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Juan Ignacio Blanco  

 

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Cheryl Christina CRANE

 
 
 

 

Cheryl Crane, daughter of actress Lana Turner, closeup, seated in custody.

 

 

Cheryl Crane in a heavily retouched photograph published April 6, 1958, while she was being held
in the stabbing death of Johnny Stompanato. (Photograph by the Los Angeles Times)

 

 

Beverly Hills, California: Cheryl Crane (left), daughter of Steve Crane and actress Lana Turner, is escorted
from the jail here to juvenile hall in Los Angeles by policewoman Margaret Weissberg, April 5th. Cheryl
says she knifed Johnny Stompanato, Miss Turner's gangland boyfriend, to death when he threatened
to disfigure the actress. (April 5, 1958)

 

 

An eight-inch knife used in killing Lana Turner's lover, Johnny Stompanato,
by her daughter, 14-year-old Cheryl Crane
.

 

 

Beverly Hills Police Sgt. Russell Peterson with the knife that killed Johnny Stompanato.
Photograph by Loren Patty / Los Angeles Times

 

 

On the morning of April 5, 1958, Cheryl was booked on suspicion of murder without bail and taken
to Juvenile Hall. Lana and Stephen Crane, Cheryl's father, paid her a visit on Easter Sunday,
arriving and leaving in separate cars. This photo shows Lana leaving after her visit with Cheryl.
"We spent an hour together and didn't cry," said Lana, then she ran to her car and wept
.

 

 

This photo was taken when Lana went to see Cheryl in Juvenile Hall. Here she is sitting in the
car with her mother, Mildred Frances Cowan. During this time, Mildred stayed with Lana,
who was in shock and hysterical, despite sedatives administered by her doctor
.

 

 

April 8, 1958 - Mother Consoles Lana at Hearing. Los Angeles, California: Mrs. Mildred Turner, right,
leans over to comfort her daughter, actress Lana Turner, who was on the verge of tears awaiting
the pre-detention hearing of Lana's daughter, Cheryl Crane, 14. After the closed-door hearing it
was announced that Cheryl remain in the custody of the juvenile authorities until a second
 hearing on April 14. She is being held in connection with the stabbing-death of underworld
figure, Johnny Stompanato.

 

 

Cheryl's Family at Hearing. Los Angeles, California: Steve Crane greets his former mother-in-law,
Mrs. Mildred Turner, while his ex-wife, actress Lana Turner, bows her head prior to the closed-door
pre-detention hearing of the couple's daughter, Cheryl Crane, 14. The girl was ordered retained
in custody of juvenile authorities until a second hearing, on April 12, in connection with the
stabbing-death of Johnny Stompanato.

 

 

 

 

Los Angeles, California: On their way to the coroner's inquest into the death of Johnny Stompanato are
Mrs. Mildred Turner, mother of screenstar Lana Turner, famed Hollywood attorney Jerry Giesler,
and Lana Turner. April 11, 1958.

 

 

Actress Lana Turner testifying at the murder trial of her daughter, Cheryl Crane, who she watched
knife Johnny Stompanato to death. Although she testified for 62 minutes, when the Deputy

District Attorney showed her the knife she could not look at it
.

 

 

Actress Lana Turner weeps on the witness stand as she tells the story of the killing of Johnny
Stompanato. "It happened so fast I never saw a blade," the actress sobbed; says Stompanato
tried to strangle her only seconds before the stabbing.
Photo date: April 11, 1958
.

 

 

Los Angeles, California: Showing the strain, actress Lana Turner appears on the verge of collapse as
she testifies at the inquest into the death of Johnny Stompanato, her gangland boyfriend, here, April
11th. Deliberating less than half an hour, the coroner's jury ruled that Stompanato's death, at the
hands of Cheryl Crane, Lana's 14-year-old daughter, was "justifiable homicide." April 11, 1958.

 

 

Lana, wearing a tailored gray suit, returns to her chair at the court table after her testimony, followed
by her lawyer, Jerry Geisler. She was on the stand for an hour. She recounted her argument with Johnny,
when she opened the bedroom door for Cheryl, how they came together so fast that she never saw
the blade, and how Johnny grabbed his abdomen, and fell on his back. She went on to describe
how she and Dr. McDonald tried in vain to revive him
.

 

 

Lana is followed by her lawyer, Jerry Geisler as she leaves courtroom after testimony. It took the jury only
twenty-five minutes to come up with a verdict of justifiable homicide. Lana was not in the courtroom
when the jury returned the verdict. When told of the news, she said, "Thank you, God
."

 

 

 
 
 
 
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