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Twenty-Five Years Ago Lorena Bobbitt Castrated Her Husband, Here’s What She’s Doing Now

The name Lorena Bobbitt might not ring a bell for younger generations, but many out there remember her infamous story – the story of a housewife who had enough of her husband’s abuse and retaliated by cutting off his penis and throwing it into a field.

Twenty-five years later, here is the story of Lorena Bobbitt.

The incident and resulting trial shocked and enraptured the entire country.

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It was all over the news, and portrayed in sketches and jokes on late night TV. Everything about the story was salacious and insane, from start to finish. But one person came out on top.

The events turned Lorena into a folk hero.

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Particularly for battered women. The abuse she faced and the actions she took made her almost a feminist icon, though some disagree.

Her ex-husband, John Wayne Bobbitt, on the other hand went in another direction.

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Bobbitt eventually used the fame he got from the incident and became a porn star. Seriously. I guess that’s one thing you can do when your penis becomes a superstar.

Lorena Gallo was born in Ecuador, and raised in Venezuela.

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In 1989, the 20-year-old immigrant became Lorena Bobbitt after marrying John Wayne. The couple lived in Manassas, Virginia, where she worked at a nail salon.

The marriage, however, was anything but bliss.

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During court proceedings, Lorena recounted various incidents of abuse, rape and physical violence at the hands of her husband, as well as verbal abuse and insults, calling her a “Spanish whore.”

That all pushed her to the edge.

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Lorena claimed that the repeated abuse and spousal rape she suffered from her husband led her to take matters into her own hands, just a few days before their fourth anniversary.

In the middle of the night on June 23, 1993, things escalated.

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A drunk John Wayne came home and raped Lorena, according to her testimony. He denied her claim and was later acquitted of that charge in a separate trial.

But she remembers it very clearly.

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“I remember I was sleeping, and definitely, he jumped onto me,” she told Oprah back in 2009. “After that, it was just like a tunnel going through my mind.”

Once he passed out, Lorena went to the kitchen, and grabbed a knife.

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She then went back to the bedroom, threw open the covers and and chopped off John Wayne’s penis at the base. The blood and screaming was instantaneous.

She then took off in her car.

During Lorena’s appearance on “Katie.” Credit: Katie/ABC

Lorena took the penis with her and leaving John Wayne screaming and bleeding. What else could she do? She had to get out of there and feared what he would do to her in retaliation.

Lorena drove for hours, eventually throwing the penis out of the window onto a field.

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Later that day, she called 9-1-1 to alert them of them incident. And she let them know exactly what she did with the missing penis.

It took hours for police officers and a search crew to find John Wayne’s penis.

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Once they did, surgeons were able to re-attach it to his body in a grueling 10-hour surgery.

“I looked down and there was blood everywhere,” John Wayne recalled in an episode of the show “Scandal Made Me Famous.” “It was a devastating thing to happen to you suddenly. Suicide seemed like the only answer.”

The ensuing trial and all its salacious details became major tabloid fodder.

During the Trial of Lorena Bobbitt. Credit: Jeffrey Markowitz/Sygma

I mean, an abused woman cuts off her husbands penis, flees the scene, and then throws it out of a window? You couldn’t write that shit!

When the jury came back after deliberations, Lorena was acquitted of all charges by reason of temporary insanity.

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The jurors believed Lorena suffered an “irresistible impulse” to cut off her husband’s penis as a result of the abuse she endured. The LA Times reported at the time that when the jury read the verdict, Lorena looked at her lawyer and asked “Is that good?” She was held for psychological observation but later released, and went back to work as a manicurist.

Lorena has lived a relatively quiet life. She eventually became a real estate agent and started a charity.

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Lorena’s Red Wagon Lorena Gallo Foundation, a charity that aids victims of domestic abuse. Today, Lorena lives with her daughter and longtime partner in Virginia.

John Wayne, on the other hand, used his newfound fame and notoriety to explore other career choices.

Credit: Paradise Visuals

He started a band called The Severed Parts and went on to star in a few porno movies, including “John Wayne Bobbitt Uncut” and “Frankenpenis.” Yes. “Frankenpenis.”

