Manson in 2011
Patricia 'Katie' Krenwinkel
The testimony of Linda Kasabian in the Charles Manson Trial (1970-1) from the Famous Trials website of Professor Douglas O. Linder
(Direct examination by Vincent Bugliosi)
On the influence of Charles Manson over Family members:
"Did you ever see or observe any members of the Family refuse to do anything that Manson told him or her to do?"
"No, nobody did. We always wanted to do anything and everything for him."
On the Tate Murders:
[Departure from Spahn ranch]
"The night of the afternoon that Mr. Manson said 'Now is the time for Helter Skelter,' were you still at the ranch that night?"
"Was this the evening of August the eighth, 1969?"
"I believe so."
"What took place that evening, Linda, at the ranch?"
"I remember I was standing out front at this one point and Charlie came up to me and pulled me off the porch, and I was standing at the very end of the porch, closest to George Spahn's house, and he told me that-"
"He told you what?"
"He told me to get a change of clothing, a knife, and my driver's license."
"Did Mr. Manson tell you to change the clothing you already had on or to bring an additional change of clothing?"
"To bring an additional."
"To bring an additional change of clothing?"
"Now, when you walked up to the car, you say Katie and Sadie - Susan that is - were inside the car. Where was Tex?"
"He was standing over by the driver's side."
"Was he talking to anyone?"
"I think he was talking to Charlie."
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"Tex got in the car, and we started."
"What happened at that point?"
"We got about to the middle of the driveway, you know, and Charlie called us and told us to stop, and he came to the car to my side of the window, stuck his head in, and told us to leave a sign. He said, 'You girls know what I mean, something witchy,' and that was it."
[Description of the murders]
"We climbed over a fence and then a light started coming toward us and Tex told us to get back and sit down....A car pulled up, in front of us and Tex leaped forward with a gun in his hand and stuck his hand with the gun at this man's head. And the man said, ‘Please don't hurt me, I won't say anything’, and Tex shot him four times."
"Did you actually see Tex point the gun inside the window of the car and shoot the man?"
"Yes, I saw it clearly."
"About how far away were you from Tex at the time that he shot the driver of the car?"
"Just a few feet."
"After Tex shot the driver four times what happened next?"
"The man just slumped over. 1 saw that, and then Tex put his head in the car and turned the ignition off. He may have taken the keys out, I don't know, and then he pushed the car back a few feet and then we all proceeded toward the house and Tex told me to go in back of the house and see if there were open windows and doors, which I did."
"Did you find any open doors or windows in the back of the house?"
"No, there was no open windows or doors."
"What is the next thing that happened, Linda?"
"I came around from the back, and Tex was standing at a window, cutting the screen, and he told me to go back and wait at the car, and he may have told me to listen for sounds, but I don't remember him saying it."
"While you were down by the car do you know where Tex, Sadie, and Katie were?"
"No, I didn't see them."
"Did either of those three come down to the car?"
"Yes, Katie came down at one point."
"Did Katie say anything to you?"
"Yes, she asked for my knife, and 1 gave it to her, and she told me to stay there and listen for sounds, and I did, and she left."
"When she left, did she walk in the direction of the residence?"
"Did you see either Patricia Krenwinkel or Susan Atkins or Tex walk into the residence?"
"No, I didn't."
"Were you all alone by the car?"
"Yes. I heard a man scream out 'No. No.' Then I just heard screams. I just heard screams at that point. I don't have any words to describe how a scream is. I never heard it before."
"How long did the screaming continue?"
"Oh, it seemed like forever, infinite. I don't know."
"Was the screaming constant or was it in intervals?"
"It seemed constant, I don't know."
"Now, what did you do when you heard these screams?"
"I started to run toward the house."
"Why did you do that?"
"Because I wanted them to stop."
"What happened after you ran toward the house?"
"There was a man (Frykowski) just coming out of the door and he had blood all over his face and he was standing by a post, and we looked into each other's eyes for a minute, and I said, 'Oh, God, I am so sorry. Please make it stop.' And then he just fell to the ground into the bushes. And then Sadie came running out of the house, and I said, 'Sadie, please make it stop.' And then I said, 'I hear people coming.' And she said, 'It is too late.' And then she told me that she left her knife and she couldn't find it, and I believe she started to run back into the house. While this was going on the man had gotten up, and I saw Tex on top of him, hitting him on the head and stabbing him, and the man was struggling, and then I saw Katie in the background with the girl (Folger), chasing after her with an upraised knife, and I just turned and ran to the car down at the bottom of the hill."
"Now, when you told Sadie that people were coming, was that the truth?"
"Why did you tell her that?"
"Because I just wanted them to stop."
"You said you saw Katie. That is Patricia Krenwinkel?"
"Was she chasing someone?"
"Was it a man or a woman?"
"It was a woman in a white gown."
[After the Tate murders]
"Did Katie and Sadie say anything as you were driving off from the residence?"
"What did they say?"
"They complained about their heads, that the people were pulling their hair, and that their heads hurt. And Sadie even came out and said that when she was struggling with a big man, that he hit her in the head. And also Katie complained of her hand, that it hurt."
"Did she say why her hand hurt?"
"What did she say?"
"She said when she stabbed, that there were bones in the way, and she couldn't get the knife through all the way, and that it took too much energy or whatever, I don't know her exact words, but it hurt her hand."
"Did Tex eventually stop the car?"
"Yes, he did."
"Do you know where he stopped the car?"
"I don't know the names or anything, but it was a street - we had spotted a hose coming out from a house, and we went up the hill and turned around and parked and walked up to the house."
"Would you relate what happened, Linda?"
"An older woman came running out of the house."
"This is the house where the hose was?"
"All right, what happened next?"
"And I don't remember her exact words, but she said, 'Who is there?' or 'Who is that, what are you doing?' And Tex said, 'We are getting a drink of water.' Then she got sort of hysterical and she said, 'My husband is a policeman; he is a deputy,' or something like that. And then her husband came out and he said, 'Is that your car?' And Tex said, 'No, we are
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"And we started to walk toward the car."
