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Murray R. Gold Trials: 1976-92

A Former Son-in-law, A Dead Culprit?, Second Trial, … Waving In The Wind"

Defendant: Murray R. Gold
Crime Charged: Murder
Chief Defense Lawyers: First and second trials: Victor Ferrante, William Kuntsler, Timothy Moynahan; Third trial: John Williams; Fourth trial: William Collins, Nicholas Serignese
Chief Prosecutors: John A. Connelly, Francis McDonald, Walter Scanlon, Marcia Smith
Judges: First trial: Robert A. Wall; Second trial: George A. Saden; Third trial: Charles D. Gill; Fourth trial: William Lavery
Place: Waterbury, Connecticut
Dates of Trials: First trial: February 17-March 31, 1976; Second trial: October 12-November 18, 1976; Third trial: January 8-March 5, 1985; Fourth trial: June 24-July 24, 1986
Verdicts: First trial: Mistrial (hung jury); Second trial: Guilty of first-degree murder; Third trial: Mistrial; Fourth trial: Guilty
Sentences: Second trial: 25 years imprisonment; Fourth trial: Two concurrent terms of 25 years to life

SIGNIFICANCE: The long trip of Murray Gold for well over a decade through the criminal courts shows what can happen when a mentally ill defendant fights the system. The facts of the case, many of them disputed by either the defendant or the prosecution, leave the observer to wonder whether Gold was indeed wrongfully accused and convicted.

Shortly after 9:00 P.M. on Thursday, September 26, 1974, Waterbury, Connecticut, police were called to the Fern Street home of 71-year-old attorney Irving Pasternak. They found Pasternak and his wife, Rhoda, dead—Irving stabbed 35 times, Rhoda 25 times. They found a bloodstained knife and bloody footprints bearing the trademark "Cat's Paw."

In the street, two women reported being nearly knocked down by a man "running like the devil and his long hair waving in the wind."

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1973 to 1980