Susan Cabot, circa 1950
July 9, 1927
|Died||December 10, 1986 (aged 59)|
Encino, California, U.S.
|Cause of death||Homicide|
|Resting place||Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery|
(m. 1944; div. 1951)
(m. 1968; div. 1983)
Susan Cabot (born Harriet Shapiro; July 9, 1927 – December 10, 1986) was an American film and television actress.
Born to a Russian Jewish family in Boston, Massachusetts, Cabot led an early life filled with turmoil; she was raised in eight different foster homes. She completed her education in New York City, and found employment as an illustrator. She supplemented her income by working as a singer, and also worked in theatre.
She made her film debut by chance when Kiss of Death (1947) was filmed in New York, and she played a bit part. She expanded her acting work into television and was seen by a Hollywood talent scout who took her to Hollywood to work for Columbia Pictures. This brief period was not successful, and she moved to Universal Studios where she was signed to an exclusive contract. After a series of roles for which Cabot was mainly cast in B-movie westerns, she became dissatisfied and asked to be released from her contract. She returned to New York, where she resumed her stage career with a role in A Stone for Danny Fisher. She was invited to return to Hollywood and appeared in a few more films, including The Wasp Woman (1959), her final film role.
She married her first husband, Martin Sacker, in 1944, and divorced him in 1951. Subsequently, Cabot was romantically linked with King Hussein of Jordan for several years. She bore her only child, a son, in 1961. In 1968, she married her second husband Michael Roman with whom she raised her son, Timothy Scott Roman, before again divorcing in 1983.
In the last years of her life, Cabot suffered from depression and suicidal thoughts, and was prey to a wide range of irrational, powerful fears. She was under a licensed psychologist's care, but the psychologist found her so troubled and ill that the sessions became "emotionally draining". Cabot became increasingly unable to care for herself. The interior of her home was littered with years of trash, and spoiled food lay everywhere.
In the weeks immediately prior to her death, Cabot's mental health deteriorated significantly. On December 10, 1986, Cabot's 25-year-old son, Timothy Scott Roman, beat her to death in her home in Encino, California, with a weightlifting bar. He was charged with second-degree murder.
At trial, Roman testified that his mother had awakened him while screaming, not recognizing him, and calling for her mother, Elizabeth. When he attempted to call emergency services, she attacked him with a barbell bar and a scalpel. Roman seized the bar from her and beat her repeatedly on the head.
He then hid the bar and scalpel, and told police that a man in a ninja mask had killed his mother (believing no one would believe his story about her mental illness). Roman's defense attorneys claimed their client's aggressive reaction to his mother's attack was due to the drugs he took to counteract his dwarfism and pituitary gland problems.
At the close of the trial, prosecutors changed the charge to voluntary manslaughter, as no evidence had been presented at trial to support premeditation (which was required for a murder conviction). Superior Court Judge Darlene E. Schempp deliberated 10 minutes, and then convicted Roman of involuntary manslaughter. Roman, who had already spent two-and-a-half years in jail, was sentenced to three years' probation on November 28, 1989.
|1947||Kiss of Death||Restaurant extra||Uncredited|
|1950||On the Isle of Samoa||Moana|
|1951||The Enforcer||Nina Lombardo||Uncredited|
Alternative title: Murder, Inc.
|1951||Tomahawk||Monahseetah||Alternative title: Battle of Powder River|
|1951||The Prince Who Was a Thief||Girl||Uncredited|
|1951||Flame of Araby||Clio||Alternative title: Flame of the Desert|
|1952||The Battle at Apache Pass||Nona|
|1952||The Duel at Silver Creek||Jane "Dusty" Fargo||Alternative title: Claim Jumpers|
|1952||Son of Ali Baba||Tala|
|1953||Gunsmoke||Rita Saxon||Alternative titles: A Man's Country|
|1954||Ride Clear of Diablo||Laurie Kenyon||Alternative title: The Breckenridge Story|
|1957||Carnival Rock||Natalie Cook|
|1957||Sorority Girl||Sabra Tanner||Alternate titles: The Bad One|
|1957||The Viking Women and the Sea Serpent||Enger||Alternative titles: Undersea Monster|
|1958||War of the Satellites||Sybil Carrington|
|1958||Machine Gun Kelly||Florence "Flo" Becker|
|1958||Fort Massacre||Piute Girl|
|1958–1959||Have Gun - Will Travel||Angela
|1959||Surrender - Hell!||Delia Guerrero||Alternative titles: Blackburn's Guerrillas|
|1959||The Wasp Woman||Janice Starlin||Alternative titles: The Bee Girl|
|1970||Bracken's World||Henrietta||Episode: "One, Two, Three... Cry"|
- "The Private Life and Times of Susan Cabot". Glamourgirlsofthesilverscreen.com. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
- Barker, Mayerene (April 13, 1989). "Defendant May Be Son of Hussein, Lawyer Says : Accused of Murdering Actress Mother in '86". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 7, 2013.
- Doherty, Rosa (12 January 2018). "CIA files reveal Jordan's King Hussein fathered a child with Jewish Hollywood actress". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
- Brettell, Andrew; King, Noel; Kennedy, Damien; Imwold, Denise; Leonard, Warren Hsu; von Rohr, Heather (2005). Cut!: Hollywood Murders, Accidents, and Other Tragedies. Barrons Educational Series. p. 220. ISBN 0-7641-5858-9.
- Lerner, Patricia Klein (October 11, 1989). "Son Convicted of Killing Actress Mother". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 5, 2017.
- Harris, Michael D. (November 29, 1989). "Actress Susan Cabot's son gets probation in her death". United Press International. Retrieved April 5, 2017.
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