Once Upon A Time In Federal Hill Pt. II: Bookend Mob Murders On Atwells Avenue Forever Etched In Providence Gangland Lore

October 14, 2022 — Providence mafia figure Raymond (Slick) Veccho was slain drinking a vodka on the rocks, shot to death behind a table for one inside Vincent’s restaurant on Atwells Avenue in Federal Hill by two masked assailants on September 18, 1982. ‘Exactly a decade later to the day, renegade Providence mob enforcer Kevin Hanrahan was gunned down on Atwells Avenue by a pair of masked gunmen on the evening of September 18, 1992 leaving a dinner at The Arch steakhouse. Nobody has ever been charged in either case.

According to sources, the two mob hits are directly connected (WPRI’s Tim White was the first to report on this angle). Hanrahan, 39, was a top suspect in the Vecchio murder and reportedly actively seeking to knock off the two most powerful bosses in the New England mafia at the time of his own slaying. His killers chose the night of September 18 and the location, on the same block of Atwells Avenue, as a message. The triggermen in the Hanrahan hit were friends with Vecchio, per sources, and gladly accepted the contract.

Vecchio, 31, was part of old-school Providence mob capo Rudy (The Skipper) Sciarra’s crew. Sciarra died in 2012 of natural causes. In 1978, Vecchio and Sciarra were indicted together in an escape plot from a Rhode Island state prison. The escape case was dropped upon the star witness suspiciously committing suicide.

Hanrahan and Vecchio were feuding over narcotics and females in the early 1980s, per sources. New England mafia higher-ups thought Vecchio, a multiple-time convicted felon, was stealing from gambling and drug rackets. Members of Vecchio’s family scuffled with responding police on the night of Vecchio’s killing outside the restaurant.

Fast forward ten years and Hanrahan was in hot water with his superiors in the mob. He was attempting to carry out murder contracts on Patriarca crime family boss Francis (Cadillac Frank) Salemme and his underboss Luigi (Baby Shacks) Manocchio by way of an order given from behind bars by deposed Godfather Raymond Patriarca, Jr. and extorting Salemme and Manocchio-protected bookmakers. Prosecutors believe Salemme gave the order to kill Hanrahan and passed it on to Manocchio to coordinate. Salemme and Manocchio had both come up in the underworld when Patriarca’s dad, the crime family’s namesake, was on the throne.

Although the Vecchio homicide investigation will most likely never see an indictment, just a couple years ago, it looked like a case was on the verge of being brought in the Hanrahan hit. Former Providence mob capo Bobby (The Cigar) DeLuca pleaded guilty in 2018 to taking part in the Hanrahan murder conspiracy and state and federal grand juries was convened — however, according to sources, prosecutors worry the 76-year old DeLuca’s credibility is shaky and want more evidence in order to indict more people. DeLuca had been living in the Witness Protection Program, but was arrested two years prior in a separate cold-case murder in which his testimony helped convict Cadillac Frank Salemme and put him in prison for the rest of his life.

Baby Shacks Manocchio succeeded Saleme as boss of the New England mob in the mid 1990s. He retired in 2009. Today, Manocchio, 95, is retired living between Rhode Island and Florida.

This article was originally posted here