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Inside Vegas - Steve Miller

Steve Miller is a former Las Vegas City Councilman. In 1991, the readers of the Las Vegas Review Journal voted him the "Most Effective Public Official" in Southern Nevada. Visit his website at:

Rick Rizzolo’s first week out of prison...

Bada Bing; Break in at Buffalo Jim’s; Dominic
Rizzolo may be charged with attempted
extortion and attempted murder;
and a new Bentley cruises the
Crazy Horse parking lot

Inside Vegas by Steve Miller
March 31, 2008

LAS VEGAS - It’s been one heck of a week since convicted racketeer Frederick John "Rick" Rizzolo was released from federal prison.

According to reliable sources, his father Bart Rizzolo was overheard in a coffee shop complaining about exorbitant attorney's fees being charged to defend against the crimes his family committed before and after they owned the now-defunct Crazy Horse Too strip club.

Money should be the least of Bart's problems!

Bart was overheard complaining that his grandson Dominic Rizzolo was about to be arrested for attempted murder and extortion. Four weeks later, a police report confirms that Dominic may soon be arrested.

Why he was not arrested earlier remains a mystery.

Dominic, 22, is being represented by local criminal defense attorney Tony Sgro. His case is reportedly pending prosecution by Clark County District Attorney David Roger.

During his 2002 campaign for DA, Roger accepted the donation of a campaign headquarters from Sgro, and $50,000 dollars in campaign contributions raised by Rizzolo.

Several days following his election, Roger dropped five cases presented by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police for the prosecution of Crazy Horse employees who threatened or beat up bar patrons who refused to sign bogus credit card tabs. The cases included Metro's request for prosecution of Bobby DiApice, the Crazy Horse manager who almost killed Kirk Henry.

Roger's refusal to prosecute Henry's assailant or the Crazy Horse Too that employed him caused speculation that he protects his major campaign contributors.

Based on Roger's lack of action, the federal government was forced to take over and conduct the investigations and prosecutions that convicted Rick Rizzolo and 16 Crazy Horse employees, along with seizing the former topless bar and its’ real estate to pay the over $28 million dollars in debts owed to Henry, the IRS, city of Las Vegas, Buffalo Jim Barrier, and Security Pacific Bank.

According to sources, Clark County Justice Court case number 08 F 04300 X involves an alleged stabbing that occurred on January 21, 2008 in a Las Vegas residence.

The report alleges that Dominic Rizzolo entered a house where he stabbed an acquaintance causing life-threatening injuries. No motive for the attack was given.

A representative of the Clark County District Attorney's office authored a letter on March 14 stating that a felony complaint was filed against Rizzolo, however, no arrest followed.

When a police detective assigned to the case was asked on March 28 why Dominic had not been arrested, he replied that Rizzolo should have been arrested by then, and he would look into the reason no arrest had been made.

No additional information has come forth from the detective, and a check of the Clark County Justice Court web site does not show a hearing date scheduled.

In other words, this case was possibly about to go away -- unless word gets out -- or the victim files a civil law suit as was the case with Kirk Henry after he realized that local prosecutors were not going to act.

Because of David Roger’s long history of helping his political supporters, the outcome of this stabbing case is also in question.

Rizzolo personally donated $10,000 to Roger's first campaign for Clark County District Attorney, and Rick Rizzolo and his wife Lisa organized a fundraiser in their home that raised an additional $40,000 that Roger later said he returned after word got out that he was being supported by strip clubs.

If Dominic Rizzolo is prosecuted for the alleged stabbing, it will prove that the apple does not fall far from the tree. There is a long history of violence in the Rizzolo family.

In 1989, Rick Rizzolo pleaded guilty to the 1985 baseball bat beating of a Crazy Horse patron. Rick Sandlin died three years later of complications related to his injuries.

Rizzolo did not have to go to jail for his crime in 1989, but finally ended up in prison for racketeering in 2007.

He served eleven months of a twelve month and one day sentence before being released one month early for good behavior.

Following his release last week, sources say Rizzolo moved into a multi-million dollar estate owned by Cliff Diamond in the posh Henderson community of Roma Hills.

Rizzolo is to remain on house arrest until April 4, his scheduled release date. At that time he will be free to move around the community for the remaining five years of his parole, but according to his plea agreement he is prohibited from being involved in the adult entertainment industry for the rest of his life.

But that doesn't stop rampant speculation that Rizzolo won‘t be out of the skin game for long!

Sources report that Rizzolo and his pal Vinny Faraci are about be become silent partners in a new strip joint called Bada Bing.

The bar located on the site of the old Leopards Lounge near the Palms Hotel is expected to come before the Clark County Commission for licensing in April.

The applicant is reportedly a woman named Gail, and she's not expected to mention that she has notorious silent partners in the proposed topless bar.

