City Man Takes Over Moxley Web Site.
Greenwich Time, January 3, 1999
By J.A. Johnson Jr., Photo by Mark Conrad
Their lives crossed only briefly, but 23 years after the murder of Greenwich
teenager Martha Moxley, Tom Alessi is helping to keep the 15-year-old girl's
memory alive in cyberspace.
Since September, Alessi has been webmaster of a site on the World Wide Web
dedicated to the investigation of Moxley's murder on Oct. 30, 1975.
Alessi, 38, and facilities administrator for Stamford's 911 system, attended
elementary and high school with Moxley.
"We were classmates in Western Junior High School, and we were friends when we
began Greenwich High School," said Alessi, who lives in Stamford with his wife
and son. "I'd been following her case ever since the murder, and I figured the
only thing I could do to help was to keep the story in the media and try to
bring as much attention to it as possible."
Alessi, an avid Internet surfer, came across the "Who Murdered Martha Moxley?"
Web site created by Robert Steiner, a graduate student in Austria with a
fascination for unsolved homicides. Through e-mail correspondence, Alessi
convinced Steiner to transfer stewardship of the site to him.
"After talking with Robert for a while, it became clear that I could put more
time into maintaining the site than he could, because he was a student, and so I
asked him," Alessi said. "Also, it made sense for me to do it since I am closer
physically to the story."
Since the Web site changed ownership the first week of September, it has offered
new features such as a "Friends of Martha Moxley Guestbook," where visitors can
register comments. Among the nearly 30,000 visitors who have left messages are
friends and relatives of the victim from around the country.
On Oct. 13, Martha's mother left the following message: "I am visiting friends
in California and we discovered Martha's name on the Internet," wrote Dorthy
Moxley, who now lives in New Jersey. "It was so heartwarming to find so much
interest and support. . I appreciate those people who are keeping the case and
Martha's memory alive on the Internet with their interest and kind comments."
Many visitors have left messages of support for Dorthy and her only surviving
immediate family member.
"My heart goes out to Dorthy and her son, John," wrote Delaware resident
Rosemary Rafferty. The well-wisher added her thanks and encouragement to Alessi:
"Please keep up the good work. I don't understand how the killer or killers
sleep at night. When will good triumph over evil? Thank you for your wonderful
Such messages would indicate Alessi's efforts have had the desired result of
humanizing the case.
"I remember Martha as a very popular person who was happy all the time and very
friendly to everyone," Alessi said. "I don't remember her ever being mean to
anyone, and that she was the type of person everyone liked. So with the Web
site, I hoped people would remember she was a person and not just a statistic."
The Web site also offers reviews of books about the Moxley case, as well as
archives of news articles and photographs from the national media.
Alessi updates the Web site daily, and a "news ticker" runs across the bottom of
the computer screen bearing the latest headlines about the Moxley case.
In December, the site was conferred three cyber-honors: "Crime Fighters Golden
Cuff Award for Web Excellence," PC Online News' "Outstanding Web Site Award,"
and Police Guide's "Award For Excellence."
The "Who Murdered Martha Moxley?" Web site is at http://www.marthamoxley.com.