Josephine Terranova

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Josephine Terranova, from a 1907 publication.

Josephine Pullare Terranova (April 21, 1889, in San Stefano, Sicily, Italy – July 16, 1981, in Marin County, California) was the defendant in a sensational murder trial in New York City in 1906.[1] After years of alleged sexual abuse at the hands of her aunt and uncle, the 17-year-old Terranova stabbed the pair to death. A jury acquitted her in what was widely regarded as an act of jury nullification.[2]

She later settled in the San Francisco Bay Area, allegedly with the financial assistance of William Randolph Hearst.[3][4] She died in Marin County, California in 1981, aged 92.

The case was a major national news story at the time, leading to a widespread public debate on the proper role of psychiatric expertise in judicial proceedings.[citation needed]