Sandi Murphy Renews bid for Binion Estate, Gets Beat Up

Jul. 11, 2007
Copyright © Las Vegas Review-Journal

Legal try for funds restarts

Sandy Murphy back in court in effort
to get part of Binion estate


Sandy Murphy, the woman once accused of killing gaming executive Ted Binion, was back in a Las Vegas courtroom Tuesday, seeking to keep alive her attempt to gain possession of a portion of Binion's estate.

"She's got to support herself," Murphy's attorney, Herb Sachs, said outside District Judge Elizabeth Halverson's courtroom.

Murphy and her one-time lover, Rick Tabish, were charged in 1999 with drugging and killing Binion in what authorities said was a plot to steal his $7 million silver stash and prevent him from cutting Murphy out of his will.

The two were convicted of murder and other charges in 2000 and sentenced to life in prison. But the convictions were overturned by the state Supreme Court and the two were acquitted by a second jury in 2004 of the murder charge. They were found guilty of grand larceny, conspiracy and burglary charges in the theft of Binion's silver.

Sachs said an appeal is before the state high court on those charges. He said he has plans to file a motion this month asking for a new trial on the theft charges based on newly discovered evidence, which he said he will detail in the motion.

Murphy does not face any additional time in prison because of the 4 1/2 years she has already spent incarcerated.

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George Knapp, Chief Investigative Reporter

I-Team Exclusive:
Sandy Murphy's Run In With Binion Family Member

July 10, 2007 08:03 PM

The animosity between Sandy Murphy and the Binion family hasn't subsided after all these years. Monday night, things got ugly at a Las Vegas restaurant. Eyewitnesses say Murphy was attacked by a member of the Binion family.

The Eyewitness News has been in phone contact with Sandy Murphy over the past few weeks and she told the I-Team she looked forward to getting all of the various legal wrangling behind her.

She called the I-Team on Monday from California to say she'd just learned the wrongful death suit filed against her by the Binion family was almost certain to be dismissed Tuesday. She didn't think she would have to appear, but she flew to Las Vegas anyway and was in court for the dismissal.

What was not obvious to onlookers is that Murphy was a bit banged up Tuesday morning after an altercation Monday night at one of Las Vegas' most popular gourmet restaurants, Piero's, on Convention Center Drive. Murphy and her lawyer declined all comment about the incident.

However, eyewitnesses say Murphy was assaulted by Benny Behnen, the grandson of Binion family patriarch Benny Binion. Sources say Behnen and his group were involved in some sort of argument with another group when he spotted Murphy across the restaurant and came over to her, smashed her head on a table and gave her a shot to the jaw. Metro police were called to the scene.

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Dominic is the brother of mob-affiliate Rick Rizzolo who is losing the Crazy Horse while he sits in federal detention. zg
zengrifter <[email protected]> wrote:

Hey Dominic -

This is Marcus Dalton, former managing editor of the Las Vegas Tribune and current editor for Local Topix Las Vegas.

Your "best friend" Benny beat-up Sandi Murphy, I believe. Isn't that the issue?

I'll meet you and your pals with Steve, no scurrying allowed.

Love to you too, cape'ce? Marcus

[email protected] wrote:
Is this a threat

Because of the tone of this email, I have forwarded it to the Clark County Sheriff, FBI, U.S. Attorney Eric Johnson, and attorneys for Rick Rizzolo. - SM

From: "Dominic Rizzolo"
To: [email protected]
Subject: Dominic Rizzolo
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2007 15:54:45 -0600

This is Dominic Rizzolo. You have some nerve calling anyone a coward especially my best friend Benny Benhen. ........ Why dont you make a copy of this email and put it on your website so that people can see just what kind of person your are. If you were to see any of us around you would scurry like a frightened rabbit.


