Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Take the Back Alley to Langley - Part Three

Hippie Reeve via Chaos

Part One Introduction

Part Two Backstory

Houston, we have a problem. 

Our friend inside the government, these days known online as Montana Sun, ran an earnings report on Reeve Whitson. They found:

- No government earnings were ever posted for Whitson

- No government pension existed for Whitson

- No government retirement insurance existed from that nonexistent pension 

- No record of Whitson paying taxes after 1962

-------------

People who work for Uncle Sam have insurance. Former service members have VA records. Everyone pays taxes. 

As Montana Sun pointed out, even Lee Harvey Oswald left a paper trail, and he helped kill a President of the United States. 

Is it possible Whitson was nothing more than a well-connected PI? His life is straight out of James Bond. We'll wrap this up in Part Four. +ggw

------------

Edit: You can catch me on The Paulcast tonight at 10 pm EST talking all things Whitson! 

Edit #2: Whitson's gal Joan Weldon. 


262 comments:

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saoirse said...

"Our friend inside the government, these days known online as Montana Sun, ran an earnings report on Reeve Whitson. They found:"

Begins with "Our friend" - singular, and ends with "they found" - plural.
Typo? Hiding the pronoun? TMFB has successfully infiltrated the U.S. Federal Government with a group of sleuths?

starviego said...

Whitson was probably what is known as a "contract agent" for the CIA. He's paid in cash or via some 'cover' employment. Thus there'd be no paperwork involved.

starviego said...

A quote of interest, when we contemplate the role of the PIs in this case:

The Private Sector: Private Spies, Rent-a-Cops, and the Police Industrial Complex by George O'Toole c.1978
pg223
When the CIA first considered the very sensitive question of operating within the United States, someone must have pointed out that firms like Fidelity Reporting Service could offer ideal cover. Private detective agencies are licensed to snoop, and they provide a confidential service, routinely refusing to disclose their clients' identities. They could provide perfect camouflage for the CIA's domestic intelligence activities.

starviego said...

The Family Ed Sanders pg306
Mr. Peter Folger, Abigail Folger's father, according to numerous people involved, initiated an intense investigation into the matter, as did Roman Polanski who were assisted by several famous Los Angeles private investigators. ... In fact, at least ten private investigators in Los Angeles were used extensively throughout the investigation of the case, both by private parties and the district attorney.

shoegazer said...

I don't get it. Why are we talking about this guy?

Are we adding a new god or demon to the pantheon?

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Saoirse - Yep pronoun games. Good eye.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Shoe - I'm exploring the claims of CIA involvement in the Manson milieu.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Star - Agree on the PI, but here's my thing, Whitson is good friends with the Tate fam and Roman but he's also watching them for the CIA? Why is he watching them? How would he be friends with Hatami? Hatami says he didn't know Whitson well yet Hatami is the person Whitson chooses to call before the bodies are discovered? That doesn't sound very CIA-like.

shoegazer said...

The entire Whitson scenario is closely consistent with LSD hallucination, as described by Kasabian.

Another "coincidence"?

There. Am I in the club now? ;^)

G. Greene-Whyte said...

LOL!

starviego said...

G. Greene-Whyte said...
"Whitson is good friends with the Tate fam and Roman but he's also watching them for the CIA? Why is he watching them?"

Target Acquisition. His job was to make sure the targets are where they are supposed to be at the right time. IMO only!

"Hatami says he didn't know Whitson well yet Hatami is the person Whitson chooses to call before the bodies are discovered? That doesn't sound very CIA-like."

Maybe Whitson thought his job was just to surveill some radical lefty black panther sympathiser elements, but then realizes he's been used in some manner to facilitate the murders. Whitson freaks out and breaks cover.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

I will say it's fascinating. Another thing I think about a lot is when Bugliosi says he told the LAPD to go find Hatami for him, Hatami arrived with Whitson.

I'm probably in the PI camp but will remain agnostic until more proof arrives. Uncle Sam knows who his people are. They might be kept secret from us but the internal admin stuff still gets done. Even on contract workers at that level I gotta think.

Whitson also told a ton of people he was in the CIA. Even if he's just working for him that's not the best idea. He becomes an instant target when no one had to know.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

*lol them not him. Typos be damned.

tobiasragg said...

I have been meaning to ask, since this series of posts began: has anyone actually verified that this person was ever *actually* employed by Tate, Bugliosi - or even the CIA, for that matter?

The source for much of this speculation seems to be O'Neill, who seemed content with publishing any & everything he happened upon without much regard for fact-checking or verifying much of anything at all.

Much of O'Neill's work really amounts to gossip when you get right down to it, and it's interesting (and a bit distressing) to see him being taken seriously by some out there. Gossip is fun and all, but is it really worthy of careful consideration - especially when the initiator of such conversational points apparently hasn't bothered to do his own homework to begin with?

Torque said...

Greene, exactly. Regardless if Whitson was legit intel or a PI, why would he be "watching" Cielo? And if he were watching the property, from what vantage point would he be watching? This also brings up the question of how long he may have watched the property.

We know Sharon and Roman moved into Cielo on or around February 14, 1969. Both of them were out of the country by the third week of March. Depending on just who one cites(Doris Tate or Winnie Chapmam), Sharon makes her return to Cielo about the 15th of July. Roman, of course, does not return to the States until just after the murders. Point here is that Sharon probably physically occupied that house for about eight weeks in total, and Roman would have been in residence for about five weeks.

Bill Garretson, Abigail, and Voytek lived there longer, of course, than Sharon and Roman. Would there be any surveillance necessary in the absence of Roman and Sharon, and why?

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Good point, Torque. Rudi wasn't there to keep an eye on, either.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Tobias, I'm always down for a story that involves an acrobat tbh.

shoegazer said...

Garretson was a spook, too.

There's little doubt of this, if you think about it...what else could it be, huh?

Spy vs Spy, Mad Magazine circa '69.

starviego said...

Torque said...
"Regardless if Whitson was legit intel or a PI, why would he be "watching" Cielo?"

According to some, Gibbie's dad Peter Folger was doing surveillance on his daughter, so Whitson might have been part of Folger's private investigative team.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Sorry, I won't be on The Paulcast tonight. Life got in the way :(

brownrice said...

And while we're at it, let's not forget Navy Intelligence and Charles Winans... :-)

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Star - Which leaves the Poles?

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Hi, brownrice!

shoegazer said...

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts,

Is this game something like Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_Degrees_of_Kevin_Bacon#:~:text=Six%20Degrees%20of%20Kevin%20Bacon%20or%20Bacon's%20Law%20is%20a,ultimately%20leads%20to%20prolific%20American


Yours truly,

Puzzled in Portland

Dan S said...

He could see cielo from lookout mountain, right, starviego?

brownrice said...

Hi, GGW. :-)

Tom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tobiasragg said...

This dude seemed to be a rabbit trying desperately to dig a true crime-related hole that people will jump into.

Doesn't seem to be much there there, unless one's name is O'Neill and you are searching for any hole to fill a volume created soley to justify a multi-decade & largely fruitless life pursuit . . .

But hey, the Manson heap is half-built upon such lives spent.

saoirse said...

So there's supposedly a mole in 'the government', that goes by the handle 'Montana Sun', who has clearances to access ALL federal employee service, payroll, benefits and IRS info.....
Hmmmmm!
Maybe I'll give that the benefit of the doubt maybe not but since 'they' is eager to help have him/her/it look up:

Ricardo Morales
Frank Fiorini (aka Sturgis)
Eduardo Villareal
Donald Haggerty
Enrique 'Henry' Lopez

Tell 'they' to take a cell phone photo of the query results screen and put it on this blog.

"People who work for Uncle Sam have insurance".

CIA contractors would not be entitled to benefits from Sammy.

"No record of Whitson paying taxes after 1962"

Was he ever charged with tax evasion? If not then he worked under the table for cash or via an alias. There's lots of ways to live under the radar, especially if the gubment is helping you.

"even Lee Harvey Oswald left a paper trail"

That trail was eventually discovered through the careful and painstaking research of declassified documents not payroll queries.
If Whitson had any connection to the agency it's possible that any record of it is either locked up or long gone.

This Whitson issue cannot be verified or falsified without more factual information - which may never materialize.


saoirse said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
G. Greene-Whyte said...

Howdy, Pardners! I'm enjoying a nutritious breakfast of Cadbury mini eggs and coffee while I browse your fine comments. While I'm not a psychic, I'd bet Montana Sun is not going to help or prove themselves to you, Saorise, and it's on account of your hurtful yet dulcet tones. I'm still willing to share my chocolates with you, however. I never believe anyone either unless I get the proof.

Like all good 25% sons of Erin, my day is filled with cooking, jigs, and reels. Happy St. Patrick's Day to all the members of the mid-March IRA choir. May your songs and Jameson buzzes be amazing. Like many quarter Irish, I'm ignoring my English, Scottish, and Welsh blood as it boils beneath my pale, ruddy, skin. Up the Ra!

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Or down the Ra! Whichever way you all swing. Cockels and mussels alive alive oh!

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Back to Whitson...One thing that goes through my mind a lot is there was a public cash reward out there. Wouldn't half the PI's in town go after the money and throw their hats into the ring?

shoegazer said...

WOW!

Reading vol 44, page 6470-6471 Judge Older reads aloud before session, to all counsel, a letter he received from a Marian F. Buckley.

Believe me, it is well worth the read in light of the various pet conspiracy theories we get here on occasion.

https://www.cielodrive.com/people-v-manson-atkins-vanhouten-krenwinkel/04-trial/Vol44.pdf

So that folks here who like to involve Elvis, the Pope, and the Ghost of Christmas past in a vast conspiracy to frame Garretson, a CIA spook, for the St. Valentine's Day Massacre can see what a noble lineage from with they spring forth.

shoegazer said...

Tobias:

Doesn't seem to be much there there, unless one's name is O'Neill and you are searching for any hole to fill a volume created soley to justify a multi-decade & largely fruitless life pursuit . . .

...and which is first published 25 June 2019, closely coinciding with the 50 year anniversary of the crimes, and coat-tailing all of the advertising for "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood", which kicked off a wave of new interest in this old topic.

But it's just a coincidence, if you ask me.

TabOrFresca said...

GreenWhite,

Reeve Whitson leaves bloody footprint on “flagstaff” while talking on shoe-phone to Hatami. Eh?

G. Greene-Whyte said...

ToF= Ha! Stayed tuned for my new series that focuses on actress Joan Weldon and her ants movie.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Not sure why I put an equals sign in there...

shoegazer said...

TorF:

Yes, all the evidence points to the fact that Whitson was barefoot, too, that night.

Deep cover, you know...

Speculator said...

Shoegazer - I decided to drop in on vol 44 that you were reading - and then onto vol 45. I know it's off-topic as far as this Whitson post is concerned, but it does make intriguing reading. I don't mean the woman's letter by the way! Hopefully she got the necessary psychiatric help shortly after writing it ;-) !! I can't make my mind up about Kasabian at all. She often appears so evasive with her don't knows/I don't understand the question/can't remember etc etc. Admittedly the way Kanarek phrases some of his questions is painstakingly awful and pretty poor, but he does stick at it and you can perfectly see what his strategy was. There are clearly gaps in her evidence. I don't get the timeline of her running to the house, seeing Frykowski AND seeing Folger chased down. If she was so in shock after seeing Frykowski and immediately ran, it would mean that Folger would have had to appear outside almost simultaneously or immediately after Frykowski - within seconds. Otherwise he shock/horror and impulse to run wouldn't add up. When you piece together the evidence of the others as to who was attacked/killed where, it doesn't add up that Folger appears outside at the same time as Frykowski. We know that Watson concentrated on VF initially and he was shot/clubbed at our near the door (but inside the house). Meantime PK was struggling with AF and called Watson who went over to help. That's when he stabbed her in her stomach and she fell - still inside the house (according to Atkins). Presumably they then left her for dead and Watson then saw (or was alerted by Atkins or even Kasabian) that Frykowski had made it outside. He then attacked him further. So for Kasabian to see both VF and AF being attacked/pursued outside would mean that either AF managed to immediately stand up and sprint outside despite already half dead or that Kasabian hung around longer than she admitted. It's just too convenient and manufactured to me that she saw BOTH attacks outside whilst keeping enough distance as to not incriminate herself. Her assertion that she just thought that they were going there to steal is pretty thin too. As is her supposed shock/flight upon seeing Frykowski but not Parent. That point was well made by Kanarek. We now know of course that she went through the pockets of the dying/dead Parent - apparently without the shock/horror having yet kicked in! Never let shock/horror get in the way of an easy wallet I guess. And her assertion that she didn't know that the LaBiancas had been killed until October.

Torque said...

Shoe, thought I'd pop in on your last comment. Yes, I've traditionally felt the same about Linda seeing Voytek and Abigail on the lawn simultaneously. But first back to the living room. Susan said that Abigail had not been stabbed yet, and that Abigail threw her arms up after struggling with Patricia, and said, "I give up. Take me." Whereupon Tex stabbed her once in the abdomen. Looking at the autopsy report, I believe this wound is stab wound #10, which is described as "a 1 inch long penetrating stab wound with the sharp edge directed downward. This lies almost exactly in the midline and about 24 inches below the top of the head." This wound is thought to have pierced the bladder.

Susan said Tex stabbed Abigail only once. After this, Patricia must have inflicted additional wounds on Abigail, while Tex went outside to stab Voytek again. This may be the time that Linda sees Voytek stumble out of the house. Yet Abigail would have to be able to get up and run out the rear door to the pool, ostensibly when Patricia was distracted, then be confronted again by Patricia on the front lawn as she gave chase.

In all, its a difficult choreography of steps to me, unless this segment of the attack happened very quickly.

Speculator said...

Torque - it’s obviously impossible for anyone to accurately recreate what was a horrific and chaotic series of events. But notwithstanding that, from what we can glean it would either seem very unlikely that VF and AF appeared outside so simultaneously, or, Kasabian wasn’t as shocked/horrified as she made out and she was in situ for a longer period of time to view both victims. But of course it was ideal for the prosecution for her to witness both attacks and incriminate both TW and PK. Plus it added value to her evidence and therefore her chances of getting star witness and immunity. These factors all co-exist with each other and one is dependent upon the other in order to fulfil what the Prosecution want and what she wants.

tobiasragg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Manson Mythos said...

Five years ago, an article came out in which a Reeve Whitson is mentioned as being a CIA supervisor in the Iran-Contra operation. That was two years before O'Neill's book was recently and official CIA FOIL logs show that somebody was requesting information on Reeve John Whitson as early as the year 2000, that is 22 years ago (and that person was most certainly Tom O'Neill).

SO....HOW and from WHERE did this minor PR man Whitson end up being mentioned as supervising money in the Iran-Contra operation in Panama? I've been told the article isn;t written by a credible person, but where did he get Reeve's name, before Tom's book?

NOW. The only explaintion is that there would be two Reeve Whiston's and the was an unbelievable coincidence that the Whitson Tom learned of in 2000 or early who he suspected of being CIA is a different person from a Reeve Whitson who actually was CIA.

IF there is two different Whitson's and Montana Sun can confirm and deny if somebody was CIA or not, then he could find information on the one who actually was, no? If not, then they can't say for certain who was what.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

D. I spent a bit of time googling that author today.

https://www.offshorealert.com/israeli-attorney-steven-slom-awarded-damages-of-1-after-being-falsely-accused-of-money-laundering-by-kenneth-rijock/

https://wicnews.com/world/exclusive-ex-convict-who-accused-dominica-pm-of-corruption-sued-for-spreading-fake-news-5658558/

https://www.imidaily.com/vice/rijock-faces-barrage-of-lawsuits-for-campaigns-of-fake-news/

https://www.offshorealert.com/butterfield-bank-sued-by-cayman-client-for-closing-accounts-over-ridiculous-blogs-by-convicted-fraudster-kenneth-rijock/

tobiasragg said...

