December 30, 2012
Jean Harris, 89, the patrician girls' school headmistress who spent 12 years in prison for the 1980 killing of her longtime lover, Scarsdale Diet doctor Herman Tarnower, died Sunday at an assisted-living facility in New Haven, her son, James Harris, said Friday. She had claimed the shooting of Tarnower, 69, was an accident. Convicted of murder in 1981, she suffered two heart attacks while serving her sentence in the Bedford Hills women's prison north of New York City. She was granted clemency by then-Gov.
June 26, 1986 |
Some time within the next few days, Jean Harris will post a letter to New York's Gov. Mario Cuomo. Please, she will be saying, please have mercy. She will ask for the clemency that only a governor can grant. Her plea should be heard. Perhaps you have forgotten the case of Jean Harris. Six years ago it was the stuff from which the tabloid papers are made. But suppose we go back a little further, to December 1966. That was when Jean Harris met Dr. Herman "Hi" Tarnower. She was then 43, divorced, mother of two sons, a native of Grosse Pointe, Mich.
March 16, 1993 |
Joan Rivers is a very giving person. Gives her Joan Rivers-designed jewelry right off her wrist if she meets someone who has the blues. Freely gives away the flowers everyone is always sending to her. Gives her opinions on everything under the sun. Yesterday, during a taping of The Joan Rivers Show to be aired next week, Rivers gave convicted murderer Jean Harris a dog. Harris, of course, was recently released after serving 12 years in prison for...
July 22, 1986 |
On the rush-hour streets of Manhattan, where so much can go unnoticed in the perpetual movement of people and machines, Jim Harris has not. Pedestrians who won't stop for a "Don't Walk" signal or a whizzing cab have stopped for him and stopped by the thousands, though there is nothing unusual about a young man collecting signatures on these sidewalks. For more than two weeks, on busy curbs around the borough, they've queued up before this boyish fellow with the sandy hair and the slight build and the Wall Street clothes, who sits quietly, arms folded across his knees, on a skinny metal folding chair at a wood-slat table in front of a poster board that screams louder than any kind of bullhorn: Please sign my petition to Governor Cuomo asking for clemency for my mother JEAN HARRIS Friends had told him that it would never fly, that even if New Yorkers hadn't forgotten about Jean Harris, serving a sentence of 15 years to life out at Bedford Hills state prison for the 1980 murder of Scarsdale Diet doctor Herman Tarnower, they didn't care enough anymore to rally behind a campaign to free her. Too much time, he was warned, has gone by. Jim Harris listened, but not very well.
August 24, 1988 |
The judge who sentenced Jean Harris to a 15-year-to-life term for the murder of Dr. Herman Tarnower said yesterday that he would "strongly recommend" her release, now that she has served 7 1/2 years. "She is a substantial citizen who committed one violent act in her whole life and paid dearly for it," said former Westchester County (N.Y.) Judge Russell Leggett. "She is not a threat to anyone. The only person she was a threat to is not around anymore. " Harris, 65, became eligible yesterday for clemency.
October 18, 1988 |
The only question the governor of New York ought by now to ask himself about Jean Harris is not whether he should grant her clemency but why he already hasn't. She has spent seven years in prison since she was sentenced to 15 years to life for the murder of Dr. Herman Tarnower, whose treatment of her hardly qualified him for the bullet but might, chivalry may be forgiven for hoping, cost him protractions in purgatory to earn heaven's pardon. Former State Supreme Court Justice Russell Leggett, who presided over Jean Harris' trial in 1981, has written the governor to cry mercy for her now. Tarnower had dealt her a copious diet of tranquilizers, possibly to ease her afflictions but probably to reduce her nuisance quotient.
January 24, 1993 |
Jean Harris, the headmistress who fatally shot the Scarsdale Diet doctor, is free after 12 years in prison. Harris, 69, was released five days ahead of schedule Friday night from a hospital in Valhalla, N.Y., where she was recovering from a blood clot in her leg. The complication arose after she underwent quadruple bypass heart surgery. Gov. Mario Cuomo granted her executive clemency Dec. 29. Harris was headmistress of an exclusive girls' school in McLean, Va., when she shot and killed Dr. Herman Tarnower, her lover of 14 years, at his home in 1980.
February 11, 1986 |
A book by convicted murderess Jean Harris is under investigation to determine if it violates a law forbidding criminals to profit from their crimes. The book by Harris, 62 - who was convicted in 1981 of second-degree murder for fatally shooting her lover, Dr. Herman Tarnower - was supposed to be about her prison experiences. However, according to Diane McGrath, commissioner of New York State's Crimes Victim Board, the agency learned it had been expanded to include information about the Tarnower case.
February 15, 1994 |
Jean Harris used to think that only "the bad people" went to prison, while "the good people" stayed free. Now she knows better. "The main thing I learned in there was how connected we all are," Harris said in an interview yesterday with ABC's Good Morning America. Harris, the former mistress of an exclusive girls' school, spent 12 years in prison for fatally shooting her lover, Herman Tarnower, inventor of the Scarsdale Diet. She was released last year. "The day I walked into that prison, I looked around and I thought, 'There are two groups in here, me and them,' " Harris said.
October 29, 1993 |
Jean Harris and James Taylor, who have in common serving time in prison, last night spoke at the Academy of Natural Sciences on a shared interest - people in prison and their children. Harris, 69, who spent 12 years in a state prison at Bedford Hills, N.Y., for the 1980 murder of her former lover, Scarsdale Diet doctor Herman Tarnower, helped create a model parenting program there for the women inmates and their children. Taylor, 52, who is serving a life sentence for murder at the state prison in Graterford, initiated a self-help inmate group called People Against Recidivism that has sessions on parenting as part of its program.