Monday, April 11, 2022

List of Cielo Crime Scene Anomalies: Major and Minor

I have no doubt that many of you who visit this forum find one of the most compelling things about the Cielo murders to be the remaining anomalies--the mismatches between the hard evidence and the testimony or related narrative. I would like to create a list of agreed-upon anomalies that is composed of two parts: major anomalies and minor anomalies. I then invite additions to the list. Once we've settled (more or less) on the items, I'd propose to create an article to deal with each one separately, in some level of depth, or maybe in logical groupings of a few that are closely related. We can then poke at the presented scenario(s) and try to create a hierarchy of the likelihood of each version of the scenario that evolves.

I expect that this will be a collaborative effort to help clear as much of the fog surrounding the events at Cielo as possible. I will not explore personalities other than how they might have directly affected the events.

We are never really going to know what happened, and we all know that, but I think that using a collaborative effort we may tighten things up a bit. 

I'm working from the following assumptions for this exercise: 

  • The "official narrative" that the prosecutors used to convict the Cielo perpetrators is essentially correct in all aspects that it purports to account for; it is likely, however, to be a subset of the complete event. 
  • All physical evidence is correct and reliable.

There are many incompatibilities between the two assumptions, and these create the anomalies I'm addressing. I'm seeking to narrowly define the possibilities, or even to resolve some of the anomalies to within perhaps 90% certainty. In some cases the narrative may have to give; in others, the evidence.

Here goes...

Major Anomalies

The items on this list are fundamental to the events and to the sequence described in the official narrative, but they directly contradict the narrative.

1) Blood evidence at the doorway/porch.

This is at odds with all testimony. 

2) Towel on Sebring's head.

At odds with all testimony.

3) Stab wounds on Tate's back.

No version of the narrative unambiguously describes a situation in which she was attacked from behind.

Minor Anomalies

The items on this list raise questions about variations from the official narrative, but are not in themselves contradictory.

1) Broken guard rail.

Explained as being done by Parent, but without much detail.

2) Marks on Tate's face.

Watson has mentioned at least twice that he inflicted cuts on Tate's face as the first wounds; the Noguchi autopsy report and testimony say they are rope burns.

3) Knife found at the scene with no blood evidence.

The knife found in the chair had no blood on it, but appeared to be coated with some unidentified substance.

4) Moving or rearranging some of the bodies.

Initial investigators state that they believed that Tate's body had been in some sense handled or moved.

5) Glasses near the trunks.

Unexplained in the official narrative.

6) Blood trail on the trunks.

On close inspection the blood trails on the trunks appear to have been made while the trunks were in a different position than in which they were found.

I'll look for replies and compile suggestions for about a week, then publish the resulting master list and get started soon thereafter. I'll construct and propose an initial hypothesis, and we can beat on it to see if we can make it stronger. Other readers, after viewing the list, may want to take one of the items and create a hypothesis to present: that would be great, so far as I'm concerned.

In creating these lists I'll be the final arbiter as to what is included. 

Some years ago, David did an excellent, in depth seven part series that explored the evidence at the Cielo crime scene. I recommend looking at it, or re-reading it. We'll cover some of his points, perhaps coming at them from different angles.

A Look at the Evidence, Part 1

Any suggested additions? If so, please reply.

212 comments:

1 – 200 of 212   Newer›   Newest»
Chris B said...

Off hand Kasabian History doc about reaching into Parent's car and wasn't it looking thru/taking his wallet.

Krenwinkel checking out the guesthouse door handle was a much later parole hearing admission.

The split window screen. Did Tex go in through a window round the back or split the screen to get in?

Tex always goes on about not having the rope?

SixtiesRockRules! said...

1) blood found on living room carpet near chair. Could have been steve parent's blood. 2) blood allegedly found in garage/loft. 3) purple scarf found near frykowski. 4) purple ribbons found on front door handle (or inside house) 5) beer bottle in sharon's bedroom. None of sebring's fingerprints found in it. 6) bloody fingerprint on gate button...wasn't this found to be sebring's blood? 7) sounds of a loud argument being heard in the vicinity of the house at a time much later than when the killers supposedly left the scene.

Jay said...

This looks to be very interesting. The blood evidence is intriguing- it can tell a whole different story about what happened.
How about the missing videotapes? The ones they do mention are explained away in a very cursory manner I think.

shoegazer said...

What I'm going to limit my list to is discrepancies between official narrative--which is mostly from testimony and pre-trial interviews with attorneys, and physical evidence.