Sorry, reposting to correct a few bits of slightly unclear wording:

"I don't get the timeline of her running to the house, seeing Frykowski AND seeing Folger chased down."

The timing of these events (which happened concurrently & very quickly) is quite possible to lay down in timeline form, but you have to kind of pluck the relevant info bits out from all of the objections, bench conferences and random chatter. In brief:

-Kasabian is standing near the Parent car, she hears screams and arguing and horror coming from inside the house.

-Something in her head tells her to try and make this stop, so she begins approaching the house.

-As she is crossing the shallow front yard, Frykowski appears through the open doorway. He makes his way to the post and steadies himself there. He is bleeding profusely and obviously in a very bad state ("about half-dead at that point" is how Krenwinkel or Atkins described it in a parole hearing recounting of the events).

-As Frykowski has paused there, against the post, Kasabian says she thought or screamed within herself "make it stop", etc.

-Frykowski's strength gives way and he falls forward into the shrubbery, breaking several branches and bleeding heavily as he momentarily lays there. In fairly short order, he begins to crawl on his hands & knees away from the house, crawling in Linda's general direction but not directly toward her.

-As the man is crawling, Atkins runs outside and asks Kasabian for her knife. She would have run past the crawling Frykowski to get to Linda. They do their "make it stop/it's too late/listen for sounds" exchange.

-As Atkins runs into the house, Watson emerges through the door. It is unclear if they passed each other on the porch or if Atkins had made it all the way in before he emerged. Watson quickly moves to the crawling or prone Frykowski and begins stabbing & beating him. It is presumably during this approach by Watson that Frykowski lets go with his "oh no - god no - " pleas that were heard down in the canyon below by the camp counsellor dude.

-As Linda witnesses the Watson attack on the nearly-dead Frykowski, Folger emerges from the pool side of the house, heading for the footpath at the edge of the yard and the embankment beyond. She has been stabbed once in the midsection, quite deeply. Krenwinkel is hot on her heels, knife "upraised." Krenwinkel soon catches up to Folger, tackles her, and begins stabbing the woman.

-It was at this point Linda bolts, heading down to the gate and running all the way down Cielo to where the car is parked, round the bend there. She quickly considers pounding on a neighbor's door for help and then just as quickly dismisses the idea, she says, because she fears the (Manson) family will just kill those people, too. She makes it down to the car, starts it, and presumably tries to catch her breath and calm her nerves.*

*Side note: I always thought it would have been interesting if Linda chose to simply drive away at this point, leaving the other three to their own devices. Linda had the $72 stolen from Folger's wallet in her pocket. The car was low on gas at that point but she could have easily gassed up (several times over) and driven most anywhere for help. This is an easy thing to think of whilst calmly sitting back and thinking of her situation decades later, but I do wonder if the thought crossed her mind in those moments before the three returned to the vehicle.

Speculator said...

Tobias - but if you look at the timing of the attacks and place Watson at different points I just don’t see that it played out like that. When VF exits the door we can safely assume that Watson isn’t at that stage pursuing him and that Watson has turned his attention, albeit briefly, elsewhere. We can also safely assume that the elsewhere is AF where he inflicts the stomach wound that Atkins describes and AF falls down - inside the house. Watson then presumably returns to attack VF outside. He’s clearly left AF for dead on the floor inside the house with PK still there presumably inflicting further wounds. So how does AF get out the house so quickly for LK to see her outside. That just doesn’t add up given that seconds earlier Watson had inflicted a significant on her. I can see her staggering out but that would mean that she takes longer to exit. And that means that LK didn’t suffer the immediate shock and run that she claims and must’ve been there longer. Or in the alternative she didn’t actually see AF outside at all and embellished her evidence to aid the prosecution. And if she was in such shock how come she was unshocked enough to frisk a dead/dying Parent for his wallet minutes earlier. Somehow she doesn’t add up to me. And for anyone who thinks that doubting LK is somehow a sop to CM that’s utter nonsense. He got his just desserts and the two aren’t binary.

Manson Mythos said...

So the guy might be a criminal and a fraud...but that is besides the point. I'm asking, from WHERE did he get Reeve's name if Tom's book wasn't even out? Did he just happen to make it up?

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Agree, Spec.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Ah, I see your point, D. Yeah. Good question.

tobiasragg said...

"Meantime PK was struggling with AF and called Watson who went over to help. That's when he stabbed her in her stomach and she fell - still inside the house (according to Atkins)."

The first Folger stab actually happened earlier than what you are suggesting. Watson began with Sebring - shooting him once and then, not quite knowing what to do next, he says, went over and stabbed him 6-7 times. The women were strung up at this point.

Having finished with Sebring, Watson turns and, again not quite seeming to know what to do next, delivers his stab to Folger's midsection, which causes her to double over and fall to the ground.

As this was happening, Frykouski and Atkins were struggling - him pulling her hair - and the land in the chair, where Susan has landed on her back but on top of him. She stabs backward, penetrating his leg several times. Frykowski/Atkins tumble to the floor in the midst of these struggles and they roll around, attacking each other. Watson says he tries to get off a shot to still the man, but they are rolling around so much, he can't get a good aim.

Folger has roused herself during the above struggle and Krenwinkel jumps in to subdue her. The two are fighting as Frykowski rights himself, heads for the front door, and is attacked by Watson.

Frykowski manages to make it to the doorway and begin screaming his head off for help - it was at this point Linda was approaching the house and freezes on the lawn at the sight of the man.

Pat is finding herself on the losing side of her battle with Folger and yells for help. Watson moves to help, but for some reason goes after Frykowski, who has disappeared from the porch, instead.

As Watson launches his renewed attack on Frykowski, Folger has broken free and bolted, Krenwinkel giving chase.

The above is arrived at by kind of triangulating statements from the three inside the house. It's pretty easy to patch the whole sequence of events together given all that they've said, with Linda adding details in from her perspective out on the lawn. The only (slightly) murky bit is Atkins leaving the house to borrow Linda's knife. Kasabian testified that Frykowski had fallen into the bushes and begun crawling out into the lawn when Atkins appeared (though she & the lawyers get confused for a bit during the testimony and refer to Atkins as Krenwinkel). It was just after Linda's exchange with Atkins, she says, that Watson emerges to begin attacking Frykowski on the spot where he was found the next morning. Presumably, Atkins moved to guard Tate ask the above struggles were happening inside the house, realized she was weaponless, and ran outside to fetch Linda's knife. This means that Tate would have been sat unguarded for a few moments at least, though she was hardly in the condition to make any kind of run for safety, of course.

tobiasragg said...

Me: "The first Folger stab actually happened earlier than what you are suggesting."

I should have added that the timing of the Folger stab I describe above comes from Watson. He kind of loses Folger in his "Will You Die For Me?" retell - there, she goes from trying to negotiate safety to running across the lawn with no detail on her in between - but in later retells (I'm guessing during parole hearings, I'd have to go back and look) he does state that the Sebring attack happened first, followed by the Folger stab, followed by the various struggles, escapes & chases, etc.

What Watson suggests dovetails pretty well with the various retells from Atkins & Krenwinkel, so I am inclined to believe this to be the most-likely sequence of events.

tobiasragg said...

"We now know of course that she went through the pockets of the dying/dead Parent"

We actually do not know this. It is difficult to account for the mysteries of human memory, but for whatever reason this detail seems to have been made up, imagined, dreamt or mis-remembered by Kasabian when she shared this detail in later years.

In her recounting of the wallet search, Kasabian indicates that she was ordered by Watson to go through the lad's pockets and take his wallet, which she says she did.

However, Parent's wallet was found on him the next day. The wallet - and its contents - are detailed on a police report from that day.

It could be that Watson did issue the order but Kasabian decided not to comply - or perhaps she imagined the entire thing.

I should add that I typed out the above timelines from memory, but I did sit down a few years ago and, for whatever reason, charted all of this out. I think it was in the months leading up to the 50th weekend. I collected all of the recountings from various books, parole hearings and interviews and built a kind of visual time-line or chart - slightly like the word maps that people do these days - combining all of the statements from each of the four and pulling them together to form an overall most-likely sequence of events.

Now, if we are disbelieving one or more of the four, then it's no wonder some are confused. but taken together, the retells are largely in agreement and they do conform with Kasabian's testimony on what she saw. I will also add that the most-recent retells (mainly delivered during parole hearings) are almost useless. Krenwinkel has taken to either legitimately forgetting or purposefully recasting events here and there - hers are mainly errors of omission these days. Kasabian has been quite consistent over the years, but lately she's dropped a weird & obvious falsehood (the Parent/wallet thing). Atkins has consistently lied on several things, but she was also consistent on many points, too. Her retells on the chaotic struggles/escapes is often too broad, but she has shared details that conform with the others over the years (e.g. Frykowski yelling in the doorway). Watson lately is so befuddled it's not even worth bothering.

But there was a good, long period there, from the late 70s through the 90s and a bit beyond, where there are several detailed recountings that can be pieced together quite easily, and as I said, taken as a whole they paint about as clear a picture as we are ever going to get on those events.

Dan S said...

I really liked that post about how Sharon is now her younger sister and it was all staged. I can't believe the judge read that into the record

tobiasragg said...

Just for fun, I was reading Atkin's interview from December '69 and she does shed some (possible) light on the series of events, at least from her perspective and memory. I will say that this is about the most lucid and honest Atkins recollection of these events that I can remember having read. She does obviously get things muddied up in places, but there is none of the "I killed Sharon Tate" bullshit or any of the other Atkins bullshit that was to come later. Anyway, here is the bit where she speaks of the minutes of struggle & confusion and what she remembers of Watkins' actions:

"I remember seeing Frykowski going outside and as he was going outside he was yelling – for his life, he was screaming, really loud . . . Tex went over and hit him 5 or 6 times over the head with the butt of the gun, broke the gun handle, the gun wouldn’t work any more, and proceeded to stab him. While he was stabbing the man was still screaming – I’m surprised nobody heard anything. And he was pretty much half dead on the porch – that’s why all the blood was there, I imagine . . . Sharon was starting to get herself loose from the rope and the Folger girl had already broken loose and was fighting with Katie and I was just standing there watching, there wasn’t much I could do . . . I went over and got Sharon and put her in a head lock. She didn’t fight me, I just held her. Then she was begging me to let her go so she could have her baby and Katie was calling for me to help her because Folger was bigger than Katie and Katie had long, long hair. She was pulling on Katie’s hair and Katie was calling for me to help her. So I called to Tex to do something. Tex came back into the house and reached up to stab Folger and she looked at him and said, “You’ve got me, I give up” and Tex stabbed her and she was on the floor. I think he stabbed her in the stomach because I saw her grab down here. And then Tex went back outside because the other man, Frykowski, had gone outside and was on the lawn by then . . . "

(I omitted the lawyer interruptions and questions along the way)

shoegazer said...

Tobias:

Looking at your several comments on this thread I'm in close accord. I have at his point one minor question, and a corroborating observation.

Question: You mention that you think Frykowski collapsed at the post, then crawled from there to the lawn, but damned if I can recall ever reading any testimony that he had crawled. Maybe he did, but in my mind's eye, it's difficult for me to imagine him crawling from the porch, down the walkaway a bit,then beginning to angle across the front lawn, sorta back toward the guest house. He didn't get far, but it does seem a bit far for crawling.

Observation: You do a good job of postulating that all of versions of the main sequence of events seem to be consistent in major details. This struck me too, and to me it accounts for the inconsistencies: the main narrative we use is assembled from multiple points of view. No one participant saw all parts. Each one is like the Blind Men and the elephant, where each feel a part of the elephant and accurately describes that part.

Jingoistic readers, who have favored personalities they'd like to whitewash, or villains they'd love to tar, then point to the different descriptions without wishing to recognize that these portions are incomplete in isolation, and that it's possible to combine the versions and come up with a fairly consistent narrative--which is damned close to the official one. They'd rather make up their own scenario, one that they *like*.

BTW, you are exactly right about Parent's wallet: Kasabian may think she took it out, but it was there for the police to find in his pocket and its contents appeared to be intact. It's in the early part of the testimony in some level of detail.

While Atkins says she asked Kasabian for her knife, Kasabian says its "Katie" in x-exam in vol 47. But this must be a slip-up--it almost has to be Atkins.

Too, she says she was by the car (Parent's) when asked for the knife, but this makes little sense, timewise. I think your idea that Kasabian was still in the vicinity of the walkway, and Atkins (who lost her knife, apparently in the chair cushion while fighting Frykowski) was guarding Tate, felt that it was OK to go far enough to ask Kasabian for her knife. It seems unlikely that if Kasabian was anywhere near Parent's car Atkins would risk it.

tobiasragg said...

The crawling bit came from Kasabian. I thought it was part of her trial testimony, but it could have come a later retell.

She describes Voytek appearing through the doorway and steadying himself against the post there. He then kind of collapses forward into the bushes, then crawls from there into the yard. It was then, Linda says, that Atkins came running out to borrow the knife.

saoirse said...

@ Manson Mythos

Very interesting!
What article are you referring to?

Monica said...

Tobias,
For many reasons, the sequence of events (particularly regarding Folger) had always haunted me. I have read so mamy conflicting stories. Yours is the most reasonable I have read. The reality of it is heartbreaking. Hopefully she was rolling on her MDMA at the time and did not feel pain.

Manson Mythos said...

This is the article:

https://www.wantedsa.com/index.php/sections/world/185-latin-america/1644-cia-engaged-mossack-fonseca-for-iran-contra-and-bcci

This pre-date's O'Neill's book.

Speculator said...

You see one thing I don’t get is how we’re supposed to rigidly go with one part of Kasabian’s account but call her out as a liar or whatever on another ie the wallet! I know it was still on his person but she does say she checked it and at the time of doing that tv show she was completely lucid and in her senses. Bugliosi also looked shocked and interjected to stop her going any further off script! I’d suggest that it’s far more likely the wallet was a truth that she originally omitted (as it would have possibly compromised her as a witness) than it being a flight of fantasy that she only recently made up for reasons unbeknown!!

Speculator said...

Also, we can all try to piece together the sequence of events/attacks and none will be spot on. It was terrifying chaos. But you simply have to follow Watson’s movements to get an idea as to how long AF would have emerged from the house after VF. Kasabian was supposedly so shocked at the sight of VF that she more or less immediately bolted. If she stands around for even any minimal length of time after seeing him then you question how shocked she really was and is it all a bit more contrived. So when VF appears at the door where is Watson? Taking a breather from the mayhem?! Having a cool drink to recover?! Unlikely! He’s inside turning his attention to AF who is still INSIDE the house. So then ask yourself how long it takes for Folger to be attacked by Watson, collapse, regain herself and struggle outside with one and likely a number more wounds. Then ask yourself whether Kasabian must’ve hung around a tad longer than she suggests in order to see AF also exit the house.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

You see one thing I don’t get is how we’re supposed to rigidly go with one part of Kasabian’s account but call her out as a liar or whatever on another ie the wallet!

I think it's a bad policy to think that any part of what anyone tells you is completely accurate and/or truthful. The art of life requires that you size up the information, run it by common sense test, and adjust from there, until new info causes it to change.

So what you do is take the pieces that pass the common sense test and keep them as the basis for they hypothetical scenario. Then some other pieces are provisionally valid, but require various levels of testing, Then there s the total bullshit that can be excluded from the scenario immediately--but retained, just in case new info comes in.

