Paradiso is accused of killing his girlfriend of two-weeks, Eileen Pelt, 20, in December 2006 by stabbing her in the neck. He claimed that he was suffering from paranoia after taking methamphetamine at the time and thought that Pelt was going to kill him. His mother was driving at the time of the attack and Pelt died in the car. Paradiso then told his mother to drive to a secluded spot to dump the body.
Sheriff’s Deputy Dave Konecny stated that “The suspect was being cross-examined. The suspect made a move toward the judge with an unknown cutting instrument. A Lodi police officer immediately came forward, striking the suspect and stopping the assault.”
It is unclear what Konecny meant by “striking the suspect”. What is clear is that Lodi Det. Eric Bradley shot Paradiso. However, Chuck Pacheko, Paradiso’s defense attorney, said that the shots occurred when his client “was still grinding away at her neck… two shots, boom, from behind me.”
It also sounds like Paradiso stabbed both Fox and Pelt (no pun intended) in the neck.
What is also intriguing is that the family claims that it Paradiso’s mother, Debra, warned “jailers” that her son was carrying a weapon to court. The mother said that they searched his cell but did not find it.
It is simply amazing that a violent criminal could not only hide a weapon in a cell but get such a weapon into the courthouse. In many courthouses, inmates are not separately screened by machines upon their arrival — under the presumption that they have been screened and controlled through the jail system.