Tommy Karate Pitera's "Invisible" Prison Assault

On August 11, 1996, the seemingly impossible happened at the high-security U.S. Penitentiary in Allenwood, Pennsylvania.

Bonanno consiglieri Anthony Spero and Tommy Karate Pitera
Tommy Pitera, right, with Bonanno boss Spero.


An inmate was "serious[ly] assaulted," yet an incident report suggests there was little physical evidence in terms of wounds. Some witnesses said they could see no wounds. The inmate himself, who appeared "nervous," denied that he'd been assaulted. Nevertheless, he'd been beaten repeatedly in the face with a metal object that was never found.

Imprisoned Bonanno crime family member Thomas "Tommy Karate" Pitera was sanctioned by prison officials for committing the assault.

If not for the testimony of several Confidential Informants (all of whom feared for their lives, according to documents), prison officials never would've nabbed Pitera for the assault.

Excerpts from high-level security Discipline Hearing Officer Report (DHO) number 430571 dated August 29, 1996, are included in the text, below.


Tommy with Celeste.

The documents arrived to us via a third-party in response to comments made on this blog that claimed Pitera was a rat. (No, I didn't trek up to Allenwood, though Tommy invited me to speak with him under two conditions, one of which I was unable to meet.)




As to what exactly happened to the inmate, whose name is blackened out, the report says (click to enlarge):




The document further notes:



And the final result of the assault, Pitera was sent to 45 days in segregation.

To underline the most intriguing part of this story,



On June 25, 1992, Pitera was convicted of murdering six people and supervising a massive drug dealing operation in Brooklyn. (He was acquitted of the 1988 "Willie Boy" Johnson murder).

The jury rejected the death penalty for Pitera, so in October 1992, Judge Reena Raggi sentenced him to life in prison.

On April 3, 2012, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals denied Pitera's motion for DNA testing of the guns and other evidence in three of Pitera's murders.

Tommy in his heyday.

The full page documents:


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Page two

Page three (above)
Page four  (above)



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