That's what you do in all of life, possibly excluding family members/very close friends. It's what I do when reading this comment section, don't you?

WRT to the wallet, I'll work from memory, so I could be wrong.

Parent's wallet was still in his pocket, and I read no testimony that indicated that his body had been disturbed from what appeared to be his final positioning at death: slumped a bit, rotated toward the console/passenger seat.

So, which pocket? For very many righted men of the period, wearing jean-like pants, this will be the right back pocket. This is because it fits poorly in the front pockets, and if you are right handed, it is very tough to get it out of the left back pocket.

If all this is true (maybe not) he is lying undisturbed on the wallet, rolled over on it, maximizing his body weight directly on top of it.

And in truth: does it make any sense to go to all the work of rolling him over to get the wallet, going thru it, leaving it apparently intact, replacing it, repositioning the body?

Does that sound to you consistent with anything that happened there that night? It was the very definition of a giant goat-fucking session, the way I see it.

Then ask yourself whether Kasabian must’ve hung around a tad longer than she suggests in order to see AF also exit the house.

And you know what? It doesn't matter if what we are after is a fairly complete sequence of events that is fairly closely borne out by the physical evidence.

Really, that's all you would want out of Kasabian. She does not need to be a shocked naif. That part is strictly to get her immunity.

Personally, I do not believe that she was a ready, or motivated, participant, but nor do I buy her instant remorse and guilt.

tobiasragg said...

"Then ask yourself whether Kasabian must’ve hung around a tad longer than she suggests in order to see AF also exit the house."

This line of thinking, if we're being generous enough to call it that, is rather incomprehensible.

Linda Kasabian stood in that spot on the lawn long enough to have witnessed what she said she witnessed. She saw Watson pounce on Voytek in attack, and then she saw Abigail running from around the corner of the house with Krenwinkel chasing her, and then she bolted.

This is what she said in 1969 and in 1970 and ever since. So what does "a tad longer than she suggests" even mean?

Kasabian's statements also align quite well with all that those inside of the house have described. Taking just Atkins' interview with her proposed lawyers (Caruso/Caballero) alone, she has Watson stabbing Abigail then heading out the door to find the now-missing Voytek. Atkins had returned from the brief Kasabian knife exchange and was doing her thing with Sharon as Abigail breaks free and disappears, with Krenwinkel following her. This aligns perfectly with Kasabian describing having seen "a woman in a white gown" running from around the corner.

I don't even know what's there to question.

shoegazer said...

Tobias:

There's a sticky issue about being left to be a lookout, near the Parent car, and being approached (she says by Katie) and asked for a knife.

vol 47 pages 6750 - 6752

It may also be in direct examination, earlier.

This *sounds* like she was a considerable distance from the house, likely near Parent's car, and Katie, as she says, asked for a knife, which Kasabian gave, and told her to listen for sounds.

Kasabian testifies that when she heard screaming she came running back to the house and got as far as the walkway.

Then are we saying that later when Kasabian was on the walkway, saw Fyrkowski by the post, that Atkins came out, Kasabian said "make it stop", and Atkins said "too late" and asked for a knife?

I haven't seen any testimony or narrative, but gosh that would make sense if Atkins had lost the knife, and needed one to using in guarding Tate.

Otherwise WTF was Atkins doing coming out of the house at that point?

Vera Dreiser said...

Spec, where the fuck did you see this?:

"Bugliosi also looked shocked and interjected to stop her going any further off script!"

G. Greene-Whyte said...

I seriously look for your comments every Friday at 1:30 pm EST. Where have you been, Bingley?

Speculator said...

Vera - it was on the tv special where she was interviewed with Bugliosi beside her. 2009ish.

Speculator said...

Greene - Are you suggesting that I’m too predictable:-) !!!

Speculator said...

Shoe - so how does your common sense test explain LK suddenly stating that she went for Parent’s wallet?!!!

Speculator said...

Shoe - There’s no way of knowing where Parent kept his wallet and what evidence woukd there be if LK had frisked his pockets? None I would suggest.’it’s not like he’d need lifting out of the car to check his pockets!

tobiasragg said...

"I haven't seen any testimony or narrative, but gosh that would make sense if Atkins had lost the knife, and needed one to using in guarding Tate. Otherwise WTF was Atkins doing coming out of the house at that point?"

Yes, Atkins had lost her knife inside (dropped into the chair during her struggles with Voytek) but she was very confused at the time on this point. Taking what she says in her December 1969 lawyer interview, she was guarding Tate and discovered that she had no weapon. She thought "oh yes - Linda is holding my knife" and she runs outside to retrieve it from Linda.

Later, in the car, it was discovered that a knife was missing and Susan realized that Linda hadn't been holding hers, it had actually been lost somewhere in the house. Susan describes herself as "going through changes" over this realization, stating she feared she had left prints on the knife and this might have led to her being ID'd and arrested. Atkins says she tried to persuade the others to go back to find the lost knife, but they thought this was too risky and refused.

This correlates with Linda's testimony on Voytek appearing/falling/crawling and in the next breath she is describing Susan emerging from the house to retrieve a knife.

Vera Dreiser said...

Spec, I challenge you to find it. It ain't there. Never happened. Buggie was NEVER in Liar Linda's presence when she mentioned Parent's wallet in any forum anywhere.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Spec - I call Vera Caroline Bingley lol.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

...so how does your common sense test explain LK suddenly stating that she went for Parent’s wallet?!!!

There are two things I'd consider:

1) Does it make any sense to go for the wallet under the circumstances I described?

To me, the answer would be "no". It could be that my assumptions are incorrect, but working from them as is, it makes little sense out there, in the dark, to open the car door illuminating the body and the wallet thief, then put it all back.

2) Is does it makes sense for Kasabian to *say* that she did it when it appears that she did not?

That one makes little sense to me. It would need more examination. But it does appear, by the evidence, that it was either untouched, or carefully, laboriously replaced without any significant theft.

And in the bigger picture, the one where we need to learn the sequence of the events and who did what, this is not important.

There. How does that sound?

tobiasragg said...

"There’s no way of knowing where Parent kept his wallet"

The wallet seems to have been in Parent's back left pocket, though this is not detailed by the LAPD. There is a side photo of the boy sitting/laying in the car seat that was seemingly taken from the side of the car with the car door open - the view of Parent is horizontal, as if the photographer was kneeling alongside the vehicle when this picture was snapped. The pic is out there online, though it is not one of the most commonly-shared pics of the murdered Steve Parent. Anyway, in this pic there does appear to be a wallet-type of outline in the kid's rear pants pocket, the one facing the photographer - so the left-side pocket. This mightn't actually be the wallet, it could just be the way the shadows fell or a couple of wrinkles in the pants seat that made this appear to be a wallet - but anyway, that's what it looks like.

The LAPD report indicates the following as items found on Parent's person or within the vehicle:

1. One wallet, brown/plastic with miscellaneous ID's of S.E. Parent
2. One $5 Bill
3. Four $1 Bills
4. One Notebook, Black Plastic
5. Checkbook, Steve Earl Parent, Bank of America
6. One Lucerne Watch, men's white metal, broken stretch band

Interestingly, the serial numbers of each bill are detailed in this report.

Speculator said...

Tobias - you’re welcome to your opinion and so am I. The point that I’m making is to question Kasabian’s apparent shock/panic/horror call it what you like, that she says made her immediately flee the scene. I don’t think that VF and AF appeared simultaneously outside. I don’t think the accounts from the killers bear that out. So either LK didn’t go into an immediate blind panic or she didn’t see AF come outside as she claims. You’re quite welcome to your own views on it. What I’m saying doesn’t change anything in the overall scheme of things but it does put at question some of the claims from LK as to her state of mind, her honesty and her willingness to be present on the scene. And if you don’t think any of this is comprehensible, explain why she didn’t bolt straight after Parent was shot? Did she still think they were simply there to steal? Maybe a stabbed up guy with his head caved in was needed as opposed to just a poor kid slumped in his car with bullet wounds to the head ??!

Speculator said...

Vera - I guarantee it’s correct. It was discussed on here at the time. If Grim is looking in I’m sure that he’ll remember it.

tobiasragg said...

"So either LK didn’t go into an immediate blind panic or she didn’t see AF come outside as she claims."

There's no real opinion involved in any of this, other than one's interpretation of Linda's state of mind as she described it.

I am content with the fact that the stories all square up quite neatly, with Voytek emerging from the house first, followed by Folger, and Kasabian having witnessed it all.

Now, I don't know what "immediate blind panic" means really, and I don't even know that Kasabian used these words to describe her reaction to these events. Apparently you expect a certain kind of behavior in reaction to "immediate blind panic" but I guess I am thinking that people can have all kinds of reactions to such a feeling. They can run away from the horror, they can run toward the horror and attempt to interrupt or stop it, or perhaps they can remain frozen in place, unsure of what to do.

Apparently, you feel that Kasabian is lying about this or that and that's fine, really, but I don't see much reason to doubt the woman when she shared what she has shared. I also remind myself that it really doesn't matter what you or I think anyway, as the jury found Kasabian credible and convincing during these trials.

Speculator said...

Shoe - you’re right it’s not important in the overall scheme of things, other than as I’ve previously pointed out to question LK’s account of her mindset, actions and participation on the night. The lack of an explanation for her introducing this addition to her original account is telling.

Vera Dreiser said...

It was discussed, but no one ever produced it. Vera will wait, tho. It's cocktail hour.

Vera Dreiser said...

PS -- and I'm sure Boogie would have had that reaction had he ever witnessed her say it. But he didn't.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

There is at this point insufficient evidence as to where he kept his wallet, this is true.

If it was me, slumped over dead in the Rambler, it would be very hard to get to my wallet without moving me a lot.

It's an area of speculation, for sure.

Vol. 65

page 8580

That's as much as I've seen so far.

Heres Parent in the car:

Parent in car

Everyone must draw their own conclusions.

Speculator said...

Vera - go steady on the ice and leave plenty of room for the alcohol!!

Speculator said...

It’s a shame that the court proceedings weren’t filmed. There’s a lot to be gained from seeing the words actually come out of the mouths!!

shoegazer said...

Tobias:

It gets weird, though, doesn't it?

Yes, Atkins had lost her knife inside (dropped into the chair during her struggles with Voytek) but she was very confused at the time on this point. Taking what she says in her December 1969 lawyer interview, she was guarding Tate and discovered that she had no weapon. She thought "oh yes - Linda is holding my knife" and she runs outside to retrieve it from Linda.

To me, this makes perfect sense.

But then we have Kasabian testifying that out closer to Parent's car, as she is standing watch, Krenwinkel comes, asks her for her knife, Kasabian gives it to her, Krenwinkel tells her to listen for noises and leaves.

THe Kasabian hears screams, runs to the walkway, eventually Atkins comes out and asks for a knife. The question is: did Kasabian give a knife to Atkins then, after already giving Krenwinkel one earlier, near Parent's car? And if not, she had to tell Atkins that nope, she didn't have Atkin's knife, at which point Atkins should have soiled herself with worry, as she says she did later in the car.

Am I missing something or rearranging it? If not, it's just plain odd. But in all the confusion...

Speculator said...

Anyway, my apology for leading this away from the original purpose of the post which was Whitson!!

Speculator said...

Shoe - there are many things from that night that are just plain odd. “Listen for sounds”!!! Did people used to say that?!!!! Do you think PK should have added “listen for sounds - oh apart from any screams from people dying” !!! I mean “keep a look out” or “ watch out for anyone coming” yes but that just sounds plain odd to me. Maybe Kasabian ran back to the house to tell them she heard an owl twitting!!

shoegazer said...

Tobias:

The wallet seems to have been in Parent's back left pocket, though this is not detailed by the LAPD. There is a side photo of the boy sitting/laying in the car seat that was seemingly taken from the side of the car with the car door open - the view of Parent is horizontal, as if the photographer was kneeling alongside the vehicle when this picture was snapped. The pic is out there online,

Funny you should mention this. I linked to it here about 10 minutes ago.

I also downloaded it and took it up several levels of mag. It could be argued that there is something in his left rear pocket, but even that much is not definitive: it could simply be the way the material of his pants folded over.

But granted that it is something, it is very far from definitive enough for me to say it's a wallet.

Last point. Eyeball the photo, then try to picture Kasabian rolling him over, looking thru the wallet (if indeed it's a wallet in the left pocket), then putting it back and rolling him back. All without leaving blood smears of some kind. And working under the domelight, right out in the front part of the property.

Then, last of all, why leave the $9?

The whole thing seems pretty unlikely to me.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

So far as Kasabian's state of mind, her portrayal of it, I give her very little credibility. I'm in Volume 48 right now, Kanarek's x-exam. She is very evasive, in my judgement. Has been for the last 6 volumes.

But here's the thing: her state of mind is not important if it can be shown that she's basically accurate in relating the sequence of events. That's her main judicial function.

The honesty/reliability persona is mostly her, trying to earn immunity because she's given to believe, possibly by Bugliosi (..."the 'g' is silent"...), that she must not only have seen the actions, but strongly disapproved of them, too.

To me she passes the first test but fails the second. And all I'm here for is an accurate portrayal of the events, not the motivations. I don't expect the characters--any of them--to be pure exemplars of yourFavoriteTraitHere.

Speculator said...

Vera - the interview is with Larry King. It’s on YouTube

Vera Dreiser said...

Yeah, I now she did King with Bugger to promote the documentary, but you point your old gal to the moment -- the time marker -- when the wallet is mentioned. Vera will (continue to) wait.

tobiasragg said...

"Am I missing something or rearranging it? If not, it's just plain odd"

You are missing one thing and the testimony is momentarily confusing on this moment.

Kasabian said that she has heard screams and arguing and moved toward the house. THEN she says that Voytek appeared on the porch, fell, and crawled from the bushes.

It was as Voytek was making his way out of the shrubbery that Atkins runs out, asks for the knife and tells Linda to "listen for sounds."

Krenwinkle never exited the house in search of Linda, her exit happened through the bedrrom door in pursuit of Folger. Where the testimony gets confusing is that one of the lawyers (I can't remember if this was direct or cross) refers to Atkins as Krenwinkel and for whatever reason Linda replies using Krenwinel's name in her responses, but they are really talking about Atkins. A brief recess happens and when court resumes, they continue talking about these same moments, but they are correctly referring to Atkins by name at that point.

Speculator said...

Shoe - evasive is the right word. And she’s very good at it. You’d almost think she’d been trained ;-) !! Notice how she does the old politician’s trick of repeating part of the question that she’s been asked to but herself time to answer. That’s when she’s not saying she doesn’t understand!

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Not filmed, but after reading the transcripts for a while, especially those before the bench and not in front of the jury, I feel I'm getting to "know" the attorneys somewhat. Do you?

shoegazer said...

NO!!!

It ALL has to do with Whitson! EVERYTHING DOES!

He's the Grand Unified Theory of conspiracy scenarios.

;^)

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Listen for sounds...

Yep, I agree. But actual real hippies were a small subset, with a sort of differing thought processes from the majority, and Manson's group was an even further rarified subset.

You had these exemplars, and then for every actual one (let me try to describe the thought process--it was a lot like people see as Asperger's (Ass-burger's ?) there were a whole lot--maybe 100--wannabes.

So you had some few people who really ad truly believed that nothing was owned--not that it shouldn't be owned, but that in fact ownership was a manipulative fiction, an evil artifice, being foisted upon humanity (kinda reminds of "race is s social construct")--The People...as in "power to The People!"--and so they honestly felt as Kasabian portrays.

Then there were 100 others who assiduously dressed and acted and spoke like the Asperger's plagued minority I described, and this worked as long as you did not want to use any of the stuff that they had temporarily in their possession, even if they were not using it then, nor had used it in the last three weeks.