"All four of you?"
"Yes. And the man was behind us."
"Did the man follow you all the way to the car?"
"Yes, he did."
"Do you recall what the man looked like?"
"I just remember he was old and he had white hair, that is all I remember."
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"The man was right behind us and he came to the driver's seat and he started to put his hand in the car to reach for the keys and Tex blocked him, grabbed his hand and just jammed, you know."
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"I remember we came to sort of a level part of the road and through a dirt shoulder, and he pulled off and handed me the clothing and told me to throw them out, which I did."
"What clothing are you talking about?"
"The clothing that the three, Tex, Katie, and Sadie had changed from."
[Return to Spahn ranch]
"Was there anyone in the parking area at Spahn Ranch as you drove in the Spahn Ranch area?"
"Who was there?"
"Was there anyone there other than Charlie?"
"Not that I know of."
"Where was Charlie when you arrived at the premises?"
"About the same spot he was in when he first drove away."
"What happened after you pulled the car onto the parking area and parked the car?"
"Sadie said she saw a spot of blood on the outside of the car when we were at the gas station."
"Who was present at that time when she said that?"
"The four of us and Charlie."
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"Well, Charlie told us to go into the kitchen, get a sponge, wipe the blood off, and he also instructed Katie and I to go all through the car and wipe off the blood spots."
"What is the next thing that happened after Mr. Manson told you and Katie to check out the car and remove the blood?"
"He told us to go into the bunk room and wait, which we did."
"When was the first time you learned the identity of those five people killed at the Tate residence?"
"The following day on the news."
"In Mr. Spahn's trailer?"
"Did you see Tex, Sadie, and Katie during the day following these killings, other than when you were watching television with them?"
"Well, I saw Sadie and Katie in the trailer. I cannot remember seeing Tex on that day."
On the LaBianca murders:
"After dinner what did you do, if you recall?"
"Charlie came in and called Katie and Leslie and myself aside and told us to get a change of clothes and meet him at the bunk room, which we did."
"Did Mr. Manson say anything to you and the others, once you were all together in the bunk house?"
"Yes, he did."
"What did he say?"
"He said we were going to go out again tonight. Last night was too messy and that he was going to show us how to do it."
"Now, Linda, you testified that the first night you had the idea that you were going on a creepy-crawly mission; you did not know there was going to be any killing, is that correct?"
"Yes, that's right."
"The second night did you know what was going to happen?"
"Did you want to go along with Mr. Manson and the others on the second night?"
"Why did you go along if you didn't want to?"
"Because Charlie asked me and I was afraid to say no."
[In search of victims]
"What happened after you stopped in front of this house?"
"Charlie got out of the car and told me to drive around the block."
"Did he get out of the car by himself?"
"Yes, he did."
"Did you in fact drive around the block?"
"Yes, I did."
"With the other people?"
"Did you come back to the front of the house?"
"Charlie was standing in approximately the same spot I left him, and he got back in the car."...."Charlie told us that when he had walked up to the house and looked into the window that he saw pictures of children on the wall, and he said he couldn't do it, he couldn't go in, but he said later on that we shouldn't let children stop us for the sake of the children of the future."
"Was Mr. Manson continuing to give you directions?"
"Yes, he was."
"Where did he direct you to drive at that point?"
"I don't know the district or the areas, but residential areas, houses, and we came to one point, I remember I was really tired, I just could not drive anymore, so he just took over the driving and then I remember we started driving up a hill with lots of houses, nice houses, rich houses, and trees. We got to the top of the hill and turned around and stopped in front of a certain house and we all looked at the house."
"Did anything unusual happen while you were driving east on Sunset Boulevard in the residential area?"
"Yes, after I had been driving for a few minutes there was a small white sports car in front of us and there [were] stoplights here and there, and Charlie" . . .
"Do you know who was in the car?"
"I believe it was a man, one person."
"No one else was in the car with him?"
"No, I don't think so."
"Did Mr. Manson say anything to you with respect to that car?"
"Yes, he did."
"What did he say to you?"
"He told me to follow it and at the next stoplight when it was green to pull up beside it."
"When the stop light was green?"
"I mean, excuse me, red, I get my colors mixed up. So that we were stopped. It would have been red, excuse me. Charlie wanted me to pull up beside the car, and Charlie was going to get out and kill the man, shoot the man, whatever."
"Did you in fact pull up next to this white sports car at a red light?"
"Yes, I did."
"Did Mr. Manson get out of the car or start to get out of the car?"
"He proceeded to get out of the car, yes."
"And what happened at that point?"
"The light turned green, so the car left."
[At the LaBianca home]
"When had you been parked in front of that home prior to this occasion?"
"A year before, approximately, in July of 1968."
"What was the occasion for your being in that particular location a year earlier?"
"My husband and I and friends were on our way down from Seattle, Washington, to New Mexico and we stopped off in Los Angeles, and this one particular person knew Harold True, so we went to his house and had a party."
"Is this the house in front of which Manson told you to stop the car?"
"Yes, it is."
"Now, when Manson directed you to stop in front of Harold True's place, did you recognize the spot?"
"Yes, I did right away."
"Did you say anything to Manson with respect to this?"
"What did you say to him?"
"Charlie, you are not going into that house, are you?"
"Did he say anything to you when you said that to him?"
"Yes, he did, he said, 'No, I'm going next door.' "
"What was the next thing that happened?"
"He got out of the car alone."
"Did all of you remain in the car?"
"Yes, we did."
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"I saw him put something in his pants, an object, I don't know what it was."
"What is the next thing that he did?"
"He disappeared up the walkway, the driveway leading toward Harold's house, and 1 could not follow him any longer. He just disappeared."
"What happened after Mr. Manson returned to the car?"
"He called Leslie and Katie and Tex out of the car."
"Was he out of the car at that point, too?"
