Mass Murderer Charles Manson Up For Parole
A California parole board will meet today to determine if mass murderer
Charles Manson could be considered "suitable" for parole.
Manson has been denied parole 11 times over the years and his several
violations of prison rules over the past five years do not bode well for
any hopes of freedom.
Manson is serving a life sentence for seven murders in a 1969 killing spree in Los Angeles.
"We do not expect that Manson will show up. He has not shown up for
several of his latest hearings, since 1997," Calif. Department of
Corrections spokesman Luis Patino told ABCNews.com. "He told his
counselor that he did not plan on attending."
Manson has been less than a model inmate. He has violated several rules
in the five years since his last parole hearing, Calif. Department of
Corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton told ABCNews.com.
He has been caught in possession of a weapon, threatened a peace
officer, and has been caught twice with contraband cell phones in the
past three years, Thornton said.
Manson placed calls and messaged people in California, New Jersey,
Florida, British Columbia, and elsewhere, Thornton said. The incidents,
in 2009 and 2011, are still under investigation and Thornton could not
comment on how he obtained the phones.
Those present for the hearing will include a commissioner, deputy
commissioner, attorneys for both sides and family members of Manson's
Debra Tate, the sister of murdered actress Sharon Tate, is expected to attend the hearing, Patino said.
Attorneys from both sides will give presentations and read any documents
by victims' relatives or other interested parties. They will also go
over Manson's prison records.
The hearing could last anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours, Patino
said. Then, the commissioners will go into closed deliberations and a
decision is expected later in the afternoon.
The commissioners will decide if Manson is suitable or unsuitable for
parole. Once they make that determination, it could be upheld, denied or
sent back by the governor to the full board of parole. Even if Manson
were granted parole, by law no formal decision would be made for 90
Last week, the California Department of Corrections released two new
photos of the now 77-year-old Manson. In the images, his beard is
longer, but he still has the same intense stare as he had as a younger
The images were taken at the state prison in Corcoran, Calif., in June
2011. They show Manson with unruly gray hair, a scruffy beard and a now
faded swastika tattoo on his forehead.
Photos of inmates are routinely taken when they are transferred to
different facilities or when their appearance changes, like Manson's
The last photos of Manson were released three years ago and showed him with a shaved head and a shortly trimmed beard.
Manson was convicted of seven counts of first degree murder for a 1969
killing spree in Los Angeles. The killings included the fatal stabbing
of five people in Tate's home, and the murders of Leno and Rosemary
Manson was sentenced to death when he was found guilty, but the sentence
was modified in 1977 to "life in prison with the possibility of parole,
after a 1972 ruling by the California Supreme Court that determined the
state's death penalty statute at the time was unconstitutional,"
according to the California Department of Corrections.
Several members of Manson's "family" have been released from prison in recent years.
Manson's reign of terror was detailed in the best-selling book "Helter Skelter" by former prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi.
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