan.
The gunman sped off in a blue pickup truck after the hit, which one source described as “disrespectful” because it took place near his family home in an outer borough.
‘Even Gotti had more respect… he did it out in Manhattan,’ one police source said.
NYPD officers responding to a 911 call about an assault in progress just after 9.15pm arrived to find the reputed crime boss with six gunshot wounds to the torso.
Cali was rushed to Staten Island University Hospital North, where he was declared dead.
It is understood Cali’s distraught family members ran outside after the shots were fired.
One man collapsed in front of the home crying: ‘Papa! Papa!’ as a woman shouted into her phone: ‘Why doesn’t the ambulance come? He’s not breathing!’
No arrests have been made and an investigation is ongoing as police search for a blue pickup truck that fled the gruesome scene after it is believed to have run Cali over.
Investigators, including the FBI, are looking into whether the hit was authorized by one of New York’s five Mafia families, or whether the hit was ordered outside their ambit.
A police source said: ‘Cali was home having dinner with his family when this truck pulled up. He was shot outside the home.’
A witness said: ‘There were like six shots, and then there were three more.
‘The man was on the ground face-up. His head was by his SUV, and the truck was open.’
In 2008 Francesco “Franky Boy” Cali [shown in federal custody], was sentenced in New York for extortion conspiracy
An unsuspecting sleepy neighborhood reacted in shock and surprise to the spectacle of a gangland slaying in their midst. One of Cali’s neighbors, 58-old-year Salvatore, heard a burst of about seven gunshots. ‘I just heard the pow-pow-pow-pow-pow,’ he said, adding, ‘You never know who your neighbors are’.
Another resident, Prashant Ranyal, 39, who lives blocks from the scene said: ‘I’ve seen the [mob] movies . . . but I’ve never seen any activity that we feel at all that there’s something strange about this area.’
The murder of the Gambino family boss Frank Cali on Wednesday was reminiscent of New York City’s last major mob hit nearly 35 years ago: the assassination of Paul Castellano outside a Manhattan steak house on a December afternoon in 1985.
The Sicily native, who is married to John Gambino’s niece, served on the family’s ruling panel for several years before being promoted to acting boss in 2015, replacing the previous leader Domenico Cefalu, also known as ‘Greaseball’.
The organization reportedly focused its efforts on heroin and Oxycontin trafficking under his leadership.
Among law enforcement officials, Cali was known as a ‘real quiet old-school boss,’ one police source said.
He was considered to be a foil of his former boss John Gotti because ‘no one ever sees him,’ – Cali only had one criminal conviction, having spent 16 months for a 2008 federal extortion charge in connection with a failed bit to build a NASCAR race track in Staten Island.
The hit on Cali comes as New York has seen a resurgence in mob activity recently, beginning in October, when Sylvester Zottola, 71, an associate of the Bonnano crime family, was gunned down at a Bronx McDonald’s drive-thru.
And John Gotti’s brother Gene, 71, was recently released after spending 29 years in prison for dealing heroin.
First Mafia boss hit since the day Big Paul Castellano was whacked outside a steakhouse
Cali’s murder is the first hit on a Mafia boss since John Gotti arranged the assassination of then-Gambino head ‘Big Paul’ Castellano – outside Sparks Steakhouse – in 1985.
The notorious assassination saw Castellano, 70, and his underboss Thomas Bilotti, 47, both shot in the face by a three-man hit squad just after the two victims had stepped out of their car.
Castellano’s reign as kingpin had begun in 1976 after the death of Carlo Gambino.
The Gambinos were the most powerful of the five families of the New York City mafia and worth an estimated $500 million a year.
The final nail in his coffin was when he made Capo Thomas Bilotti his underboss.
John Gotti, who had been loyal to Dellacroce and didn’t think Castellano was worthy of being the Don, and the irate Gambinos then decided to whack Castellano.
At the time, Castellano had been on trial in Manhattan federal court on racketeering charges involving three murders and an international stolen car ring but the trial was in recess.
On December 15, 1985 Gotti and the Dellacroce devised a plan to assassinate Castellano and Bilotti – by luring the boss to a meeting at Sparks Steakhouse in mid-town Manhattan.
The scene of the crime in Dec 1985. Big Paul was made boss instead of the likely heir, then underboss Aniello Dellacroce – a decision which annoyed those loyal to Dellacroce
At around 5.30pm, Gotti and Salvatore ‘Sammy the Bull’ Gravano were driving in Gotti’s Lincoln Town Car when they spotted the boss in his Black Lincoln Town Car, ollowed and watched as Castellano and his Underboss Thomas Bilotti pulled up at Sparks Steakhouse to attend a sit down with Frank DeCicco to apologize for missing Dellacroce’s funeral.
Just as they exited the car, the assassin shot Castellano six times. Bilotti, who was in the driver’s seat was also shot dead.
Soon after, John Gotti became head of the family, Frank DeCicco became Underboss, and Gravano became Consigliere in 1986.