"What happened next?"
"Sadie - excuse me - Clem (Steve Gorgan) jumped in the backseat with Sadie and I pushed over on the passenger side, and I heard bits and pieces of the conversation that he had with Tex and Katie."
"What did you hear him say?"
"I heard him say that there was a man and a woman up in the house, and that he had tied their hands and that he told them not to be afraid; that he was not going to hurt them."
"Did he say anything else to Leslie, Katie, and Tex?"
"Yes, at one point he instructed them, for Leslie and Tex, to hitchhike back to the ranch, and for Katie to go to the waterfall."
[After the LaBianca murders]
"Did he tell you to do anything with respect to this wallet after he handed it to you?"
"Yes, he did."
"What did he tell you?"
"He told me to take the change out of the wallet and to wipe off the fingerprints, and then - this is while we were driving off -and we drove a few blocks, and he told me that he would stop, and he wanted me to throw it out on the sidewalk."
"Well, when he gave you those instructions about wiping the fingerprints off the wallet, did you do that?"
"Yes, I did."
"Did you remove the change from the wallet?"
"Yes, I did."
"What did you do with the change?"
"I believe I put it in the glove compartment."
"Did he tell you why he wanted you to throw the wallet out of the window?"
"Yes, he did. He said he wanted a black person to pick it up and use the credit cards so that the people, the establishment would think it was some sort of an organized group that killed these people."
"What happened after you stopped the car?"
"We all got out of the car, started walking toward the beach, we got down to the beach, walked on the sand, and Charlie told Clem and Sadie to stay a little bit behind us. And Charlie and I started walking hand in hand on the beach, and it was sort of nice, you know, we were just talking, and I gave him some peanuts, and he just made me forget about everything, just made me feel good....I told him I was pregnant and started walking. We got to a side street, a corner, and a police car came by and stopped and asked what we were doing. And Charlie said, 'We are just going for a walk.' Charlie said something like, 'Don't you know who I am?' or 'Don't you remember my name?' They just said no. It was a friendly conversation. It just lasted for a minute. Then they walked back to the car."
"With respect to this conversation with the policemen, did they write your names down?"
"Not that I saw, no."
[Searching for still more victims]
"Then he looked at me and he said, 'What about that man you and Sandy (Good) met?' He said, 'Isn't he a piggy?' I said, 'Yes, he is an actor' (Saladin Nader, who had picked up the girls hitchhiking, brought them back to his apartment and had sex with Linda), and then he further questioned me and he asked me if the man would let him in. And I said, 'Yes.' And he asked me if the man would let my friends in, Sadie and Clem. And I said, 'Yes.' And he said, 'Okay. I want you to kill him,' and he gave me a small pocket knife. And at this point I said, 'Charlie, I am not you, I cannot kill anybody.' And I don't know what took place at that moment, but I was very much afraid. And then he started to tell me how to go about doing it, and I remember I had the knife in my hand, and I asked him, With this? 'And he said, 'Yes,' and he showed me how to do it. He said, 'As soon as you enter the residence, the house, as soon as you see the man, slit his throat right away.' And he told Clem to shoot him. And then, also, he said if anything went wrong, you know, not to do it."
"What happened after you arrived at this man's apartment?"
"Charlie wanted me to show him where he lived."
"Did you do that?"
"Yes, I did."
"Did you get out of the car with Charlie?"
"What about Sadie and Clem?"
"No, they stayed behind."
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"We entered the building and we walked up the stairs. I am not sure in took him to the top floor-I am not sure exactly what floor I took him to. Then I pointed out a door which was not his door."
"Which was not the actor's door?"
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"Then we walked back downstairs to the car, and he gave Clem a gun."
"Charlie Manson gave him a gun?"
"Yes. At this point he said something" . . .
"When you say 'he,' you are talking about Charles Manson?"
"Yes. He said that if anything went wrong, you know, don't do it; and of course, to hitchhike back to the ranch, and for Sadie to go to the waterfall."
"Did either Clem or Sadie say anything to Mr. Manson at this point?"
"No, not that I know of"
"Then you say Charlie drove off?"
"What is the next thing that happened?"
"Clem, Sadie, and myself walked up -I b elieve I took them to the fourth floor, because I know I didn't go all the way to the top, and I went-as I entered the hallway, whatever it is, where all the doors are, I went straight to the first door, and I knocked. They hid behind the corner."
"When you say 'they,' you are referring to whom?"
"Sadie and Clem. And I knocked on the door, which I knew wasn't the door, and a man said, 'Who is it?' And I said, 'Linda.' And he sort of opened the door and peeked around the corner, and I just said, 'Oh, excuse me. Wrong door.' "
"And that was it? How long did you look at this man who opened the door?"
"Just for a split second."
