A prominent Rhode Island mobster has died in prison while serving a sentence for murder, racketeering and extortion. Frank ‘Bobo’ Marrapese Jr., was 74.
Rhode Island State Police Lt. Col. Joseph Philbin confirmed Marrapese’s death on Friday at Rhode Island Hospital.
A spokeswoman for the state Department of Corrections said Marrapese had recently been hospitalized, but could not immediately provide the cause of death.
Rhode Island State Police Lt. Col. Joseph Philbin confirmed Frank ‘Bobo’ Marrapese’s death on Friday at Rhode Island Hospital
Federal authorities said Marrapese served as an enforcer for New England mafia boss Raymond Patriarca in the 1960s and 1970s.
Federal authorities said Marrapese served as an enforcer for New England mafia boss Raymond Patriarca (pictured) in the 1960s and 1970s
During that time he operated the Acorn Social Club in Federal Hill in Providence, Rhode Island.
On March 15, 1975, Marrapese shot fellow mob boss Richard ‘Dickie’ Callei and had his body buried at a golf course, Rehoboth, Massachusetts.
And while he was connected to a plethora of other crimes, including a hijacking case in connection to La-Z-Boy recliners in the 1980s, Marrapese evaded capture for the murder for close to a decade.
Marraspese was acquitted in the murder of Anthony ‘The Moron’ Mirabella at Fidas Restaurant in May 1982.
Later that year, he would also not be charged in connection to the August killing of Ronald McElroy, 20, who was beaten with a baseball bat after cutting the mob boss off during a street race in Providence.
He was interviewed for the popular ‘Crimetown’ podcast launched by the creators of HBO’s ‘The Jinx’ where he maintained that he was innocent for the death.
On March 15, 1975, Marrapese shot fellow mob boss Richard ‘Dickie’ Callei and had his body buried at a golf course, Rehoboth, Massachusetts
He was charged and convicted of Callei’s murder in 1987 and faced a life sentence.
And while Marrapese was released in 2008, he would soon find himself back in trouble with the law.
Marrapese was arrested in May 2011 in connection to a gambling ring that raked in hundred of thousands of dollars. He was sentenced to nine years in 2013 for racketeering and extortion.
His parole was denied by the Rhode Island Parole Board in September.
News of his death split the Rhode Island community as many remembered the two sides of his personality.
After being released in 2008 he was sent back to prison in 2013 for racketeering and extortion for a gambling sting involving hundreds of thousands of dollars
‘There were two sides to Bobo’s personality,’ Providence Police Cmdr. Thomas Verdi, said on Friday, to the Providence Journal.
‘On one hand, he could be gregarious, a big smile, the center of attention. The other side of him — mostly when he was younger and on the street — he was a volatile, violent, and lethal criminal.’
He was referred to as being a ‘total gentleman’ by security officer Pat Cortellessa, who worked with Bobo at the Gallery Nightclub, where the mob boss acted as a consultant of sorts.
He was referred to as being a ‘total gentleman’ by security officer Pat Cortellessa, who worked with Bobo at the Gallery Nightclub, where the mob boss acted as a consultant of sorts
‘There were so many different gangs in Providence,’ said Cortellessa, now 61.
‘By him being there, he kept out worse people that would harass the owner, and lunatics and crazy people and just troublemakers. So it’s a reverse psychology of keeping the riff-raff under control.’
When the FBI came to ask the Gallery’s owner if he was being extorted by Marrapese, the man was said to have replied ‘absolutely not.’
‘In my experience, he was a very honorable man, and he would never forcefully beat people up,’ Cortellessa added.
‘He was very diplomatic.’
‘In my experience, he was a very honorable man, and he would never forcefully beat people up,’ Cortellessa added
But according to But according to Col. Steven G. O’Donnel, this side of the man would have definitely been seen by his comrades.
‘At times he acted appropriately and could comport himself as a gentleman should,’ O’Donnell said.
‘But the true definition of a gentleman: Gentlemen don’t kill people, period. He might have some good days and bad days, but his good days come from a reputation that people are scared to death if they do wrong.’
In O’Donnell’s mind, Marrapese’s death marks the end of the era for the Patriarca family, whose leader died in 1984.
And in his last few years, the old mob boss certainly didn’t have the same bark that he once had, according to O’Donnell.
‘He didn’t enjoy the same type of reputation that he did when he was on the streets,’ O’Donnell added.
‘When he was on the streets, he was as feared as any criminal has ever been in Rhode Island.’