ShareThis Page

High Park crime writer draws attention of television network

| Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013, 9:02 p.m.
Margie Stanislaw | The Jeannette Spirit
Christian Cipollini of High Park has written a true-crime novel.

The A&E Biography channel has just added High Park native Christian Cipollini to its roster of “experts.”

Cipollini has a background in media, sales and public relations, but his true love is writing and he is extremely interested in the true crime genre.

The combination of his interest in true crime and his love of writing came to fruition this year when he published his first book, a nonfiction true crime book called “Diary of a Motor City Hit Man: The Chester Wheeler Campbell Story.”

“I've been a freelance journalist (for newspapers) and a lot of magazines over the past 10 years,” said Cipollini.

“This (book) was a destiny — everything else was leading to it.”

As for his involvement with the A&E television channel, Cipollini said, “They found me through a colleague. When I got the tweet, I thought it was a joke. It wasn't until they mentioned the name of my colleague that I knew it was for real.”

It was because of his book and his extensive research and interest in true crime, specifically the world of organized crime, that A&E flew Cipollini to Washington, DC where they filmed him giving his opinions as an expert in organized crime, for the third season of “Gangsters: America's Most Evil.”

“My daughter saw me on a commercial. I am really excited about that,” said Cipollini.

For more than 20 years Cipollini has been reading anything he can get his hands on about organized crime. He also started blogging and writing on websites about that subject and collecting original organized crime photos.

One of those photos was of Chester Wheeler and inspired him to write this book.

“I got an original photo and I never heard of him,” said Cipollini. “No one had ever written about him.”

Through a friend who is an attorney in Detroit, Cipollini was able to get access to a lot of old evidence files that started his research. After that “a lot of people in Detroit jumped on board,” said Cipollini.

The book was published this year by Strategic Media Books, a publisher of mostly nonfiction crime stories and books. Cipollini is in the process of developing a true-crime anthology.

Cipollini is a graduate of Hempfield Area High School and Seton Hill University. Cipollini's degree is in corporate communications and he works for Pitt Industrial Diamonds in sales and media.

He and wife Jennifer live in High Park and have two daughters, Natasha, who helped to illustrate the book and Kylie Sieber.

To learn more about true crime, writing or having a book published, get to know neighbor Christian Cipollini.

Editor's note: Meet Your Neighbors is a recurring feature in The Jeannette Spirit. If you know of a neighbor with an interesting life story to tell, someone who deserves some recognition for volunteer work, a resident with a special talent or an avid collector who would like to be featured, call the Spirit at 724-838-5154 or send an email to klinden@tribweb.com.

Margie Stanislaw is a contributing writer.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.