Description of the Victim’s Wounds from the Trial Summation of Prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi (Famous Trials)
"Dr. Noguchi, the coroner of Los Angeles County, conducted the autopsy on the body of Sharon Tate and supervised and directed the autopsies on the bodies of the other four Tate victims, Frykowski, Folger, Sebring, and Parent. He found sixteen stab wounds on Sharon Tate's body, all of which were penetration wounds. Four of the stab wounds were found in the chest, one stab wound to the abdomen, eight stab wounds in the back, one stab wound in the right upper arm, one stab wound in the left upper arm, and one stab wound in the right thigh. He also testified that he observed two rope burn abrasions to Sharon's left cheek. Two rope burn abrasions to Sharon's left cheek. And he concluded that these rope burn abrasions were caused when Sharon was hanged. Sharon was hanged at the scene. Maybe the correct grammar is hung. The rope connected Sharon Tate's neck with Jay Sebring's neck, and it was also flung over a wood beam, and then it fell back onto the floor. If one were to pull the rope, it would have tightened around Sharon's neck, not Jay Sebring's neck. So, although we cannot be sure, it is entirely possible that Sharon received these two rope burn abrasions when either Tex, Katie, or Sadie - probably Tex - pulled on the rope, perhaps temporarily suspending Sharon in the air. But the cause of her death was not hanging. The doctor's autopsy discovered an eight-month-old fetus, an unborn baby, in Sharon's uterus. The doctor estimated that the unborn baby could not have lived in Sharon's womb more than fifteen or twenty minutes after Sharon died. Now, although from a legal standpoint an unborn baby cannot be the subject of a homicide, I think you will all agree with me that in a very, very real sense, six human beings lost their lives. Miss Folger's cause of death was stab wound of the aorta. That is the large blood vessel. Miss Folger had twenty-eight stab wounds. All of which, however, were penetration wounds, and five or six of which were fatal in and of themselves. Jay Sebring's cause of death was exsanguination due to multiple stab wounds. The doctor said by exsanguination that Jay Sebring simply bled to death. Mr. Sebring had seven stab wounds, all of which were penetration wounds, and three of which were fatal in and of themselves. Sebring also had one gunshot wound which the doctor also felt would have been fatal. Dr. Noguchi recovered the bullet inside the back of Mr. Sebring's shirt. It entered Sebring's body and passed all the way through and was lodged between his back and his shirt, where Dr. Noguchi found the bullet. This bullet definitely and unequivocally was fired from this revolver here, People's 40. That is the revolver which has been connected with Charles Manson and the Spahn Ranch. I will go into this in much more detail later. Mr. Frykowski had fifty-one stab wounds. Fifty-one stab wounds. All of which were penetration wounds. Seven of which were fatal in and of themselves. Five of the stab wounds were to Mr. Frykowski's back. Now, you will recall that Linda testified that Frykowski was on his knees in front of the Tate residence, and she saw Tex stab Frykowski in the back. That was Linda's testimony. Now, Dr. Noguchi comes along and, lo and behold, Voytek Frykowski does have five stab wounds on his back. Again, completely corroborating Linda Kasabian's testimony. Steven Parent's autopsy determined that the cause of death was multiple gunshot wounds. Mr. Parent had five gunshot wounds, two of which were fatal in and of themselves. Note, Dr. Noguchi said that Steven Parent had five gunshot wounds, however he testified that Parent was only shot four times, inasmuch as two of the gunshot wounds, gunshot wounds two and four, were caused by the same bullet. So Parent, according to Dr. Noguchi, was only shot four times. This is completely consistent, of course, with the testimony of Linda Kasabian who testified that Tex Watson shot Steven Parent four times. The total number of stab wounds to the five victims was 102. While Manson, ladies and gentlemen, and his killers were roaming the Pasadena area indiscriminately looking for their victims, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca were driving toward Los Angeles, their home, and violent death. Officer Rodriguez, the first officer to arrive at the scene around 10:35 P.M., on August 10, 1969. He entered through the front door. Although the front door was closed, it wasn't locked. He observed Leno LaBianca lying on his back in the living room, a fork stuck into his stomach, papers all over, pillowcase over his head. Officer Rodriguez observed Leno, he said he ran out of the house to his radio car and called for an ambulance and a backup police unit. Sgt. Edward Cline arrived around 10:45 P.M. He testified to discovering Rosemary dead in her bedroom. He also testified to observing the writings 'Death to pigs' and 'Rise' on the walls in the living room, and 'Helter Skelter' on the refrigerator door, and he identified photos of these things. 'Death to pigs' on the living room wall in the LaBianca residence, the word 'Rise'
printed in blood in the LaBianca residence. Here is 'Helter Skelter'. It looks like it is misspelled, H-e-a-l-t-e-r S-k-e-l-t-e-r, printed in blood on the refrigerator door at the LaBianca residence. When the pillow was removed he observed a blood-soaked pillowcase covering Leno's head. Around the pillowcase was an electrical cord which was attached to a lamp around four or five feet from Leno's body. He observed the fork, of course. And he also bserved Leno's wrists to be tied with leather thongs, and he observed the word 'War' to be carved on Leno LaBianca's stomach. He said he observed no evidence of a struggle in the living room, and he testified that Rosemary also had a pillowcase over her head, an electrical cord from a nearby lamp was also tied around her neck, very much like that of her husband. He testified he found several items of value, such as several diamond rings, one of which was marked '14 karat', wristwatches, expensive camera equipment, many rifles and guns, a jar of coins, a coin collection, and other matters of value, personal property, all of which he said were inside the residence and easily accessible to anyone if their intent had been to steal. Dr. Katsuyama is the deputy medical examiner for the Coroner's Office. He performed the autopsies on Leno and Rosemary on August eleventh in the Coroner's Office. With respect to Leno, the cause of death was multiple stab wounds to the neck and abdomen, causing massive hemorrhage. The doctor said that when he removed the pillowcase he observed the knife, lodged in Leno's throat, and he gave it to a representative of the Los Angeles Police Department. He said Leno had twelve stab wounds in his body, all of which were penetration wounds, and six of which were fatal in and of themselves. In addition to the twelve stab wounds, there were seven pairs of double tined fork wounds, in other words, fourteen puncture wounds, for a total of twenty-six wounds in Leno LaBianca's stomach and body. The doctor also observed the word 'War' scratched on Leno's abdomen. There were no defense wounds on Leno. And, of course, there wouldn't be. Leno's hands had been tied up around his wrists and obviously he was helpless, helpless to defend himself. With respect to Rosemary, her cause of death was multiple stab wounds to the neck and trunk causing massive hemorrhage. When Rosemary's body arrived at the Coroner's Office, the pillowcase was still over her head, and the electrical cord was wrapped over the pillowcase around Rosemary's neck. Rosemary, ladies and gentlemen, had forty one stab wounds, all of which were penetration wounds, eight of which were fatal in and of themselves. Dr. Katsuyama also found three linear abrasions on Mrs. LaBianca's back, which he felt were caused by an instrument such as a screwdriver, or the metal prongs on the plug to the electric cord. He ruled out a sharp knife. Rosemary had one defense wound to her right jawbone. Dr. Katsuyama testified that several of Rosemary's stab wounds to her buttocks were definitely inflicted after Rosemary had already died, and he even circled these areas in black here, because you will notice that the wounds within the circle are very, very light color, very, very light colored, as opposed to the darkness around the wounds up above. He found blood at various places at the LaBianca scene, took samples of the blood, and determined what the blood type was. The words 'Helter Skelter' were B-type blood, Leno LaBianca's type blood."
