Years before his reporting on egregious abuse at Attica Correctional Facility landed on the front page of the New York Times, investigative reporter Tom Robbins was at another New York newspaper, the Village Voice, covering a murder trial when the key witness gave testimony he knew to be false -- or, at the very least, contradictory to what she had told him years earlier.
Robbins first met the witness, Linda Schiro, in 1997 and had recorded a series of interviews with her for a potential book on her love interest, mafia assassin Gregory Scarpa. Robbins and his colleague Jerry Capeci had promised Schiro that whatever she shared wouldn't be attributed to her. But when Schiro took the stand and implicated a retired FBI agent in four murders, Robbins felt compelled to step in.
In part two of his conversation with Jesse Eisinger and Eric Umansky, the veteran journalist talks about the murder case and how he became a part of the story in a 'Perry Mason moment.'
Photo courtesy of John Smock.