M. Henry Martuscello was born on September 27, 1908 in Amsterdam, Montgomery County, New York. He was educated at St. Lawrence University and Brooklyn Law School. He then practiced at his uncle Michael Ditore’s Brooklyn law firm from 1931 until 1937. Martuscello served as a special assistant in the Brooklyn District Attorney rackets bureau until 1938, and as an assistant district attorney for Kings County from 1938 until 1945.
From 1945 until 1952, Martuscello was a judge of the Municipal Court. He was then elected to the State Supreme Court and reelected in 1966. In October 1967 he was designated to the Appellate Division, Second Department, and was reappointed to that court in 1975 after unsuccessfully running for the New York Court of Appeals in 1972. In 1975, Martuscello wrote the opinion which unanimously overturned conspiracy convictions of former Queens District Attorney Thomas J. Mackell and two of Mackell’s chief aides. He retired in 1978, having reached mandatory retirement age, and served as a certificated judge until his death two years later.
In addition to his judicial career, Martuscello co-authored a two-volume manual on New York jury instruction. He was honored in 1971 with the Columbian Lawyers Association’s Rapallo Award and in 1974 with the Brooklyn Bar Association’s annual gold medal.
He was married to Kathryn Sessa and had three children and four grandchildren. He died on November 9, 1980 in Brooklyn at the age of 72.
“M. Henry Martuscello, 72, Dies; State Appellate Division Justice.” New York Times (1923-Current file): D19. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2008). Nov 11 1980. Web. 16 May 2012.
“M. Henry Martuscello: Liberal” New York Times (1923-Current file): 82. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2008). Oct 16 1972. Web. 16 May 2012.