New York Times
3 May 2016
By ASHLEY SOUTHALL
When the body of the man with the tattoo of the Virgin Mary spread across his back was found on the shore in Brooklyn, his face was wrapped in duct tape and his feet were encased in concrete, the police said.
“This individual was wrapped in black plastic bags and his arms were tied behind him,” Robert K. Boyce, the chief of detectives for the New York Police Department, said at a news conference in Queens on Tuesday. “His feet were submerged in poured concrete, obviously a homicide.” […]
The Daily Beast
4 May 2016
A Brooklyn street gang member got a mob flick sendoff.
Cement overshoes have long figured in Mafia mythology, but until this week no cop in New York—or seemingly anywhere else in America—had seen them actually used to ensure a victim sleeps with the fishes. […]
4 May 2016
By Tess Owen
[…] As legend has it, giving a murder victim "cement shoes" has long been a favored body disposal method of mafia hitmen, and it's the origin of the phrase "sleeping with the fishes," which was made famous by The Godfather. The heavy concrete is supposed to make a body sink to the bottom of a river or the ocean, but — for reasons that remain unclear — it might not have worked in this case.
The fact that the body washed ashore has fueled speculation that the murder was the work of amateurs imitating something from the movies rather than professional assassins, and some have even suggested that the remains never sank at all, perhaps due to air bubbles in the concrete. The NYPD spokesperson said the body probably did sink "due to a combination of factors" — which he couldn't elaborate on — and the body washed up partly "due to tidal flow."
Organized crime experts disagree on the credibility of the "cement shoes" myth. […]