Bail Is Denied Roxie Allen in Robbery of 15 in Craps Game

Camden Evening Courier – December 8, 1930

Three Pals of Camden Boxer Also Jailed at Shore for Grand Jury

Quartet Identified by Poolroom Owner

Limp Betrays Fighter at Landisville – Says He Did Not Aid Holdup

Identified as four of the five bandits who held up and robbed 15 men at a craps game in a Landisville poolroom yesterday, Roxie Allen, well-known South Jersey boxer, and three other South Camden youths are under arrest today.

The suspects, charged with obtaining money and watches worth $175, are Rocco Auletto, Allen‘s real name, 21, of 318 Spruce street; Carmen Passarella, 26, of 1227 Broadway; Salvatore Passalacqua, 20, of 339 Clinton street, and Rocco DeCorda, 23, of 221 Spruce street.

Two of the suspects, Passarella and Passalacqua, have made a full confession, according to Captain William J. Carter, Troop “A” commander, of the Hammonton State Police barracks.

Allen and De Corda have denied implication in the holdup. The welterweight pugilist admitted that he drove
the holdup car but remained behind the wheel during the robbery, unaware of the intentions of his companions.

A fifth man, said to be colored, is being sought in Camden by the State Police and Camden detectives.

All four captives, arrested in this.city and positively identified by the proprietor of the robbed place as well as by some of the victims, were held without bail pending action by the Atlantic county county grand jury on charges of weapons.

They were arraigned before Justice of the Peace Peter Capizola, of Buena. Prior to that, they were “booked” at the Atlantic county Jail In Mays Landing, and then photographed and fingerprinted at, the Malaga state police barracks.

Allen‘s Limp Seen, Claim

All four were recognized by the proprietor, Nicholas Yennittl, owner, of “Poppy’s Place,” it is alleged. Yennittl said he knew the three white men who entered unmasked, and recognized Allen in the automobile after seeing him limp when he got out. Allen did not enter the place, nor could Yennittt, see whether Allen had a gun.

It was at 2:10 p.m. yesterday that four men, three carrying revolvers and the other a sawed-off shotgun, ran into the poolroom and commanded the patrons to put up their hands. The 15 men inside were lined against a wall and their pockets were looted. The money on the table was picked up by one of the bandits. The total cash stolen amounted to only $75, while the watches and rings taken from the victims were worth about $100.

Captain Carter and other investigators heard reports that if the holdup had been staged 10 minutes later, a richer reward would have fallen into the hands of the bandits, The rumors were to the effect that the “banker” for the place arrived there from Atlantic City 10 minutes after the holdup, with two or three thousand dollars.

Nicholas Dandrea and Yennitti recognized the three white men, and then saw Allen, they said, in the car outside, Allen and Passeralla had been in the place Saturday afternoon, the former losing about $15 at pool, according to Yennitti.

The license numbers of the car were observed by several of the victims, and the affair was reported to the state police. Troopers George Probert and Howard Mallff of the Malaga barracks, and Wilfred Dube, state police plain-clothesman, were assigned to the investigation. They immediately sped to Camden, where they obtained the aid of Detective Theodore Guthrie.

Allen and Passarella were arrested last evening by the troopers and Guthrie. Passalacqua was arrested at his home last night by Sergeant Rox Saponare, of the Camden detective bureau. De Corda waa arrested 4 a. m. today on suspicion and was later identified,

Holdup Car Found

The holdup car was found at Third and Pine streets today and was impounded by the Camden police for Atlantic County authorities. It bore the license plates C25899, but this license was issued, according to the state motor vehicle bureau at Trenton, to Harry Whaland, 1424 Mt. Ephraim avenue, Camden. An investigation proved that the tags had been stolen from Whaland’s car yesterday. Moreover, Whaland had a car different in make than the one impounded.

In his confession, Passarella declared that the seized car was his and that it was used in the holdup. The plates, he is said to have confessed, were stolen from Whaland.

However, a checkup at the Trenton bureau revealed that the license number C22859, issued for the car claimed by Passarella, had been issued to a Frank Passarella, of 327 Washington street, Camden.

Passarella, the man under arrest, is a nephew of Frank Passarella, also known as Passeralli, 31, of 212 Catherine street, Philadelphia, one of the two Atco National Bank bandits who were convicted here last month and received heavy jail sentences.

The limp which betrayed Allen was the result of a bullet wound inflicted on him August 2 by Charles Areni, 699 Central avenue, who later was convicted and sent to state’s prison.

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