Tag Archives: Romeo Antoniello

A Brother’s letter: Antoniello family still reeling


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

Angelo Antoniello refers to the man convicted of killing his brother as “criminal.”

Other times, he just calls him “garbage.”

On Tuesday, March 20, Vincent Mineo pleaded guilty to first-degree burglary and was sentenced to 20 years in prison, according to the district attorney.

Gerardo “Jerry” Antoniello was killed on Wednesday, September 9, 2009, during a push-in robbery at his family’s home on 95th Street and North Conduit Avenue in Ozone Park. Two men, one now known to be Vincent Mineo and the other allegedly Francis LaCorte, attempted to gain entry to the Antoniello home as well as take cash from Romeo Antoniello, who had just finished closing the family’s pizzeria, Romeo’s on Cross Bay Boulevard.

The perpetrators hit Romeo, who was suffering from cancer, in the head, before pushing their way into the residence. Jerry attempted to defend his family when he was hit in the head with a single gunshot. He was taken to Jamaica Hospital in critical condition, where he died early Thursday morning, September 10.

During Mineo’s trial, Angelo said he showed no remorse, comparing his courthouse demeanor to that of “Charles Manson.”

Attempts to reach Mineo’s lawyer were unsuccessful.

The second alleged perpetrator, Francis LaCorte, sits on trial currently. Angelo claims, at the suspect’s request, he and his mother Gaetana are banned from attending.

Two years later, Angelo says thinking about his brother’s tragic death still saddens and angers him. Angelo, who says he is “not one to express my feelings,” wrote the following to Mineo as part of his victim impact statement:

“I feel you got off easy with a 20 year sentence – 20 minutes locked up in a room with me would have brought a better outcome. The past two-and-a-half years have been a living hell, seeing my mother cry every day and not knowing how to console her. The night of September 9, 2009 has been playing over and over in my head and has put a strain on my personal and family life. It has made me cautious of anyone I encounter. You and your degenerate friends have put my family through so much pain taking our son, brother, uncle and friend from us. My daughters never had the chance to meet their uncle Jerry and I dread the day I have to tell them what happened to him. All my memories of my brother Jerry have been marred by the senseless act of violence you and your lowlife friends committed that night.

Just imagine for a minute losing someone so important and close in your life, let alone being murdered, shot in the back of the head. For the past two-and-a-half years I’ve had this hatred built up inside of me for anyone who is involved. I feel absolutely no sympathy for you, your family, or anyone who has shown up crying and supporting a guilty man. NO innocent man would easily accept a 20-year plea.

Just seeing you before me kills me and makes me crazy knowing that you’re responsible for the death of my youngest brother. Jerry was an honest, loyal and hardworking man. He never had to steal to earn his living and he died trying to protect the people that mattered most to him – his family.

Is it fair that Jerry didn’t get to live his life and you get to make phone calls and stay in touch with your family and friends? Is that justice?”