A felon suspected of being an Irish mobster wept in court Wednesday after a judge sentenced him to 15 years in prison and 15 years probation for the beating death of another man inside a bar.
Larry Eugene Tosh, 40, was charged with first-degree murder in the death of Richard Allen Burns Jr., 32. Burns was found beaten about 12:30 p.m. Sept. 20 in the 1100 block of SW 41. He was taken to OU Medical Center, where he died.
Tosh, prosecutors alleged, “stomped and punched” Burns to death. They agreed to reduce the murder charge if Tosh pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter.
On the night of his death, Burns told several people he was on his way to the Red Dog Cafe to meet “Irish,” who was going to help him with a drug debt, according to the arrest warrant.
An informant told police he knew Tosh as “Big Irish,” a member of the Irish mob, and that Tosh told him he had been hired by a Mexican drug dealer to beat up Burns because of his drug debt, records show.
The informant also told police Tosh said another member of the Irish mob named “Cagle,” who is in prison, wanted Burns beaten up because he thought Burns had been with his girlfriend.
Tosh was on probation for gun and drug possession convictions when the beating occurred.
Defense attorney Marco Palumbo said Tosh is a former Army paramedic who got “strung out” on drugs, not a mob enforcer who was collecting a drug debt.
“This thing was basically a fight where somebody went a little bit overboard and hit a guy one too many times,” Palumbo said. “It was an accident. He didn't think the guy would die.”
The victim's mother read a statement, saying Tosh has “destroyed” the lives of her family and the lives of his two children as well.