Dominic Rizzolo

Oops, its Rizzolo's son. zg

From: [email protected]
Date: Wed, 18 Jul 2007 17:05:05 EDT
Subject: A reason for Dominic Rizzolo''s threat
To: [email protected]

A reason for Dominic Rizzolo's threat

A check of the Clark County Recorder's records indicate the recent formation of THE LISA M RIZZOLO SEPARATE PROPERTY TRUST by the prestigious law firm of LIONEL SAWYER.

These records do not reflect the Rizzolo's out of state properties including a beach house in Newport Beach, Calif, a lake front condo in Chicago, two Land Rovers, a 2005 Mercedes, a 1958 Corvette, the Crazy Horse Too property in Philadelphia, and ownership of the Crazy Horse Too converted warehouse in Las Vegas.

This is the TRUST set up to protect the Rizzolo's joint assets that were accumulated during their 25 year marriage that ended in a bogus divorce days before Rick Rizzolo was indicted -- assets that are community property accumulated during the time crimes occurred at the Crazy Horse Too.

This TRUST was also set up to pay for the life-long sustenance of Rick Rizzolo's two adult children Dominic and Monica, sister Annette, brother Ralph, and father Bartholomew.

I am the only journalist so far to advocate the reversal of the bogus transfer of the millions of dollars worth of assets (listed below) that should have -- by now -- been liquidated to pay the Rizzolo's $17 million dollars in court ordered debts to the IRS, Kirk and Amy Henry, City of Las Vegas, and Buffalo Jim Barrier.

My prodding on this subject obviously hit a nerve with the Rizzolos. This inspired Dominic Rizzolo, the 21 year old child of Rick and Lisa, to threaten my safety in an email sent yesterday that's now in the hands of the FBI, Sheriff, and U.S. Prosecutors.

If my suggestion is followed, the more-than-ample LISA M RIZZOLO SEPARATE PROPERTY TRUST should immediately be pierced to pay the Rizzolo's joint legal obligations -- obligations that are now PAST DUE and are not required to be paid through the sale of the Crazy Horse Too according to the Judgement and Plea Agreement.

If this occurs, Dominic Rizzolo may be forced to seek meaningful employment to maintain the lavish life style to which he has become accustomed. Hence his threat. - SM

A Chip Off the Old Block

INSIDE VEGAS by Steve Miller
July 23, 2007

The final paragraphs of last week's INSIDE VEGAS struck a nerve with the son of convicted racketeer Rick Rizzolo.

In the column I referred to a person named Benny Behnen (Archive copy) as being a coward for beating up women. His latest victim was Sandra Murphy whom he reportedly slugged and kicked in Piero's on July 9.

Behnen , 30, is part of a new breed of local spoiled brats who have no education or skills, but plenty of mom and dad's money to blow in bars and casinos. Benny's protégé is Rick Rizzolo's
impressionable 23 year old son Dominic.

This was the second time Behnen has gotten away with attacking a women in Piero's. A professional bar fly, Behnen has until recently been exempt from arrest or prosecution because he's the grandson of the legendary Benny Binion of Horseshoe Casino fame. The Horseshoe under the ownership of Jack and Ted Binion and later under the management of the Binion's sister Becky was once a major political campaign contributor to Vegas politicians including District Attorneys, Judges, and Sheriffs. Under the Behnen's mis-management, the Horseshoe went broke and its name was sold to Harrah's. The building still contains a casino, but its on the brink of closure. (Editor's note: Jack and Ted Binion contributed $20,000 cash to Steve Miller's 1991 mayoral campaign.)

Benny Behnen is nothing like his grand dad who treated women with respect. Now, Behnen's best friend has come forward to try to make a similar name for himself.

Dominic Rizzolo is also the son of a family who is famous for their generous political campaign contributions (Archive copy) -- contributions that have kept local law enforcement at bay for over a decade.

Last week's column somehow inspired a threatening email from Dominic, a troubled young person who idolizes Benny Behnen. However, I suspect the real reason for his message may be based on fear of losing his financial security, not his admiration for a thug.

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Well-Known Member
hmmm interesting

Try to get money out of the estate is a good case . Friends in the vegas area say she has little if any chance of receiving anything in reality .:)