Arts & Culture

New Book, “Mommy’s A Mole” Investigates 32-Year-Old Murder Case That Implicated North Ender Leonard Paradiso

Leonard Paradiso of the North End was known to residents of the community for pushing a cart selling clams for many years at the festivals of the patron saints.

Paradiso was also known for his conviction of the 1979 murder of Marie Iannuzzi. He was also implicated by authorities for the 1981 murder of Joan Webster. Paradiso maintained his innocence of both crimes up until his death in 2008.

A new book, Mommy’s A Mole: Unraveling the Joan Webster Murder & Other Secrets in a CIA Family, researches the unresolved 1981 murder of Joan Webster and related cases. Author and Webster’s sister-in-law, Eve Carson, presents documents that she contends point to a wrongful conviction in the Iannuzzi case and a fabricated explanation regarding Joan Webster.

“I think North End residents would like to see an injustice righted against one of their own,” says Carson. “The state’s investigation targeted Leonard Paradiso, and speculated Joan Webster was murdered onboard his boat. There is no evidence the boat even existed when Joan disappeared.”

The book describes how Paradiso became inextricably entangled with Joan’s case. Personal experiences in the Webster family, and a published account by the former prosecutor, motivated a closer look at the presumed culprit.

“Recovered files exposed an obsessed effort to incriminate Paradiso for numerous crimes,” according to the author. “Records reflected the same misprision prevalent in Boston’s broken system at the time of Joan’s loss.”

The book is now available through the website or on Amazon.

There are numerous references throughout the book to the North End, such as in this excerpt:

Here is a second book excerpt referencing the North End:

6 Replies to “New Book, “Mommy’s A Mole” Investigates 32-Year-Old Murder Case That Implicated North Ender Leonard Paradiso

  1. To Eve Carson whoever you are… I am the woman who called the Saugus Police. I sat there during that trial while 6 other woman told chilling stories of their encounters with Paradiso. We are the woman that got away alive, how could you bring this pain back to my life. Please do not buy this book, this woman is an opportunist that does not know what she is talking about.

    1. I have the transcripts of the testimonies. They are shared in the book.

      Let me share a quote with you:

      “I am very concerned about his [defense attorney Owen Walker’s] arguments that since the evidence in this record is uncontradicted, that whoever owned the boat and the car, the boat and the truck, counts C & B, prior to August of 1981, that by August of 1981, that both of those assets were long gone, and that all that the owner really owned was some type of claim for insurance proceeds, rather than what this indictment charges.” Judge Bruce Selya, United States of America v. Leonard J. Paradiso, pages 128 & 129, April 9, 1985.

      The boat did not exist when my sister-in-law Joan Webster disappeared. There is no evidence to the contrary. I lost a member of my family and the state made up a story.

      Eve Carson

  2. Tim Burke identified Patty Bono in a side bar during the Iannuzzi pretrial on 3-5-1984. On page 119 of the hearing transcript, Burke confirmed you placed an anonymous call to the Websters in January 1982. Saugus Police Chief Donald Peters affirmed the anonymous call to the Daily Item on 1-31-1932 after the Robert Bond allegations came out. He confirmed the call was placed in January 1982. I have my facts correct from the actual records.

  3. Hello Mrs. Nutile,

    I read Timothy Burke’s book last week and am now in the process of reading Ms. Carson’s. Have you read Ms. Carson’s book?

    I have no doubt that you experienced the horrible circumstances described in Mr. Burke’s book and that Leonard Paradiso was caught in the act of raping Connie Porter and was no doubt guilty of raping other victims of opportunity many of whom testified against him in his trial for the murder of Marie Iannuzzi.

    My problem with Mr. Burke’s book is that it describes how a district attorney created a case against a clearly unsavory citizen with no concrete evidence that he actually did any murder at all. Certainly Leonard Paradiso had proclivities that could graduate to murder but in my opinion none of the evidence introduced at court proved Paradiso murdered Marie Iannuzzi. I think the likelihood that he abducted and murdered Joan Webster too, highly improbable. That Paradiso was a scam artist, an insurance fraud, a liar and a rapist was amply proven in court. We cannot however make a leap into the abyss and say because he did these things he therefore murdered Marie Iannuzzi. While I’m not sad to see him gone there is no justice if the wrong person, however unsavory, is convicted of a crime and the right person still walks the streets among us.

    There are a number of problems for me with the idea that Paradiso abducted and murdered Joan Webster. The first red flag to me is that Joan Webster is from a completely different socioeconomic group than any of his other victims. What we know about serial offenders, rapists and murderers, is that their crimes are inspired by a certain type of person. Webster was not the type to inflame the rage that made Paradiso rape much less murder. Add to this there is no credible evidence that puts Paradiso at Logan Airport with access to a taxi cab on the night of the crime. All this is Timothy Burke’s speculation.

    The fact that Mr. Burke makes no reference to the work that George and Eleanor Webster did in his entire book is also a problem for me. This seemed to me like a cover-up before I ever heard of Eve Carson and her book. I was inspired to look further into the Paradiso case because frankly Mr. Burke’s case feels like an agenda to rush to judgement. I’m finding Ms. Carson’s book very thought provoking. She does come across as paranoid but if half of what she thinks is happening is true she has good reason to be. Just because one is paranoid people may still be out to get them. She certainly gives Paradiso more of the benefit of the doubt than I think he’s worthy of, but while I’m convinced he’s a guilty man, I am not convinced he’s guilty as charged.

    Patrick King

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