Thursday, November 29, 2012

Open Letter To Governor Brown Regarding Parole of Bruce Davis




“I realized then it was dangerous, dirty, criminal, and I did not care because I was getting what I wanted”.

“I could have, should have made different decisions. And I could have. But these are the ones that I made. I chose to stay. I didn't care what he did. It never crossed my mind to care”.

-Bruce Davis at his 2010 Parole consideration hearing


Dear Mr. Governor:

I am writing you today to ask that you NOT grant parole to Bruce Davis. I understand that this is a very difficult decision. Times are tough in the state of California, and there must be many pressing issues on your plate. However, I ask that you take a moment and hear me out on this matter which is surely going to set precedents for not only the other defendants in this case, but many others who may someday consider committing additional crimes of this heinous nature. To help me make this case- I will point out some common arguments for his release below in addition to some words that were never intended for my use to debunk them. I  chose to use the words of those involved so as to make no mistake that my ideas were not made up to support my claims, and that even those involved make the same arguments as I do, although again, they never intended to do so. Please take the time to consider my offering.

“So I decided to be a counterculture dropout and an outlaw. That opened me up.”
    -Bruce Davis at his 2010 Parole consideration hearing



You see Governor, Bruce made this decision to go over to the dark side before he met Charlie Manson or anyone in his family. Bruce was traveling all over the country, and world, doing his own thing both before and during his time with Manson. There are several other crimes out there that coincide with his presence in the areas. Bruce Davis may have been involved with, or have knowledge of, some of these crimes. In fact, another one of his co-defendants Steve Grogan led authorities to the area where one of Bruce’s victims was buried for years. It is worth pointing out that Grogan had no religious conversion aiding him with his decision to help. Certainly Grogan had his own motivations, but wouldn’t Bruce Davis with his search for forgiveness and his desire to make amends to the families under the light of God have felt the need to do so as well, or sooner in his case in light of his new belief system? It seems his actions are not as committed as his words when it comes to easing the pain of his victims families. Letting him out now would be doing so without having ever forced him to come completely clean. That would be not such a  great precedent to set in this citizen’s eyes. Everything Bruce and his attorney have said leads me to believe that if released Bruce would not be out there preaching, or talking to others about the errors of his ways, as much as sitting on a couch somewhere complaining about how unfairly he was treated.


“apply the law fairly and honestly and give Mr. Davis the parole grant he's been owed for about 30 years. Courage that the last 22 Panels with the exception of one Commissioner lacked.”


" Bruce Davis reached his base term over 30 years ago and has to date been denied 22 straight times based solely upon the life crime and other unchanging historical factors."

        -     Attorney for Bruce Davis at 2010 Parole consideration hearing


This is my personal favorite reason you will hear Mr. Governor as to why he should be released. The “time frame” argument. Nobody has yet been able to show me where life sentence with a possibility or eligibility for parole becomes a guarantee for parole after a certain amount of time. I wonder- Is there a matrix or time frame for when Gary Hinman or Jerome Shea get to go home to their families? It seems to me that Bruce is getting frustrated that all these years haven't changed the fact he helped kill a couple of people. You mean after 22 straight parole hearings I still did that? You still want me to pay? Also- I remind you that Bruce Davis initially fled when charged. He decided when to turn himself in to serve justice for what he did. Are we now allowing him to decide when he is done based on a certain amount of  time? We OWE him something? My greatest concern regarding this is the message it sends. If we tell our fellow citizens that taking a life from another may cost your own- it may make people think twice. If we send a message that simple math dictates how long you will serve- wont people start making judgments based on how much time is worth how much damage they want to cause? Do we really want people to start trying to figure out what is and isn’t worth doing. Don’t we owe it to each other to make sure people understand that we will not tolerate behavior which harms others, and if you take a life you need to be prepared to give up your own? I don’t know a single person who would risk losing their freedom forever. But there are people out there with nothing to lose and if they get desperate or angry enough- 7 to 10 may not be the end of the world if they don’t get away with it. Do we need/want to make the statement that nothing you do has permanent consequences?

Q:   Describe or explain the relationship between Bruce Davis and Charles Manson.

A:   It seemed to me that Bruce was competing with Charlie. He was trying to be an equal with Charlie or even he -- he was loud-mouthed. Whereas when Charlie would generally speak most of the people in the family would keep silent and listen, unless he asked them something directly or he said, "What do you think," or, "Say something." But Bruce would interrupt Charlie when he was talking and he talked in a real loud voice, and it seemed like that he like the power that he had when Charlie wasn't around because he could have one of the girls run and fetch him something.

Q:  You got the impression that Bruce Davis wasn't subservient to Charlie either?

A:   It seemed to me that he had more ego than any of the other guys I ever saw there. So that he hadn't given it up to Charlie.

