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I Want to Live -- The Barbara Graham murder case, November 16, 1958

November 16, 2008 |  6:34 am

Above: Barbara Graham, one of four women to be executed in California, along with Juanita "the Duchess" Spinelli, Louise Peete and Elizabeth Duncan.
The trailer--dig those bongos!
Gerry Mulligan!
Five years after the execution of Barbara Graham in the Mabel Monahan killing, the story comes to the screen in the Robert Wise film "I Want to Live!" by Nelson Gidding and Don Mankiewicz, starring Susan Hayward in an Oscar-winning performance. 

Graham and accomplices John Santo and Emmett Perkins were convicted of killing Monahan, 63, who was found strangled and beaten in her Burbank home, which had been ransacked. Another accomplice, John True, testified for the prosecution under a grant of immunity. True said they were looking for $100,000 supposedly hidden at the home by Monahan's former son-in-law, a Las Vegas gambling operator.

"Mrs. Graham didn't bat an eye."

"I just can't believe that verdict is true."

"Life is so short. Is mine to be shorter?"

"As long as they found me guilty of something I didn't do, I'd rather take the gas chamber."

"When you hear the pellets drop, count 10 and take a deep breath."

"The newsmen and photogs around the office say she was 'guilty as hell.' "