On September 6th 2017, Craig Carton was arrested on charges of conspiracy, wire and securities fraud. He resigned from WFAN soon after and went to federal trial beginning last week. Carton never took the stand during his case. Being quiet is something no one is used to when it comes to Craig, who never held back from criticizing a public figure for any wrongdoing.
While the jury’s decision on Craig shocked no one, Thursday morning at 6am on WFAN served as a coping mechanism for those on the Boomer and Gio show following Wednesday’s announcement of a guilty verdict.
Boomer admitted Wednesday was a “sad day of closure.” Esiason previously opted not to discuss the legal situation with his former partner in the last 14 months because he didn’t want to say anything that could affect or include him in the case.
Esiason was noticeably saddened while discussing the situation, stating “We love Craig, Craig was the light of this radio station for many of us.”
“Unfortunately yesterday was the lowest of lows for all of us that have been involved in this and we can only pray and hope that he and his family find solace in the fact that not at least it’s come to somewhat of an end,” said Boomer who then added, “There will be brighter days ahead somewhere along the line.”
Board-op Eddie Scozzare said he understands when people with an outside perspective of someone that commits a crime are happy about a conviction, but explained those that were close to Craig have a different viewpoint.
“Even though maybe it’s wrong, even though you know he’s been found guilty, we still hoped he got off, because that’s our perspective from the inside as opposed to the outside where people are happy about it,” said Scozzare.
Jerry Recco cited past conversations with his own father who said, “This can’t be, it doesn’t work this way,” referring to Carton’s gambling success. To which Jerry would respond, “but it is, you never saw him lose…you just thought he was good at it.”
“Every time we went out with him, Craig was the one who held court, Craig was the one who told the stories, Craig was the one that made you laugh and it never stopped. There was never ever this notion that something was wrong,” added Recco.
Producer Al Dukes made a similar statement, saying he only saw Craig win, he witnessed Carton succeed at blackjack and was unaware Craig was losing money especially because he was always the same fun, energetic personality. “He was not a bad person. I don’t think he set out to do any of these things,” said Dukes.
Esiason brought closure to the conversation saying, “At the end of the day you have to take a big deep breath and hope and pray that Craig gets through this next stage of it and when he is done with it, somehow, someway he can do something positive to help people deal with what the hell he has dealt with over the last 14 months because he has basically destroyed a lot of people in his wake and it’s really sad to watch how a gambling addiction can do that to you.”
After following what was made public of the case, it did not appear Carton’s defense team had much of an ability to argue his innocence. Maybe Carton couldn’t bring himself to admit guilt, or maybe he ignored the odds and went all in on one final gamble in a desperate attempt at returning to the life he lived 14 months ago.
A rather emotionless Carton left the courtroom telling reporters he was disappointed in the verdict, but respected the decision.
“I’m going to go home and hug my kids and let my lawyers deal with the rest of it,” Carton said.
“The rest of it,” will include an appeal, according to Carton’s defense team. Carton is currently scheduled to be sentenced on February 27th, 2019.
Whether his sentence is one year, two years, five, or ten, when Carton is free he will have offers and his need to have his voice heard, along with the audience’s need to hear him will find Carton on-air again, assuming he isn’t sentenced to the full 45 years that are on the table.