The Angel with the Key to the Bottomless Pit
By Stephanie Baker CNN March 21, 2018
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — The cremated remains of notorious cult leader Charles Manson were scattered on a California hillside following a Christian funeral on Saturday, nearly four months after his death. The burial came one week after Manson's grandson, Jason Freeman, won the right to his grandfather's body after a court battle that began shortly after Manson's death on November 19. The family "acted like ninjas" to keep the funeral in Porterville from gaining attention, Freeman said. About 20 people attended, he said, describing them as his grandfather's best friends from before and during Manson's 46-year incarceration.
Sharon and Jay - she was due to give birth in two weeks.
Charles Manson Dies at 83; Wild-Eyed Leader of a Murderous Crew
By Margalit Fox November 20, 2017
Charles Manson, one of the most notorious murderers of the 20th century, who was very likely the most culturally persistent and perhaps also the most inscrutable, died yesterday in Kern County, Calif. He was 83 and had been behind bars for most of his life. He died of natural causes in a hospital, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said in a news release. Mr. Manson was a semi-illiterate habitual criminal and failed musician before he came to irrevocable attention in the late 1960s as the wild-eyed leader of the Manson family, a murderous band of young drifters in California. Convicted of nine murders in all, Mr. Manson was known in particular for the seven brutal killings collectively called the Tate-LaBianca murders, committed by his followers on two consecutive August nights in 1969. The most famous of the victims was Sharon Tate, an actress who was married to the film director Roman Polanski. Eight and a half months pregnant, she was killed with four other people at her Benedict Canyon home. The Tate-LaBianca killings and the seven-month trial that followed were the subjects of fevered news coverage. To a frightened, mesmerized public, the murders, with their undercurrents of sex, drugs, rock ’n’ roll and Satanism, seemed the depraved logical extension of the anti-establishment, do-your-own-thing ethos that helped define the ’60s. Since then, the Manson family has occupied a dark, persistent place in American culture — and American commerce. It has inspired, among other things, pop songs, an opera, films, a host of internet fan sites, T-shirts, children’s wear and half the stage name of the rock musician Marilyn Manson. It has also been the subject of many nonfiction books. The Manson family came to renewed attention in 2008, when officials in California, responding to long speculation that there were victims still unaccounted for, searched a stretch of desert in Death Valley. There, in a derelict place known as the Barker Ranch, Mr. Manson and his followers had lived for a time in the late ’60s. The search turned up no human remains. It was a measure of Mr. Manson’s hold over his followers, mostly young women who had fled middle-class homes, that he was not physically present at the precise moment that any one of the Tate-LaBianca victims was killed. Yet his family swiftly murdered them on his orders, which, according to many later accounts, were meant to incite an apocalyptic race war that Mr. Manson called Helter Skelter. He took the name from the title of a Beatles song. Throughout the decades since, Mr. Manson has remained an enigma. Was he a paranoid schizophrenic, as some observers have suggested? Was he a sociopath, devoid of human feeling? Was he a charismatic guru, as his followers once believed and his fans seemingly still do? Or was he simply flotsam, a man whose life, The New York Times wrote in 1970, “stands as a monument to parental neglect and the failure of the public correctional system”? No Name Maddox, as Mr. Manson was officially first known, was born on Nov. 12, 1934, to a 16-year-old unwed mother in Cincinnati. (Many accounts give the date erroneously as Nov. 11.) His mother, Kathleen Maddox, was often described as having been a prostitute. What is certain is that she was a heavy drinker who lived on the margins of society with a series of men. Mr. Manson apparently never knew his biological father. His mother briefly married another man, William Manson, and gave her young son the name Charles Milles Manson. Kathleen often disappeared for long periods — when Charles was 5, for instance, she was sent to prison for robbing a gas station — leaving him to bounce among relatives in Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky. She was paroled when Charles was 8 and took him back, but kept him for only a few years. From the age of 12 on, Charles was placed in a string of reform schools. At one institution, he held a razor to a boy’s throat and raped him. Escaping often, he committed burglaries, auto thefts and armed robberies, landing in between juvenile detention centers and eventually federal reformatories. He was paroled from the last one at 19, in May 1954. Starting in the mid-1950s, Mr. Manson, living mostly in Southern California, was variously a busboy, parking-lot attendant, car thief, check forger and pimp. During this period, he was in and out of prison. He was married twice: in 1955 to Rosalie Jean Willis, a teenage waitress, and a few years later to a young prostitute named Leona. Both marriages ended in divorce. Mr. Manson was believed to have fathered at least two children over the years: at least one with one of his wives, and at least one more with one of his followers. The precise number, names and whereabouts of his children — a subject around which rumor and urban legend have long coalesced — could not be confirmed. By March 1967, when Mr. Manson, then 32, was paroled from his latest prison stay, he had spent more than half his life in correctional facilities. On his release, he moved to the Bay Area and eventually settled in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco, the nerve center of hippiedom, just in time for the Summer of Love. There, espousing a philosophy that was an idiosyncratic mix of Scientology, hippie anti-authoritarianism, Beatles lyrics, the Book of Revelation and the writings of Hitler, he began to draw into his orbit the rootless young adherents who would become known as the Manson family. Mr. Manson had learned to play the guitar in prison and hoped to make it as a