Burke refused to take responsibility for killing Bruce Gotterup, instead blasting the cooperating witnesses who ratted him out
The feds pulled out the rug on Gambino turncoat John Alite's courtroom confrontation Friday at the sentencing of his co-conspirator, who received life in prison for a gangland slaying they committed.
In a heated exchange inside Brooklyn Federal Court, Assistant U.S. Attorney Evan Norris ordered Alite to stay out of the courtroom, where he intended to read a statement calling out defendant John Burke as a coward and a phony. The victim’s widow had changed her mind about him reading a statement because she felt it would become a distraction to the proceeding, sources said.
Burke was the triggerman who put a bullet in the back of victim Bruce Gotterup's head in 1991 in retribution for trying to sell drugs out of a Queens bar under the control of the Gambino crime family.
Alite pleaded guilty to helping plan the rubout with the alleged approval of then-Gambino boss John A. (Junior) Gotti, who beat the murder rap in 2009.
Alite — who served 100 months in prison as a reward for his cooperation — has apologized to members of the Gotterup family, who then asked him to accompany them to Burke's sentencing.
"It's OK, today is the Gotterups' day," Alite told the Daily News in an exclusive interview "I just wanted them to know that I'm sorry for my role and I support them. "
Bruce Gotterup was murdered by John Burke in gangland-style murder in 1991.
That was more remorse than Burke was ready to show.
Burke refused to take responsibility for killing Gotterup as well as drug dealer John Gebert, instead blasting the cooperating witnesses who ratted him out.
"John Alite killed three men and he's back with his family," Burke told Federal Judge Sterling Johnson.
"I'm happy with myself…My sentence won't shake me," Burke added. "My foundation's built on a rock and that rock is Jesus."
While Alite remained on the third floor of the courthouse with FBI agents, upstairs Burke took a pounding from the victim's son, Randy Gotterup.
"For the longest time I dreamed about seeing the person who killed my father," Randy said in court. "Growing up I had to deal with poverty, my mom was a wreck, they literally left my life in turmoil."
I had shows like 'Growing Up Gotti ' flaunted in my face," he added, referring to the reality show starring the late Gambino boss John Gotti Sr.'s daughter Victoria and her sons.
The judge called Burke a "negative role model" whose lifetime of crime should serve as an example of "what people should not do."
"I heard you say you were a changed person, you say you have renounced organized crime," Johnson said. "The jury didn't buy it."
Burke was slammed with life in prison plus ten years for the two murders and racketeering.
Alite had reached out to the Gebert family to apologize for his role in that murder as well, but was rebuffed.
"You going to write that mother------'s life story?" Thomas Gebert, the victim's brother, said to Alite and a Daily News reporter.