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- Zsa Zsa Gabor shocked the nation when she slapped a cop at a traffic stop.
- During her trial, Gabor pleaded not guilty to all charges and claimed self-defense.
- Gabor ultimately received a three-day jail sentence, fines, community service, and a psychiatric examination.
Known for her pageantry and acting career in the classical Hollywood era, Zsa Zsa Gabor’s presence in the spotlight was fraught with controversies. Perhaps her most daring scandal, Gabor made headlines after getting into an altercation with a cop and resorting to a physical attack.
From DUIs to speed limit offenses, celebrities have been known to clash with cops and when tensions escalate, the encounters could get shockingly physical. Sometimes the encounters are mild and random. Singer Dua Lipa was in such a situation when she unintentionally assaulted a police officer. However, in the case of movie star Zsa Zsa Gabor, she shocked many after slapping a cop at a traffic stop. Here’s how the incredible incident played out.
Why Did Zsa Zsa Gabor Slap A Cop?
Zsa Zsa Gabor’s acting fame was at its peak during the 1950s, but she witnessed some sort of spotlight revival after her unforgettable encounter with a police officer. On June 14, 1989, Gabor had been driving through the streets of Beverly Hills, when a cop asked her to pull over at a traffic stop. The officer noticed that the registration tag of the actress’ $215,000 Rolls-Royce convertible had expired.
The Beverly Hills cop, Paul Kramer, then ordered the Moulin Rouge actress to step out of the vehicle for further assessment. Gabor complied and he proceeded to run other checks. This led Kramer to discover that her license had expired, and she had an open container of alcohol, all of which attracted fines. At some point, Gabor became impatient, got into her car and drove off.
Paul Kramer wasted no time as he gave a chase. After catching up with the socialite, he reportedly asked her to step out a second time, and when she did, she slapped him across the face. The event would go on to gain nationwide attention as it was dubbed “the slap heard round the world.” The series of events that followed also generated massive publicity around Zsa Zsa Gabor.
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According to the police report, at the first stop, the Lovely to Look At actress became antsy while Paul Kramer ran a check on her license. She then shouted some expletives, announced that she was leaving and zoomed off. In Zsa Zsa Gabor’s account, which she shared with People, she had asked Kramer what was taking so long while he ran a check on her car, but he told her to “f**k off” and she took it literally. She explained:
“On my word of honor, I thought he meant I should go. That’s what they say in London and that’s where I was raised.”
People also revealed that the alcohol container found in Zsa Zsa Gabor’s car belonged to her eighth husband, Prince Frederick Anhalt of West Germany. He revealed, “Sometimes I use it to sweeten my Diet Pepsi.” Gabor’s marital life played out in public and even drew criticism from David Letterman.
Zsa Zsa Gabor’s profile summary per Biography;
Sari “Zsa Zsa” Gabor
February 6, 1917
Miss Hungary 1936
Acting career credits
Touch of Evil (1958), Death of a Scoundrel (1956), and Playhouse 90, among others.
December 18, 2016
Inside Zsa Zsa Gabor’s Trial After The Slap
Within the duration of her trial, Zsa Zsa Gabor’s court sessions came with a handful of theatrics as the media intently followed the process. In September 1989, Gabor arrived in court with her spouse, Frederick von Anhalt, her daughter, Francesca Hilton, and her hairdresser. The Queen of Outer Space actress was charged with misdemeanor battery on a police officer, disobeying orders, driving with an expired license, having an open alcohol container and possessing an expired car registration.
Zsa Zsa Gabor pleaded not guilty to all charges, while noting that she slapped Paul Kramer as a form of self-defense. This was not the first time she faced accusations of abuse. The actress faced a possible jail term of two years and a $4,000 fine. In court, she explained that the officer was rude, crude, and abusive towards her. She relayed that he dragged her out of the car, handcuffed her, and made her sit on the curb. Gabor’s court case was quite a media sensation that attracted hundreds of reporters.
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At some point, the judge presiding over the case issued a gag order prohibiting the We’re Not Married! actress from speaking about her trial. She violated the order by referring to her encounter with Paul Karmer as “idiotic and stupid.”
She also flouted the rule when she referred to the prosecution witness, “Amir Eslamina, as “a little punk with a hairdo like a girl.” Zsa Zsa Gabor continually bashed Kramer, and she even went to the extent of accusing him of having gay partners. Gabor made outlandish claims, noting that the police’s video footage of her was doctored.
The movie star’s court sessions were not short of comedic antics either. During one of the trial days, a mock fight broke out in the court building between a Zsa Zsa Gabor impersonator and a man wearing a “Hang Zsa Zsa” T-shirt. This made the whole courtroom erupt in laughter. However, the judge was deeply displeased and Gabor was accused of “milking” the justice system to gather attention. District Attorney Ira Reiner said about the actress:
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“Zsa Zsa Gabor tried to make a mockery out of the idea of equal justice. She has an unfortunate history of trying to turn everything into farce and to mock everything.”
Ira Reiner noted that Zsa Zsa Gabor’s case started as a “minor accident” and a minor case that escalated because of “her conduct over the three-week period during the trial.” He added that The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air actress also ridiculed the judge, the police, the court personnel and the prosecutors by labeling the system as ‘a Nazi-type system.”
Ultimately, the judge issued a verdict. Zsa Zsa Gabor was sentenced to three days in jail, ordered to pay fines totaling to $12,937, and to do 120-hour community service. She was also instructed to undergo a psychiatric examination. In classic Gabor style, the actress described the verdict and justice system, stating:
“I’m disappointed. I can’t believe it. I can’t believe that in a country as great as ours, that a 6-foot-4 policeman can beat up a lady of 5-foot-4 and use dirty language as if she was a street walker.”
When asked how she felt about going to prison, the star relayed that it would be “wonderful” because she would have time to write her book. Speaking on The Phil Donahue Show, Zsa Zsa Gabor joked about her sentence, noting that she hoped people inside would be nicer than the people of Beverly Hills.