Las Vegas is a major tourist attraction. Underneath the tinsel, the shine, and the low is a dark history. Despite the new marketing efforts which try to paint the town as a place for the whole family, Las Vegas continues to be a haven for gambling, murder, and indulgence.
The busy casino strip combines with 24/7 entertainment as the desert town blows away tourists. The city drags along enough mystique and glamor to seduce even the most reluctant visitor.
From Mormon bankers partnering with mobsters to entrepreneurs making a fortune — several times over, Las Vegas can be the dark side of the American dream. The city continues to rebel even after businesses took control of casinos.
Some of the nation’s most infamous criminals have played a part in the show which is Las Vegas. Some call the city “ground zero” for shocking crimes. Here are two:
Hailed as one of the more legendary rappers, Tupac’s career ended one night on a Las Vegas street. After a Tyson bout at the MGM Grand, Tupac had his own dispute with Orlando Anderson in the hotel’s lobby. Following the match, he rode with Suge Knight to prepare for a concert at Club 662.
Tupac never arrived. On the way to the event, the auto he was in was circled by three cars as a fourth sprayed gunfire. Thirteen shots were fired, and Tupac took three that finished his life. The crime remains unsolved although numerous hypotheses have been presented. The only person even willing to testify was killed himself two months later in New Jersey.
Unions have a long relationship with organized crime. The Las Vegas Culinary Worker Local 226 is not an exception. Led by Al Bramlet the organization took control of the city’s service industry with threats and violence.
A failed bombing headed to Bramlet’s fall. In 1977 law enforcement found two bombs that failed to detonate at a pair of non-union restaurants. The duo responsible for the botched bombing were Thomas and Gramby Hanley.
The Hanley’s, father and son, were angry when Bramlet refused to pay them for the failed bombing. The hit men promised to get revenge. Understanding that Bramlet was armed and dangerous, the figured the airport was the only place they could find him without his pistol.
On February 22, they grabbed Bramlet as he was leaving McCarran International Airport. Once they extorted money, they shot Bramlet six times and left his body in the desert. Hikers found the body.
One of the Hanley’s associates snitched, and now they are doing life without parole.
Culinary Workers Local 226 is still one of the nation’s most powerful unions.