After the events depicted in Netflix’s captivating docuseries, Get Gotti, many viewers have been curious about what transpired in the life of Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano after his pivotal role in taking down the notorious John Gotti, the ‘Dapper Don’ of the Gambino crime family. He was after all the highest-ranking member of the Mafia’s ‘Five Families’ to break a blood oath of silence.
Gotti, infamous for his extravagant lifestyle and frequent media appearances, was the mastermind behind the assassination of his predecessor, Paul Castellano, before ascending to the helm of the most formidable crime syndicate in America. However, not all of Gotti’s associates remained loyal to him.
During the 1980s, Gotti, nicknamed ‘The Teflon Don’ for his ability to evade prosecution, managed to escape multiple trials through witness tampering, intimidation, and bribery. The federal authorities persisted in their pursuit of cases against Gotti, and in the Netflix docuseries, they ultimately found assistance from Gotti’s former confidants, including Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano.
Gravano’s decision to cooperate with the authorities came with its own set of repercussions, including earning him numerous enemies within the Gambino crime family.
So what happened to Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano after he helped take down Gotti?
Sammy Gravano had already left a significant mark on New York’s organised crime scene. Initially associated with the Colombo crime family, he later joined the Gambino faction, aligning himself with notable mobsters such as Angelo Ruggiero, Frank DeCicco, and Joseph Armone. This group of associates played a vital role in orchestrating the murder of Paul Castellano in 1985, allowing Gotti to assume control of the syndicate.
Gravano was subsequently promoted for his role in Castellano’s assassination, eventually rising to the position of consigliere, a trusted adviser and mediator. By the late 1980s, he had become the underboss of the Gambino family. However, when Gravano overheard disparaging remarks from the Teflon Don himself, he made the unprecedented decision to testify for the authorities, becoming the highest-ranking member of the Mafia’s ‘Five Families’ to break the oath of silence.
Following Gotti’s sentencing to life in prison without parole in 1992, Gravano faced his own convictions, earning a five-year prison sentence. While his testimony against Gotti undoubtedly contributed to the reduced sentence, his extensive involvement with the mob prevented him from avoiding incarceration altogether, despite admitting to involvement in at least 19 murders, according to the New Yorker.
From prison to podcast life for Sammy Gravano
After serving approximately four years at the time of his sentencing, Gravano was incarcerated for less than a year more. Upon his release, he briefly entered the Witness Protection Program. However, approximately a decade after the Gotti trial, he was arrested on federal and state drug charges and sentenced to about 20 years in both New York and Arizona, serving the sentences concurrently. When Gravano was eventually released from prison nearly two decades later, he faced a lifetime supervision stipulation.In 2017, Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano regained his freedom. He had served substantial time for his involvement in drug trafficking rings but had not spent as long in prison for his mob-related activities. Despite his violent reputation, he was released a few years earlier than expected.
In 2020, the former mobster started a podcast and a corresponding YouTube channel titled Our Thing.