Woman in Aptly Named Crazy Love Movie Is Dead

Linda Riss Pugach was blinded by her ex-lover, later married him

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 24, 2013 2:06 PM CST

(Newser) – "Ours was a storybook romance," Burt Pugach tells the New York Times for the obituary of his wife, Linda Riss Pugach. You be the judge: In 1959, the married Pugach hired three thugs to throw lye in the face of Linda when she ended their affair. She was blinded, the attack became a media sensation, Pugach went to prison for about 10 years ... and the two got married when he got out. Linda Riss Pugach died of heart failure this week at 75.

Also of note is the time in 1997 when Burt Pugach represented himself at trial after being accused of sexually abusing and threatening another woman. "You're a wonderful, caring husband," his wife told the court. He got convicted on only one of 11 counts and served 15 days. The Pugaches were the subject of a 2007 documentary called Crazy Love.

This handout photo provided by Magnolia Pictures shows Linda and Burt Pugach in 1974.
This handout photo provided by Magnolia Pictures shows Linda and Burt Pugach in 1974.   (AP Photo/ Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures and Shoot the Moon Productions, file)
In a 1997 file photo, Burt Pugach laughs with his wife, Linda, in the hallway of the Queens Criminal Court in New York, where Pugach was on trial for threatening a younger woman.
In a 1997 file photo, Burt Pugach laughs with his wife, Linda, in the hallway of the Queens Criminal Court in New York, where Pugach was on trial for threatening a younger woman.   (AP Photo/Emile Wamsteker, file)
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