Patricia Campbell Hearst, (born February 20, 1954), now known as
Patricia Hearst Shaw, is a granddaughter of William Randolph Hearst.
She was the victim of a kidnapping, but soon afterwards became a criminal
herself: She robbed a bank and spent time in prison.
Hearst was born in San Francisco, California, the third of five
daughters of Randolph Apperson Hearst. She grew up primarily in the
wealthy San Francisco suburb of Hillsborough, California.
She was kidnapped on February 4, 1974 (shortly before her 20th
birthday) from her Berkeley, California apartment, that she shared with
her fiancÚ Steven Weed, by an urban
guerilla terrorist group called the Symbionese
Liberation Army (SLA). When the attempt to prisoner-swap Hearst for
jailed SLA members failed, the SLA made ransom demands which resulted in
the donation by the Hearst family of $6 million worth of food to the poor
of the Bay Area. After the distribution of food Hearst was not released.
Shortly thereafter on April 15, 1974, she
was photographed wielding an assault rifle while robbing the Sunset branch
of the Hibernia Bank. Later communications from her revealed that she
had changed her name to Tania (after Che Guevara's lover -
Marxist/socialist revolutionaries were their heroes) and was committed to
the goals of the SLA. A warrant was issued for her arrest and in September
1975, she was arrested in an apartment with other SLA members.
In her trial, which started on January 15, 1976, Hearst claimed she had
been locked blindfolded in a closet and physically and sexually abused,
which caused her to join the SLA, an extreme case of the "Stockholm
syndrome," in which captives become sympathetic with their
captors. Hearst further argued she was coerced or intimidated into her
part in the bank robbery.
The defense did not succeed and she was convicted
of bank robbery on March 20. Her sentence was eventually commuted
by President Jimmy Carter, and Hearst was released from prison on
February 1, 1979. Later she was pardoned by President Bill Clinton on
January 20, 2001, on the final day of his presidency.
After her release from prison, Hearst married her former bodyguard,
Bernard Shaw on Valentine's Day, 1979. She now lives quietly with her
husband and two daughters in Connecticut.
The famous photo of 'Tania.'
SLA photographer unknown.
Hearst tells her version of events beginning with her kidnapping by the
SLA in her memoir Every
Secret Thing. Public opinion remains divided as to whether Hearst
was coerced or brainwashed while being held by the SLA.
Hearst's notoriety has led to her being cast in several films,
including John Waters' Cry-Baby,
B. DeMented, and A
The Taking of Patty Hearst is a documentary made in 2004; it was
first called Neverland, but the name had to be changed because of
possible confusion with the feature film Finding
Neverland starring Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet.
- Shana Alexander, Anyone's
Daughter: The Times and Trials of Patricia Hearst,
- Carolyn Anspacher & the San Francisco Chronicle, The
Trial of Patty Hearst, Great Fidelity Press, 1976.
- Marilyn Baker, Exclusive!:
the inside story of Patricia Hearst and the SLA, Macmillan
- Mary F. Beal, Safe
House: A Casebook Study of Revolutionary Feminism in the 1970's,
Northwest Matrix, 1976.
- Jerry Belcher & Don West, Patty/Tania,
Pyramid Books, 1975
- David Boulton, The
Making Of Tania Hearst, Bergenfield, N.J., U.S.A.: New American
- John Bryan, This
Soldier Still At War, (on Joe Remiro) Harcourt Brace Jovanovich,
- Patty Hearst with Alvin Moscow, Patty
Hearst: Her Own Story, New York: Avon, 1982. This was the title
after the movie came out. Original title: Every Secret Thing.
- Sharon D. Hendry, Soliah:
The Sara Jane Olson Story, Cable Publishing, 2002.
- Janey Jimenez (U.S. Marshal who escorted Hearst between prison and the
court during the trial) with Ted Berkman, My
Prisoner, Sheed Andrews and McMeel, 1977.
- Jean Brown Kinney, An
American journey: The short life of Willy Wolfe, Simon and Schuster,
- Vin McLellan, Paul Avery, The
voices of guns: The definitive and dramatic story of the twenty-two-month
career of the Symbionese Liberation Army, one of the most bizarre chapters
in the history of the American Left, Putnam, 1977.
- John Pascal, The
Strange Case of Patty Hearst, New American Library, 1974.
- Findley & Craven Payne, Life
and Death of the SLA, Ballantine, 1976.
- Robert Brainard Pearsall, Symbionese
Liberation Army: Documents and Communications, Rodopi, 1974
- Fred Soltysik, In
Search of a Sister 1976.
- Steven Weed, with Scott Swanton. My
Search for Patty Hearst, New York: Warner, 1976. Weed was Hearst's
boyfriend at the time of the kidnapping. That was the end of their
- Video: Patty
Hearst, based on Every Secret Thing, directed by Paul
- Video: The Ordeal of Patty Hearst (1979) (TV)
- Video: Patty Hearst: The E! True Hollywood Story (2000) (TV)
- Video: Neverland:
The Rise and Fall of the Symbionese Liberation Army aka Guerrilla:
The Taking of Patty Hearst, Directed by Robert Stone, 2004,