So yep, real flower children, like Manson's group, yep I could imagine people like that saying "listen for sounds" and being taken seriously at the time, not being laughed off the planet.

Gosh, it embarrasses me...

G. Greene-Whyte said...

I think it's not coincidental that Joan Weldon and Joan Huntington were both named Joan and involved in this thing.

It's also possible I just want to post Weldon photos snapped next to statues.

Want to know something else? Both died somewhat recently. I'd better start screen capping now.

Dan S said...

she's probably confusing it with the many other times she lifted an unconsious man's wallet. no way bitch left $9

shoegazer said...

That's the spirit, G. G-W!

shoegazer said...

BTW, Dan, I found a relative value calculator on line because I was curious how much the 5K she supposedly stole from Melton was worth today.

It was 35,300, I believe.

When I bought my first house in 1974, a small 2 BR less that 1 mile from the Pacific Ocean, in a place called Grover Beach, the 20% downpayment was 4K.

That was non-trivial money in those days.

shoegazer said...

tobias;

Volume 48 has a fair amount about the relative timing and positioning of Frykowski, Atkins, Watson, Krenwinkel, and Folger during the attack, as seen by Kasabian.

First part of the volume. Kanarek moves the topic of the questioning around quite a bit. There may be more later; I'm currently in the process.

Manson Mythos said...

Vera is correct. Kasabian doesn't say she took Parent's wallet in the Larry King interview. She says it in the documentary.

It's at the 50:40 mark. She describes getting in the car.

https://youtu.be/XwFGdnNTBnk

Manson Mythos said...

She might have also said it during the interview. Id have to watch ot from front to back because I do remember a part where Bugliosi looked like he seen a ghost over something she said.

Vera Dreiser said...

No, bitch never said it on King. Probably by prearrangement with her puppetmaster.

tobiasragg said...

"So you had some few people who really ad truly believed that nothing was owned"

Before it went to shit, the scene in San Francisco really was largely like this. Not that nothing was owned, but this real sense that hey may - let's all kinda look out for each other. So you had the Free Clinic and the Diggers and all of that.

By the time Manson was sprung in March '67, that scene was beginning to turn and it never really turned back.

With Charlie, the notion of "what's yours is mine and vice versa" almost always ended up being a one-way street.

grimtraveller said...

saoirse said:

Begins with "Our friend" - singular, and ends with "they found" - plural.
Typo? Hiding the pronoun?


Isn't that what you do {ie, not you, in particular, but the universal you} when, either you don't whether someone is male or female that you are referring to {or replying to} or when you don't want whoever is reading to know if the person being referred to is male or female ?
In the online world, it's a more prevalent thing, I guess, because unless we specify, we don't know who or what each other is and we don't always want to assume.

starviego said:

Whitson freaks out and breaks cover

But...but...he's CIA 🕵🏻‍♀️ and there's no record of him 🧑🏻‍🌾 so he must be a top agent....😛

Speculator said...

Shoe - yes you certainly get to know Kanarek from those transcripts! I quite like his approach to be honest. Deliberately chaotic questioning to try and trip Kasabian up. A video of the trial would’ve been amazing to judge the demeanor of each witness. It’s like if you simply read a transcript of Atkins tv interviews over the years you wouldn’t get the same impression of what a transparent, self-pitying and disingenuous person she was that you do when watching her!

shoegazer said...

Spec:

I agree with you about Kanarek. I suspect that he's purposely forming somewhat ambiguous questions so that a) he hints at what he wants to imply in a way the jury will drift toward his innuendos; and b) because they are ambiguous, he's asked to re-state them, thus allowing him to repeat the same innuendo multiple times before the jury. The downside of this is that he risks alienating the judge, which he seems to have done.

Basically, he tries to smear prosecution witnesses, and his strongest suit is x-exam.

For the other attorneys, I am getting a pretty favorable impression of them. Bugliosi seems simply hard-nosed and determined--he's very focused his prosecution strategy. Stovitz is fairly dryly serious and detail oriented, although I note that in one of the meetings before the bench he tried to crack a sort of Borsch Belt joke, ending up with "Buddy Hackett tells it better".

Fitzgerald seems to me to be very talented and sound, legally, makes the most straight forward and compelling, well-supported legal approaches,but does so infrequently when compared to Kanarek, who seems to throw everything at the wall just to see if anything will stick.

Now that I've read volumes of Kasabian's testimony, it's hard to see her as anything but a person not overly concerned with where she is in day-to-day life, or how this might affect any one else--she just floats thru life, letting things happen, so long as she's having a pretty good time--really a sort of free-spirited, roving prostitute. She got in over her head very quickly at Spahn and when the shit hit the fan, she's trying hard to stay out of it. Basically truthful in all things related to sequence of events, but very, very suspect when testifying (or dodging) questions on issues of state of mind of what her motivations were for any given action.

It's true that Kanarek frames syntactically convoluted questions, but early on she recognized that this had irritated the judge, and she takes full advantage of it. She's damned close to portraying herself as deficient in the English language as the x-exam continues.

I'm anticipating a "No habla anglais, senor" at some point.

Speculator said...

Shoe - and don’t forget the one who’s not getting enough sleep!! Shinn?!!

tobiasragg said...

"and don’t forget the one who’s not getting enough sleep!! Shinn?!!"

I've been reading "In A Summer Swelter" and here the author (also an attorney) shares a rather compelling and possibly very accurate thesis, that the three girls in the original Manson trial absolutely failed to achieve a fair trial.

I find myself agreeing (and not) with this premise. The behind-the-curtain view on how Manson orchestrated the entire - and entirely weird - defense in this lengthy trial is interesting enough, and it's always seemed clear that Manson was directing the entire effort with one goal in mind: to get himself off and let the girls take the fall for the murders. That much has been obvious enough all along, but the behavior of the defense team is rather shocking, even in Manson terms. You have Fitgerald screwing Squeaky, Shinn playing lapdog to the insufferable Karanek, and the likable but woefully over-his-head Ron Hughes.

The entire trial boils down to a life-or-death battle between Bugliosi and Manson, who often acts via his pit bull Karanek, but not always. Both men play to the public (via the press) as much as they do to the jury, and the girls are almost lost in the mix. Shinn & Hughes' attempts at cross are often feeble and ineffective and Fitzgerald isn't a whole lot better, though he does score an occasional point.

The "fair trial" where the girls are concerned is an interesting question, and it is a really tough one for me to answer. On the one hand, the three definitely got the trial they desired at the time, but they were playing into the entire "Save Charlie" as much as Manson himself was. It is the future girls - the three women as they existed once they were able to claw their way free from Manson's grip - that really got screwed. This becomes heartbreakingly apparent in something like the Nikki Meredith book, where we overhear the trio wondering aloud to each other, two or three years after the fact, whether it all (Helter Skelter, etc.) was possibly not real after all. Those are the now much-wiser women who continue to rot in prison, but they are not the girls who sat for trial - so how does one guarantee fairness in a situation such as that?

IMO, the defense really lost this case, as far as the girls are concerned anyway, the day Bugliosi won the right to try all four together. Manson was fond of stealing concepts from Beatle lyrics and in this way at least, he finally saw his whole "I am he as you are me" rap come to fruition.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

It seems like Shinn is in jail, or something like it I may have missed. Perhaps contempt?

Just now I read a very, very useful interview from the cielo.com site.

It is an off-the-record interview of Stovitz, in March of 70, before the case was formally assembled and put on trial. It was very useful to me because it did two important things, all expressed in informal colloquial English:

1) Details prosecution strategy, and some of their underlying beliefs and assumptions.

2) Provides a meaning timeline from which the sequence of events, and more importantly, the impetus for each of the events, is made very clear.

Personally, I don't take it at face value in its entirety, but it shows very well what the authorities had to work with.

There is a sort of amusing, but perceptive personal analysis of Manson's character.

Stovitz Interview

I mean, this has been out on Cielo.com for a long time: maybe most here have already read it.

Vera Dreiser said...

Still waiting, Spec, but I suppose you, like Matt (when I asked him for links to information he insisted was in the LaBianca Homicide Report which I knew wasn't) you'll just ignore this old gal's challenge and move on like nothing ever happened. Why do I waste my time on this blog when I could be out flapping my lady part at whoever walks by?

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Saturday Bings? No way.

grimtraveller said...

Vera Dreiser said:

Why do I waste my time on this blog when I could be out flapping my lady part at whoever walks by?

Well, because there's more fish...um, never mind !

Still waiting, Spec

You'll be waiting for a long time in perpetuity. No such moment exists. At least, not on the Larry King video that's floating about.

Speculator said:

Vera - I guarantee it’s correct

Being a guarantor is a dangerous pastime.

It was discussed on here at the time. If Grim is looking in I’m sure that he’ll remember it

I wasn't around the blogs in 2009.
We touched on it in January of this year in the Tex parole hearing thread. It wasn't established that Bugliosi was ever in an interview with Linda in which she stated the stuff about the wallet and having watched both the Larry King and the History channel documentary from 2009, I didn't remember him being there for the reveal. I remember her saying it in the documentary. Many on the blogs thought it was the smoking gun they'd always suspected Linda of firing and for a number of years after, there was a frantic feeding frenzy. I do remember saying that if Bugliosi was there he would have been shocked if he was hearing it for the first time. But it's in neither the King nor History channel programmes.

GG-W said:

I will say it's fascinating. Another thing I think about a lot is when Bugliosi says he told the LAPD to go find Hatami for him, Hatami arrived with Whitson

Thus far, no one seems to have been particularly moved, from the perspective of Hatami, by the implications of Tom O'Neill's story about Hatami telling him that he knew about the murders before Mrs Chapman ! I mean, that puts Sharokh Hatami in a completely different light, if he was telling the truth. It also makes one wonder, not so much why Whitson didn't do anything, like going after Linda when she bolted from the house, but why he didn't help police with their inquiries, albeit anonymously.
All ifs and buts though.

tobiasragg said:

The source for much of this speculation seems to be O'Neill, who seemed content with publishing any & everything he happened upon without much regard for fact-checking or verifying much of anything at all

I think that's unfair.
There are tons of documents and things that can be checked, in his book. I'm no O'Neilly, 👶 🧞 and I think he draws incorrect conclusions, but you can't hold him responsible for the things people tell him. And though I think that the plausibility of each of his "possible scenarios" is actually what weakens his case severely {they could all be true, singularly, but obviously, they can't all be true}, I'd have to conclude that research and trying to put flesh on the bones of what he discovers is not a criticism that can really be levelled at him.


G. Greene-Whyte said...

Whitson's one time gal, Joan Weldon, sings at 3:50 in this video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=brWxa6xC5-I

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Grim - As the story goes, Whitson was never able to fully recover from abandoning his post that evening. He'd been in the Cielo bushes earlier in the day according to folks O'Neill interviewed, correct? The bushes part I made up. He was supposedly somewhere.

shoegazer said...

GT:

Re O'Neill: are you saying he is a catalyst rather than a source? That he points you in intriguing new directions that require further study and evaluation? Many may not pan out, but...

There's value in that, for sure.

tobiasragg said...

"I think that's unfair. There are tons of documents and things that can be checked, in his book. I'm no O'Neilly . . . "

I hear you, I really do. But I must admit I'm a bit of a stickler when it comes to publishing and documentation. If you tell me it's raining, I'd believe you because you are a friend and I like you. But I wouldn't publish it in a book, not unless I could step outside and observe that, yes indeed, it's raining - or if I could contact with someone living close to you and they also indicated that it is raining.

*Then* the thing is publishable. Until then, it is mere gossip.

I do get it, though. O'Neill pubbed more in the pop culture vein/true crime gossipy vein than producing a volume of actual research and scholarship. I'm not sure that he would agree with this notion, but it is what it is. A confection to be enjoyed momentarily rather than a meal of substance.

Manson Mythos said...

In my own research I've been doing, I've come to the absolute conclusion (and this isn't based on me pulling shit out of my hat) that while Whitson was in fact 100% CIA, his involvement in the Tate case had absolutely nothing to do with the CIA and wasn't official business. There is absolutely no reason the CIA would be involved in anything going on at that house, it was a domestic affair. He didn't just come out of the wood work, buddy up with Col. Tate and become his partner...no, no. He and Paul Tate already knew each other long before from both being in the intelligence community and he was surveilling the Polanski residence and social circle as a favor to Col. Tate to keep an eye on Sharon Tate and look out for her safety. Col. Tate had to have known or suspected she was in dangerous and dirty company.

Whitson was in the military too. He went to Vietnam after 1969 at the tail end. It's not a 100% must that you have a college education either. NOT that anyone would know what his education background is. Aside from the most basic mundane information, nobody is going to find any documents on his official business or life in intelligence, although some of it us known, mostly related to his involvement in Panama during the Iran-Contra episode (found in the "Panama Papers", which is over a million pages long) and in letters between him and Robert B. Anderson in the Eisenhower library. Anderson it's worth pointing out did time for running an illegal bank that laundered drug money. Everything else has been swept clean and still classified.

tobiasragg said...

"he was surveilling the Polanski residence and social circle as a favor to Col. Tate to keep an eye on Sharon Tate and look out for her safey . . . Everything else has been swept clean and still classified."

And a fine job he made of this, eh?

"Swept clean & still classified" are among the most favored phrases among the conspiracists. Mainly because such explanations make everything in the world still possible, no matter how improbable they may be.

It's all rather self-serving in the end, isn't it? Rather like the farmer growing and harvesting his own food, but mentally in cases like these.

Manson Mythos said...

No, obviously he didn't do a good job.

So who do you think Whitson was? You think his name just came out over 22 years ago in regards to the CIA out of the blue? Nobody in Mansonville knew he was Col. Tate's partner until 2015. O'Neill was looking into him for over a decade prior, but he kept his research under lock and key.

Whitson was Col. Paul Tate's side kick. Do you think he went up to Col. Tate and offered him his help out of the blue and Col. Tate just accepted without knowing him? Do you think he'd be right there besides Bugliosi and Col. Tate during interrogations if he was just a guy on the street?

Explain all of that, without appearing like a blowhard as you usually do.

Vera Dreiser said...

Tobottomlickermus,
Question: Have you EVEN read O'Neill's book? The endnotes, etc.?
Vera believeth not by statements like thus:
"I hear you, I really do. But I must admit I'm a bit of a stickler when it comes to publishing and documentation."

tobiasragg said...

"Question: Have you EVEN read O'Neill's book? The endnotes, etc.?"

Toby has not suggested that nothing in O'Neill's tome is true. Toby has declared that not all things in O'Neil's release were backed up and verified.

Toby thinks you should go back to exposing your wares to horny old retirees. More interesting.

tobiasragg said...

I'd not trouble you, and certainly not myself, with an uninformed opinion.

Vera Dreiser said...

Sounds like a no to me

grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

Re O'Neill: are you saying he is a catalyst rather than a source? That he points you in intriguing new directions that require further study and evaluation?

What I'm saying is that a lot of what he presents is documented, so it's kind of unfair to say that he just published unverified stuff. The stuff of his book is not necessarily in the documents, but in his interpretation of them and what he concludes. That's where the meaty discussions will always lie. For example, there's a photo of some of Bugliosi's notes on Terry Melcher's supposed continued visits to Spahn after with a big X through it. That the notes in VB's handwriting exist, is not in question. It's there for all to see. So it's not unverified shit to say that it is there.
However, does it mean what Uncle Tom concludes it means ? I don't think it does. But neither can you blame him for seeing it the way he does.
What I like about the book "Chaos", is that it provides lots of interesting details that were always there, under the surface and not generally known ~ but it doesn't actually change the bigger picture that we've been familiar with for all these years. It doesn't change the mind of Charles Manson, the Family members etc ~ unless you are going to go down the CIA/FBI/COINTELPRO/Jolly West and the acid dosed elephant/Jack Ruby etc road. The book also further emphasizes just how incredibly so many {seemingly ?} disparate roads converged in the same place at the same time. There are a number of historical moments like that, the music and influence of the Beatles, World War 2, Africa's continued poverty, etc. They fascinate me.

shoegazer said...

grim:

I think we're saying about the same thing, but differently.

