Feature Articles

January 2006

Partners In Crime: The Mafia Cops

By J. R. de Szigethy and Lou Eppolito, Jr.

Part Twelve: The Revenge of Janie McCormick

     In the latest twist to the on-going saga of accused "Mafia Cops" Stephen Caracappa and Lou Eppolito, Sr., former Detective Eppolito, along with his second wife Fran, have been indicted on Federal income tax evasion charges. The Feds allege that the couple did not report substantial income for the years 2000, 2001, and 2002. Fran Eppolito thus becomes the third resident of the opulent Las Vegas Eppolito home to be indicted on Federal charges; last March Mrs. Eppolito�s husband and son Anthony were charged with drug trafficking, in addition to what would ultimately be 10 counts of murder and other charges lodged against the former Detective. As in the case of her son, Mrs. Eppolito was released on her own recognizance.

     News of the indictment was not unexpected by those following this case. Shortly after his arrest last year, a former Las Vegas Casino hostess named Jane McCormick told the Media that Eppolito had ripped her off to the tune of $45,000 - the senior citizen�s life savings. McCormick alleged that Eppolito convinced her to give him the money on the promise that he would write her life story. McCormick�s tell-all would be about her glory days entertaining Hollywood�s �rat pack� of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Joey Bishop, Sammy Davis, Jr., and Peter Lawford. McCormick claimed she gave Eppolito the money in 2002, but three years later, by the time of his arrest, no book had materialized.

     McCormick alleged she could prove she gave Eppolito the money and that she spoke to investigators for the Internal Revenue Service. McCormick�s $45,000 is believed to among the money that the Eppolitos allegedly failed to declare as income.

     Janie McCormick has emerged as a darling of those in the Media following this case, taken in by the senior�s charm, wit, and steely determination as she has faced adversity over the course of her life. McCormick has made it clear that she will bring her one-woman crusade against Eppolito to Brooklyn in February when the trial of the two accused cops begins.

     This latest setback for Eppolito comes on the heals of some apparent good news for the beleaguered duo. Just days before this latest indictment, Eppolito�s partner Caracappa appeared in an interview aired on CBS� �60 Minutes.� Caracappa�s decision to appear on the program came as a surprise to some, given he has always been the �quiet� one who has avoided the spotlight. However, several people who viewed the program told that Caracappa came across as sincere and believable, and that they were convinced of his innocence or leaning towards that determination. If the lawyers for the two accused former cops concur, it will almost certainly mean that both men will testify on their own behalf towards the conclusion of their trial.

     The burden of proof is on the Federal Prosecutors, who must convince 12 jurors that the two did in fact commit the crimes they are accused of. With Detective Eppolito�s powers of persuasion the stuff of urban legend, no one should be surprised if bookmakers in Las Vegas accept wagers as to their chances of acquittal. This story, after all, takes place in two locales known for decades to be run by members of the American Mafia; Brooklyn and Las Vegas.

To be continued

Related Features:

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Eleven: Christmas for the �Mafia Cops�

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Ten: The Media Wars

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Nine: The Wrong Man

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Eight: Yet Another Murder, Another Warning

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Seven: The NYPD�s �Other� Mafia Cop: Steve Gardell

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Six: Another Murder, Another Warning

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Five: A Troubled Prosecution

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Four: Judge Grants Bail

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Three: The Emergence of 'Crystal Meth'

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part Two: The Cop Who Loved Snakes

Partners in Crime: The Mafia Cops
Part One: Mafia Cops Indicted

J. R. de Szigethy can be reached at:

© 2006

Past Issues
div. of PLR International

Copyright © 1998 - 2006 PLR International