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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:

The Sewers of Vegas
INSIDE VEGAS by Steve Miller
May 14, 2007

When the lights were turned on, the agent tells, and the officers’ eyes adjusted a little, guys became nauseated by what they saw. Nobody wanted to go near the seats... And the lab turned up nine different types of semen from one seat. - Joshua Longobardy

The sewers of Paris yielded gold, jewels and relics of the revolution. And thousands of people lived in the subway and train tunnels of New York City. What secrets do the Las Vegas storm drains keep? What's beneath the neon? - Matt O'Brien

LAS VEGAS - From a blood and semen soaked topless bar, to the sewers of Vegas, this past week two authors bravely exposed the darkest secrets of our town.

When a young writer came calling at my home over six weeks ago, I welcomed him with my usual skepticism. Many writers
over the years have picked my brain on the subject of the Crazy Horse Too. But none have inspired me to open my files and share all my research and sources -- until Joshua Longobardy knocked on the door.

The 26 year old former editor of the UNLV Rebel Yell had taken a job with my nemesis Brian Greenspun at his family's Las Vegas Weekly and was given the leeway to write an investigative 8,000 word feature article on the LV strip club scene.

Knowing Brian has carried a childish grudge against me since our high school days, and that I once penned an article entitled "Brian is a poor excuse for a Greenspun," I realized up front that I would be an unnamed source in spite of Joshua's best effort to give
professional credits, and that could be a good thing!

My main concern has always been to get this story told. I don't seek credit, or to be sued for defamation. I just want the violence and political corruption to end. (The Weekly has a much larger local audience than, and Brian Greenspun has much deeper pockets than Rick Porrello or me, so it will be interesting to see if the Greenspun Media Group gets sued for libel even though the story in 100% factual. Attorneys for the Crazy Horse have a propensity to sue or try to gag reporters to discourage the truth from being told.)

Joshua immediately zeroed in on INSIDE VEGAS articles from 2002 to the present, many of which tell the tragic story of the Crazy Horse Too and those who enable it to remain in business. He also studied my Rick Rizzolo Connection website.

Asking the most well thought out questions I've ever been asked by a reporter on the subject, I soon realized Joshua fully intended to reveal one of our town's best kept secrets -- how organized crime has corrupted our politicians, law enforcement, and judicial system to allow the depraved owners to continue to this day the extortion, prostitution, drug sales, robbery, and violence at their Industrial Road topless bar.

I told Joshua about our paid off mayor; several paid off police officers; the paid off district attorney; and a paid off judge. I told him how cops, paramedics, and firemen were comped in the back room so they didn't file reports on any of the over 700 calls for police or paramedic service in 3 years. I told him how a local reporter who accepts favors from Rick Rizzolo, squelched news stories and possibly tipped him off that the Feds were about to conduct a raid. I told Joshua that Rizzolo and his silent partners who I named, still own and run the club with a straw man fronting the operation with a paid off city official helping to preserve the liquor license. I explained that someone in Washington D.C. reportedly told the Department of Justice to "go easy" on Rizzolo and his partners, then fired the U.S. Attorney when he refused.

Joshua took careful notes and studied the Internet links I provided. I also arranged interviews with eyewitnesses, victims, Buffalo Jim Barrier, private detectives, and the disgusted FBI agent who told me about the D.O.J. thwarting their prosecution after ten years of hard work. All my sources readily cooperated with Joshua, though no one from the police, district attorney's office, courthouse, or city hall agreed to be interviewed.

Now I wish to share Joshua Longobardy's excellent front page story with my INSIDE VEGAS readers.

Click: "The Rise and Fall of Crazy Horse Too" for a fascinating look at our town's biggest ongoing disgrace.

(Editor's note: Crews of unidentified men were observed removing all copies of the Las Vegas Weekly from news stands several hours after the magazine hit the streets. Because its a free publication, such an act is not illegal.)

                        BENEATH THE NEON
Matt O'Brien is the News Editor of Las Vegas CityLife.

In his new book, "Beneath The Neon," Matt goes underground -- literally -- to tell the story of those who exist under the glitz and glamour of the Las Vegas Strip.

While tourists cavort on the streets above, the losers have found a sanctuary of sorts in the depths of our city's storm drain system.

"Armed with a flashlight, tape recorder and expandable baton for protection, I sought to answer these questions," wrote O'Brien.

"In the summer of 2004, I took a sabbatical from
CityLife and explored the flood-control system in full. It continued through 2006, as I returned to the drains for follow-up notes and to explore virgin tunnels."

O'Brien continues; "Set in the long, hot and lonely summer of '04 (Beneath The Neon) chronicles my adventures in this uncharted underworld. I follow the footsteps of a psycho killer. I two-step under the MGM Grand at 3 in the morning. I chase the ghosts of Benny Binion, Bugsy Siegel, Elvis, Frank Sinatra and Howard Hughes. I learn how to make meth, that art is most beautiful where it's least expected and that there are no pots of gold under the neon rainbow."

Because both of the literary works are so well written, I'll forgo my usual diatribe this week to let you experience the perspectives of other writers -- perspectives that bring together many of the lose ends about a city that reminds me of the Titanic.

We the writers are akin to the radio operators on that doomed ship. Duty demands that we stay at our stations in the radio room even though we know the ship is going down. We keep tapping out our SOS hoping someone will hear our distress signal and come over the horizon to rescue our fellow passengers from a horrible death.

Meanwhile, we'll stay at our posts until the lights go out.

Las Vegas is that Titanic. It will never be the lovable small town it once was. But it's story must be told. I thank Joshua and Matt for bravely staying at their stations to tell our saddest stories.

Maybe there's a Carpathia out there listening?

Another great read about
the new Las Vegas:


Copyright © Steve Miller

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