Luca Brasi's Killer Sleeps With the Fishes
It’s one of the most memorable moments in the greatest Mafia movie ever made: A man sneaks up behind Corleone family enforcer Luca Brasi, slips piano wire over his beefy neck and strangles him to death.
The famous scene from the 1972 classic The Godfather has a Connecticut connection.
Playing the assassin was Norman Bacchiocchi of Derby, and in a case of life imitating art, he would meet a fate similar to that of the fictional Brasi.
After his moment of silver screen fame, Bacchiocchi returned to Connecticut where he tried to get in with real mobsters. He became a gambler and suspected drug dealer who ran junkets to Las Vegas.
In 1979, Bacchiocchi, a former Derby High School football player, got into a dispute with low-level Mob associates. In addition, he was believed to have significant gambling debts.
The dispute was serious enough that New Haven mobster Salvatore Annunziato and another gangster had a “sitdown” about it, according to court testimony.
In May 1979, Bacchiocchi, 35, went to a property in Hamden with three reputed Mob associates. There, two of them pulled out guns and shot him to death.
Both shooters later plead guilty to murder conspiracy in the killing.