New York Daily News

March 31, 2015, 2:00 AM




Nightspots worry Lillo Brancato would draw NYPD raids because of cop killing, but he says he doesn't drink  


Nightlife bigwigs think that associating with ex-con movie star Lillo Brancato could be bad for business.

Confidenti@l is told that after a powerful police union came out against the actor — who's filming his first movie since he was involved in the shooting of a police officer — nightclub owners and promoters are worried their venues will draw heat from the cops if they get too cozy with him.

Our source says that while the troubled actor could once be seen hobnobbing with owners and promoters, they're now going to be keeping their distance from him.

Last week the New York City Patrolmen's Benevolent Association called for a boycott of "Back In The Day," the Alec Baldwin flick that Brancato, who was released on parole in December 2013 after serving eight years of a 10-year sentence, has been filming in Brooklyn.

"We will never be able to forgive and forget the role that junkie Lillo Brancato played in the death of hero Police Officer Daniel Enchautegui," its president,Patrick Lynch, said in a statement.

"People in nightlife have to stay on the right side of the cops because there's an NYPD nightlife task force which regularly goes to all the clubs to make surprise raids and inspections," a hospitality industry insider tells us.

The source says that industry insiders are nervous that having Brancato, who was once a familiar face on the party scene, in their VIP areas may cause trouble between their venues and New York's Finest. "They're treading carefully," said the insider.

Since his release, the troubled actor, who starred in the "A Bronx Tale" with Robert De Niro and a season of "The Sopranos," has been spotted at swanky SoHo lounge Goldbar and Chelsea hotspot the Leonora. Before his incarceration, the actor was a regular at Amy Sacco's Lot 61 and strip club Scores.

In December 2005, Brancato and accomplice Steven Armento tried to break into a home in the Bronx but were confronted by Enchautegui, who was off-duty but lived next door. Armento shot Enchautegui dead and was imprisoned for life. Brancato was convicted of first-degree attempted burglary.

Brancato, who has a 9 p.m. curfew and doesn’t drink, tells Confidenti@l, he's been to a couple clubs since his release, but only for film industry events. He needs special permission to stay out past curfew.

"You can tell club owners they don't have much to worry about because I don't go to clubs," he said. "They can sleep better at night — or during the day."