The FBI and Clark County Liquor License officials are aware of the rumors of hidden ownership, and police are expected to give her application an exhaustive investigation.

While he was in federal prison, Vinny Faraci, a reputed Bonanno crime family member, tried to get a license to operate a topless bar called Eden. But when he learned that county officials found out who he was and where he was temporarily residing, he withdrew his application. Up until then he must have presumed that with a powerful enough attorney he could get the license even while he was in prison.

His attorney was David Chesnoff, the law partner of Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman. Goodman once was Rizzolo’s criminal defense attorney and corporate agent. Goodman got Rizzolo off with just a gross misdemeanor in the Rick Sandlin attempted murder case.

Now with the Eden application in the trash can, it looks like Faraci has found a new silent partner in Rizzolo, and they reportedly have secret ambitions to own Bada Bing with the old Crazy Horse crew there every night to bash heads.

Rizzolo, Faraci, and their crew certainly know how to make money from unsuspecting tourists. They beat the money out of them!

Even with a court ordered prohibition against ever engaging in any form of adult entertainment business for the rest of his life, it seems everyone in Sin City is anxiously awaiting Rizzolo’s return to the topless racket with Bada Bing, that’s if Federal Judge Philip Pro doesn't get wind of the scheme and pull the carpet from under Rizzolo and Faraci before Bada Bing can open.

Rizzolo’s new roommate's mother is reportedly Renee Diamond, a local Democratic party activist who served one term in the Nevada Assembly. Her late husband Sam was the owner of Slots of Fun on the Las Vegas Strip.

It is not known whether the former assemblywoman approves of her son's infamous new house guest.

Rizzolo returned to Las Vegas owing $28 million in debts. These debts were expected to be paid from the proceeds of the sale of his defunct Crazy Horse Too topless bar and property, but so far no legitimate buyer has come forward with verifiable funding to make the purchase.

Therefore it's expected that sometime this summer, Judge Pro will order seizure and liquidation of Rick and Lisa Rizzolo's hidden personal assets to pay off their long past due debts.

After a hastily conceived divorce, the Rizzolo's fraudulently transferred tens of millions of dollars worth of personal real estate located in Las Vegas, Newport Beach, and Chicago along with cash reportedly amounting to far more than the couple's court ordered debts. If these assets are seized and liquidated, it will leave the couple "ruined financially" according to a court document filed by Rizzolo's lawyer.

Kirk Henry's neck was broken by one of Rizzolo's employees in 2001 leaving him paralyzed from the neck down and ruined financially. The Rizzolos were married at the time, so Lisa Rizzolo shares liability exposure.

So far, Henry has only received $1 million dollars from Rizzolo's insurance to help pay his life-long medical bills.

The remaining $9 million owed Henry was supposed to be paid by the Rizzolos personally, but both have failed to honor their obligation.

In the meantime Rizzolo and an unidentified man have been spotted on three occasions cruising through the Crazy Horse parking lot in a new Bentley.

Coincidently, Crazy Horse neighbor Buffalo Jim Barrier suffered a break in at his auto repair garage on Monday March 24, the day Rizzolo got out of prison.

Barrier filed a police report saying that the intruder came in by removing a roof air conditioning unit, but he didn't steal anything.

Most of Barrier’s garage is under 24/7 TV surveillance, but the intruder must have known where the cameras are located because he made entry through the only room that does not have a camera, and then climbed through the attic to access Barrier’s locked office.

While in the office, the intruder rifled through Barrier’s desk drawers and files but didn't take anything.

"There was a brand new Dell lap top computer in plain sight, but the guy didn’t steal anything. He just looked through my papers and then left a stack of documents about my house on top of my desk."

Barrier said that the placement of only documents pertaining to his home mortgage may have been a method of saying "We know where you live."

Speaking of a history of violence in the Rizzolo family, in late 2007 a restraining order was placed on Bart Rizzolo to prevent him from coming within 100 feet of Barrier after Bart attempted to run the garage owner down with his Range Rover.

Since then, Bart has not stepped foot on the Crazy Horse property, but now that his son is out of prison, it's unknown why Rick would be seen cruising through a property he no longer owns.

The only business still open on the property is Barrier’s garage, so there's no reason for Rick to be on a property now owned by the United States of America.

I've been told that Rizzolo's parole officer, the local cops, and the FBI is keeping a close eye on his movements and contacts. He's also being watched by over a dozen of his former employees who say they would love to see him violate parole.

Rick Rizzolo is suspected of having millions in cash stashed in casino cages. Based on the extent of his debts, officials want to know if he will resume his degenerate gambling habit?

Rizzolo was known as a "Whale" before he went to prison. Whales are million dollar players. If he cannot control his gambling fetish before he clears his debts, he may soon find himself back behind bars where he belongs. Hundreds of eyes are watching is every move.

The Rizzolo’s problems are far from over.

Copyright © Steve Miller

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