‘Growing up Buttafuoco’: Joey and Mary Jo’s daughter reflects on the shooting that changed her life

NEW YORK — One might think that 27 years after the “Long Island Lolita” story first blew up in the tabloids, it’s impossible to say more.

“Most people think they know this story, but they have no idea,” said Jessie Buttafuoco, the victim’s daughter. “I lived this story. And it’s crazy.”

The Buttafuocos are back. Jessie Buttafuoco, Mary Jo Buttafuoco and Joey Buttafuoco who became famous for all the wrong reasons.

“It took on a life of its own because the public saw that, that’s what they wanted. And that’s what the media wanted,” said Joey Buttafuoco. “Did I play there? Yes, of course I have.”

In a two-hour special 20/20, the Buttafuoco saga was told by the people who lived it and those who reported it.

On November 8, 2019, the 20/20 special, Growing up Buttafuoco, aired.

When we first heard that a woman had been shot dead on the doorstep of her home in suburban New York, we all thought it was a home invasion.

“A mysterious suburban shooting. A woman was shot in the head outside her home,” reported Bill Beutel on WABC-TV’s Eyewitness News in 1992.

Nassau County police arrested a 17-year-old high school student named Amy Fisher, who later admitted to shooting Mrs. Buttafuoco because she was having an affair with Joey Buttafuoco.

That’s when the story took off.

“As I try to recover from this egregious injury, this phenomenon is occurring,” explained Mary Jo Buttafuoco. “It’s not about me anymore. It’s about Joey and Amy!”

People couldn’t get enough of it. People were talking about it everywhere, from diners on the South Shore to yacht clubs on Long Island’s North Shore. You got on the train and everyone had the Daily News. “Long Island Lolita” was an obsession.

The episode “20/20” delved deeply into the crime and circus that followed, with Joey Buttafuoco as ringmaster.

“It was a fucking cartoon I was living in. It was just crazy,” he said. “So yes. I have deposited and withdrawn.”

The Buttafuocos stayed together for ten years before divorcing and were interviewed separately. Amy Fisher declined an interview and is reportedly living back on Long Island under a false name — a single mom of three.

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https://abc13.com/joey-buttafuoco-mary-jo-jessie-amy-fisher/5683978/ ‘Growing up Buttafuoco’: Joey and Mary Jo’s daughter reflects on the shooting that changed her life

Dais Johnston

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