Category: Charles Manson

Leslie Van Houten Denied Parole for Role in Manson Murders

Leslie Van Houten, the one-time Charles Manson follower long seen as the most likely of his ex-acolytes to win freedom someday, was denied parole Tuesday for a 19th time in the killings of Leno and Rosemary La Bianca.

At the conclusion of the emotional three-hour hearing, the chairman of the parole board, Robert Doyle, said Van Houten was not yet suitable for parole because she had failed to gain complete insight into her crime and its motivation.

While commending her for her adjustment to prison and her work on behalf of other prisoners, Doyle and deputy commissioner Carol Bentley said the crimes involved were so atrocious and heinous that they must be considered in the decision.

Manson follower faces parole board for 19th time

Leslie Van Houten, the one-time Charles Manson follower long seen as the most likely of his ex-acolytes to win freedom someday, faces her 19th parole hearing with a new lawyer and new case law which may give her the best chance yet for release.

Van Houten, 60, remains incarcerated at the California Institution for Women at Frontera, the same prison where another Manson follower, Patricia Krenwinkle, is imprisoned. Susan Atkins, the third woman convicted of murder in the crimes directed by cult leader Manson, died in prison last year after parole officials denied her dying request for freedom.

Van Houten’s chances for parole are enhanced by the fact that she has been discipline free since her incarceration in the early 1970s, has positive psychological reports and has been active in self-help groups at the prison including “Golden Girls,” a group for elderly women inmates.

She has a new lawyer, Brandie Devall, who told The Associated Press she will refer to rulings by the California Supreme Court in 2008 and 2009 affecting standards for parole.

Charles Manson follower Susan Atkins dies

Susan Atkins The Associated Press reports that Susan Atkins, a follower of cult leader Charles Manson whose remorseless witness stand confession to killing pregnant actress Sharon Tate in 1969 shocked the world, has died. She was 61 and had been suffering from brain cancer.

Atkins’ death comes less than a month after a parole board turned down the terminally ill woman’s last chance at freedom on Sept. 2. She was brought to the hearing on a gurney and slept through most of it.

California Department of Corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton said that Atkins died late Thursday night. She had been diagnosed with brain cancer in 2008, had a leg amputated and was given only a few months to live.

Manson follower Susan Atkins is denied parole

Susan Atkins For the second time in as many years, a state parole board voted unanimously Wednesday to deny one of Charles Manson’s fiercest followers her request for a “compassionate release” so that she can die at home.

Former Manson prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi said it was time for the state to show Atkins mercy.

Parole panel denies compassionate release for Manson follower Susan Atkins

Susan Atkins in 2001 Susan Atkins, 60, played a central role in the slayings of Tate and others in a bloody two-night rampage in the Los Angeles area. She has served 37 years in prison, longer than any other woman currently a prisoner in California, officials say. Now ill with brain cancer, with one leg amputated and the other paralyzed, Atkins has only months to live, doctors have said. The petition for Atkins’ release ignited debate about what mercy is appropriate, particularly considering the grisly crimes for which she was convicted.

Protests against compassionate release of Susan Atkins expand

Susan Atkins L.A. County Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley and other prosecutors are urging the state parole board to deny a ‘compassionate release’ to the Charles Manson follower who has terminal brain cancer.

Atkins and other members of Manson’s cult were convicted in seven murders during a bloody rampage in the Los Angeles area over two nights in 1969. Actress Sharon Tate, the wife of film director Roman Polanski, was 8 1/2 months pregnant when she and four others were killed at her hilltop home in Benedict Canyon.