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Righteous Carnage
The List Family Murders

by Timothy B. Benford and James P. Johnson

      Most of America will remember May 21, 1989, when Americaís Most Wanted featured a man named John List. An expert took an old picture of him and created a new bust of what he'd probably look like today. He was wanted for the murder of his wife and children as well as his own mother at the familyís home in Westfield New Jersey. John List managed to elude authorities for eighteen years before AMW and its viewers helped to bring him in.

This book is about that gruesome crime, with extensive background into John Listís life and actual pictures from that time. The book covers his childhood and how he came to live in the big house on Hillside Avenue in Westfield, New Jersey. The events that occurred on December 7, 1971, and what led up to the murders is shocking. This true story tells you how John List so quietly slipped into another life and remarried and remained a faithful church attendant for so many years. There is also a thorough accounting of what happened during the trial, and a confession letter that John List wrote to the family priest.

A very eerie story about a man who planned out and killed his entire family. John List is a man who showed no remorse for the lives he took. Written by an author who lives in that area and was actually covering this trial, you'll find this a compelling read complete with updates and photos attributed to the author.

The Book

July 2000
Trade Paperback
Nonfiction/true crime
More at
NOTE: Being re-issued as an eBook July 2006 by American Book Publishers

The Reviewer

Michelle Shealy
Reviewed 2006
© 2006