Rush New Haven Whiskey Gang here

by Laurel | December 30th, 2011

30 December 1919

Left to Right (Standing): City Marshal Alfred T. Caron of Chicopee, State Detective Maurice F. Nelligan of Northampton, State Director of Public Safety Alfred T. Foote of Holyoke, State Detective David J. Manning and State Detective Thomas Bligh both of Springfield. Left to Right (Sitting): Dominick Penatti, Frank Lucibello, Harry Vincent, William Guangi and John Pinto, all of new Haven.

Left to Right (Standing): City Marshal Alfred T. Caron of Chicopee, State Detective Maurice F. Nelligan of Northampton, State Director of Public Safety Alfred T. Foote of Holyoke, State Detective David J. Manning and State Detective Thomas Bligh both of Springfield. Left to Right (Sitting): Dominick Penatti, Frank Lucibello, Harry Vincent, William Guangi and John Pinto, all of New Haven.

Clever Trick Avoids Extradition, Five Accused of Chicopee Murder

Midnight Ride Speeds Party Over Border

District Attorney Elcot Wright Takes Hand With Ely — No More Deaths in This Section — Chicopee Raising Relief Funds for Stricken Families

The Five men arrested in New Have, CT, in connection with the numerous deaths from wood alcohol “whiskey” in this city, Chicopee, Holyoke and Hadley were rushed to this city last night, after a fast midnight automobile ride, and to Chicopee early this morning where they will be arraigned in police court on charges of murder. A clever maneuver, avoiding the delay of extradition, Col. Alfred F. Foote, director of public safety for Massachusetts, who personally supervised the drive that resulted in the arrests of the alleged murderers, turned over the prisoners at the Springfield police station to Marshal A. T. Caron of the Chicopee police, after the murder warrants had been served on them.

Conviction that they had the right men was voiced by Director Foote. “We are absolutely sure of our case,” he commented. “It is absolutely clean cut.” This statement, following a strenuous investigation of every piece of tangible evidence that could be gathered, summarized the opinion of the state police authorities that the chain of evidence against the traffickers in the death-dealing whiskey was complete.

The Maneuver to Get Prisoners Here

The five prisoners left New Have in the custody of United States Marshal William R. Palmer and his deputies, but after the machines cross the state into Massachusetts the prisoners were turned over to A. F. Foote, Massachusetts public safety commissioner and state policemen accompanying him.

Custody of the five men was secured by a legal maneuver and made extradition action unnecessary. After Coroner Eli Mix had released the prisoners from his control late yesterday, the Massachusetts officers withdrew their claim to the men, leaving the federal authorities in charge. Marshal Palmer went to New Haven police headquarters and too the five men away. Within a short time the entire party was speeding northward.

After the New Haven Police gave up the prisoners to the federal agents, counsel for one of the prisoners appeared with writs of habeas corpus issued by Judge Simpson of the court of common pleas. The lawyer was told that the men were no longer in the custody of the police.

These Are the Prisoners

The prisoners who ere brought here from New Haven are Dominick Perrotti, Frank Lucinello, John Pinto, William Guangi and Harry Vincent. The first three men are regarded as principals, while Guangi and Vincent are supposed to have acted as gents for the manufacturers of the “murder drinks.” Nicholas Russo, the first man arrested in the New Haven raids Sunday, was released. The state officials are satisfied that he is not directly connected with the distribution of the stuff that found its way into Chicopee and Holyoke.

Wright Takes a hand

District Attorney Joseph B. Ely, who has maintained a close interest in the case from the start, and who helped to direct the investigations which led to the arrests of the prisoners, appeared with District Attorney=elect Charles H. Wright at the Springfield police station soon after midnight. After a brief conference with Director Foote and State Detectives Thomas Bligh, David J. Manning, Jr., Maurice Nelligan and Marshal Caron of Chicopee, both he and Mr. Wright undertook a grilling examination of the prisoners in the hope of obtaining further information regarding the manufacture , sale and distribution of the liquor.

No New Deaths

No new deaths were reported from any part of Hampden or Hampshire county yesterday. Several of the patients in local hospitals were still reported as seriously ill, but improvement was noted in almost every case, and hope is now held for the recovery of the various victims.

Plead Not Guilty to United States Charge.

The four men arrested in this city, Holyoke and Chicopee on federal warrants Sunday on charges of violating the Volstead act, for complicity in the sale and distribution of the wood alcohol “whiskey” were arraigned before United States Commissioner John L. Rice yesterday. The men arraigned were Henry Shapiro of 33 Paton Street, Springfield; Adam Ostrowski, an undertaker of Holyoke, John Starzyk, a liquor deal of Holyoke, and John Nosarzewski of 107 Exchange Street, Chicopee. The men all pleaded not guilty and were held under $500 each for the hearing on January 10.

Not Guilty to Manslaughter Too

Four men were arraigned in Chicopee police court yesterday morning charged with manslaughter. They are Louis Menard, porter at the Chicopee House; Joseph Garbic, bartender in Ocykyski’s saloon; Thomas Oczkwyski, saloon keeper, and Leopold Fredette of the liquor firm of Fredette and Tetreault. They pleaded not guilty are were held unders bonds of $10,000 each for hearing January 8. The men all furnished bail.

Further investigations yesterday indicated that the wood alcohol “whiskey” sold in Holyoke, Thompsonville and Hartford, CT, was concocted in New York city and shipped directly to Hartford, from where it was distributed though agents to Thompsonville and Holyoke. It is almost certain that some of the Chicopee supply was concocted in New Have, CT, and shipped direct to Chicopee saloon keepers, who bought though Hartford distributing agents. The wood alcohol probably came from the same source in New York.

The Half-Barrel That Killed Chicopee

Saltzberg, the Hartford deal, tried to get back the two barrels he sent to Chicopee, but as too late to get one half barrel which had been sold already according to Paranelli’s confession in New York. This half-barrel did much of the Chicopee execution.

Chicopee Relief Fund

A movement was started in Chicopee yesterday to raise a relief fund by public subscription for the relatives of the alcohol victims. It is likely that the board of aldermen at their meeting in that city this evening will be asked in connection with the matter.

Chicopee, Holyoke and Hartford buried some of their dead yesterday. Chicopee, where the number of deaths was largest, had 14 funerals. The funerals of other victims to be held toady.

Will Chicopee Saloons Open

An effort will probably be made to have saloons in Chicopee reopen today for the sale of near bear beverages, but it is doubtful whether the authorities will sanction it until they are absolutely satisfied that no poisonous “whiskey” or intoxicating liquor remains in that city. While no evidence has been produced to show that other saloons had sold the “liquid dynamite,” other than the saloons, whose proprietors are now under arrest, the officials are reluctant to allow the saloons to open until the investigations are complete.

How Sufferers Are Treated

Hope was expressed last evening that all the victims now suffering from the effects of the poison will recover. The treatment used in nearly all cases, particularly those which are showing improvement, is sweating and flushing of the bowels and kidneys. Where the poison has not affected the vital nerve centers, physicians say, the patient has a goof chance for recovery under proper stimulation.

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