P.O. Anthony Rizzato #12407

Name: Riccato, Anthony N.
Star: 12407
Memorial Panel #: #PANEL#
Rank: Patrolman
District / Unit: Special Operations Section
End of Watch: 17 July 1970
Incident Details: Police Officer Anthony Rizzato, 35, was a 4-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to Area 6 Task Force. Officer Anthony Rizzato and Sergeant James Severin were volunteers for the Chicago Police Department’s “Walk and Talk” project. The program was designed to cultivate community relations between Chicago Police Officers and residents of the Cabrini-Green housing complex. On July 17, 1970, the officers became victims of sniper shootings as they walked across the Seward Park baseball field at Cabrini-Green. Officers Rizzato and Sgt. Severin were shot in their backs by high-powered rifles which erupted from two CHA buildings. Officers Dennis Jurkowski, Bob Sargus, Curtis Crisler, and Sergeant Edward Stetter drove into the middle of the baseball field under a hail of sniper fire to recover the bodies of their fellow officers. Officer Rizzato and Sergeant Severin were transported to Henrotin Hospital where they were pronounced dead on arrival. Four people were charged and arrested for the officers’ murders-George C. Knight, 23; Johnnie Veal, 18; Vernon R. Baker, 14; Sidney Bennett, Jr., 18. Knight and Veal were both found guilty of first-degree murder and were each sentenced to 100 to 199 years in prison. Baker’s charges were dropped in 1972. Bennett confessed to the murders, but was deemed mentally unfit to stand trial. In 1975, Bennett shot and killed a man while working as an armed security guard. He pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and was sentenced to 1-5 years in prison. Officer Rizzato’s funeral mass was held at Queen of Angels Catholic Parish and he was laid to rest in St. Joseph Cemetery. He is survived by his wife, Rosarina; children, Rose and Anthony, Jr.