Terence Hallinan

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Terence Hallinan
District Attorney of San Francisco
In office
Preceded by Arlo Smith
Succeeded by Kamala Harris
Personal details
Born (1936-12-04) December 4, 1936 (age 77)
San Francisco, California, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Alma mater London School of Economics
University of California, Berkeley
University of California, Hastings College of the Law
Profession Lawyer
Religion None

Terence Hallinan (born December 4, 1936) is an American attorney and politician from San Francisco, California. He is the second of six sons born to leftist attorney Vincent Hallinan and his wife Vivian. He currently works in private practice in San Francisco.

Hallinan was educated at the London School of Economics, University of California, Berkeley, and University of California, Hastings College of the Law. He successfully contested the State Bar's negative evaluation of his character, based on his engagement in civil disobedience in opposing racist discriminatory employment practices by certain San Francisco businesses in the 1960s, before the Supreme Court of California.[1]

As an attorney, he successfully argued to have the murder convictions of serial-killer Juan Corona overturned on appeal, and represented Corona in his retrial which resulted in 25 convictions for murder and a life sentence.[2]

He served on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, losing his first bid for that office to Harvey Milk in 1977, and later was the district attorney of San Francisco for two terms. While serving as DA, he became a notable opponent of capital punishment. He also was a strong advocate on behalf of decriminalizing prostitution. He was widely known among law enforcement personnel as being soft on crime and causing petty crime rates in San Francisco to increase.[3] In his tenure he supported medical marijuana and is now an advisor of NORML.[4] He was defeated for reelection as District Attorney by Kamala Harris.


  1. ^ Hallinan v. Committee of Bar Examiners, 65 Cal. 2d 447 (1966).
  2. ^ "Juan Corona". latinamericanstudies.org. Retrieved 2007-07-30. 
  3. ^ Perillo, Lois (1998-05). "Police Beat: Crimes Go Down In March". The Noe Valley Voice. Retrieved 2014-04-28. "The man is no longer in jail, however. The district attorney dismissed the case "in the interest of justice"."  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  4. ^ Terence Hallinan NORML

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Hallinan, Vivian. "My Wild Irish Rogues." Doubleday & Company, Inc. Garden City, NY. 1952.