He's found interesting evidence and combinations of persons/places/timing. To the degree that the permutations of these combinations have not been thoroughly explored, we've got basically new territory.

And O'Neill offers up some of his thoughts on what this might mean--potentially one of many speculative scenarios, some of them highly provocative--but hey...ya gotta make a living. But he doesn't claim it's the definitive one(s), if I'm reading you correctly.

If this is anywhere near accurate, it seems that much of the criticism he has received is based on readers who claim that he's stating these conclusions as definitive, when all he's doing is being Charles Fort Lite.

Is this anywhere near what you are thinking? If so, he may be worth a qualified read.

tobiasragg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tobiasragg said...

"It doesn't change the mind of Charles Manson, the Family members etc ~ unless you are going to go down the CIA/FBI/COINTELPRO/Jolly West and the acid dosed elephant/Jack Ruby etc road."

I think your characterization is a fair one, and I was not meaning to suggest that the book is not an interesting read or completely undocumented. I imagine there is a better book in there, somewhere, but he really loses me with the kinds of things you cite above. Are we really believing that the CIA used little Charlie Manson as an LSD test subject and sent him out into the world to collect and control those pesky, disobedient youth? Are we buying into a JFK assassination tie with the Manson murders?

Charlie Manson was a nobody little failed career criminal. He walked out of prison for that last time wanting to be a Beatle, but he found himself continuing to be dismissed, disregarded, overlooked. It has been argued that this deep-seated need for recognition is at least part of what motivated him to initiate the crimes that he did. He became a kind of Beatle antithesis and finally achieved the public attention he had long sought.

That last bit can be argued and legitimately disagreed with, but I feel like O'Neill is an example of folks placing far, far too much importance and significance onto this little failure of a man and his band of lost and needy runaways. It *is* a bit like Oswald and the lone gunman conclusion, "this event was so big, certainly that can't be all there is to it!" And in a way, Chaos resembles the Oliver Stone "JFK" film scenario: there are so many conspiracy theories out there, let's just throw them all at the wall and snap a picture real quick while they're all still sticking. I also consider the exterior, business-side motivators behind this book: O'Neill had been plunking away at this thing for two decades and he was under considerable pressure from his pubco to finally just produce the thing, already - oh and by the way, the 50th anniversary is approaching and we do wanna make SOME kind of money out of this thing. So O'Neill takes the Stone approach and simply raises every question that's ever been raised over this matter (and THEN some), slaps it together into an overlong volume and sends the thing out in the world without drawing any kind of real conclusion or unified theory. Asking the questions is the easy part and, not withstanding twenty years' obsessing, the lazy part. In the end, O'Neill stops there and, in my opinion at least, he ultimately disappoints.

shoegazer said...

Diverting, on the topic of Kasabian's reliability in relating the events of the two days of carnage.

I'm getting fairly close to the end of Kanarek's x-exam. I've actually found myself a bit impressed where she testifies to thoughts/states of mind/conversations that she could probably have tried to dodge with an "I don't know" or an "I probably did/did not...", or an "I might have/have not..." or an "I don't recall..." or "I don;t undertand...".

Now, I'd need to sync this up against the point where she was definitively granted immunity, to see if she starts being a bit more frank after she's sure that she has immunity.

But overall, it seems like she is fairly truthful except that she is exaggerating her mental outrage when she is directly witnessing, or is peripherally involved in aiding, like getting rid of the LaBianca wallet.

Trying to form an overall impression of the kind of person she was, at that point in time, she was truly, what would have been called by the youth of the era, a "space cadet". She actually tended to think like a hippy, as I understand the term.

There was a tremendous amount of optimistic naivete among some subsets of people. And face it, if all or most of the life assumptions of those deeply influenced by the underlying philosophies, such as they were, were adopted, you could run away and hide in a sort of perpetual childhood innocence, carefree and benevolent, spontaneous and impulsive.

I think that those two back-to-back nights scared her, and she could feel that after the truncated murder spree of the second night, there'd be no end to those sorts of hi-jinx, and she simply ran away, more-or-less like she said, using all of the poor judgement of a space cadet.

tobiasragg said...

"she could feel that after the truncated murder spree of the second night, there'd be no end to those sorts of hi-jinx, and she simply ran away"

Yes, indeed. We have multiple examples of these people thinking or assuming that the murders were going to continue until/unless someone decided to make them stop, somehow. In Kasabian's case, I think she found herself in way over her head and she ran. The murders might have continued, but she'd no longer be part of them. We have an older Van Houten describing her assumption that sooner-or-later, everyone would be involved in these killing sprees. She describes herself as simply doing the duty they all were going to have to execute, eventually (pun semi-intentional). And if we're believing Tex Watson, he says that he simply refused to continue killing when Charlie instructed him to snipe the local law enforcement dudes that Manson felt sure were on their way to the ranch (Myer or Barker, I can't remember which).

As for Leslie's believability - particularly in describing her state of mind at the time, two things have always stuck out to me and influenced my POV on the matter. The first is those jury members who spoke out on their trial experience once it was all said and done. We cannot view Kasabian on the stand but they did, and to a person these mostly middle & older aged adults said that they found her to be most credible, further indicating that her testimony and steadfastness on what she saw and how she felt weighed heavily in their ultimate collective guilt decision.

The second factor, this one much more personal, comes from having viewed Kasabian's recounting of these events in the years hence. In each of these three on-camera accounts, she never fails to appear anything less than deeply disturbed as her storytelling approaches Cielo. Her words become halting, her voice emotional, and in the one instance of our being able to see her face that I can recall, one can detect a kind of faraway and haunted gaze in her eyes. And she always breaks down crying when she gets to the point of seeing Voytek on the porch, always. One could say that this is acting or put on, but it should be noted that in all but one of these appearances she has sought to visually shield her identity, speaking in shadow or wigged and wearing shades. She lives under an assumed name these days and the immunity question was long-ago settled, and I simply find her to be as credible as Leslie Van Houten is these days.

For me, finding fault in someone's statements that cannot be objectively verified (such as one's inner state-of-mind) must be based on something tangible. Inconsistent statements, vague answers or refusals to answer probing questions, proven actions that conflict with the person's claims. Personally I don't find any of this present in the trial transcript, though others will have different POVs, of course. For me, Kasabian in transcript "reads" very much like the Linda Kasabian we see in the press conference she sat for shortly after testifying - direct, determined and more than a little bit sad over it all.

tobiasragg said...

me: "As for Leslie's believability - particularly in describing her state of mind at the time. . . "

Sorry, that should have read "Linda"

Manson Mythos said...

That "hippie reeve" picture is bunk too. Reeve never "infiltrated" the hippie movement as I've come to find out. He was involved mostly international affairs and it appears his most important work in intelligence was later.

I'm not a "conspiracy theorist" either. Whitson was 100% CIA and we know he assisted Col. Tate, who there is no way he didn't know long before the murdered occurred. But it was simply PI work as a favor to Col. Tate to just keep an eye on Sharon's safety. Some could argue they were just Nixon-era Republicans and Col. Tate didn't like the drug using, anti-war limousine liberals she was surrounded by in Hollywood, but he had to have known something. Cielo Drive wasn't a peaceful place when Frykoski and Folger were there, by multiple accounts and all of this fits perfectly with Doris Tate saying she wanted Frykowski and Folger out.

As for Kenneth Rijock. I've talked to him and he isn't just making this shit up. Look at his past, he knows a thing or two. The only people slandering him are these shitty hole in the wall countries who's corruption he pointed out. It's like saying what RT says is the truth.





shoegazer said...

Continuing Kasabian's testimony...

How times, change, huh?

The quasi-bohemian commune that was the Manson family was probably thought to be pretty with it, or tuned in by young folks of the time--or at least this would have been the reflexive response if asked about commune life in general. It was generally perceived to be an admirable step towards a better, more natural way of life--and a lot of "back to nature" stuff seemed to be incorporated in it.

This was the irony of the existence of Crumb's Mr. Natural: an experienced opportunist/manipulator who knew what to say to be taken as enlightened. Really, Manson was just a young version.

Manson's Family was the very definition of an alpha male patriarchy. Very gender role oriented.

There's so much stuff that has completely reversed in terms of societal sensibilities since then. I first saw this when I once mentioned the draft to someone maybe 20 years younger, drinking beer with them in brew pub. They had heard of it, thought that they understood it, but they actually had a very hard time comprehending how it worked and what it meant to live in a society where it was viewed as part and parcel on one's unquestioned national duty. That there could be something that was not voluntary, not up to whether they wanted to be a part of it, or not, and that the majority of people living in the US at that time accepted this as a norm.

tobiasragg said...

"Manson's Family was the very definition of an alpha male patriarchy. Very gender role oriented."

You hit a big, fat nail on the head and it is a point that has been on my mind recently.

The reaction to the familial living conditions and to Manson himself at the time was most interesting, indeed. The middle-class "normal folk" reacted as one might expect them to. But there was indeed a kind of sympathy with - if not downright empathy - among the younger set. It had more to do with disdain for "the man" than for any discernable envy over the very challenging nature of this group's physical existence. There was a general kind of agreement amongst the young that Charles Manson was in the process of being railroaded into taking the fall for some shocking murders he likely had nothing to do with. These feelings were fed and enhanced by early coverage of Manson in the less-mainstream press. We've all seen the front-cover "Man of the Year" images of Charlie from those pre-trial days, there were more than a couple.

You linked to a recording of the Dalton & Felton interview a few days ago, and there is an interesting story behind that journalistic duo. The Rolling Stone magazine (amusingly referred to as the "Rolling Stones magazine" by the decidedly un-hip Manson trial attorneys) had hired David Felton to do a piece on Manson and his family once their arrests had happened, and much to his chagrin Felton found himself partnered up with the much younger and slightly anarchistic David Dalton to do the story. The thought was that, while Felton was the more seasoned writer and journalist, Dalton would get much further when it came to communicating with and "getting" their shared subjects. The journalist pair spent a goodly amount of time with the non-incarcerated family and they interviewed Manson at some length, along with prosecutor Stovitz, who remained "off the record" but was nonetheless easily ID'ed and warned over his tendency to talk to the press. The Felton/Dalton interview Stovitz served as a first warning to the loose-lipped prosecutor, his second infraction later, once the trial was underway, was his last.

The resulting Rolling Stone piece is well worth the read, it was perhaps the first truly in-depth view on the Mansonites featured in a publication with a relatively wide circulation. Felton felt Manson and his followers and their existence in the dusty and garbage-strewn Spahn to be beyond disgusting. He had a real distaste for these people and the beliefs they espoused. Dalton, on the other hand, felt a kind of kinship with these people and he was more than a little sympathetic to their cause, and to what he viewed as Manson's probable innocence - until the Stovitz interview. . .

tobiasragg said...


The pair had interviewed Manson in jail, and on the way back to their car they had their first, rather heated argument. They had very different views on Manson's probable guilt and it was probably these competing points of view that yielded such a memorable journalistic piece. Much later, they sat with Stovitz who, along with spilling much of what the prosecutors already knew on these crimes, shared crime scene photos with the pair. As David Dalton described it not so very long ago:

"We saw the photographs—the word WAR etched in Leno LaBianca’s stomach, the words PIGGIES and HELTER SKELTER written in blood on the walls at the crime scenes. The argument was over. Manson was not innocent."

The RS piece, for those who haven't yet bothered, is posted here: https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-news/charles-manson-the-incredible-story-of-the-most-dangerous-man-alive-85235/

Back to the observation of yours that I pulled to kick off this response, it has always struck me as odd that so many of these girls left what seemed, to them, very restrictive and old-school familial situations to join a most-decidedly older-school man who was all about keeping the pimp hand strong. Of course, this wasn't the case at first. It took a good while for the violence to truly begin on an increasingly-common basis and, by then, the followers were well sucked into the man's orbit. But it is curious and a couple of them at least have commented on this in more-recent years. And still, though, we have the likes of Blue and Red who defend the man and who swear their continued devotion to him even to this day, well after his death.

shoegazer said...

But there was indeed a kind of sympathy with - if not downright empathy - among the younger set. It had more to do with disdain for "the man" than for any discernible envy over the very challenging nature of this group's physical existence.

This is correct within my experience. There was a reflexive assumption that they were anti-Establishment, which meant anti-war, and most importantly (although few would phrase it this way), anti-draft.

They were "heads" or "freaks"--two labels with a positive connotation among college Boomers of the era. Probably not in Muskogee, however.

There was a general kind of agreement amongst the young that Charles Manson was in the process of being railroaded into taking the fall for some shocking murders he likely had nothing to do with. These feelings were fed and enhanced by early coverage of Manson in the less-mainstream press. We've all seen the front-cover "Man of the Year" images of Charlie from those pre-trial days, there were more than a couple.

There's a nuance here, however...

I think fewer of the young really followed this very much: none of the victims were anything but Establishment--Tate and Sebring were generally recognized names--and no one cared much about Hollywood people, unless they, too, were identified as anti-war.

Compared to awareness of Tet, from the year before, this story was just not in our strike zone.

But as you say, to the degree that the case penetrated the consciousness of the college crowd, Manson at al were viewed as being hassled by the Man.

Until Manson carved that X and the others followed. That really, really seemed creepy, anti-hip. Maybe he wasn't cool, after all...

grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

I think we're saying about the same thing, but differently

Yeah, we're definitely heading in a similar direction.

He's found interesting evidence and combinations of persons/places/timing. To the degree that the permutations of these combinations have not been thoroughly explored, we've got basically new territory

I wouldn't argue with that. It is new territory, but more akin to "Side trips" than "A Beacon From Mars", for anyone that ever listened to Kaleidoscope {the USA 60s band, not the English 60s band or the South American 60s band}. New in the sense that it fills in some intriguing gaps, but doesn't substantially alter the picture.

And O'Neill offers up some of his thoughts on what this might mean--potentially one of many speculative scenarios, some of them highly provocative--but hey...ya gotta make a living. But he doesn't claim it's the definitive one(s), if I'm reading you correctly

It's nuanced. He can't claim anything as definitive ~ but that doesn't stop him from saying things without actually saying them {a good Charlie trick there !}. For example, he becomes adamant that the reasons given for the murders {well, he majors on HS, even though the prosecution presented multiple motives} are not the reasons ~ even though he states he doesn't know what the reasons were. He goes overboard on some things that weren't gone into {for example, Bugliosi saying that when he joined the case, he instructed LAPD to return a film of Sharon Tate being forced into certain activities with some people, though he joined the case 3 months after the murders} and draws conclusions from them that could be accurate....or not.
He told Joe Rogan that he more or less hopes his readers will join the dots he lays out and conclude some kind of CIA involvement, even though he won't actually come out and say "it was a CIA project."
I think it was something of a misstep to subtitle the book "The truth behind the Manson murders." I often have issues with sensationalizing titles and headlines. But, it's a good book, so I'll give him a pass on that one.

Is this anywhere near what you are thinking? If so, he may be worth a qualified read

Regardless of what I may think, his book is worth a read. Along with "Helter Skelter", "Goodbye Helter Skelter" {by George Stimson} and others, it's required reading.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

I imagine there is a better book in there, somewhere

Other than correcting a few misstated facts, I'm not so sure there is. I think it really is a premier league work. I don't have to agree with its conclusions to do so.

