Who Killed Gus Greenbaum? Examining the Unsolved Murder of a Las Vegas Mobster

Who Killed Gus Greenbaum? Examining the Unsolved Murder of a Las Vegas Mobster

Date: January 19, 2019
Time: 2 p.m. in the Historic Courtroom
Cost: Free for Members or with Museum admission

Gus Greenbaum ran the Flamingo and Riviera resorts for the Mob—siphoning millions of dollars for crime bosses across the country. His influence earned him the title Mayor of Paradise. In December 1958, Greenbaum and his wife, Bess, were murdered in their Phoenix home. No one was ever prosecuted.

Veteran Las Vegas journalist and author John Smith will tell the tale of Greenbaum, from working with Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel to his reluctant reign at the Riviera. Smith will also examine the evidence in this unsolved murder case.

Featured Speakers

John L. Smith  

John L. Smith


John L. Smith is a longtime Las Vegas journalist and author of more than a dozen books on Nevada subjects, including Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn and Of Rats and Men: Oscar Goodman’s Life from Mob Mouthpiece to Mayor of Las Vegas. The Nevada Press Association inducted him into its Hall of Fame in 2016. That same year, Northwestern University awarded him the James Foley-Medill Medal for Courage in Journalism and he also received the National Society of Professional Journalists Ethics in Journalism Award and the Ancil Payne Award for Ethics from the University of Oregon. Smith’s biography of Las Vegas civil rights activist and politician Joe Neal is scheduled for publication in the spring of 2019. As a freelance writer, his work regularly appears in the Nevada Independent and CDC Gaming Reports, and he contributes commentary for Nevada Public Radio.