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. Steve currently writes a weekly column in the
Las Vegas Tribune about organized crime and political corruption. Visit his
website at: http://www.SteveMiller4LasVegas.com
Sgro Complains About Miller's "Inaccuracies"
COMMENTARY: Steve Miller
Las Vegas Tribune
November 6, 2002
In a defamation lawsuit pending against the Las Vegas Tribune, Tony Sgro, attorney for Crazy Horse Too topless bar owner Frederick "Rick" Rizzolo, on October 10 wrote: "Virtually every week, Mr. Miller writes an article in the Tribune, and posts that article on his website, disparaging Mr. Rizzolo. On some ambitious weeks, he writes two or three of these articles. I understand the importance of a free press. Mr. Miller is certainly entitled to his opinion and he is entitled to express that opinion in print. What Mr. Rizzolo has always objected to is not Mr. Miller’s negative opinions of him, but of the weekly misstatements of fact. In the hundreds of articles written by Mr. Miller about Mr. Rizzolo over the years, one would be hard pressed to find a single one that was not replete with inaccuracies."
I think its appropriate at this time after Mr. Sgro and his client charged I have inaccurately represented events at the Crazy Horse Too, to post opinions other than my own in this week’s column to clearly show that what I have reported was not "replete with inaccuracies." If there have been inaccurate statements in my "hundreds of articles" that mention Mr. Rizzolo, then the others quoted below should share the blame.
"Once outside, (Kirk Henry) was going to get in his car and (a) bouncer of Crazy Horse grabbed him around the neck, manually strangling him and twisting his neck. (Henry) then fell to the ground, recalling his body went numb and, lying there, found it hard to breathe." – Las Vegas Metro Police Report, September 21, 2001.
"Then can you explain to me how it is that my client goes into their establishment and ends up being a quadriplegic?" Attorney Donald Campbell, KLAS TV News, Oct. 5, 2001
"It is the second beating incident reported at the club in the past six years. Also, employees of the club are set to go on trial in March 2002 in the case of a customer who was found beaten to death behind the club in 1995." – Reporter Carol Wilkinson, KLAS TV News, Oct. 5, 2001
"A criminal investigation involving the (Kirk Henry) incident was initiated by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. The investigation is now being (led) by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and is active and ongoing." – Deputy District Attorney Mitchell Cohen, October 14, 2002.
"Potentially, the civil case takes the doors to the inner workings of the Crazy Horse Too off their hinges and raises questions about whether so many men with suspect backgrounds are conducting criminal activity. It doesn't yet add up to an indictment, but it's more than enough to give Rizzolo a real pain in the neck." - Columnist John L. Smith, Las Vegas Review Journal, November 3, 2002
"The bouncers were shoving (Kenneth Kirkpatrick) around. Security then knocked him to the ground and punched and kicked him in the face and back of the head. Victim's arms were grabbed and he was handcuffed. Victim then states he felt hands in his pockets. A few minutes later his wallet was tossed into his lap, the handcuffs were taken off and he was told to leave. Later he discovered that $140 was missing from his wallet." - Las Vegas Metro Police Report, May 24, 2001.
"Victim (Jermaine Malcolm Simieou) states as soon as they got outside, victim was struck while his arms were being held by a (Crazy Horse) bouncer, another person was hitting victim in his head. Victim states his arms were held by someone while he was being hit. Victim states he has a black eye, two chipped teeth, a possible broken nose, knots in his head and his shoulder is bruised." Las Vegas Metro Police Report, April 30, 2001.
"I (Chris Johnson) went to the counter at the front door of the Crazy Horse Too topless bar with my ID and Visa card. Next thing I knew, a bouncer was pushing me away from the entrance for a reason I am not aware of. He pushed me into the parking lot and onto the curb. Then he pushed me again into the street where I fell twisting my ankle." – Victim's statement from Las Vegas Metro Police Report, October 21, 2002.
"At this time McKenna punched him on the right side of the neck causing him to fall to the ground. A witness to the incident: (name) had the names of the (name of company) cab drivers who allegedly observed the battery. Contact was made with (witness' name) who did not complete a voluntary statement. (cab driver's name) also stated that (Crazy Horse) security person Michael Muscato threatened him after he spoke with officers. No marks or swelling was seen on (Michael) Silverman and he refused medical." - Las Vegas Metro Police Report, May 30, 2002.
"The patrons of Crazy Horse Too scatter trash and garbage consisting of greeting cards of the dancers, used condoms, drug paraphernalia consisting of used needles and empty ‘baggies,’ discarded beer bottles, liquor glasses and pornography of various types. Recently, I arrived at my business to find my parking lot again, particularly soiled with the above items. I went to the Crazy Horse Too and spoke with Bart Rizzolo. I asked if be would send someone to my property to clean my parking lot. Mr. Rizzolo refused to do so. I told him I would sweep it up and bring it down to Crazy Horse Too and dump it out. He replied that, if I did, he would 'blow my f---ing head off.'" - Robert L. Westphal.
"Yeah, they're the one that beat up this Hawaiian guy (Scott David Fau) out there that was just - - the poor guy wasn't even moving, and they were kicking him, and, um, at that point that's all. They were just kicking him around, jumping on him, stomping on his arm. They stomped his leg. Kicked him in the stomach. They kept - Moe was kicking him in the head, and you just watched his head wiggle around. The manager guy would poke his head out the door, but he wouldn't walk out. He'd just - he'd open the door and look out and then step back in. I never seen - he didn't come out." – Taped statement of Dan Kennedy, January 24, 2001.
Editor’s note: The "Moe" referred to by Dan Kennedy is the subject of another story in this edition of the Las Vegas Tribune: "300 Pound Bouncer to be Tried for Battery." In 1995, Scott Fau died from injuries described by medical examiners as "blunt force trauma consistent with a severe beating and/or positional asphyxiation." Mr. Rizzolo sued Dan Kennedy for defamation.
"Even damning documents filed recently in District Court that say he's the subject of a joint FBI-Metro criminal investigation fail to have Rizzolo chugging Maalox. Nor is he blushing that activities at his club are the subject of a federal grand jury." - Columnist John L. Smith, Las Vegas Review Journal, October 27, 2002
"Replete with inaccuracies?" Mr. Sgro, the Las Vegas Tribune has ACCURATELY been reporting your client's "criminal" activities since 1998. We have broken more stories on the subject than any other media outlet. For example, the Tribune was the first to report the beating of Kirk Henry, then we fanned the flames until the other media paid attention. Had we been frightened by your Slapp suit, few would now be aware of the true nature of your client's business, and by this time even more innocent people might have been maimed or killed. Need I say more?
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