Are we really believing that the CIA used little Charlie Manson as an LSD test subject and sent him out into the world to collect and control those pesky, disobedient youth?

Well........
I don't believe it. But let's not kid ourselves, there were some nefariously devilish minds within the CIA, and despite what was sometimes said about some of the world's totalitarian regimes and their practices, American agencies could be just as devious, unfeeling and dismissive of human life and communities. And all kinds of experiments {and nasty projects entered} were done on people, with or without the subjects' consent and knowledge.
As human beings, we are sometimes, quite bluntly, crap. And we are capable of some pretty crap things.
Mind you, in saying that, it is easy to overlook the reality that a lot of people liked LSD and found it really useful in their lives. There was no way initially to tell how one would respond to its continued effects. Paul Fitzgerald extolled its virtues. And so did Charles Manson. The CIA use of acid always has to run alongside the emerging {and eventually arrived} counterculure's use of it. Both were very deliberate.
Charlie, after what happened with his Christ conflation, with Dean Moorehouse, and in conjunction with what he found happening in Berkley and the Haight, found that LSD was an incredible drug that took people to all manner of places within the mind and discovered that certain things were far easier to accept after a good dose. Dosing/spiking or suggesting a trip was an almost standard thing with Charlie, at times. We see him doing this with Moorehouse, Stephanie Schram, Bill Vance, just off the top of my head. But he wasn't the only one. Bobby Beausoleil in a 1971 book "The Garbage People", speaks of how he thought all the devil worship stuff of kKenneth Anger and his mates was such a load of crap ~ until he started getting heavily into acid. He makes an interesting comparison with the power of acid suggestion, with hypnosis.
I don't think that Charlie needed to be sought out by the CIA to control those kids. Many of them were on the way to being damaged goods, if they weren't already, long before they met Charles Manson. But he found acid a useful tool, rather like the way some pop/rock band managers did with the artists they managed/controlled/ripped off.

Are we buying into a JFK assassination tie with the Manson murders?

On the surface, it seems ridiculous. But before I accept or reject something like that, I want to know how its author is trying to tie it together. I tend to think that if I can try to understand something like the creator or extoller of the idea/concept understands it, then I'm in a better position to say yay or nay, and be able to comment on it.
You should read the book, when you have a spare moment. I didn't want to bother when it first came out, but I'm glad that I did.

Speculator said...

Vera - my apology as I think I’ve conflated a couple of different interviews together. VB wasn’t present when she mentioned the wallet. I do recall him looking concerned at something she said in the interview that they did together though - I’ll have to have a look. But yes my apology. It just shows what my guarantees are worth ;-) !!!

shoegazer said...

Continuing in thinking about the Kasabian testimony...

During x-exam by Kanarek she was asked to identify the starting point and the route of her walk around Cielo to find open windws/doors, when Watson told her to check, just after Parent was killed. From this, it seems like she started near the gap between the garage and the main house, and immediately went around behind the house, around back.

She got as far as the dressing room, turned around and came back. She was never in the front of the house any farther than where she saw Frykoski.

Examining her description of where she was and what she saw, the Family member who got farthest along toward the pool/guest house was Krenwinkel in pursuit of Folger, and Watson when he helped Krenwinkel. There's nothing in the testimony indicating that anyone got any farther toward the guest house, although after she ran away, it's possible.

This is according to her testimony.

Is that the way you (anyone) see it? Do you see anything substantially questionable about it? At this time, I do not.

tobiasragg said...

After all were dead, or nearly so, Watson sent Krenwinkel back to the guest house and we know she went to the front door and turned the door handle. I don't think this came out during the trial though, can't remember. It was admitted to later.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Toby - I question that door handle turn. Seems straight out of a horror novel.

Oppositely, if it did happen...Billy was one year removed from high school wrestling and in there with a legit dog in Christopher. Plus whatever knives were in the kitchen and whatever he wanted to throw at someone to create a distraction while he moved in.

So, he's playing the stereo at medium volume while blissfully unaware of the carnage taking place outside. Why wouldn't he go see why the door handle turned? That would seriously mess with my mind if I was inside alone.

tobiasragg said...

"Toby - I question that door handle turn."

Well, question away - I wasn't there, lol. I believe Garretson said at the time that he noted the door handle turned down at some point that night/morning. Given some of the things he said later in life, I always place a mental question mark after Bill Garretson statements.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Rosie. Me. You. Tacos.

614 uber alles.

shoegazer said...

What is the source for the information that Krenwinkel went back to the guesthouse?

If we say that we "know" this, it would be important to judge the source.

tobiasragg said...

Once you've finished reading your transcripts, you can move on to other books and parole hearings. Both Krenwinkel & Watson have discussed this in detail.

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

I think I’ve conflated a couple of different interviews together. VB wasn’t present when she mentioned the wallet. I do recall him looking concerned at something she said in the interview that they did together though

I suspect this partly explains why it took Uncle Tom 20 years to get the book actually finished, why Shreck took so many years between Manson file 1 and its "Shaman" update, and why even Bugliosi and Gentry worked on HS for some years before it came out and got some bits wrong. There's just so much information. So much to remember, to check, to put into some kind of organized sense, conflation is actually quite a logical state of affairs. I did it a couple of weeks back and Vera picked me up on it. I did it a few months back and Chris B picked me up on it. I do it from time to time and I usually have to check my facts and sometimes I'm surprised at what I thought at that moment was so.

Vera Dreiser said...

You're forgiven, Spec, and for being more the man than Matt, who still refuse to admit his major gaffes about what was (wasn't) in the LaBianca report, you can have a gander at Vera's lady parts. They're a bit crusty but still fetching.

Speculator said...

Vera - errrrrrrrr.........let’s move quickly back to the door handle and the guest house ;-) !!!!

orwhut said...

Until this thread came up, I had held off on buying Chaos. Now I have the Kindle edition and have jumped to the part on Whitson. It seems that he deliberately did things to make people suspect he was a government agent. That just doesn't seem like the best policy for someone who might go under cover. It also reminds me of a friend who I long suspected was a chronic liar.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

whut - Kindle is the way to go I think. The search allows us to drill down where we want to be quickly and in an organized way.

Speculator said...

Whut - what do you think of the book? I found the first half of it really intriguing. But when he got to all of the CIA/ULTRA stuff in the last third or so I just switched off it completely. Like others have said, he raises a lot of questions but doesn’t provide any conclusions. But I guessed he leaves us to draw our own conclusions. His own little back story that he kept going back to was a bit of a nonentity too but I guess he wanted to tell his own journey with the book too.

orwhut said...

Green,
I love the search feature of Kindle Books. With my vision as it is, without being able to enlarge the print I probably wouldn't bother trying to read it on paper.

orwhut said...

Speculator,
I've never thought much of the CIA/ULTRA business as it pertains to this case. The book is drawing me in the way doubtful conjecture often does, AT FIRST. After reflection I usually decide that it was interesting but I'll need more convincing.

I'm still trying to figure how I could make money exposing one of my deceased relatives as the Black Dahlia or Zodiac Killer.

tobiasragg said...

"I'm still trying to figure how I could make money exposing one of my deceased relatives as the Black Dahlia or Zodiac Killer."

Haha, that has been my reaction. Were I running a blog like this one and searching for new topics and questions to explore after more than five decades, this book is a goldmine. But as a more-or-less normal person with a variety of interests in life to pursue, I'm asking myself how much I care about LSD-exposed elephants and their possible (read: improbable, at best) relationship to little Charlie Manson and his band of misfits.

It's funny, someone above offered a very nice (and much appreciated) attempt to kind of catch me up on the appeal of LSD and the covert govt use of the chiral compound in mind control and all kinds of experimentation. It reminded me of the caution I often repeat to myself: "you never know who you're talking to". Or, in other words, "do not assume". Personally, I have a relative wealth of experience dropping acid personally - though some of those Manson folks would put me to shame - but I've also done a ton of learning on the whole nefarious governmental use of the substance - and how it all went unexpectedly wrong, lol. Or right, if one prefers. These days, acid isn't worth the bother - it is far too laced with speed to be as fun as it used to be, and I arrived at the party too late to enjoy the *true* glory days of the mid-late 60s. But none of this was ever my point to begin with.

My actual point was that little Charlie Manson wasn't even on anyone's radar when he walked out of prison in early '67. The CIA stuff dwindled on thru the early 70s, but the real bulk of that research happened during the height of the cold war and was largely wrapping up by 1964-5 when Manson was still learning how to change chords on McNeil Island. Some suggest, as O'Neill does, that Manson COULD have served as some kind of LSD test subject, but logic and just a wee bit of knowledge in this arena tell us that the notion is as unlikely as my ever voting for Donald Trump as President.

Since TLB, Charlie Manson has become an object of fascination, with too-long books and blogs like this devoted to the dude. But up until poor Steve Parent cruised toward that front gate button, Charlie Manson was a two-bit failed criminal who was mainly occupied with stealing cars and conning people out of cash. He was a nobody. Which has kind of been the entire point of his rap since late 1969. I think that some folks, people like Tom O'Neill, spend so much of their lives wrapped up in this thing that the elevate the true (lack of) importance Charlie Manson truly represented before he caught the nation's attention, and that leads to JFK connections and all of this other bullshit.

orwhut said...

My father-in-law was discharged from a navy base in California around the time of the Black Dahlia murder. If I dreamed up a way to pin it on him my wife would kill me so I'll probably let that idea slide.

Vera Dreiser said...

Tobias,
You haven’t read the book either obviously.

tobiasragg said...

"It seems that he deliberately did things to make people suspect he was a government agent."

This has always been the point, for me.

If you are truly working as a "government agent" the last thing you do is signal that this is the case. It simply goes with the territory, it is the mindset.

Signaling is the stuff of wannabes.

Dan S said...

Lsd elephants . the haight clinic. Charlie would have been very interesting to them and there was certainly a cia backing there.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

Both Krenwinkel & Watson have discussed this in detail

And there are real problems with both of them in this regard.
Watson, for example, gives two totally different accounts of the shooting of Jay Sebring. In his first book, the one that he keeps telling people to refer to if they want answers, he says Jay was sitting down when he shot him:

When I started to tie the rope around Sharon's neck, Sebring struggled forward in the chair he was seated in beside the fireplace, shouting for me to be careful of her.
"I told you, 'One more word and you're dead,'" I screamed and shot him.


But nowadays, he comes out with Jay claiming he knew karate, then he shot him:

And so the girls they went into the other room, brought Sharon out and Abigail Folger and also Jay Sebring and they were standing around. And I had a gun in my hand and Jay told me, he said I know karate, and I don't think I've ever told anybody this, but he said I know karate, just for your sake and you're over there. And that..and I got afraid so I shot him with a .22 pistol. He went to the ground and I stabbed him.

This isn't a case of two different perspectives, this is two different stories from the same person about the same event. And he doesn't mention sending Pat to check the guest house in either of his books, which makes me wonder if it really did happen. I mean, at what point would this have happened ? Before the killings in the house ? After the lawn stabbings ? before or after Linda's appearance ?
As for Pat, most of her memories seem to me to have dissolved in an acid haze, somewhere. She has rarely offered any substantial details of Cielo and I'm not aware of her answering the charge of both Atkins and Watson, saying that she was the one that pushed for the killing of Sharon Tate.

Speculator said:

I don't get the timeline of her running to the house, seeing Frykowski AND seeing Folger chased down. If she was so in shock after seeing Frykowski and immediately ran, it would mean that Folger would have had to appear outside almost simultaneously or immediately after Frykowski - within seconds. Otherwise he shock/horror and impulse to run wouldn't add up. When you piece together the evidence of the others as to who was attacked/killed where, it doesn't add up that Folger appears outside at the same time as Frykowski

I don't think that follows. Watson's 1st book did say:

As Frykowski sank down on the flagstones, Sadie yelled that someone was getting away. I looked across the lawn and saw Abigail Folger dashing toward the fence with Katie behind her, knife raised.

For what it's worth !
Abigail and Wojiciech were found on the lawn pretty close to each other. There's no evidence from any of the perps of either of them getting very far once they were out of the house. As for Linda's immediacy of fleeing, bear in mind that she continually scuppered Bugliosi's trying to pin down specific times by saying "I don't know time." She seemed to wear it as a badge of honour, that she had abandoned notions of time. She stated that she doesn't know how long she looked at Frykowski.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Before we move on to Torque and Star's posts, I want to bookmark my place in the Whitson series with a thought. Grim recently said that O'Neill can't be held responsible for what people tell him.

I agree.

But using the People vs. Charles Manson et al transcripts to show Whitson's name, and then relying heavily on private interviews isn't enough for academia, and therefore even though I hate to say it, isn't enough for me. The argument needs to be proven by the people making and supporting it. Not the doubters. Peer review and empirical research do not operate that way. Tabloid arguments do.

However, Whitson is fascinating and held our interest for a week of discussions. Our convo went across the Manson scene and was discussed on podcasts and several other places online. Whitson is more interesting than me and probably many of us. Until we pick this up again, I'll remain hopefully agnostic, and forever smitten with Joanie Weldon.

On to the next arguments we go!

grimtraveller said...

GG-W said:

using the People vs. Charles Manson et al transcripts to show Whitson's name, and then relying heavily on private interviews isn't enough for academia.....The argument needs to be proven by the people making and supporting it. Not the doubters

I totally agree.
I'm curious as to why more hasn't been made of Hatami's statement about being told about the murders before Mrs Chapman discovered the bodies. Because that would be huge, if true. And Uncle Tom is the only source of this statement.

Speculator said:

if she was in such shock how come she was unshocked enough to frisk a dead/dying Parent for his wallet minutes earlier

On the other hand, it could well be that her not "getting" the wallet as instructed represents the greatest evidence of her being in shock. The following night, when given a wallet by Manson, she did everything instructed, noticed the colour, noticed the kind of name of the woman whose wallet she'd been given had, and had sufficient presence of mind to hide the wallet in the toilet tank.
That first night, after seeing Steve killed, her mind simply wasn't on the job she'd been instructed to do. So she took out the wallet, but didn't present it to Watson. And his mind wasn't, at that moment, on the wallet, because he never asked for it later.

But of course it was ideal for the prosecution for her to witness both attacks and incriminate both TW and PK. Plus it added value to her evidence and therefore her chances of getting star witness and immunity. These factors all co-exist with each other and one is dependent upon the other in order to fulfil what the Prosecution want and what she wants

Actually, for close to 3 months, Gary Fleischmann was angling for immunity and the prosecution view was "for what ?" As far as they were concerned, she was a perp, even though they knew she hadn't killed anyone and there was no evidence to corroborate Susan's story. They thought that, at best, all she might have seen, was Steve Parent's murder.
It's not a popular thought, but really, immunity had very little to do with Linda Kasabian. Gary Fleischmann was its architect, along with Aaron Stovitz. The prosecution were the ones that called Fleischmann and said they were up for talking business. And they did this without knowing what Linda had to say. The deal they had with her was signed on 26/2/70 ~ but she had her first talk with LE {in the form of Bugliosi} on the 28th. They signed a deal with her, literally sight unseen.
Because the prosecution initially assumed she'd only seen one murder, she could have got away with limiting her eyewitness testimony to just the Parent murder. The same result would have ensued.
Another point to consider ~ there was no evidence Linda was at any of the murders. Every one of the other murderers could be connected in some way to Cielo or Waverly. Not her. By testifying, regardless of immunity, she put herself at the scene of those murders and therefore, at risk, if anything should go wrong and the prosecution not fulfil is side of the bargain.
That's pretty heavy.