MR. BUGLIOSI:  Thank you. No further questions.

-Exchange between DA Bugliosi and Brooks Poston during Tex Watson Trial

As well Governor- you will hear many say that Bruce Davis was simply a follower, and under Charlie’s spell. But again I point out that he was much older, and more educated than most of the teenage girls following Charlie around. This was a man in his mid to late twenties during this time who had done quite a bit of traveling around. This was not some young dumb hick just getting off the farm for the first time.  In the Oscar nominated Documentary Manson by Robert Hendrickson- there is a scene in which Lynette Fromme goes on and on about a ceremonial vest all the girls made, and contributed their own hair to. She gleefully points out that only Charlie is allowed to wear it. Not 5 minutes later in the same film- Bruce Davis is strutting around in this same vest designated only for the leader. Today they tell us to be weary of the internet and email- for once words are sent out into cyberspace- they are public domain forever, and can’t be taken back. So too was this true for video in the early 70’s. What Bruce wants you to believe now about his role then, and his actual actions and words from back then are very different. If you listen to his words he will tell you he was following Charlie and desperate to please him. Nobody else who was around them says that.

INMATE BEAUSOLEIL: Bruce Davis came with Charlie. He's the person who originally -- he and Dan DeCarlo from Straight Satan's were the two individuals that drove me to Hinman's place in the first place and dropped me off. Then Bruce Davis came in with Charles Manson. As the information that you have, that part is true. He came with Manson. He didn't do anything to Hinman, but the gun that I had was his gun, and he was concerned about that.

-     Bobby Beausoleil from his 2010 parole consideration hearing

Finally Governor, you will hear people say he Bruce didn’t directly kill anyone himself. Well to that I would say aside from him personally stabbing Shorty Shea- the murder of Gary Hinman could not have happened without the participation of Bruce Davis, and that Bruce Davis specifically had the power to stop the murder from occurring. He drove them to the scene and gave them the weapon to make it possible. The knife may have done the damage, but the gun set the tone and made escape thoughts much more imprudent. If Bruce was concerned about the gun- it had to be his own interest he was concerned about. He did nothing to stop it from harming Gary. He left the gun with them despite knowing the intention of the visit. He never took it away, or told them they couldn’t have it. In fact when he got there and saw that Gary was being tortured and held captive in his own home- instead of offering help- he stole a car and left. Bruce didn’t deliver the fatal blow, but Bruce did nothing to stop it either and he was in a position on at least two occasions to do so. If Linda Kasabian was guilty for driving to the locations at the Tate and Labianca homes, and Susan Atkins was guilty at Labianca for just being in the car- how can Bruce not be guilty for driving the car and supplying the weapon he purchased (illegally by the way) at Hinman, or with Shorty Shea who he physically, personally contributed to slaughtering with his own hands??

So Mr. Governor I ask you to take all of this into consideration. I ask you to follow not only the law, but your heart in making the just choice of keeping Bruce Davis right where he belongs. In prison, working with others through programs and correspondence to make sure that people understand what happens when you get involved with taking lives from others. He will do more good, and can touch more people right there. I understand that with the passing of time it becomes more and more difficult to remember the atrocities this man helped to commit, and although he has behaved himself in prison quite well- it is fair to point out that from Scientology to Charlie to Christianity- he still is seeking for a higher power to lead him. He has spent most of his adult life searching for the right answers. Yet, if he would just listen to his own heart and read between the lines of his own words, the answer and most important issue in all of this has been there all along. What and who have  been the bottom line. This is not about attorneys or matrix’s. This is about life and death, and what we do for each other as a community and society to protect each other and look out for one another and Bruce Davis said it best himself….

“Admitting I had indeed influenced the others brought out a struggle between my old habit of denying my influence in general and my conscious awakening to my true responsibility for my crimes. I struggled with fear of condemnation and pride as I came to terms with the truth about myself. I had not only done dreadful things, but I also influenced others to participate in horrible crimes. I experienced a shattering impact of my crimes when from deep within with my mind's eye I saw two gravestones, Gary Alan Hinman and Donald Jerome Shea."

"I know that the real focus of this was thinking about Donald Shea and Gary Hinman and their families that will never get over it. And the very fact that nothing I could ever do will ever change that for them.”

-     Bruce Davis Parole consideration hearing 2010

But Mr. Governor- there is something you can do for others who have yet to have to go through a tragedy like this. Send a message loud and clear. Let them hear your message from California to New York, and all places they are listening in between. We will not forget, and will not tolerate what this man did. We will not make this type of crime something you can wash away with time, or jailhouse accomplishments. I agree with Bruce on this one point- some things can never be changed. I am not a lawyer myself. I have no real knowledge of the California correctional system or its guidelines. I am not trying to make a legal argument to keep him in. I am just one voice out here trying to remind you of what Bruce and his Attorneys won't tell you. Just to remind you of two voices you wont hear from.Two lives so savagely taken. To shout one out for the memories of Gary Hinman, and Jerome Shea.
              
