The Marty Fitzpatrick Murder: Pittsburgh Policy Czar ‘Junior’ Williams May Have Played Role In Fmr. Cop’s Grisly Killing

Recently-deceased Pittsburgh wiseguy and policy kingpin, Adolpho (Junior) Williams, who passed away last week from a heart attack, was a suspect in the brutal unsolved gangland slaying and robbery of retired McKees Rocks’ police officer Marty Fitzpatrick, which took place in the early morning hours of July 31, 1987, in addition to dying as the prime suspect in the never-charged Bobby Mancini murder which occurred a little over a year later. Junior Williams was 82 years old when he died and had been the Steel City mafia’s gambling boss in rugged, notoriously-corrupt McKees Rocks from the mid-1980s into the early-2000s and the crime family’s overall numbers lieutenant. He was featured in the 2014 A&E reality-television show ‘Godfather of Pittsburgh.’ His last name was Americanized from Guglielmo.

Fitzpatrick, 54, had just left the Williams-controlled McKees Rocks Social Club, also known as the “900 Club,” around 2:30 a.m. and was going to grab a quick bite to eat at the Coffee Pot restaurant downstairs when he was jumped, beaten, strangled, robbed of the $1,000 of cash in numbers winnings stuffed in his pocket, tied to the bumper of a car and dragged several blocks until he was dead. A passerby came across his body at around 4:30 a.m., having found his medical bracelet yards in the distance and followed a trail of blood to Fitzpatrick’s battered corpse in the middle of a quiet street.

The 900 Club was a lounge, mob hangout and gambling den ran by Williams through his brother and fellow racketeer Eugene. It was the crown jewel of the McKees Rocks gambling scene and the epicenter of organized crime activity in the area.

Upon the imprisonment of local independent underworld-figure Tony Grosso in 1986, Junior Williams and his crew got the okay from then-Pittsburgh mafia don Michael Genovese (d. 2006) to grab Grosso’s gambling territory in McKees Rocks, the East End and the Hill. Grosso had mentored Junior and his two brothers, Eugene and Salvatore, in the numbers business. According to Pennsylvania State Police records, while the Williams crew’s takeover in the East End and the Hill went smooth, things in McKeees Rocks got messy with anybody who didn’t get in line being done away with by a bullet to the head and old scores being settled violently.

Multiple informants told the state police and the FBI that Fitzpatrick had gotten into some type of dispute with long-gone Pittsburgh mafia underboss Gabriel (Kelly) Mannarino back in the 1970s when he was on the job as a cop and it was well known on in local mob circles that as soon as he retired from the police force he was on the fast track to being wacked. Mannerino died of natural causes in 1980.

One state police memo speculates Junior Williams was given the contract on Fitzpatrick’s life at the time he was given the go-ahead to seize Grosso’s racket territory and relayed the job to underlings. Fitzpatrick turned in his badge and went into retirement in 1985, collecting a disability check for the loss of one of his lungs, plus his pension. He lasted until the summer of 1987.

Around the 20-year anniversary of the Fitzpatrick hit, in late 2007, state police began reexamining the Fitzpatrick homicide investigations, reaching out to the media for help spreading the word, hoping to round up more leads. The inquiry’s newfound life soon fizzled. Like in the Mancini case, no charges were ever filed.

McKees Rocks’ bookie and numbers chief, Bobby Mancini, an ambitious racketeer deeply tied into the area’s political machine and police department, was killed inside his apartment on the night of October 24, 1988 (shot in the back of the head), after it was leaked that he was cooperating with authorities and wearing a wire on associates on both sides of the law. The 32-year old Mancini was resisting the Williams crew’s push into the region and trying to ward off the siege by increasing payoffs to municipal officials for their protection and providing information to the state police and the FBI against Junior Williams as an attempt to eliminate him from the picture by causing his arrest.

The then-Mayor of McKees Rocks Dennis Skosnik was indicted for taking bribes but had the charges dropped in the aftermath of Mancini’s murder. A multi-time convicted felon, Williams was released from his final prison term in 2006, the same year Skosnik was sent away for corruption connected to his time as Allegheny County Sherriff’s Department Chief Deputy. Despite his role as a suspect in the Mancini and Fitzpatrick slayings, Williams was never convicted of any acts of violence. Skosnik and his wife left their written condolences on William’s on-line obituary and wake-and-funeral listing.

Leave a Reply