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Actress Theresa Saldana dies

Posted at 1:33 PM, Jun 08, 2016

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Actress Theresa Saldana has died. She gained fame for her role in the movie "Raging Bull" -- and went on to survive a stabbing attack by a stalker in front of her West Hollywood apartment.

Saldana later would become a crime victim's advocate as she continued her acting career -- playing herself in a TV movie about her ordeal, and later co-starring in the TV drama "The Commish."

A longtime friend says Saldana died Monday at a Los Angeles hospital at the age of 61. She had been suffering from pneumonia.

Her most notable big-screen role was opposite Joe Pesci in "Raging Bull," Martin Scorsese's 1980 film starring Robert De Niro.

Her 1982 stabbing by an obsessed man was stopped by a water deliveryman who held the assailant for police. Scottish drifter Arthur Jackson served more than a decade in prison for the crime before he was sent to Great Britain to face charges in a case there.

Saldana, who endured a prolonged hospitalization, was both physically and mentally scarred and received treatment for both problems. She went on to found a support and lobbying group, Victims for Victims.