Speculator said...

Grim - yes the LK “I don’t know time” thing is well noted. Like you say it’s almost like a badge of honour, as in these things of your world like time don’t concern me. I just wonder whether there’s an element of deliberate evasiveness in there too though.

Speculator said...

Greene - never mind Joanne Weldon, what about Vera’s crusty parts!!! ;-)

G. Greene-Whyte said...

I heard they were gin soaked.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

I just wonder whether there’s an element of deliberate evasiveness in there too though.

This is very interesting, Spec. I'm working my way thru the transcripts, right now into Hughes' x-exam of Kasabian. At that point she had been granted immunity.

I think that within a couple of sessions of gaining immunity, she becomes a very much stronger witness, more convincing. Less dodging, in my opinion.

This is counter-intuitive, in my opinion. Once immunity is offered, the prosecution no longer has a lever on her, and the defense can throw the immunity up to the jury as an implied quid pro quo: she has officially been bribed to say what the prosecution wants.

But after she had immunity it is like she is sure that she cannot be charged, and she went with the truth as she understood it (it's much easier than sticking to a falsehood consistently), with less hesitancy and indecision.

As always, my opinion, only.

tobiasragg said...

"This isn't a case of two different perspectives, this is two different stories from the same person about the same event."

It is true that Charles Watson has been more than a bit flakey in his recountings of these events. But aside from the Sebring sitting/standing detail, I think he is essentially telling the same story in most of these retells.

I'd recently been reading these parole hearings (the source of much of this information) comparatively and back-to-back, and I have noted an interesting phenomena. Both Watkins and Krenwinkel - and Atkins, before her death - told pretty much the same story each time. But there were minor differences and omissions each time. These were often dependent on what question(s) and interruptions were involved in specific hearings, there are many times an individual commissioner will drill into a particular point, which interrupts the narrative, but not always.

Watson has always been sloppy in his retells, but he has consistently said that he sent Krenwinkel back to the guest house to kill anyone who might be back there. This was likely part of Manson's verbal checklist he delivered 1:1 with Watson that night, I'd have to go back and check. But I feel quite confident that this does happen.

Krenwinkel also has been quite consistent on these points. She says that Watson sent her back to the guest house and she says she went - all the way to the front door. In most of these retells, it was here on the front porch that Krenwinkel says she paused, thinking to herself "no - I cannot go through with this - I am not going to follow through on this instruction", which is obviously a paraphrase. This could very well be an attempt by Big Patty to demonstrate to the board members that she really *was* at least somewhat human back then. I am betting that this is the case, but one thought has always struck me:

Garretson's stereo volume was set at a "4", which was not quite halfway but decently loud. He was listening to The Doors and either a Mamas & Papas or a Mama Cass record, he seems confused on this point. When asked on the stand if the music could be heard in one of the guesthouse back rooms, he indicates that yes, it could have been heard faintly. I don't recall noting the speaker placements in that front living room, but the stereo unit itself was stationed along the front wall of the living room - not at all far from the front door.

It dawns on me that if Patricia Krenwinkel really did travel all the way to the front porch/door area, she would almost certainly heard music playing inside, however faintly. Obviously, this would have signaled that someone was inside and that, for whatever reason(s) Krenwinkel decided not to go through with the extra murder - or perhaps she didn't travel as close to the guesthouse as she says she did and, for whatever reason, just went round the corner of the house, then chickened out and returned.

There is also the matter of the three dogs who were hanging out with Garretson in that front room. According to him, they'd always bark six or so seconds before someone knocked on the front door, meaning that the dogs would always hear someone approaching before they actually arrived. They barked just prior to Steve Parent's arrival, Garretson said. According to his testimony, the dogs did not bark in hour or two after Parent's departure, which would seem to indicate that a Krenwinkel approach did not happen. Unless, of course, the music prevented the dogs from being alerted as usual. . .

tobiasragg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tobiasragg said...

(reposting this to correct some minor typos) . . . As for the door handle being turned down, this came from Garretson. But for the life of me, I can't remember when he said it. I did a super-quick scan of his trial testimony and this went unmentioned at that time - though I didn't read all of the cross examinations. IF Garretson said this during his police interrogation post-arrest, I would be inclined to believe it. The kid was scared shitless at that point and I got no sense that he was lying then. The transcript is out there somewhere, I'm just too lazy to go looking for it. IF Garretson said this in later years, I personally would completely disregard the detail. He said all kinds of things in the decades after, and obviously something very odd had happened with that dude over the years. Nuff said.

All of this is completely inconsequential, of course, because the ultimate answers are unknowable at this point and even if they became known, they wouldn't change much of anything.

P.S. Back to the Sebring/Watson moment that led up to the shooting, the "I know karate" threat was corroborated by Susan Atkins, who also included this detail in a couple of her recountings of that night. Both Watkins and Atkins spoke of Sebring issuing some kind of karate-related threat as he began to move toward Watson. Using the old journalistic rule of corroboration, two statements in agreement indicate that a thing is likely true, while only one source for a fact must as a rule make the fact suspect (which is the core of my objection to O'Neill's process & results). I am inclined to believe that this is the way that things went down. Also, once this detail on Sebring's actions became known, a couple of Jay's friends & family members have indicated that yes, this sounds very much like something he would have done, which for me serves as further indication that this detail is likely true.

According to Atkins at one parole hearing, she even shouted a warning to Tex, who was busy making leaping, monkey like moves and/or noises behind the sofa, something to the effect of "Tex - look out!" and that's when the shot happened. No idea on the accuracy of Atkins' detail - if Tex also includes this in his recounting somewhere along the way, this most likely did happen, too.

shoegazer said...

Trying to remember the Sebring autopsy and Noguchi trial testimony, but I think that the bullet trajectory was odd--it may be that Sebring had his left arm extended outward, toward the source of the gunshot. Shot in the left armpit with the bullet traveling inward and downward.

He had 2500 cc of blood in the left lung, I believe. This is almost 50% of a normal volume of blood, so he bled internally, for the most part.

Dan S said...

I thought garretson had headphones on

Sadie's GoGo Boots said...

Testing

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

"This isn't a case of two different perspectives, this is two different stories from the same person about the same event."

It is true that Charles Watson has been more than a bit flakey in his recountings of these events. But aside from the Sebring sitting/standing detail, I think he is essentially telling the same story in most of these retells


Well, he is speaking of the same event ~ how he shot Jay Sebring. The mindset of the two tellings, however, is completely different.
In the telling closest in time to the murders, his first book, which he says is culled from the interviews he did with his lawyer in late '69 or early '70 {thus far, it's not clear to me, which it is}, we see Tex, the man with the gun, asserting his dominance over everyone in the room, rather like Charlie after Crowe's shooting. He is in the flush of having committed his first murder, he is in the position of being the one entrusted with carrying out Charlie's will and he has a room full of scared people. He's already kicked Wojiciech in the head. He's sufficiently confident to send Susan to bring out 3 people on her own. He's been happy to let Pat leave and return. He is the boss: "Go with Tex and do whatever he tells you". He directs Jay to sit down and when Jay has a go at him about Sharon, he shoots him. Nothing about karate.
"and now I dragged the rope over to Sebring and tied him, while Sadie tied a towel around Frykowski's wrists according to my instructions. I wrapped the rope around Sebring's neck and then slung it up over one of the rafters that ran across the room and supported a loft above the fireplace. When I started to tie the rope around Sharon's neck, Sebring struggled forward in the chair he was seated in beside the fireplace, shouting for me to be careful of her.
"I told you, 'One more word and you're dead,'" I screamed and shot him.
"
In a way, Susan provides more details than him in her two December '69 extravaganzas, but even she contradicts herself. In the GJ, within 3 sentences, she states that Jay was told to lie down and then he wasn't told to lie down. However, she also states Jay was told to sit down and he "proceeded to go over and sit down." It's when Jay doesn't follow Tex's orders that Susan says he gets shot. Tex says the guy, sitting, made some kind of movement and got shot.

Fast forward to 2021.
"He told me that he said, I know karate and he was about four feet in front of me. And when he told me that, um, I got scared and I shot him. And then he went to the ground and he was still moving, I went over and stabbed him."
Jay was tied up in 1978{69/70} with, at the very least a rope round his neck. In 2021, he's threatening karate moves and Tex is scared and shoots.
I think he's trying to appease the family members by making Jay to appear heroic, while also making it seem that he acted out of panic, almost in self defence. But these are fairly recent revelations. And as such, casts doubt on his subsequent "memories."

shoegazer said...

GT:

An added wrinkle to the Sebring scenario:

Sebring autopsy

The track of the bullet wound is unusual and implies to me that Sebring may well have been turned sideways to Watson, presenting his left side, with his left arm extended toward Watson.

There is a slicing wound on the back of his left hand, between the ring and middle fingers.

There are other ways the bullet could have taken such a trajectory, but the posture I described is the first that comes to mind. Taken together with the wound on the left hand, it suggests that Sebring was not stationary and at rest, but in some sort of transitional movement.

What other possibilities do the trajectory and wound suggest?

grimtraveller said...

Maybe he instinctively threw up his arm as a sort of reflex action to Watson turning the gun on him.
But to be honest, I only really zoomed in on Watson's accounts because, for all his consistency in some areas, there's others that cause one to doubt some of his more recent revelations, like sending Pat to the guest house or Linda driving the car down the hill.

tobiasragg said...

Well, Krenwinkel too speaks of being sent back to the guest house, so I don't see much reason to doubt that one.

As for Sebring, both Atkins and Watson indicate that Jay was moving toward Tex in a move to initiate some kind of karate action, so it is easy to imagine this impacting his body position at the time of the shot.

shoegazer said...

Let's work up a mini-scenario, based on Sebring's gunshot wound and hand wound.

The autopsy report makes it clear that there were no powered burns or obvious traces, and this means that he was shot >15 inches away, according to Noguchi's testimony.

Elsewhere (2016 hearing?) Watson says around 4 feet. Noguchi's findings and Watson's description are compatible, but not definitive (reading the 2021 hearing, and gosh, it sure is obvious that Watson seems to be mentally losing it--deteriorated since 2016). But let's go with 3-4 feet.

If Sebring began to adopt some kind of martial arts posture and Watson shot him and Sebring went down (Watson confirms this in 2016, and recalling as best I can--I'm only a year younger than Watson...oh, my!) I think that the hand wound was delivered while Sebring was down, shot, but still conscious. It's like a defensive wound.

And Watson (and maybe others--Atkins?) say that after Sebring went down is when Watson stabbed him.

Sebring has knife wounds front and back. If the hand wound was part of the immediate knife attack, I'd suppose that the frontal wounds soon followed. The back wounds could also have been delivered at that time, as Sebring was exposed as he lay dying, maybe curling further into a defensive ball, being kicked in the face, and all.

Or the back wounds could have come later, after killing Tate, just to be sure.

I'd need to re-read the report and Noguchi's testimony again, with the wound sketches beside it, to get a clearer picture.

Other observations/ideas?

tobiasragg said...

Makes sense. Sebring fell where he died, and Watson was on the other side of the sofa when the shot occured. Not much room for distance there, so your assumptions make sense.

Remember though, that Watson is said to have done a stabbing re-tour of the victims, delivering extra wounds before departing. The back wounds could well have happened at that point.

shoegazer said...

VAST DEPARTURE...

So by now, going thru most of the varying statements (testimony, interviews, parole hearings) I'm more convinced than ever that the "official narrative" concerning sequence of events, actors, and even pretty much timing, is very close to the actual events.

And much of this is backed by physical evidence. But there is one huge incongruity: blood evidence. The narrative and the blood evidence are damned close to mutually incompatible when considered at face value. Both Tate and Sebring very clearly appeared to have died at, or near, the locations found the next day, and yet blood evidence says they were are the doorway, the porch, and a bit beyond. .But this can, and should, be poked at, explored.

Let's simply focus on Sebring's death, for simplification. Kick in real hard, We can come back and do the same for Tate, independently.

Start with the assumption that, as testified, Sebring was the first killed inside the house. Atkins and Watson, in their various versions, have him near the chair where he was found, and both have him confronting, or at least arguing, with Watson, who shoots him, then stabs him. Sebring may even have been phsyically challenging Watson, turned sideways, with arm extended, when shot. He was then kicked (apparently) in the head, and stabbed, but in no account does Sebring go anyhwere else.

But Granado found his blood type on the front porch, on the walkway, on a scarf on the lawn, on the trucks, even embedded in the metal base of the pistol grip (not the wood pieces, but the part to which the wood is attached).

So let's work up a scenario that allows the final resting place of the bodies, and any blood pools and or smears or trails as identified by Granado, and yet sticks at least close to the sequence of the official narrative.

If Sebring is actually dead or dying near the chair, we expect a fairly large blood pool at theat location, and there is a fairly large one. It should also be noted that ~2500 cc, maybe half of an average volumne of blood in a normal human, was in his left lung, internally.

Now he's not capable of walking out there, so he'd need to be carried. If dragged (or if dragging himself) outside, this would likely leave blood smearing but there's no blood evidence of this. If carried, by whom, and when?

Now we've got to get him back indoors, and we face the same problem with lack of a blood trail.

Then, of course: why? Why bring him out and take him back in? Or let him crawl out and crawl back in, or let him crawl out and carry him back in? Especially in light of the fact that you leave two other victims outside, where they fell.

And the final, overall "why": why make up a story, and stick to it rigorously over a period of 50 years, that excludes this?

Thoughts/ideas?

grimtraveller said...

In the telling closest in time to the murders, his first book, which he says is culled from the interviews he did with his lawyer in late '69 or early '70 {thus far, it's not clear to me, which it is}

It was 1969, according to the presiding Commissioner Kevin Chappell, at Pat's 2017 IPB hearing.

tobiasragg said...

The interview with his lawyer is still under lock & key, at least as far as the public is concerned. The tapes are in LAPD's possession and they won a couple of recent challenges to have them released to the public & to Van Houten's attys.

The Will You Die For Me book is based on Watson's interview with the TX pastor who turned him onto Jesus. There are tapes of the two conversing out there on YouTube, they're pretty annoying.

shoegazer said...

Hah!

After reading the last few of Watson's parole hearings, it occurs to me that Watson = Dennis Wilson, but without talent or connections.

Same short term gratification quest...likely few solid goals in either case. Maybe an innate inability even to form goals, or know one when they saw one. Someone would have to tell them; they'd never come up with one themselves.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

Well, Krenwinkel too speaks of being sent back to the guest house, so I don't see much reason to doubt that one

Now, I haven't read any of the transcripts from her hearings of the 80s or 90s, I've read '78, 2004, 11, 16 and 17, so she may well have mentioned it beforehand {There's an interesting channel called Court TV that has the actual airing of the hearing so I may watch those. I see '93 and '97 are there. But they're long ~ maybe I'll listen when I'm doing some paperwork}. I'm not aware of it from either Watson or Pat prior to 2016. Do you know of anywhere they spoke of it before then ? It would be a bit of a coincidence if both of them independently came out with this in the same year but not necessarily fishy.
The irony is that it seriously messed Pat up in that 2016/17 hearing because the board members wanted to know why she didn't carry out orders, when she was using her fear of not carrying out orders as part justification for what she did.

