Niagara Gazette

Courts

June 10, 2013

Suspect in rival shooting case tried to hire hit man

(Continued)

In addition to looking for a hit man to kill his brother-in-law, Depetris reportedly was also seeking to kill a pizza deliveryman who was with him at the time of the shooting and has since cooperated with police and prosecutors. Investigators have said the pizza deliveryman lured the victim to the doorway.

Prosecutors turned over two CDs to Depetris' defense team after the arraignment. The CDs reportedly contain conversations Depetris had while looking for a hit man at the Niagara County Jail.

Farkas ordered Depetris held in "isolation" at the jail as a result of the new charges.

Prosecutors had previously asked the judge not to set bail in the case because they feared Depetris would try to convert his assets,” estimated in the millions of dollars, and flee. 

Depetris’ defense attorney says his client does not have access to "millions of dollars."

“He is currently going through a divorce and his assets are frozen,” Earl Key said. “He has no prior criminal record and these are only allegations.”

Hoffmann had previously told Farkas that Depetris had "stalked" the victim at his home, before shooting him and repeatedly firing at him inside his business.

“All because of a business deal (Depetris) felt went badly," Hoffmann said.

The victim reportedly pointed investigators to Depetris as a suspect almost immediately after the shooting. A day later, police stopped Depetris as he was driving through the city and found what one investigator called an “arsenal” inside his car.

Detectives said Depetris had a loaded semi-automatic 9-mm Baretta handgun in a holster around his neck and under his shirt at the time he was stopped. Police also recovered a fully automatic rifle and multiple, loaded ammunition clips in the back seat of the car.

At the time of his arrest, Depetris was reportedly living, without charge, in a penthouse at Seneca Niagara Casino. Sources have said over the course of the last year, Depetris had “gambled away over a million dollars” at the casino.

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