A few days prior to the opening we kibitzed with Freddy. To say that he was unhappy about his listing in Nevada's Black Book of excluded persons was like saying Joan of Arc was a little upset about being burned at the stake as a heretic.
As you can imagine, the gala was quite and affair complete with hot women, rocking music and flowing booze. Freddy the fine host, allowed us to experience the "inner sanctum" portion of the nightclub where the real deals went down. Therefore it came as no surprise when we were politely asked to leave when major players were ushered in to be wined and dined.
Rumors ran rampant about why the nightclub folded so quickly after its opening. Perhaps it was only intended to enjoy a brief run?
Read below for more about Fred Pascente...
Allegations Against 'Crazy Horse Too' (Part 2)
November 22, 2002
Glen Meek Reporting
It's a topless club with a reputation for hard-nosed bouncers -- but do some of the workers have ties to mob figures? News 3 'Investigator' Glen Meek has been digging deeper into allegations made against the "Crazy Horse Too" topless club by a man injured there.
Crazy Horse President Rick Rizzolo has admitted rubbing-elbows with men in gaming's "black book" -- and others linked to organized crime. But the company he keeps also includes some of Southern Nevada's top politicians.
Literally behind the glitter of the Crazy Horse Too topless club is the grit of an auto repair shop. It's owned by Former Pro Wrestler, Buffalo Jim Barrier. From his neighboring business -- Barrier has seen a lot of strange things at the Crazy Horse. "Yeah, I've seen bouncers out in the parking lot beating people. I've seen people coming into my place all bloody." Barrier took pictures of a Kansas tourist crumpled in the Crazy Horse parking lot in September of 2001. Kirk Henry's neck was broken as he left the club after a dispute over his tab. He's now a quadriplegic. "The management of this club should be severely punished for allowing thugs and criminals to beat up the clients that come into this place, and I think the place should be shut down." Henry is suing the Crazy Horse -- alleging there's an environment of lawlessness in the club.
The man suspected of assaulting Henry -- Shift Manager, Bobby D'Apice. D'Apice has previous arrests for domestic battery, battery on an officer and carrying a concealed weapon. In a videotaped deposition made for Henry's lawsuit, Crazy Horse President Rick Rizzolo was asked about his hiring of men with criminal backgrounds. "Prior to hiring your employees do you inquire of them as to what their criminal history is?" "No." "Why not?" "We believe in giving everybody a shot." "Irrespective of what their criminal histories might be?" "Yeah."
Rizzolo's view on background checks may help explain why there are a number of ex-felons or men with mob ties at the Crazy Horse. Men like Shift Manager, Vinnie Faraci... son of reputed "Bonnano" crime family soldier... "Johnnie Green" Faraci of New York." "Does Mr. Faraci have any criminal history?" "Yes." "What is his criminal history?" "Insurance fraud. I know about that because he was working for me when he was arrested." Crazy Horse bartender Joe Blasko also has a criminal history. He's a former corrupt Metro cop convicted in the 1980's for taking part in a mob-run burglary ring. "You know he has a criminal history but you don't know what it's for?" "I think it had something to do with Bertha's Jewelry store, but I don't remember what -- if you mean the conviction I don't know what that was all about."
Mr. Rizzolo's memory was also fuzzy about his Shift Manager Ray Randazzo. "Are you aware of Mr. Randazzo's criminal history?" "I know he has one, I don't know what it's for." "It's for drug trafficking."
Then there's Fred Pascente -- former Chicago cop and former employee of Chicago's version of the Crazy Horse -- which pays Rizzolo a 20-thousand dollar a month consulting fee. You'll find Pascente in Nevada's Black book --excluded from casinos for alleged links to organized crime. "Are you aware of any arrests of Mr. Pascente in Las Vegas?" "Yes." "How is it that you're aware he was arrested?" "I was standing next to him." Rizzolo says he ended his association with Pascente after his inclusion in the black book.
Then there's Rocco Lombardo, floorman at the Crazy Horse. You may have heard of his brother Joey -- named in published reports as a top advisor to the Chicago mob. "Is that "Joey the Clown"'s Brother?" "I don't know. His brother's named Joey -- I don't know if he's a clown or not." While professing ignorance of "Joey the Clown" -- Rizzolo was certain to recognize this next name -- until his lawyers shut him up. "Do you know Joseph Cusamano?" "He's not answering that based on counsel." "Are you refusing to answer the question?" "Yes."
Joseph Cusamano was placed in Nevada's black book in 1990 -- for criminal convictions and alleged mob connections. You'll note Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman was Cusamano's lawyer at the time. Though Rizzolo has hobnobbed with black book and mob figures -- his social circle also includes prominent Nevada politicians. Rizzolo's friendship with City Councilman Michael McDonald -- but McDonald says he's never taken campaign cash from Rizzolo and doesn't vote on issues involving the Crazy Horse. But Kirk Henry and his wife Amy can't help but wonder if Rizzolo's political connections keep government officials from taking too close a look at the club's liquor license. "And I can't understand what kind of city or state would allow a place like this to remain in business."
"The man suspected of hurting Mr. Henry -- has not been charged with anything at this point." He and his lawyer declined comment. Mr. Rizzolo was advised by his lawyer not to go on camera with us -- but the attorney did fax a statement that reads in part:
"We strongly dispute the idea that Crazy Horse Too has not done enough to maintain order and civility within the club."
"Given that more than a thousand people a day come to visit the Crazy Horse -- it is unavoidable that the occasional incident will occur." In this case -- Rizzolo's lawyers suggest Mr. Henry fell in the parking lot -- and was not attacked.
But our own investigation indicates there are witnesses who saw Henry being assaulted.The FBI and metro would like to hear from anyone who might have seen what happened to Mr. Henry. The two agencies are working together on a probe of incidents at the Crazy Horse Too.