The interview with his lawyer is still under lock & key, at least as far as the public is concerned. The Will You Die For Me book is based on Watson's interview with the TX pastor who turned him onto Jesus

But the info is taken from those 1969 interviews. As Watson himself said in his second book "The facts of my book [the first one] were taken from tape recordings I did with my attorney only 4 months after the crime. These recordings were very accurate descriptions of the crime, play-by-play."
It makes you wonder what really happened with Jay, if Watson's description is accurate. A guy sitting down, with a rope round his neck and pulled over a beam.....
To be honest, it doesn't really matter one way or the other, or change anything if Pat was sent to check out the guest house. It's just that in every telling I've read of it prior to 2016, it was never mentioned, neither is there any place in any of the narratives where there is any space for such a thing to have happened. William Garretson is rarely, if ever, mentioned by any of the perps and I'm not aware of any talk of looking for others to kill at 10050 on that first night. The other houses on the road that they were supposed to go to, they didn't go to.
If someone remembers a detail a few years after the event, it could well be true. If it's over 45 years after, and that person has already demonstrated a history of not remembering facts, then the weighing scales tip more on the doubt side than the accuracy side.

shoegazer said...

GT:

The other houses on the road that they were supposed to go to, they didn't go to.

Aha!

Manson did go back that night, my friends!

He wanted to "squib off that little turd in the back", as I understand it!

tobiasragg said...

"But they're long ~ maybe I'll listen when I'm doing some paperwork"

Well shit dude, if you haven't read the transcripts and the videos are too long for you, what can I really say in response? This response isn't meant with the amount of snark it probably reads as having, but I've read all of the transcripts associated with all of these people, and many of them multiple times. Particularly with Krenwinkel, who for me remains among the more fascinating players in this whole mess.

CourtTV that was (and still is) an actual TV channel devoted to airing court proceedings across the country. Trust me, back in the OJ days that was must-see-TV every day for months! But they also aired some of these Manson hearings back in their heyday and they were treated almost like a sporting event. DO watch the Krenwinkel hearing - and not while you're doing paperwork - it is insanely entertaining and you get to watch a middle aged Big Patty completely lose her shit in front of everyone . . . and then field all of the commentary associated with that moment! It's so good, I've probably watched this 5-6 times by now, over the years.

So yeah, I can't do your homework for you. I don't memorize the dates that each statement was made and I'm too lazy and/or busy to scurry off to do the digging for you. You're interested or you're not, I guess. But on the guesthouse matter, yes - this became a kind of centerpiece of her self-defense in these parole hearings. You can almost hear the dramatic music swell as she declares that it was there, in front of that guesthouse door, that common sense finally took hold of her and, like the Grinch at Christmas, she discovered that she actually did have a heart.

Now, whether she is telling the truth or not, I couldn't tell you. Watch and read for yourself and then maybe you can decide.

As for Watson's first book, the authorial matter reads "by Charles Watson as told to Chaplain Ray Hoekstra" - so what part the attorney tapes did or did not play in the book's creation is anyone's guess, I suppose.

tobiasragg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tobiasragg said...

I'm just killing time before bed, and this exchange motivated me to go back and watch the Pat parole hearing, which you will find here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N7SzGQHD1E4

There may be one more Krenwinkel hearing video out there, I can't quite recall, but this is most definitely worth the watch. So many little details that we all discuss here today are explored in this hearing . . . the fact that she'd gone "off into the distance, to the back house" as some of these people were murdered, the fact that she stabbed Folger in the back before she flipped over (that part is not explained) . . . how she didn't know what they were setting out to do until Tex explained the purpose of the mission . . . how she helped round the victims up from the bedrooms (Atkins fetched Folger, then Pat helped her bring out the other two; Pat confesses to being a bit hazy on some of these details but agrees that she helped do this - which became a massive issue in her latest parole hearing) . . .

What is also fascinating to me is how timid Krenwinkel is in this setting (understandable) and honestly how far into rehabilitation she is at this point in her life. In many ways, she is most impressive, especially when compared with her early years in prison, when she remained devote to Manson, then waivered, then went back and forth forever - taping pics of Manson onto her cell walls and then ripping them down, weeks later. This parole hearing is also quite interesting when compared to her last one, in 2016, and together they raise some really fascinating questions on the one she has coming up this summer.

What particularly interests me about this hour are the various interviews that are conducted and interspersed throughout the broadcast - mainly because I find myself empathizing and agreeing with everyone. You have Stephen Kay recounting the utter horror of these crimes (true) and Patty Tate stating that she doesn't care how remorseful Krenwinkel is, she did what she did and she must pay the piper (also true). But then I actually believe Krenwinkel - she seems quite human here and most certainly pretty horrified at what she managed to do. When she breaks down in tears over the fact that she cannot go back and change things, and how she lives a life devoted to trying to do SOME kind of good in the world now, I believe her. When she then questions just how many years of tears and regret this parole board expects, I feel a hardness over her apparent self-pity. It's all made extraordinarily personal and human, from every angle, and it makes all of the CIA bullshit and weirdness surrounding this thing that fascinates some people melt away. The really ugly reality that all involved (regardless of their POV) continue to suffer really shines through in these parole hearings, and no where is this on better display than in this particular one.

Anyway, just watch if you care to. If one has a real interest in this whole matter, this is pretty indispensable stuff.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

Well shit dude, if you haven't read the transcripts and the videos are too long for you, what can I really say in response?

All I asked for was if there was anywhere you knew of, prior to 2016, where Pat talked about going to the back house. My gig is not to show Pat {or Tex for that matter} to be a lyin' wench. I just want to know if she had said it before and when.

Krenwinkel, who for me remains among the more fascinating players in this whole mess

It's funny, when I first read HS, Pat was probably one of the least memorable characters for me. But that was in 1978. She did make one statement that stuck in my head right from the start though, the one about "it was just a thought and the thought came to be." Great concept. Explains the world and much of what's in it. But she's become the one that I think I've come to understand the deepest. I really feel for her because she's in a near impossible situation. Yet, she's actually fairly easy to fathom, if one really wants to.
There again, I would say that.

DO watch the Krenwinkel hearing - and not while you're doing paperwork

I will watch the '93 and '97 ones. I have them bookmarked. The paperwork I'll be doing won't be heavy duty or in-depth ! I have watched loads of documentaries and parole hearings, but only when they've been relevant to what I've been looking into. I much prefer reading the transcripts. I think I'm a more attentive reader than watcher, although there are some that would argue with me there.

I can't do your homework for you

I wasn't asking you to. In fact, I have an allergic reaction to such a notion. But that doesn't mean I'm beyond asking someone if they know specifically where I can go for something. Get me to the place where the info is, I'll do the rest, in my own time, at my own leisure and reach my own conclusions.

I'm too lazy and/or busy to scurry off to do the digging for you

You make it sound like I was asking for something utterly unreasonable. To me, it was analogous to asking for directions to the library.

I don't memorize the dates that each statement was made

I do sometimes. Funny thing is, it's not actually by choice.

As for Watson's first book, the authorial matter reads "by Charles Watson as told to Chaplain Ray Hoekstra" - so what part the attorney tapes did or did not play in the book's creation is anyone's guess, I suppose

Well, as stated earlier, the murder descriptions came from the tapes that he made with Bill Boyd in 1969. In fact, Watson lost any claims he had on the tapes by letting Chaplain Ray hear them.

tobiasragg said...

"I really feel for her because she's in a near impossible situation. Yet, she's actually fairly easy to fathom, if one really wants to."

For me, Krenwinkel is a bit harder to understand because of her history, especially when compared to the others. Charlie was always Charlie, Sadie was always rather devious and all-over-the-map over the years - flakey. Van Houten seems quite the normal one who was young & perhaps stupid enough to allow herself to get sucked into the whole vortex.

But Pat, she was a true die-hard. She went through years of indecisiveness over Manson and her feelings for him. One week, she'd be hanging his photo on her cell wall, a couple of weeks later she would rip it down in disgust. Even once she finally made a mental/emotional break with him, Pat spent decades wrestling with a pretty bad attitude overall. She was drinking and drugging pretty heavily behind bars and she had a history of really questionable and/or offensive statements and actions - sniffing that Abigail Folger was wasting her life anyway, proclaiming that as much as parole boards would like her to, she's not going to cry herself dry over what happened for 25 years, etc. It wasn't until some time in the 90s that she finally sobered up and began on her road to something approaching normalcy. She developed a long-term romantic relationship with a fellow prisoner (which ended when the partner was paroled) and she began participating in prison programming.

Krenwinkel isn't a complete mystery, but she is the one who I remain most fascinated with. I found it interesting that she & Van Houten, who were besties for decades in prison, recently had a pretty complete falling out over "different views of our shared past", according to Leslie. It would be interesting to learn the nature of those differences, given all we know of where Leslie's head is at regarding Manson and that era.

shoegazer said...

GT:

But she's become the one that I think I've come to understand the deepest. I really feel for her because she's in a near impossible situation. Yet, she's actually fairly easy to fathom, if one really wants to.

I get the strong impression that because Manson went thru the motions of treating her like decent human with some intrinsic value, no questions asked, this hooked her. There seems to be a strong underlying element of systemic low self-esteem--deeply rooted, self-defining. This was not like the transitory lack of self esteem like some of the others, like Van Houten or Watson. It was the very core of her identity.

That, and sexual attention.

I think it's always good to consider that the entire Manson experience was built on top of a stratum of unreality that was induced by constant use of drugs.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

All - So is it nurture or nature with Pat?

tobiasragg said...

With Pat?

I would say nature as related to her attachment to Manson. Obviously, Krenwinkel was a masculine and rather unattractive girl who struggled with weight issues and a hormonal imbalance that caused excessive body hair growth. Charlie laid on the same rap he did with all of the girls ("you have father issues, but look at you - you are beautiful and perfect") and Pat fell for it hook, line and sinker. As she now explains, she thought she'd finally found a man who loved her for her - despite her low self-esteem and appearance. She would do anything for that man, and this remained true even years after she'd found herself sentenced to death and then facing an extended prison term.

One can't ignore the environmental factors where Krenwinkel is concerned, of course. These days she likes to put much of the blame on drug & alcohol use, but those abuses were merely symptoms associated with much more deep-seated, biological difficulties, at least to me.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Krenwinkel's life from post to (almost) post forces strong existential questions into my mind. And every convo adds fog to my epistemology lol.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Tex says in maybe his most recent hearing, certainly in the ones I wrote about a few weeks back, that they argued in the car on the way to Cielo. In regards to Pat, which side of the argument do you think she was on if there was one?

This is to Tobias and everyone.

tobiasragg said...

"In regards to Pat, which side of the argument do you think she was on if there was one?"

Regarding Pat overall, I do think she has been about the most changed incarcerated Manson person over time, with the possible exception of Davis. While it is always dodgy to claim true knowledge of someone's nature who you have never met, to compare early-life Pat with say the Pat featured in "My Life with Manson" is pretty startling in some ways.

Regarding the car disagreement, my take is that Tex was obviously pro "go forth with murder" (for lack of a better term) because that is what Charlie said to do, while it is easy to imagine Kasabian expressing the opposite point of view. This is what likely prompted Tex to reduce her to "lookout" status and it is almost certainly what motivated Manson's "make sure they all do something" directive the next night.

As for Pat, I am going to guess that she was about as gung-ho as was Tex in that moment. I base that guess on a couple of different factors. First, Manson hand-picked her to participate on both nights. Pat was one of his earliest followers and she enjoyed a bit of a special status within the "family" group, Manson knew he could count on her to come through for him. According to Van Houten, Manson even pre-qualified Pat for the role by asking them both "are you willing to kill for this thing?" and both Van Houten & Krenwinkel replied "well no, we don't want to, but we know it has to happen - so yes" and Krenwinkel was pulled from the trailer to prepare.

The second reason I believe Pat to have been on the pro-murder side of the discussion comes from one of Tex's retells, the one I've always felt seemed closest to the truth. Then he tells us that he went into the LaBianca home with Manson initially and stayed behind as Manson headed back out to the car. I am not wedded to those details as being the absolute truth, but that makes abundant sense to me, as Manson had little idea what he would encounter within the home - so two dudes + a gun + a bayonet makes sense. Anyway, according to Tex, Krenwinkel and Van Houten entered through the kitchen door to join Watson, who asked "did he say kill them?" The girls answered in the affirmative. As an aside, the LaBiancas overheard this exchange and Mr. LaBianca at least was sent into a verbal panic. Anyway, upon responding to Tex, Krenwinkel began rummaging through the kitchen drawers in search of knives, while Van Houten stood there and seemed quite uncertain about things.

Manson's trust + Krenwinkel's reported actions lead me to believe she was probably feeling fine being compliant with Charlie's orders that Cielo night.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Thanks, Tobias. Krenwinkel is sleeping with the kids in the trailer that Friday night, right? Charlie wakes her and says go with Tex and do what he says. She's truly at the crossroads during that ride over there. Or maybe the crossroads were passed long before. I don't know why I tell myself she was one of the people arguing against the victims' deaths but I do. Maybe because if that's the case, night two becomes a no-brainer. In for a penny...

shoegazer said...

First place, what do we think they argued about, if they argued at all?

Did they get lost because they were arguing, or were they arguing because they had gotten lost?

2016:

And then I think as we were thinking about what we were going to be doing we all started arguing about it and we got lost and we drove around about an hour, drove all the way into Santa Monica and then up the other side of Benedict Canyon.

2021:

we got lost, we could've, I could've got there probably in 30 minutes but it took me an hour to get there, I was driving all the way around through Santa Monica. And it was like I was stalling, whether I could do this or not do this.

If he can be taken at face value, I think he's saying that they were reluctant to do it, and in the 2021 version, that this may have been the source of the argument.

But do you think they argued on whether to do it or not? Or simply over small details of how long it was taking to do it--peripheral things like that?

It's damned hard to imagine any of them openly arguing against what Manson wanted.

BTW, using any likely, or even unlikely route from the ranch to Santa Monica, this is very hard to do unless you drive past the mouth of Benedict Canyon on Santa Monica Blvd (or another E/W street, like Sunset). You could also have gotten onto Mulholland, but there's just no way this makes any sense.

Very hard to do, though. If this happened, it hints at irresolution, for sure.

Separate item from Watson parole hearing, and I wonder what you make of it?

2016:

So anyway, I went up to the -- I cut the screen actually in the window and went through the screen. Okay? And the girls just walked right in the door. The door was open.

2021:

I actually went through the -– through the window, I cut the window and I went in through the window. And, um, I, um, then the girls though walked straight in to the door, so I went through the window, they walked right into the door, the door was open and we met right there.

Small detail: he's saying that the front door was open, unlocked, the way I read it.

Didn't need to cut the screen and crawl in, then let them in, as is contained in many of the narratives.

...and you know, think about it, and there are two easy reasons (more, no doubt).

1) Since Frykowski was not yet ready for bed, apparently, and Sebring was still there, too--and one would suppose that he'd not spend the night--they had not made their nightly rounds of locking up.

2) They may have been extremely lax about locking up, too, having lived behind the self-locking gate so long that in the back of their collective head, they were safe.

Odd little things about this are interesting; they're relatively unimportant, but interesting, anyway.

tobiasragg said...

I don't know that they were sleeping, though they might have been. My dominant memory is of both Krenwinkel & Van Houten being in the trailer "taking care of the children" when Manson entered.

I do find Van Houten to be the most consistent and believable of the murderers, and more than once she has related the "are you willing to kill for this" trailer dialogue I described above. This does not mean that the detail is absolutely true, but her consistency and general approach to these recountings leads me to place more faith in what she shares than what has come from the others. If true, this tells us that Krenwinkel at least had some idea of what might have been up as they left the ranch that night.

The differing actions in the LaBianca kitchen is also telling, I think. That Tex revelation is what led to the most-recent attempt to have the original Watson tapes released - Leslie was hoping to use Tex's tale of her inaction at that murder scene as evidence of her reluctance to participate. Obviously, she lost that challenge but she soon found herself being granted parole anyway.

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