singer-songwriter. His voice was once compared to that of the young Frankie Laine, a crooner who first came to prominence in the 1930s. Mr. Manson’s lyrics, by contrast, were often about sex and death, but in the ’60s, that did not stand out very much. Songs he wrote were later recorded by Guns N’ Roses and Marilyn Manson. Once he was famous, Mr. Manson himself released several albums, including “LIE,” issued in 1970, and “Live at San Quentin,” issued in 2006. With his followers — a loose, shifting band of a dozen or more — Mr. Manson left San Francisco for Los Angeles. They stayed awhile in the home of Dennis Wilson, the Beach Boys’ drummer. Mr. Manson hoped the association would help him land a recording contract, but none materialized. The Beach Boys did later record a song, “Never Learn Not to Love,” that was based on one written by Mr. Manson, although Mr. Wilson, who sang it, gave it new lyrics and a new title — Mr. Manson had called it “Cease to Exist” — and took credit for writing it. The Manson family next moved to the Spahn Movie Ranch, a mock Old West town north of Los Angeles that was once a film set but had since fallen to ruins. The group later moved to Death Valley, eventually settling at the Barker Ranch. The desert location would protect the family, Mr. Manson apparently thought, in the clash of the races that he believed was inevitable. He openly professed his hatred of black people, and he believed that when Helter Skelter came, blacks would annihilate whites. Then, unable to govern themselves, the blacks would turn for leadership to the Manson family, who would have ridden out the conflict in deep underground holes in the desert. At some point, Mr. Manson seems to have decided to help Helter Skelter along. Late at night on Aug. 8, 1969, he dispatched four family members — Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkel, Charles Watson and Linda Kasabian — to the Tate home in the Hollywood hills. Mr. Manson knew the house: Terry Melcher, a well-known record producer (and son of actress Doris Day) with whom he had dealt fruitlessly, had once lived there. Shortly after midnight on Aug. 9, Ms. Atkins, Ms. Krenwinkel and Mr. Watson entered the house while Ms. Kasabian waited outside. Through a frenzied combination of shooting, stabbing, beating and hanging, they murdered Ms. Tate and four others in the house and on the grounds: Jay Sebring, a Hollywood hairdresser; Abigail Folger, an heiress to the Folger coffee fortune; Wojciech Frykowski, Ms. Folger’s boyfriend; and Steven Parent, an 18-year-old visiting the estate’s caretaker William Garretson (the only survivor of the massacre). Ms. Tate’s husband, Mr. Polanski, was in London at the time. Before leaving, Ms. Atkins scrawled the word “pig” in blood on the front door of the house; in Mr. Manson’s peculiar logic, the killings were supposed to look like the work of black militants. The next night, Mr. Manson and a half-dozen followers drove to a Los Angeles house he appeared to have selected at random. Inside, Mr. Manson tied up the residents — a wealthy grocer named Leno LaBianca and his wife, Rosemary — before leaving. After he was gone, several family members stabbed the couple to death. The phrases “Death to Pigs” and “Healter Skelter,” misspelled, were scrawled in blood at the scene. The seven murders went unsolved for months. Then, in the autumn of 1969, the police closed in on the Manson family after Ms. Atkins, in jail on an unrelated murder charge, bragged to cellmates Virginia Graham and Ronnie Howard about the killings, and that after stabbing Tate she tasted her victim's blood. On June 15, 1970, Mr. Manson, Ms. Atkins, Ms. Krenwinkel and a fourth family member, Leslie Van Houten, went on trial for murder. Ms. Kasabian, who had been present on both nights but said she had not participated in the killings, became the prosecution’s star witness and was given immunity. Mr. Watson, who had fled to Texas, was tried and convicted separately. During the trial, the bizarre became routine. On one occasion, Mr. Manson lunged at the judge with a pencil. On another, he punched his lawyer in open court. At one point, Mr. Manson appeared in court with an “X” carved into his forehead; his co-defendants quickly followed suit. Mr. Manson later carved the X into a swastika, which remained flagrantly visible ever after. Outside the courthouse, a small flock of chanting family members kept vigil. One of them, Lynette Fromme, nicknamed Squeaky, would make headlines herself in 1975 when she tried to assassinate President Gerald R. Ford. On Jan. 25, 1971, after nine days’ deliberation, the jury found Mr. Manson, Ms. Atkins and Ms. Krenwinkel guilty of seven counts of murder each. Ms. Van Houten, who had been present only at the LaBianca murders, was found guilty of two counts. All four were also convicted of conspiracy to commit murder. On March 29, the jury voted to give all four defendants the death penalty. In 1972, after capital punishment was temporarily outlawed in California, their sentences were reduced to life in prison, as well as for Tex Watson who had been convicted and sentenced to death in a separate trial in 1971. Mr. Manson was convicted separately of two other murders: those of Gary Hinman, a musician killed by Manson family members in late July 1969, and Donald Shea, a Barker Ranch stuntman killed late that August. Altogether, Mr. Manson and seven family members were eventually convicted of one to nine murders apiece. Incarcerated in a series of prisons over the years, Mr. Manson passed the time by playing the guitar, doing menial chores and making scorpions and spiders out of thread from his socks. His notoriety made him a target: In 1984, he was treated for second- and third-degree burns after being doused with paint thinner by a fellow inmate and set ablaze. Mr. Manson was turned down for parole a dozen times, most recently in 2012. Most of the other convicted family members remain in prison. Ms. Atkins died in prison in 2009, at 61, of natural causes. To the end of his life, Mr. Manson denied having ordered the Tate-LaBianca murders. Nor, as he replied to a question he was often asked, did he feel remorse, in any case. He said as much in 1986 in a prison interview with the television journalist Charlie Rose. “So you didn’t care?” Mr. Rose asked, invoking Ms. Tate and her unborn child. “Care?” Mr. Manson replied. He added, “What the hell does that mean, ‘care’?”
