Tuesday, 25 November 2008

BIG VINNY'S PLACE

Go over to East Third Street - where number 77 is the headquarters of the Manhattan chapter of the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club. This is a functioning clubhouse: be discreet. It is recommended that you don't park a vehicle directly outside as tyres tend to become slashed, do not ask to go inside to use the rest-room nor ask the members inside to come outside to pose for photo's with your loved one's. Even the smallest digital camera can be extremely painful to surgically remove from tight orifices.

The Manhattan chapter was chartered in 1969 by Sandy Frazier Alexander - an ex-marine who moved to New York in 1967 joining the Aliens motorcycle club. He decided they weren't tough enough and established Hell's Angels in Manhattan and soon Alexander's power and reputation rivaled that of the most famous angel in the country, Sonny Barger, of Oakland, California.

Originally little more than hell-raisers, they quickly attracted the interest of the law enforcement agencies and, a massive raid here on May 2, 1985 resulted in scores of arrests on drug charges and splintered the chapter. Alexander was sentenced to 16 years in prison and at a later trial William "Wild Bill" Medeiros, testified for the government that the gang had imported massive quantities of amphetamines for resale and had murdered at least two members suspected of informing.

A mural and bronze plaque in the form of a leering skull can be found opposite, on the building accommodating the six closed-circuit security cameras trained on the facade of the Angel's lair, and memorises Vincent "Big Vinny" Girolama, a particularly ferocious and intimidating member of the Manhattan chapter. He distiguished himself in Angel annals on September 21, 1977, when he threw a 32-year-old Mary Ann Campbell to her death from the clubhouse roof as other members cheered him on. Before he could stand trial he died in 1979 from a ruptured spleen suffered during a fight with a fellow Angel in Oakland, California.

Residents in the area say they feel more secure as the presence of the Angel's HQ tends to make local criminals think twice about attracting the wrath of the chapter members. And who can blame them as on the Manhattan Chapter's website it gives the following piece of advice:-

ANGELS AND THE DEATHHEAD LOGO ARE TRADEMARKS OWNED BY THE HELLS ANGELS MOTORCYCLE CORP........SHOULD WE FIND YOU USING ANY OF THESE WE WILL HUNT YOU DOWN AND HURT YOU.

Can't say fairer than that then, can you?

3 comments:

Bob Hyns said...

Sandy worked at the electric circus, was not a member in 1967 while I lived in new York after a motorcycle accident in 1968 while I was in the aliens and still count my self as an alien I moved to California, had a twin brother named bill that was a piece of shit he did the world a favor and died, respect to all.ALIEN Larry

roland fitzgerald said...

Do you know why sandy was thrown out of the Manhattan chapter of the Hells angels?

threepoint14r8 said...

My dad had a pretty serious run-in with them back in the early 1980's. A couple of prospective members lifted some items from one of the leather shops my dad ran in the village/east village back then, and he went over to the clubhouse and ran over all their bikes with his truck, and put a pistol to Sandy's head demanding the return of the stolen items or as he put it "There'll a crater where your clubhouse within 24 hours".

Well, Sandy ran around the village asking people if they knew who this maniac was, and all the other shopkeepers were like "Dick? He was the guy who created the US army special forces and was the army's top demolitions expert all through the 50's. He'll do it."

The next day, Sandy returned the stolen items with a case of beer and sincere apology. Never had a headache with them again. Even tough guys get scared of tougher tough guys.