And as Bruce said himself-  that should be the real focus…

Yours Truly,
                              
Saint Circumstance


(Transcripts from Trials and Parole hearings can be read in full at Cielodrive.com)






18 comments:

Johnny Ussery said...

Amen, Saint. Very well written. Keep up the good work.

eviliz said...

First time I heard DeCarlo mentioned
Great job ST

Bing said...

Very good read ST.,

But you have to consider Grogan in all of this. He got out almost 20 years ago and hasn't screwed up in any way. He's even managed to have a successful music career. So why can't Davis have his second chance like Clem got?

Bing said...

Very good read ST.,

But you have to consider Grogan in all of this. He got out almost 20 years ago and hasn't screwed up in any way. He's even managed to have a successful music career. So why can't Davis have his second chance like Clem got?

ST. Circumstance said...

Thanks all :)

Bing my brother:

I am willing to conceed that Bruce may never break another law- doesn't matter to me. I do not disagree that a couple of them are not suitable by now- just that they should not be eligible...

I would not have let Clem out either- but he did help them. Bruce stayed quiet and that is why Clem got the chance and Bruce has not...

funny that Grogan was considered the idiot of the group even within the group..

think Bobby and Bruce still think he is so dumb today??

CarolMR said...

Great letter, St. Is it Jerome Shea or Donald Shea?

goomba said...

Supposedly Davis gave himself up (from where?) because "Manson told him to" (from jail?) If true it doesn't jive with Davis competing with Manson.

From the text: "It seemed to me that he had more ego than any of the other guys I ever saw there. So that he hadn't given it up to Charlie."

The YouTube video of Davis' surrender show him to be a babbling Manson parrot, not a strong individual. Just my two cents.

william marshall said...

Very impressive and powerful St.
Eviilz Liz been wondering when you'd return

ST. Circumstance said...

Carol-

Donald Jerome Shea?

ST. Circumstance said...

Goomba your 2 cents is appreciated :)

hippiekiller said...

goomba said: "The YouTube video of Davis' surrender show him to be a babbling Manson parrot, not a strong individual. Just my two cents."

He was also apparently blasted on Orange Sunshine when that vid was taken. He's definitely acting high as fuck.

Check out Bruce's cameo appearence in "Inside The Manson Gang." He does this whole Charile rap that reveals his dominant nature.

Marq Goldberg said...

I really don't know enough about Bruce Davis' role in all this to have much of an opinion about whether or not he should ever be considered for parole. But two things bother me.

First, can we now at long last, start making decisions based NOT on the notoriety of the case or on Vincent Bugliosi's Helter Skelter fantasy but on what actually happened as best as we can determine? (Side note: For that I would refer the reader to the new Susan Atkins book "The Myth of Helter Skelter" published in Nov.? 2012) I don't see what Davis's connection to the "family" has to do with anything. He either committed certain crimes or he didn't. He should be punished based on his own actions. Not on who his associates were or what they did.

And, second, I'm not the least bit impressed by these jail house conversions. And I am absolutely DISGUSTED that someone's religious beliefs should carry the tiniest bit of weight with parole boards. But they do.

It annoys me beyond measure that if I were to commit a crime and appear before a board that my ability to see through the nonsense of religion (and particularly Christianity with its 2,000+ year history of violence and stupidity) that I would be punished more severely than someone who buys into that nonsense.

If anything the religious should be punished MORE severely than nonbelievers. Because those who can be convinced to believe absurdities can be convinced to commit atrocities. Why wouldn't someone commit mass murder if they believe everyone is going to Hell in a few days anyway? Why not lash out in violence if you think you're saving souls by doing so? "Jesus made me do it" is no more impressive to me as a defense than saying "Charlie made me do it."

I'd like to see Bruce Davis brought before a parole board without them even knowing who he is. Look at his specific actions. He provided a gun that was used in a crime. OK what else did he do? And then punish him accordingly.

If that means that he's served his time and should be released then fine. Let him out. If not then keep him in. But keep religion and other people's actions out of it.

Marq Goldberg said...

I really don't know enough about Bruce Davis' role in all this to have much of an opinion about whether or not he should ever be considered for parole. But two things bother me.

First, can we now at long last, start making decisions based NOT on the notoriety of the case or on Vincent Bugliosi's Helter Skelter fantasy but on what actually happened as best as we can determine? (Side note: For that I would refer the reader to the new Susan Atkins book "The Myth of Helter Skelter" published in Nov.? 2012) I don't see what Davis's connection to the "family" has to do with anything. He either committed certain crimes or he didn't. He should be punished based on his own actions. Not on who his associates were or what they did.

