Charles Manson, now 77, gets new chance at parole
This post has been corrected. See the note below.
After 11 failed bids for freedom, notorious killer Charles Manson, now 77, is up for parole later this month.
The parole board rejected his bid in 2007, saying Manson [For the record, 9:42 a.m. April 5: An earlier version of this post incorrectly gave the killer's last name as Mason.] "continues to pose an unreasonable danger to others and may still bring harm to anyone he would come in contact with."
Manson refused to participate in that hearing, describing himself as a "prisoner of the political system." He also declined to participate in any psychological evaluations in 2007.
"He refused to cooperate, so the conclusion they drew from the reports is he still remains a danger to the public," Los Angeles County Deputy Dist. Atty. Patrick Sequeira said at the time. "He was convicted of nine horrible murders. He has expressed no remorse or empathy for any of the victims."
A new photo released by state prison system shows Manson with long, gray hair and a beard. It was released at the request of CNN in advance of next Wednesday's parole hearing.
Manson and other members of his so-called family were convicted of killing actress Sharon Tate and six other people during a bloody rampage in the Los Angeles area during two August nights in 1969. Prosecutors said that Manson and his followers were trying to incite a race war that he believed was prophesized in the Beatles' song "Helter Skelter."
Tate, the wife of director Roman Polanski, was 8 1/2 months pregnant when she was killed at her hilltop home in Benedict Canyon on Aug. 9, 1969. Besides Tate, four others were stabbed and shot to death including Jay Sebring, 35; Voytek Frykowski, 32; Abigail Folger, 25, a coffee heiress; and Steven Parent, 18, a friend of Tate's caretaker. The word "Pig" was written on the front door in blood.
The next night, Manson rode along with his cohorts to the Los Feliz home of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, then left three of them to commit the murders. "Death to pigs" was written on a wall, and "Healter Skelter," which was misspelled, on the refrigerator door.
Manson was also convicted of the earlier murder of musician Gary Hinman in his Topanga Canyon home, and the slaying of former stuntman Donald "Shorty" Shea at the Spahn movie ranch in Chatsworth, where Manson had his commune.
Manson initially was sentenced to death. A 1972 ruling by the California Supreme Court found the state's death penalty law at the time unconstitutional and his death sentence was changed in 1977 to life in prison with the possibility of parole.
Here are earlier photos taken in 1968 and 2009:
— Shelby Grad and Andrew Blankstein
Photos: Charles Manson in new photo. Credit: California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation via KTLA News. Below: Manson in a 1968 booking photo, left, and a photo taken in 2009 at Corcoran State Prison. Credits: Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation