José María Jarabo

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José María Jarabo
Born José María Manuel Pablo de la Cruz Jarabo Pérez Morris
(1923-04-28)28 April 1923
Madrid, Spain
Died 4 July 1959(1959-07-04) (aged 36)
Cause of death Garrote
Criminal penalty Death
Date 19 - 21 July 1958
Location(s) Spain
Killed 5
Date apprehended
22 July 1958

José María Jarabo (28 April 1923 – 4 July 1959) was a Spanish spree killer, who between 19 July and 21 July 1958, murdered four adults and an unborn baby. Jarabo was sentenced to death and executed in 1959.

Early life[edit]

José María Manuel Pablo de la Cruz Jarabo Pérez Morris was born on 28 April 1923, in Madrid, Spain. A few years after his birth the family moved to Miami, Florida, in the United States. Jarabo hated the United States and it was there he committed his first crime, trafficking of human beings, for which he was arrested and sentenced to a term of three years in prison. He was confined in a psychiatric hospital in Springfield, Florida, and a few years after his release he returned to Spain, in the 1940s.

In Spain, Jarabo befriended many wealthy people and began a career as a professional gambler, using the money that his mother sent him from Puerto Rico. According to Jarabo's friends, he was a terrible gambler and spent a lot of money on poker and blackjack. In 1950, he began to drink and take drugs heavily, and as the years went by his financial situation became more dire because his mother stopped sending him money. Jarabo had a British girlfriend named Beryl Martin who wanted to sell a ring, which she gave to Jarabo, who sold it to businessmen Emilio Fernandez and Félix López for a small sum. A few months later Martin asked Jarabo to get the ring back, who decided to kill the two men rather than paying for it.[1]


On 19 July 1958, Jarabo went to the Emilio Fernandez's house, where a servant woman allowed him to enter after Jarabo stating that he was a police inspector. Once inside, Jarabo waited for Fernandez, while the servant went to the kitchen to do some housework. Planning to murder Fernandez and not wanting to leave a witness, Jarabo took a clothes iron and hit the woman across the head, and while trying to defend herself Jarabo grabbed a kitchen knife and stabbed her to death. After killing the young woman, Jarabo hid and waited for his main victim. When Fernandez arrived home, Jarabo shot him in the head, killing him. Jarabo then looked for the ring but did not find it. Amparo Alonso entered the house and saw Jarabo, who asked, "Who are you?" Jarabo again claimed that he was a police inspector, but the woman did not believe him and tried to run. Jarabo shot her, killing the pregnant Amparo and her unborn baby. Jarabo slept at Fernandez's house overnight and returned to his hotel the next morning.

On 21 July Jarabo went to the store where Félix López worked, where he hid and waited. When López arrived at the store, Jarabo shot him to the head, killing him.[2]

The next day, Jarabo took a bloody suit to the dry cleaners, who promptly notified the police, and a few hours later he was arrested. Jarabo was tried and convicted of all five murders, receiving the death sentence for each of them, and was executed by garrote vil on 4 July 1959.[3]