And, second, I'm not the least bit impressed by these jail house conversions. And I am absolutely DISGUSTED that someone's religious beliefs should carry the tiniest bit of weight with parole boards. But they do.

It annoys me beyond measure that if I were to commit a crime and appear before a board that my ability to see through the nonsense of religion (and particularly Christianity with its 2,000+ year history of violence and stupidity) that I would be punished more severely than someone who buys into that nonsense.

If anything the religious should be punished MORE severely than nonbelievers. Because those who can be convinced to believe absurdities can be convinced to commit atrocities. Why wouldn't someone commit mass murder if they believe everyone is going to Hell in a few days anyway? Why not lash out in violence if you think you're saving souls by doing so? "Jesus made me do it" is no more impressive to me as a defense than saying "Charlie made me do it."

I'd like to see Bruce Davis brought before a parole board without them even knowing who he is. Look at his specific actions. He provided a gun that was used in a crime. OK what else did he do? And then punish him accordingly.

If that means that he's served his time and should be released then fine. Let him out. If not then keep him in. But keep religion and other people's actions out of it.

Matt said...

Very well said, Marq.

ST. Circumstance said...

Good post Marq-

The Atkins book is not new. Her husband put it up on her website right after she passed away with some facts about Steven Kay...

The story is new though lol she has tweaked her version of the motive again. She explains Charlie put her in time out alot in an area next to where the guys had there secret conversation away from the girls, so she got to overhear alot...

I think she included this new tidbit so we would put more stock in what she says this time...

but she has changed her story way too many times for me

but Matt and Leary will be happy to know she says the motive all started with Crowe...

leary7 said...

This is one where I do totally disagree, with respect, Mary.
Bruce Davis was at the Hinmann murder site, certainly knew about the TLB murders within hours of them happening, and participated in the Shorty Shea murder. He was a full fledged Manson Family member who was complicit in all the Family crimes.
If the TLB murders had occurred decades later all the Family members would probably have been chraged under the RICO Act. Seperating them or treating them as individual criminals is absurd.
And parole boards are set up for the express purpose of determining if someone has reformed and rehabilitated themselves. Adopting a Judeo-Christian life philosophy as opposed to a nihilistic life philosophy is OF COURSE RELEVANT. To argue otherwise is beyond ridiculous.
Obviously you have strong anti-Christian or even anti-religous beliefs, which is fine. But prisoner does not exist in a test tube, they can't be judged solely on an emperical basis. What Bruce Davis has done to improve his mind, his attitude, and his belief structure HAS TO BE considered.
Sorry, no offense, but your post is pure nonsense.

leary7 said...

I'm sorry, I read that as Mary Goldberg but then realized from Matt's post that is was Marq Goldberg. My apologies.

Farflung said...

Bruce’s lawyer says with oblivious detachment:

“… give Mr. Davis the parole grant he’s been OWED for about 30 years.”

This is the ultimate outcome of the parole system where a person who was convicted, by a jury of his peers, and sentenced to death, can somehow reserve the temerity to be OWED parole. This is truly the definition of hubris, and another reason to deny him.

I guess parole has become an entitlement during the passing years and current economic crisis. Parole has been the third nipple, on the crazy aunt, locked in the judicial basement, of America for a long time. I’m at best ambivalent on the subject, and have never viewed parole as being ‘owed’ to anyone. Serve the time the law assigned, and you WILL be released. Be that on foot or a pine box is another layer in the judicial cake of duplicity. But that doesn’t mean you rub everyone’s nose in it because you view yourself as being punished more for some murders than someone else.

Parole is a FIFO-esque system which allows for the reduction of overhead associated with running a society. The base name of penitentiary has to do with penitence, rather than time served or comparisons to others. Parole is an opportunity and not a second ‘chance’. Chance is fortuitous and or accidental, and infers that the reason someone is in prison and you are not, is based upon nothing more than statistics. Insulting.

So here’s where the parole board enters the picture as an appointed entity, typically by the governor, to review individuals and recommend their release, in pseudo violation of our view of being a country of laws and not men.

After such careful jury selection, due process, judicial review and sentences prescribed by legislation passed by a two house system, a parole board of appointees will somehow determine the risk associated with an early release.

The parole concept is based upon good intentions, where a person can redeem themselves and walk the path of ‘leaving others alone’ if not righteousness. But like every other ‘good intention’, it will ultimately serve as a cobble in the path to hell. This is evidenced by the political nature of his potential release, the lamentations that Bruce has already served more time than others, and how he is old and lost his ability or desire to murder. Tertiary to the parole process appears to be contrition, redemption or reformation of the convict in favor of time served or the volume of killings in Bruce’s case.

I feel the parole system should be denied parole, until it can be defined, validated and administered with some greater and measurable benefit to society. There, I feel better now.