Wednesday, April 16, 2014

John E. Sampson -- Listen to the Kid

Employed at Desilu Studios as a film editor on the ABC television doctor drama, Ben Casey, Sampson, 50, was at the center of a troubled homelife.  For two years the editor and his wife, Jeane Sampson, 40, had violently quarreled in front of their ten-year-old child, Terry, in their home at 1103 Eilinite Avenue in the Verdugo Hills section of Glendale, California.  On the afternoon of May 6, 1962, the distraught woman phoned her parents in Palm Springs and threatened to end it all.  They begged her to do nothing until they arrived and hastily left to return to Glendale.  During the evening, however, Jeane called her daughter into the bathroom and locked the door.  The child screamed when she saw her mother clutching Sampson's .38-caliber pistol.  Sampson came to the door and, ignoring his daughter's plea, "Go away, Daddy, or you'll get hurt," broke into the bathroom.  During the struggle with his wife the film editor was shot point-blank in the abdomen.  He died hours later during emergency surgery in the Glendale Memorial Hospital.  Jeane could not explain why she locked herself in the bathroom with her child, but told authorities she meant her daughter no harm.  She intended to kill herself, not Sampson, because "I...got tired of being used as a punching bag."  While awaiting trial, Jeane Sampson was found dead from an overdose of barbiturates at her home in Glendale on the weekend of August 11-12, 1962.

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