Amidst the hullaballoo about openly gay, Missouri Tiger defensive end Michael Sam’s draft day smooch with Mizzou swim star Vito Cammisano of Kansas City, one small detail went missing; that Cammisano is the grandkid of notorious KC mobster Willie “The Rat” Cammisano.
He’s also the son of Jerry Cammisano who did time for allegedly running an illegal sports betting ring.
“Normally cavorting with the son of an underworld gambling figure would get you investigated by the NFL,” wonders one gully KCC tipster. “I wonder if they will look into the connections. Then again maybe I’m wrong and there are lots of Cammisanos?”
There may be “lots” of Cammisanos, but according to Daily Mail – not the Huffington Post, ABC News, Washington Post or Kansas City Star – Vito is indeed that guy.
“Online records indicate that he is the grandson of William ‘Willie Rat’ Cammisano,” the Mail reports. “The mob leader served time in prison for extortion and contempt of Congress in the 80s. After a long rap sheet of crimes from theft to bootlegging, accusations of murder, and refusing to cooperate with a Congressional probe into the mob, he passed away in 1995, aged 80.
“After his death, his son, William ‘Willie’ Cammisano Jr., took over the reins but he was arrested in 2010 for running a $3.5 million illegal sports betting organization and sentenced to a year and a day in prison, according to a release from the Department of Justice.
“His brother – Vito’s father – Jerry Cammisano, was also swept up in the family business and served 14 months in federal prison and ordered to pay more than $200,000 for his part in leading the sports betting ring, according to the release.
“Records show Jerry Cammisano began his sentence in February 2011, and photographs show him grinning beside Vito at his graduation ceremony last year, indicating he did not serve further time.”
In September of 2007 Charles Vito Cammisano – recognize the middle name? – was shot and killed inside a rental home in Riverside.
Among the who’s who cast of local celebrity pallbearers at Charles’ funeral: Vito’s father Jerry.
And while kids cannot be held responsible or implicated in any way for their father, grandfather or uncle’s misdeeds, it certainly does make for an interesting local connection.