Wojciech (Voytek) Frykowski
The Four Avenging Angels (a fifth sounds at top right)
For the whole story you want to read Helter Skelter The True Story of the Manson Murders (1974) by Vincent Bugiiosi with Curt Gentry. You also need to see the TV movie based on it: Helter Skelter (1976) directed by Tom Gries and starring Steve Railsback as Charlie. Mr. Railsback also nailed it as the cross-dressing ghoul in Ed Gein (2000).
Steven Earl Parent
10050 Cielo Drive (Main House) Los Angeles CA - August 9, 1969
Sharon with husband Roman Polanski
Sharon and Jay Sebring - August 8, 1969
Charles 'Tex' Watson
Leno and Rosemary LaBianca
Leslie Van Houten
Cry “Havoc!”, and let slip the lawyers.
By Don Thompson Associated Press December 12, 2017
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Cult leader Charles Manson died of cardiac arrest accompanied by respiratory failure, triggered by colon cancer that had spread to other areas of his body, according to his death certificate. He died Nov. 19 at Bakersfield's Mercy Hospital, near where the 83-year-old had been serving a life sentence for orchestrating the 1969 killings of pregnant actress Sharon Tate and eight other people. The Kern County death certificate, issued Monday and first obtained by TMZ.com, says Manson died minutes after his heart stopped, but he had been suffering respiratory failure for days. It says his cancer developed months ago. His death set off competing claims for his remains and possessions. A hearing based on a claim by a man who says he's Manson's grandson is set for Jan. 8 in Los Angeles, while a purported will filed by a Manson associate has been preliminarily rejected by Kern County on technical grounds. "It's not unusual to have multiple filings, particularly for famous or infamous people. Someone's going to have to sort it out sooner or later," attorney Alan Davis said Tuesday. He filed the Los Angeles County Superior Court paperwork on behalf of grandson Jason Freeman, who is nominating attorney Dale Kiken to administer Manson's estate. Kiken previously provided The Associated Press with documents showing Freeman is Manson's grandson, but Davis said he and Kiken are searching for other and closer next of kin. As administrator, Kiken would represent Manson's estate and not any one individual. "People do come out of the woodwork," Davis said. So far they said no other relative has asked to be appointed as the estate's representative. The Kern County sheriff-coroner's office is also still trying to determine Manson's next of kin, with no estimated time for a decision, spokesman Sgt. Steve Wells said Tuesday. Next month's court hearing could help, Davis said, because anyone objecting to Kiken being appointed administrator on behalf of Manson's grandson could object then. They say Manson left no will, despite the two-page document filed last month by Michael Channels, who exchanged letters and visited the killer in prison. The will, dated Valentine's Day 2002, purportedly leaves everything to Channels. Kern County rejected Channels' filing on two technical grounds, including that he didn't provide a Manson death certificate that wasn't available at the time. But it also said Manson's official last address wasn't in Kern County, even though he died there. Davis said Manson's last address before he went to prison was in Los Angeles County, so the probate fight should be decided there. Kiken has said there might be a third claim by Los Angeles musician Matthew Roberts, who has described himself as Manson's son. Roberts has not returned repeated telephone messages, and Channels could not be reached despite repeated telephone calls. Manson was said to have music, artwork, writings and at least two guitars when he died. Independent probate attorneys said his estate's real value could be in controlling the use of his image and the power to authorize any biographies or documentaries. Kiken said an appraiser would have to determine the value. "I think a lot of the items he has may have a value far beyond their intrinsic value just because of his notoriety," he said.
The Book of Revelation Chapter 9 (King James Version)
1 And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.
2 And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.
3 And out of the smoke came forth locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power.
4 And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads.
5 And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man.
6 And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.
7 And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men.
8 And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions.
9 And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle.
10 And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months.
11 And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon.
12 One woe is past; and, behold, there come two woes more hereafter.
13 And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God,
14 Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates.
15 And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men.
16 And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them.
17 And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone.
18 By these three were the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.
19 For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails: for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt.
20 And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk:
21 Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts.
Charlie's take on it (Famous Trials)
Manson saw himself as "the fifth angel" (verse 1) who would be given "the key to the bottomless pit." Verse 11 refers the fifth angel as "king," whose "name in Hebrew is Abaddon." The Catholic Douay Version contains also a Latin name, inadvertently omitted from other versions: "Exterminans." Verse 3 says that "out of the smoke came forth locusts upon the earth; and unto them was given power." Manson believed that the "locusts" were in fact "beetles" -- the English musical group, "The Beatles."
Manson found confirmation for the Beatles being the "locusts" of Revelation in verses 7 through 9. Verse 7 refers to the locusts "their faces were as the faces of men," but verse 8 says "they had hair as the hair of women" -- which Manson took to be a reference to the Beatles' long hair. Also, verse 9 refers to the locusts as having "breastplates of iron." In Manson's interpretation the Beatles' breastplates were their electric guitars. The "horses" that they rode (verse 7) were dune buggies. Finally, Manson saw the "fire and smoke and brimstone" that came out of their mouths (verse 17) as being the powerful lyrics to their songs -- especially those in the White Album. Manson also at times saw the Beatles as "the four angels" of verse 15.
The 200,000,000 persons comprising "the armies of the horsemen" (verse 16) who would spread destruction around the earth were, in Manson's interpretation, bikers. Manson interpreted verse 4 -- "And it was said unto them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing" -- as meaning that it was wrong to kill any living thing -- except, perversely, people. Manson would frequently upbraid family members for killing rattlesnakes or other creatures. Manson believed he would lead his Family to the desert, where they would wait out the coming holocaust and multipy until they numbered 144,000 -- a number he got from Revelation, Chapter 7 which refers to twelve tribes of Israel, each numbering 12,000. Manson believed that the entrance to "the bottomless pit" (verse 1) was a forgotten cave somewhere in Death Valley. Through this cave one could gain entrace to a wonderful land of milk and honey, lighted by glowing walls and filled with warm spring water. Perhaps most critically, was Manson's interpretation of verse 15: "And the four angels were loosed, that had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, that they should kill the third part of men." Manson saw verse 15 as a prophecy of the imminent Helter Skelter in which a revolt by blacks would result in a killing of one-third of the population. Manson may have believed that he was setting this revolt in motion in August of 1969 when he loosed from Spahn ranch his four Family members with instructions to kill.