I'll also look for affirmed, qualified evidence--and by this I mean that it has been officially noted but not explained--that's not in conflict with the narrative because the narrative never addresses it.

E.g., Krenwinkel at the guesthouse. There's no evidence, so no anomaly for the purposes of this list. It's an interesting speculation, but without evidence any qualified evidence. This differs from Watson's later admission that he cut Tate's face, but this is in direct conflict with detailed autopsy evidence and sworn trial testimony, creating an anomaly.

starviego said...

Reports of gunshots/screams after 1am?

starviego said...

Cocaine and cannabis found on scene, but no tests done for these substances on the tox screens of the victims?

shoegazer said...

Reports of gunshots/screams after 1am?

Interesting, but it's not evidence, it's testimony without any corresponding evidence. No anomaly for the purposes of the list.

There needs to be crime scene evidence and testimony of some kind that is incompatible, or crime scene evidence that is either unexplained, or explained in no convincing fashion. Glasses is an example of completely unexplained.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Parent's blood inside? I've never heard that before, Sixties. Can you share more?

shoegazer said...

Parent's blood inside? I've never heard that before, Sixties. Can you share more?

This is the kind of stuff that unless the person suggesting inclusion on the list can point to some convincing source for the speculation I won't address.

What this list will include is a mismatch between testimony/pre-trial interviews and physical evidence at 10050 Cielo.

Not that it's an interesting question, but it's highly speculative and without qualified evidence it's basically a rumor.

E.g., consider how many times you may have heard that there was a blood stain on one of the beams. I've read people making that claim numerous times. But under oath, Granado testified that on testing, they were not blood.

So if one wants to include Parent's blood in the main house, we'd need some physical evidence of it. I mean, you can find that Parent had B-MN and claim that this somehow shows he was in the house but no such testimony or implication exists so far as I know. Frykowski and Folger both had B-MN and there is lots of testimony that they were inside at least part of the time after the attacks began.

Someone else can develop a list of rumors if they want to.

SixtiesRockRules! said...

I said it "could have been" steve's blood that was found on the living room carpet. I do not now recall precisely when and where I read that allegation. I believe it was in one of the essays uploaded here several years back, but it could also have been in one of the other essays I perused on another site. I absolutely do not vouch for the authenticity or truthfulness of ANY of the items I listed earlier. I was only repeating items that I definitely recall reading from books or posts here (or elsewhere) in years past.

David said...

Sixties said: "I said it "could have been" steve's blood that was found on the living room carpet."

From his testimony (and the incomplete blood report) Granado never collected any samples from the living room. This actually bothered Bugliosi. You have to remember, however, what his role was in 1969. This isn't DNA evidence collection. So this one is not accurate.

Of course, if we had the complete blood report we might be better able to address other locations that have been mentioned.

As an aside, the relatively recent release of files by the DA renders the "cast off" answer to type O blood on the porch impossible. Either Granado made the same mistake three times when he tested the blood collected there from the location shown in the trial exhibit or there is a significant issue there.

David said...

Oh, and Frykowski, Folger and Parent were all blood type B so if type B was in the living room how is it possibly identified as Parent's blood?

Manson Mythos said...

What happened that night all came from Susan Atkins and her attorneys who absolutely had an agenda that had nothing to do with her best interests. Kasabian just corroborated it. I'm sure they stuck to that story for many specific reasons, but at the very least it was because Atkins testimony is what Bugliosi secured the indictments with. If they attempted to prove her story wrong, the entire testimony and indictments would go out the window.

The official narrative of what happened is bullshit because aside from the contradictory blood map:

1. the towel over Jay Sebring's face wasn't just thrown on. That towel is tucked under the rope and not a single one of them ever took credit or addressed it.

2. The glasses had no finger prints. Glasses are perhaps the most soiled items you'll find. They were wiped and in addition to that, not a single person in the orbit of the victims ever came forth and claimed them. They were planted.

Watson early on and even over the years would express doubt over using the rope. Recently he's gotten a bit more brazen about not only having no memory of it, but flat out stating that Charlie went to the house later that night.

Charlie did take credit for unexplained glasses and towel over Sebring's face. I believe he did tell Emmons that, because Emmons was slick, but I don't think he was slick enough to go back and pin point these small unexplained things.

