THE SILK STOCKING BANDITS A TRUE STORY OF MURDER,ROBBERY, INTRIGUE,AND BRUTAL VIOLENCE.

SILK STOCKING BANDITS 

      1956--It was 4:00 am in the morning, gamblers at a stag party were still betting when I left the table winning a few hundred dollars. With a pocket full of money,  I decided it was time to leave while I was ahead. As I approached the stairway exit leading out of the large smoke filled basement of the club; a shot rang out,  a scary quietness filled the room as the gamblers began trying to hide their money. It took me just a second to collect my senses, and realized a robbery was about to take place.  

      There was no way out of the basement we were trapped like fish in a barrel. Foolishly thinking  I was going to be safe; I hid under dice table with two other gamblers . Seconds had passed, I looked out  from  under the table   and saw a man being kicked and rolling down the stairs.  One of the bandits with  a silk stocking covering his  face and holding a gun, stood over  him as he laid on the floor bleeding  from his leg. 

       Another  of the bandits,  waving a gun and cursing , yelled  take off your clothes,  and put your money on the table. As the gamblers did as he asked, he looked around the room, when he saw me  standing  there, with my hands in the air; he remarked “Well,Well, look who we have here, obviously he had recognized me.. He handed me a blue  pillowcase and said ” pick up the money”.

     The  bandits pistol whipped one of the gamblers they  found hiding in a rest room and pushed him to floor next to the bleeding doorman they had previously shot.  Thinking of how ruthless they were, I was concerned that  one of them had recognized me and I   might have a problem. Fortunately the incident was over in a few minutes and they left. I was safe.

It would be years later when true story came out.

  • The robbery was set up by the owner of the club. He was upstairs in a bedroom pretending to be asleep while it took place
  • One of the  gamblers, a businessman, who was gambling with us at the time, later told me he had recognized his brother as one of the bandits..
  • The one bandit Ray Ferritto threatened to kill me thinking I had  recognized him and was crazy enough to go after him once the robbery was over. Ferritto,  was later indicted for the murder of Danny Green, a   gang leader called “The Irish Man from Cleveland, Ohio. Green died  in 1978 when Ferritto set off a bomb near his car in a parking lot of Green’s dentist. 
  •   When  Ferritto was caught and indicted, the mob put a contract out on him . Ferritto immediately went into the witness protection program.  He left the program a year later and  told the FBI “If the mob wants me let them come and get me’ He went back to Erie and spend the next 30 years in and out of trouble.  In 2004 a Florida newspaper wrote an article saying; “hit man Ray Ferritto dies at his home in Florida”, the mob never came to get him.
  • Bernie the Jew Aulshuler a childhood friend, who later became a ruthless gangster, also turned out to be one of the Silk Stocking Bandits. Bernie was an accomplice to the 1996 murder of Ernie Bianodello, a rival gang member. Bernie the Jew died in Prison in 2015.   
  • A book recently  published called “SILK STOCKING BANDITS” by Dorrance Publishing, about the mobs in Youngstown and the robbery which occurred over 60 years ago, will be on sale in December .Other stories of interest will be published in this web site, in the coming months.

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