Black Lives Matter: Boston Racism: Cops, Feds, and Media : Part 2 of 10

(!) VeranisI should not have said The murder of Dixon, Barrett and Smith disappeared. Thirty-one years later after Martorano got his deal we would again read about it. Adrian Walker of the Globe criticized Martorano’s deal. He would write: “You can commit one of the worst massacres in this city’s bloody history and pay no price at all. The lives of Smith, Dickson, and Barrett meant virtually nothing.”

I’ve only accessed the Globe archives. I assume none of the other newspapers made much of it. Certainly no editorials were written nor did any public officials like the Boston Police commissioner, the district attorney, the mayor, or attorney general seek the public’s help in solving these murders. Even had the black community cared nothing was carried in the news about it. Three murders forgotten forever until the murderer needed to get a deal.

Did these three black lives matter? Elizabeth Dixon’s murder and that of two others, a black teen age boy and a 47-year-old assistant manager of a night club tugged at no media or public officials’heart strings. How could it be that three were found slain like that and so few seemed to care or have an interest? Was it because black lives did not matter? It is impossible for me to believe had three white persons been found executed like this in West Roxbury it would have disappeared in a similar manner. There would have been more public and media outrage. A better investigation would have followed; tons more media time would have been devoted to it; the press would have reached out to their families to give us a sense of who these victims were.

I had friends growing up, Ralph and Tony Veranis. Tony Veranis was murdered by Murderman Martorano in April 1966 a year and a half before Elizabeth Dixon. The police said according to an article “Veranis was pistol-whipped and shot with a .38 calibre weapon, apparently while on his knees. . . .”  Martorano perjured himself when testifying about how he killed Tony. He said Tony tried to draw on him but he was too slow. He skipped the beating where he and others held him down. Unlike former FBI agent Bob Fitzpatrick, Martorano was not indicted for perjury. He was a government witness.

There were two news stories about Veranis’s murder. There was also a full length column by the late Bud Collins “Veranis Found Self — Too Late.”. He concluded: “he seemed to have found [the right way] when I saw him six months ago. But he did something to offend the animals that killed him. . . . ”

Tony’s name would surface from time to time. A hoodlum named William Geraway was indicted for his murder; his family for years put notices in the newspaper telling how they were still thinking of him. He did not disappear from public notice after two days like Elizabeth and her two fellow victims.

There were other murders of women that I looked at to see the coverage they received. On September 15, 1992, the body of 27-year-old Susan Taraskiewicz was found in the trunk of her blue Toyota Tercel in the parking lot of a Revere auto body shop. She had been murdered being found with multiple stab wounds to her back and by blunt trauma to her head and neck.

On Sept. 13, 1992, Taraskiewicz, 27, took sandwich orders from co-workers at Northwest Airlines at Logan Airport and left for an early morning food run. She never came back. Thirteen years later on September 14, 2005, the Suffolk DA appealed for the public’s help in solving it.  Seventeen years later In 2009 another article appeared. The latest article of the fifty or so in the Boston Globe was 22 years later.

About a half-year earlier than Elizabeth on May 15 Ruth Masters a 33-years-old mother was murdered in Myles Standish state park in Plymouth while she was out bicycling. Two and a half years and 16 articles later it was still being investigated and written about. That too, like Tony’s and Susan’s murder only involved one person. There was continuing interest in their killings by the investigators and media so unlike the triple murder in Roxbury.

No one wanted to forget Susan’s murder; no one wanted to remember Elizabeth’s. Why so much coverage for Susan and so little for the three black victims?  (continued in part 3)

5 thoughts on “Black Lives Matter: Boston Racism: Cops, Feds, and Media : Part 2 of 10

  1. Mtc :

    Keep crackin’! !!! … This is good stuff . Remember though : ” Johnny Did It ” does not solve all of your problems. Give Johnny a break. He is what the feds made him. This is the game. The feds did not invent it. They are just playing it along with the rest of the hallelujah chorus . 🙂

  2. Johnny got enough breaks, approx. 20, with 20’gs to go with it. He made himself a serial killer,the feds did not make him kill young black civilians.

  3. Doubting T :

    This is stating the obvious. In the PC language nursery we are all spoonfed our safe words and our no-no words OC Hitmen become ” Serial Killers ” , which is quantitatively correct one supposes, but not qualitatively or philosophically correct : ditto for stone gangsters being killed by their OC peers and in full PC language marching order being described as ” Victims. ” This is unfortunate.

    ” Johnny did it ” is a very old trope. It speaks to the reflexive tendency to blame all on ” the bad boy ” by siblings or peers. The point was not the race of those who Martorano killed : nor his technique : nor his murder of innocent teens who were potential witnesses and were sitting with the target. His professional MO was all his. His actions in Roxbury were, Professionally speaking, very very bad indeed.

    There is a Big Picture that Johnny fits into. It involves a historical dynamic between gangsters and feds. It did not start with copping to 20 murders and ” getting 20 g’s ” for John Martorano. He is a portmanteau. He is the ” Johnny Did It. ” 🙂

    Your point about, and shared moral revulsion at, the two black teen murders in Roxbury is very well taken . It was brutal. It was overkill. It had however many more fingerprints on it … ultimately … than John Martorano’s. Though he did indeed pull that trigger.

  4. Mac- Love the way you break it all down, Much RESPECT.
    Do we agree that all Hitmen or Contract killers have a code?

    1. No Children
    2.No Females
    3.No Civilians
    4. Abort contract if not able to locate target alone and out of public view.

    That is the best i can think of, as far as that kind of horrible line of work. Johnny failed in all phases of that policy.

  5. Doubting T :

    Thankyou, and likewise. The only thing more regrettable than taking a person’s life I should think, would be to do it for money. Although I understand that is usually the case with these sorts of things. I agree, it is indeed a horrible business all around. And yes, John Martorano had an MO that was his alone.

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