Lt. Joseph (Giuseppe) Petrosino: The self-made cop who took on a notorious criminal syndicate (NY Post)

(NY Post)– For more than 20 years, Petrosino waged an almost single-handed war against the Society of the Black Hand. It was as much a war for the place of Italian immigrants in American society, for their rights to exist and to be seen as Americans worthy of legal protection.

It’s a story recounted in Stephen Talty’s engrossing new book, “The Black Hand: The Epic War Between a Brilliant Detective and the Deadliest Secret Society in American History” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt). And if this pitched battle sounds like the stuff of a Hollywood screenplay, it is; Leonardo DiCaprio will be playing Petrosino in an film adaptation of the book that will most likely be released sometime in 2018.

Read more at the NY Post [HERE]. 

 

The “Italian Sherlock Holmes” was actually an American battling the Black Hand, an early Mafia group that terrorized immigrants when cops looked the other way.

But Joseph Petrosino, one of the first Italian American detectives in the NYPD, eventually mounted a personal crusade against the group terrorizing his people. The trailblazing cop was later killed while on assignment in Sicily in 1909, hoping to wipe out the problem at its source. But he came home to a hero’s funeral—and a changed city. In his new book, The Black Hand: The Epic War Between a Brilliant Detective and the Deadliest Secret Society in American History, out Tuesday, author Stephan Talty tells Petrosino’s story, and how even as he battled organized crime, he faced off against ugly prejudice that has defined American life.

Read more from Vice.com [HERE].