New York City will pay $5 million to Pauline Pipitone, the elderly mother of Nicholas Guido. On Christmas Day, 1986, he was mistaken for a mobster named “Nicholas Guido” and was executed in his mother’s yard, based on information “Mafia Cops” passed on to a mob underboss.
Per Mark Longo, the attorney who represents Pipitone, the amount of the settlement is large for a wrongful death lawsuit, but the circumstances are unusual.
The New York City law department issued a statement.
This tragic matter involves the murder of an innocent man. After evaluating all the facts, it was determined that settling the case was in the city’s best interest.
Longo said he was pleased the matter was settled.
The settlement can’t bring Nicky back. His murder was not a cop’s error in judgment, it was premeditated. We’re glad this happened while Pauline is still here to see it.
Now, imprisoned former detectives Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa passed the name “Nicholas Guido” to mob underboss Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso, who was seeking retaliation against a shooter who previously tried to kill him.
But Casso didn’t want to pay extra for Guido’s home address. He instead reached out to another source and obtained an address for the wrong Nicholas Guido, according to trial testimony.
In 2006, Pipitone testified about the day Guido was killed. She said she was in the house doing dishes after Christmas dinner when she heard gunfire outside her Brooklyn home. Her son, a telephone installer, was outside showing his new car to his uncle. She found Guido sitting up at the wheel of the car.
I went to touch his hand and he must have just died. His fingertips were cold.
Before Guido died, he threw himself on his uncle, saving his life.
According to Brooklyn prosecutors, Eppolito and Caracappa served as a source of information for Casso and helped him kill eight enemies between 1986 and 1990.
The detectives were accused of killing two of the eight themselves.
Once they turned a target directly over to Casso. They also stopped diamond dealer Israel Greenwald, while he drove home from work, telling him he was suspected of a hit-and-run accident. Caracappa and Eppolito executed Greenwald and buried him underneath a garage floor. His body was not found until 2005.
Prosecutors stated the detectives were paid $4,000 a month for disclosing inside information on police investigations and also received $65,000 for carrying out one murder.
Eppolito wrote Mafia Cop, his account of life as a police officer who was raised in a mob-connected family.
Caracappa helped implement the New York City police department’s office for Mafia investigations.
When arrested in 2005, both had retired to Las Vegas.
Under the Bloomberg administration, New York City lawyers fought to dismiss six lawsuits by the former detectives’ victims. Last fall, Brooklyn Federal Judge Raymond Dearie ruled the wrongful death case could go to trial.
In 2010, there was more fallout from the Mafia cop case. When Eppolito was arrested, renewed interest in a man who spent 19 years behind bars was sparked. It was discovered that Eppolito had framed him.
The city of New York made a $9.9 million payout to the falsely accused man.
[Image: New York Daily News]