Monday, June 4, 2012

Mob Wives Chicago: Vincent Rizza, Pia's Dad



Pia’s dad is Vincent Rizza. He was a police officer in Chicago, who turned to a life of crime including drug dealing, bookmaking and perjury before becoming an informant. Pia has been living with the stigma of her father turning "rat" most of her life. There isn’t much on him online except for his connection to a more notorious mobster named Harry Aleman. I did the best I could with the information I found from court documents. Maybe one day I will get the opportunity to speak to Pia and find out more about her father.

Vincent Rizza was a police officer who wound up working for the mob to supplement his salary. Late 1974 or early 1975  Rizza had a bookmaking operation and was told to pay a “street tax” to the local, “Taylor Street” crew. They told him he owed over $40,000 in back taxes. Rizza also agreed to report any other local bookmakers, who were not paying their “taxes,” to the mob. The mobster allegedly collecting these taxes was a man named Harry “The Hook” Aleman, one of the most feared enforcers of “The Outfit” who allegedly committed 13 or more murders. Rizza went to his own mob connection, a man named Angelo LaPietra, and told him about his situation. LaPietra gave him a sack filled with a thousand dollars with the understanding that he would try to strike a deal with the crew. Aleman visited Rizza daily to gather names of other bookmakers not paying their taxes. Rizza called Anthony Reitinger, personally, to tell him Aleman was demanding street tax in exchange for protection of his illegal operations. Reitinger refused, saying he would never pay any taxes to the mob. Rizza reported to Aleman that Anthony Reitinger was not going to pay his tax. Rizza tried to change his mind, but to no avail. Rizza then told Aleman, who subsequently killed Reitinger, near Taylor Street, in Chicago in October, 1975. Aleman supposedly called Rizza to tell him the job had been done and to watch the news.

Of all the murders Aleman allegedly committed, he was only arrested and tried for one, a man named Logan, killed in 1972. Aleman asked for a bench trial in 1977 and told Rizza the trial “was taken care of” and he wasn’t going to jail. It turns out that Judge Wilson was bribed, there was a total of $10,000 involved, to declare an acquittal on the Logan murder charge. However, Aleman was retried for this case and also tried for the Reitinger murder, based on knowledge that Vince Rizza possessed due to his association with Aleman.

In 1982 Rizza was convicted on federal drug charges sentenced to 15 years in prison for dealing drugs, but turned informant and was place in the witness protection program. He was release from the Federal Witness Protection Program to testify against Harry Aleman in 1993 regarding the Reitinger murder.

Picture Credit: Pia Rizza


8 comments:

Michelle Smith said...

Seems to me that Pia had a Dad that was quite busy. I heard her say many times that he never did anything for her. From the information you have seemed to gathered, I would have to agree with her. For those that judge Pia by what her father did, you should remember that someone is doing the same to you too. What have your parents done to embarrass you? Every closet has a skeleton, even mine. The difference is Pia's closet door is open.

Anonymous said...

Isn't there 2 books on this story that were published years ago, I remember reading about this story in those mob books about Chicago this was a big story in Chicago

Chiara Soprano said...

All I could find was that he was briefly mentioned in this book http://www.amazon.com/When-Corruption-Was-King-Chicago/dp/0786713305/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338826739&sr=1-2

When Corruption Was King

Anonymous said...

looked it up Everybody pays too plus found that he was an the mob gave him money to do his book making if you google Harry theres more on Pias dad

Anonymous said...

IM from chicago you wld never knw that this happened i knw Pia & Harry's dautgher Frankie they are the best of friends !! Plus This man was more important then that hated Noras dad & well liked by everyone

Lucky Luciano said...

Thank you so much Chiara for finding this stuff for us. I need something to do b/c I am going through Mobwives withdrawals already.

Mike said...

Vince Rizza like most bookies in Chicago got in way to deep in mob matters then he would have liked too. A friend of mine was a bookie for a long time in Chicago and payed street taxes to Joe Lombardo's west side crew. Most bookies as long as they pay there street tax on time are left alone. Some are forced to set there own bookie friends up as bait when they decide to cheat the mob. The last time Vince Rizza's name popped up in Chicago papers was in 1997 when he was called to testify in the re-trial of Harry Aleman.

Dolly Youngbear said...

Harry ALEMAN KILLED MY DAD THAT WILL NEVER CHANGE. The only thing these stupid Adults did was left a mess behind. ME.