Chicago mob strong arm Robert (Bobby the Boxer) Salerno couldn’t save his buddy Mike Oliver in the late 1970s when Oliver butted heads with legendary Outfit enforcer William (Butch) Petrocelli over Windy City porno turf. Oliver, 29, was killed in an extortion and robbery of his adult bookstore in suburban Elk Grove, Illinois.

The highly-respected and heavily-feared 82-year old Salerno is scheduled to be released this week from a multi-decade stint behind bars as a guest of the federal government. He was convicted in 1995 of racketeering and the murder of bookie Hal Smith. Nobody’s ever been arrested for the Oliver homicide.

Oliver was a low-level mob crony who paid Salerno for protection and was known to sometimes socialize with him, per Elk Grove Police records. Trained as a machinist by legitimate trade, he ran a small sports book out of his porn shop in the suburbs.

In the summer of 1979, according to the police records, Oliver was instructed by another Chicago mobster, William (Butch) Petrocelli to either shut down or move his adult bookstore out of Elk Grove. The store was coming into competition with another adult bookstore owned by another mob associate named Vito Caliendo, who belonged to Petrocelli. Surprisingly unintimidated, Oliver refused. But since Petrocelli outranked Salerno in the Outfit pecking order at that time, Oliver had nobody to run to for help.

Both Petrocelli and Salerno belonged to the crime family’s Cicero crew. Years later, Caliendo would go on to get busted for operating a large-scale prostitution ring and did five years in prison.

On November 14, 1979, Salerno, accompanied by fellow Cicero mob crew members Gerry Scarpelli, Joseph (Jerry the Hand) Scalise, Michael (Fat Mike) Sarno and Salvatore (Sally Cards) Cataudella burst into Oliver’s store at around 2:00 a.m., wearing ski masks and armed with guns and baseball bats, according to FBI informant documents. They placed Oliver, the store’s two employees and three patrons in a set of peep-show booths in the back of the store and began trashing the showroom, tearing merchandise off the wall and breaking windows and display cases with their bats.

Per the federal files, as Scalise pulled his van up to the front of the store and the Cicero wiseguys began loading cash and merchandise into it, Oliver broke loose from his captors, started making a commotion and was shot dead – it’s unclear whether his shooting was impromptu, intentional or accidental. Placing Oliver’s body in the back of the work van, Scalise drove them to a mafia graveyard in DuPage County where they buried him near a residence Scalise shared with his girlfriend.

Butch Petrocelli

Scalise, Scarpelli and Petrocelli were part of the notorious “Wild Bunch”, an enforcement subunit of the Cicero crew assigned the syndicate’s toughest muscle jobs and murder assignments. Shortly after the Oliver murder, Scalise, 79, was arrested for a headline-grabbing jewel heist in London and spent most of the 1980s in prison on Great Britain’s Isle of Man. He was indicted for racketeering in 2010, pled guilty and has two years left on his current prison bid.

Butch Petrocelli was killed in 1981 for skimming his bosses’ racket proceeds and pocketing money earmarked for the families of imprisoned mobsters. Scarpelli died mysteriously in federal custody in 1989, following his arrest on robbery charges and divulging the details of three gangland hits, including the Oliver homicide, the execution of a federal informant and his wife and the shotgun slaying of a Greek nightclub owner on Chicago’s Northside.

Utilizing intelligence gleaned from Scarpelli and James (Duke) Basile, another turncoat Outfit soldier, the FBI searched the DuPage County burial ground – off Route 83 on Bluff Road in Darien, Illinois – and unearthed the remains of Mike Oliver and New York mafia associate Robert (Broadway Bobby) Hatridge, missing since disappearing en route to a meeting about a potential narcotics deal with Scalise in the time around Oliver’s murder.

Bobby Salerno, a former prize fighter, boxing trainer and promoter, was busted alongside Fat Mike Sarno in 1990’s Operation Good Ship Lollilop. Fat Mike would be free by the end of the decade. Sarno and his best friend and right-hand man Sally Cataudella, both young up-and-comers in Outfit circles back when Oliver was killed, oversaw day-to-day affairs in the Chicago mob in tandem from 2005-2010.

The 59-year old Sarno is currently in federal prison for extortion and racketeering and won’t be eligible for parole until 2032. Cataudella, 64, went down with Vito Caliendo in 1987 in Operation Safe Bet targeting mafia-connected prostitution rings in the Windy City suburbs, remains the Outfit’s acting underboss today.

Mike Sarno (L) & Sally Cataudella (R) in an FBI surveillance photo

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