this day in crime history: august 8, 1962


On this day in 1962, Elizabeth Ann “Ma” Duncan was executed in the gas chamber at California’s San Quentin prison. Duncan had been convicted in 1958 for conspiracy to commit murder. She had paid two men, Augustine Baldonado and Luis Moya, to kill her daughter-in-law, Olga Duncan. Olga was seven months pregnant at the time. The two killers beat and strangled her, then buried her in a shallow grave. According to the coroner, she was still alive when they buried her. The elder Mrs. Duncan’s motive was her fear that the impending birth of her grandchild threatened her incestuous relationship with her son.

Ma Duncan and her two henchmen were tried and convicted. They were all sentenced to death. Sentence was carried out for all three on August 8, 1962.  It was the last triple execution in California, and the last execution of a woman in the state before the US Supreme Court suspended capital punishment in 1972.

Further reading:

Murderpedia – Elizabeth Duncan

Los Angeles Times – The Case of a Mother’s Lethal Love

Wikipedia – Elizabeth Ann Duncan

5 thoughts on “this day in crime history: august 8, 1962

  1. John D.:
    Wow, talk about a real LOON…

    An incestuous relationship…yeah, they don’t tend to end all that well.

    Nice find.

    Roll safe out there.

    (BTW, the look of your blog threw me at first – thought I might be having a stroke…lol)


  2. I always like a happy ending. Also like what you did with the joint, very sleek and modern. Feel like I need to dress up to visit.


    • We have a very strict dress code here. Pants are required… Okay, maybe not required, but suggested. I guess the dress code is really more like guidelines than actual rules. 😉


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