Susan 'Sadie Mae Glutz' Atkins
3301 Waverly Drive Los Angeles CA - August 10, 1969
Manson’s interpretation of the Beatles’ White Album (Famous Trials)
You say you want a revolution/ Well you know/ We all want to change the world/ You tell me that it's evolution/ Well you know/ We all want to change the world/ But when you talk about destruction/ Don't you know that you can count me out (in)/ Don't you know it's gonna be all right/ All right, all right/ You say you got a real solution/ Well you know/ We'd all love to see the plan.
The Beatles favor a revolution. Manson should now reveal his plan to escape the coming chaos. Although the album jacket insert reads "you know that you can count me out," on the record itself the word "in" can be heard immediately after the word "out."
Blackbird singing in the dead of night/ Take these broken wings and learn to fly/ All your life/ You were only waiting for this moment to arise.
The Beatles were urging black people to arise and revolt against the white establishment. Manson was fond of the word "rise" -- often telling his followers that black people would "rise up."
Have you seen the little piggies/ Crawling in the dirt/ And for all those little piggies/ Life is getting worse/ Always having dirt to play around in/ Have you seen the bigger piggies/ In their starched white shirts/ You will find the bigger piggies/ Stirring up the dirt/ Always have clean shirts to play around in/ In their styes with all their backing/ They don't care what goes on around/ In their eyes there's something lacking/ What they need's a damn good whacking/ Everywhere there's lots of piggies/ Living piggy lives/ You can see them out for dinner/ With their piggy wives/ Clutching forks and knives to eat their bacon.
Manson interpreted "piggies" to mean members of the Establishment. He saw the song as telling him that the Establishment needed "a damn good whacking." Manson frequently quoted the line referring to the need for a "whacking." The song refers to forks and knives. Rosemary LaBianca received 41 knive wounds, Leno LaBianca received 12 knive wounds and 7 fork wounds. On a wall in the LaBianca home, in Leno's blood, was written the phrase "Death to Pigs."
When I get to the bottom I go back to the top of the slide/ Where I stop and I turn and I go for a ride/ Till I get to the bottom and I see you again/ Do you, don't you want me to love you/ I'm coming down fast but I'm miles above you/ Tell me tell me tell me come on tell me the answer/ You may be a lover but you ain't no dancer/ Helter skelter helter skelter/ Helter skelter/ Will you, won't you want me to make you/ I'm coming down fast but don't let me break you/ Tell me tell me tell me the answer/ You may be a lover but you ain't no dancer./ Look out helter skelter helter skelter/ Helter skelter/ Look out, cause here she comes/ When I get to the bottom I go back to the top of the slide/ And I stop and I turn and I go for a ride/ And I get to the bottom and I see you again/ Well do you, don't you want me to make you/ I'm coming down fast but don't let me break you/ Tell me tell me tell me the answer/ You may be a lover but you ain't no dancer/ Look out helter skelter helter skelter/ Helter skelter/ Look out helter skelter/ She's coming down fast/ Yes she is/ Yes she is.
Manson told the group on New Year's Eve 1968: "Are you hep to what the Beatles are saying? Helter Skelter is coming down. The Beatles are telling it like it is." “Helter Skelter" was printed on the refrigerator at the LaBianca home.
[The song consists of a collection of sound clips. The sounds include shouts, classical music, exploding mortars, soccer yells, crowd sounds, car horns, crying babies, hymns, oinking pigs, dialogue from the BBC, phrases such as "Block that Nixon," and the repeated words "Number 9, Number 9, Number 9." ]
Manson saw the song as paralleling the message of the Bible's Revelation 9. He saw the song as a prophecy of the upcoming black verseus white revolution. This song, as well as "Blackbird," were seen by Prosecutor Bugliosi as being the inspiration for the printing in blood of the word "rise" at the LaBianca home.
Who knows how long I've loved you/ You know I love you still/ Will I wait a lonely lifetime/ If you want me to I will/ And when at last I find you/ Your song will fill the air/ Sing it loud so I can hear you/ Make it easy to be near you/ For the things you do endear you to me/ You know I will/ I will.
Manson interpreted the line "Your song will fill the air/ Sing it loud so I can hear you" to mean that he should make an album so that the peoples could find him (Manson), the returned Jesus Christ. After the White Album came out in Deember 1968, Manson began writing songs in earnest, hoping to answer the Beatle's imagined request that he produce an album, but he never did. Each song was to be directed at a specific target group.
She was a working girl/ North of England way/ Now she's hit the big time/ In the USA/ And if she could only hear me/ This is what I'd say./ Honey pie you are making me crazy/ I'm in love but I'm lazy/ So won't you please come home/ Oh honey pie my position is tragic/ Come and show me the magic/ of your Hollywood song/ Oh honey pie you are driving me frantic/ Sail across the Atlantic/ To be where you belong./ Will the wind that blew her boat/ Across the sea/ Kindly send her sailing back to me/ Honey pie you are making me crazy/ I'm in love but I'm lazy/ So won't you please come home.
Manson interpreted the line "Sail across the Atlantic to where you belong" to mean that the Beatles should come to the USA to join his Family in Death Valley. Manson interpreted the line "I'm in love but I'm lazy" to mean that Beatles loved Jesus Christ and believed him to be in Southern California ("magic of your Hollywood song") but were too lazy to search for him (now in the form of Charles Manson). Hoping to persuade the Beatles to join them, Manson and other Family members sent several telegrams, wrote numerous letters, and attempted at least three phone calls to the Beatles in England, all to no avail.
LA Deputy DA and lead prosecutor for People v. Manson, Charles Milles et al. and People v. Watson, Charles
From Apocalypsis cum Figuris by Albrecht Durer