And he’s done some TV where he boasted about life after Lorena.

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He’s regularly appeared on TV and radio as well, and claims to have slept with more than 70 women since the incident. He is now a devout Christian and says he holds no ill will toward his former wife.

A couple years ago, Lorena appeared on The Steve Harvey Show, and was met with major applause and she came to the stage.

She’s made the rounds on a few other talk and news shows to discuss the infamous story that captivated America. And people were once again enraptured by the story, especially since many had no memory of this fascinating story.

Read: Here’s The Insane Story of Mexico’s Most Famous Female Serial Killer

Even 23-years years after the incident, she was to recall the details.

Mark Mahaney

“I found myself in the street with a penis in one hand and the knife in the other,” she told Harvey while appearing on his show. “I’m here to tell you and to tell everyone what happens when a woman gets abused by a man.”

And the incident created political and societal change that made history.

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The trial helped create a national dialogue on domestic abuse, and paved the way for the Violence Against Women Act.

In the end, Lorena came out of the abuse she faced, and the ensuing drama and national infamy to live a happy, healthy, normal life. Which is all she ever wanted. And no matter what anyone says, she is still a hero for many.


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When Emma Gonzalez Leads The March For Our Lives, She’ll Be Following In The Footsteps Of These Latina Civil Rights Leaders

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When Emma Gonzalez Leads The March For Our Lives, She’ll Be Following In The Footsteps Of These Latina Civil Rights Leaders

As you gear up and rally to march for our lives this weekend, you might be completely in awe of the power and effect of Emma Gonzalez. The high school student from Parkland, Fl has, along with the great efforts of her peers, rallied cities and communities across the globe to fight back against the NRA and the inaction of political leaders who have long held the power to put an end to gun violence. For many of us, it’s exciting to see a Latina show the world that once again we are forces to be reckoned with. But long before Gonzalez called B.S. and became the face of a growing national movement, other Latina activists had a huge hand in changing the course of our history.

Here’s a look at seven of some of history’s most powerful Latina activists who led marches and fought for your civil rights.

Sylvia Mendez

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When it comes to the desegregation of schools in the country, American history often credits the case of Brown v. Board of Education for the changes. Barbara Rose Johns is also the one who is most typically considered to be the face of that movement after she led a 450-student walkout at a high school in Virginia in 1951.

But history has largely written out the work of Sylvia Mendez an American civil rights activists of Mexican and Puerto Rican descent who played a key role in the integration movement back in 1946.

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Mendez v. Westminster was a case sparked by Mendez’s rejection from an all-white school in California back in 1943 when she was just eight years old. Mendez’s parents sued the school district and the landmark case which was ultimately settled in 1947 successfully desegregated public schools  in California making it the first U.S. state to do so.

Dolores Huerta

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As a fierce civil rights activist and labor leader, Dolores Huerta became a tireless advocate of the United Farm Workers union. The American-born Latina of Mexican descent originally started out her career as an elementary school teacher. After seeing kids in her class come to school hungry and in need of new shoes, she decided she would help organize their parents.

She started to fight for economic improvements for Latino farm workers and pressed local government organizations to improve barrio conditions.

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In 1962, she co-founded the National Farm Workers Association (now known as the United Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee) with César Chávez. Her non-violent strikes and protests led to her 22 arrests. In 1997 she was named one of the three most important women of the year in by Ms. magazine.

Carmen Perez

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In 2017, Perez helped lead the country in its largest protest in U.S. history as a co-chair of the Women’s March on Washington.

In her 20 year career as an activist, Perez has dedicated her advocacy to some of today’s most important civil rights issues including violence against women, mass incarceration, gender inequality and community policing.

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Before the Women’s March she helped launch a 9-day 250-mile march from New York City to Washington, DC called March2Justice which implored congressional lawmakers to turn their attention to the nation’s police justice crisis.

Berta Cáceres

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Best known for leading a campaign that opposed a dam on the Gualcarque River, Cáceres was an award-winning Indigenous environmental activist. In 2015, the Honduran environmentalist received the Goldman Environmental Prize for helming the grassroots effort that pushed the world’s largest dam builder to stop the construction of the Agua Zarca Dam at the Río Gualcarque.

Because of her efforts the river that was saved and considered to be sacred by the Lenca people, was still able to provide the nearby tribe access to water, food, and medicine.

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On March 3, 2016, Berta Cáceres was assassinated for her activism when two assailants broke into her home and shot her. Her murder sparked international outrage and brought attention to the fact that Honduras is the most dangerous country in the world for activists who fight to protect forests and rivers.

The Mirabal Sisters

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Patria, Dedé, Minerva, and María Teresa Mirabal were four sisters from the Dominican Republic who ferociously opposed the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo and became known as Las Mariposas. In 1959, after witnessing a = massacre executed by the Trujillo regime the sisters were sparked into activism and rallied communities into public protests that renounced Trujillo’s rule.

Three of the sisters, Minerva, María Teresa, and Patria, were murdered for their advocacy when they were beaten to death by associates of the government.

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Following the death of Las Mariposas, Dominicans across the island decided they had had enough. Six months later, Trujillo’s dictatorship was brought down when he was assassinated.

Sylvia Rivera 

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Well before activists like Harvey Milk and figures like Caitlyn Jenner made waves, there was Sylvia Rivera. The Latina born and raised in New York City had Puerto Rican and Venezuelan roots and a tragic story when she first began to carve out a place for trans people in the American gay liberation movement. 

Rivera was a self-identified drag queen and transwoman who participated in the Stonewall riots of 1969 and soon after founded Street Transgender Action Revolutionaries (STAR) with Marsha P. Johnson.

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In 1970 she led trans activists in the country’s first Gay Pride march, then known as Christopher Street Liberation Day March and in the years after she delivered fervent speeches that called for the support of LGBTQ people of color and who were homeless.


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Amazon’s New Series Examines The Infamous Lorena Bobbitt Case And The Dichotomy Of The Sexes When It Comes To Sexual Assault Trials

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Amazon’s New Series Examines The Infamous Lorena Bobbitt Case And The Dichotomy Of The Sexes When It Comes To Sexual Assault Trials

Few household names bring to mind the story of a man’s dismembered genitals like the one of Lorena Bobbit. The Ecuadorian-born woman, best known for severing her husband’s penis with a kitchen knife while he slept, emerged as an appalling headline emblematic of the dichotomy of the perspectives of the sexes. One point of view saw her as a symbol of female resistance in the face of brutal and abusive male toxicity. The other, as a maniacal and sex-obsessed Latina who chopped off her husband’s penis in a bout of jealous rage. Director and producer Jordan Peele sets out to explore the sensational scandal that captured our country’s attention in the summer of 1993 and continues to spark shock, awe, and debate.

“Lorena” is a four-part docuseries directed by Joshua Rofé and distributed by Amazon. This week, its trailer dropped stirring a mass of excitement and anticipation online.

In the trailer, Bobbitt, the lawyers part of the trial,  and those who watched it play out examine the media firestorm twenty-six years later.

Unlike true crime series as of late, “Lorena” promises not only to examine the actual crime and actions of its criminals and victims but to also review the events of the story within the context of other significant sex scandals of the nineties. Scenes from the trailer recall major moments. Flashes of Anita Hill testifying about pubic hairs and coke cans for the Supreme Court confirmation hearing of Clarence Thomas and bits of the Bill Clinton sex scandal bring to mind a time in the early 90s when two genders clashed extensively. As one interviewee in the series trailer notes “it’s still going on.” It’s an utterance that highlights the relevance of the Lorena Bobbitt story in our modern era where the conversation on equality and treatment feels like a rerun of the discussions and debates taking place a quarter of a century ago. Is it possible that Bill Cosby and his former intern popped up in headlines related to #MeToo and that our country watched another man accused of sexual harassment was sworn into the Supreme Court because we failed to make just judgments the first time? Rofé’s revisitation of the trial leads one to expect that it will do its best to do so while reflecting on our past and current conversations related to abuse of power and gender dynamics.


Read: Natti Natasha Leads Nominations At This Year’s Premio Lo Nuestro

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