The shots later on in the night? The reports from those closest to the house match up with the time they said the murders occurred and number of bullets used. The reports of shots later do not and all are slightly different, so these people didn't hear the same things at the same time. Also, some of those reports came from people who I do not believe could hear that weak buntline from the distance they were from the house. The loud arguing was reported by a 14 year old who didn't exactly live close to the house.

So no, no shots fired later. I don't believe it.

Manson Mythos said...

BTW:

Granado saw the location of Voytek Frykowski, Sharon Tate and Jay Sebring's bodies. You'd think after taking the blood samples, he would say...."you know what, this isn't consistent with where the bodies were" and at least double checked some how. But obviously it was good enough for him.

What bothered me about the blood map is that Frykowski got the worst of it. But yet in the area where he and Tex were fighting, there is little to no B blood. According to Atkins' narrative (sort of), all that blood on the porch would logically be his. But we know Tex bashed him in the head with the gun and yet some of the grip had no blood on it at all.

So I think that while Tex and Frykowski was fighting, a bulk of the violence on him happened outside. I think once it spilt outside, Tex shot him and then went back to inflict the stab wounds on him.

I can say that I know for a fact that what Watson says on the "Tex Tapes" is that he stabbed Folger in the stomach (not Krenwinkle) in the house......AFTER being outside and coming in. What was he doing outside? According to the official story Folger bolted out of the house before Frykowski made it out there. Also at some point, Sharon Tate comes out and says "What is going on here"? Which indicates she came out on her own, not brought out by one of the girls and there was an argument and scuffle already happening.

shoegazer said...

M.M:

Watson early on and even over the years would express doubt over using the rope. Recently he's gotten a bit more brazen about not only having no memory of it,

2016 parole

PECK: Is there anything I'm -- is there anything where -- you covered their heads or did the girls cover their heads or was there ropes or what was all the --

WATSON: I did. I actually tied a rope around Jay's neck and throw it over the beam and tied it around Sharon Tate's neck, yeah.

P: What was the --

W: What that was about, you know, you know we were supposed to make it look as crazy or as gruesome as possible and you know we had the rope for something. I don't know what we had it for other than to tie up people maybe. Manson had, you know, given us the rope, the bolt cutters, and the knives and stuff and sent us on our way and we carried it into the house and that's just what we did with it.

P: Were they -- were they -- had they already passed when you --

W: No, I don't -- I don't think so. No, they weren't, no. You know no, they weren't, no not at all.

P: They were still alive when this happened?

W: Yes, they were.


2021 parole

GROUNDS: The question, was she [Tate] around where all the murders are going on? She was aware of what’s going on, is that correct?

WATSON: I think so. I think so, yes. She’s -– she’s aware of what’s going on. At some time there, I had, um -- um, I had, I don’t recall this to a big extent, at one time I even thought that Manson and TJ went back over to the house and did this, but at some point, I actually believed that I -– I tied up a rope around, uh -– uh, Jay Sebring’s neck and then threw it over a beam and tied it to Sharon. Uh, I don’t know exactly what point I did this because I kinda get confused in that after I shot Jay Sebring, um, then everything went into such motion that I wouldn’t have had, I didn’t have time to tie him, them up at that particular time.

...

G: Then you were talking about, um, taking a rope and throw it over a beam and –- and, uh, it sounds like you were, uh, you tied the rope around, was it Jay Sebring’s neck, was that, you tied his neck -–

W: Yes, and, I -–

G: And then you tied it around Sharon Tate’s neck too, is that –-

W: I'm not for sure when I did this. I'm not denying it at all. I'm not for sure -–

G: You know, I'm just asking -–

W: Yeah.

G: If you did it.

W: I'm not -– I'm not for sure exactly when in the crime that I did it. Uh, early on in my dealing with this, I actually thought that Manson and TJ had done that when they went back to the scene of the crime that night when they went back to the scene of the crime that night. I can't imagine them doing that, but, uh, -–

G: Do you remember tying those ropes, that rope around their necks?

W: I don't remember tying that rope around their neck, but I -– I -– I'm not saying that I didn't do that though.

shoegazer said...

MM:

Also at some point, Sharon Tate comes out and says "What is going on here"?

Can you supply a link to this?

The goal of this entire exercise is the get past simple remembered bits of information, back to so form of testable source. People here, like everywhere else, tend to forget details and sometimes the information blurs together.

I ask for this link especially because I've never before encountered this idea that Tate came out on her own and said something, anywhere.

grimtraveller said...

Manson Mythos said:

I'm sure they stuck to that story for many specific reasons, but at the very least it was because Atkins testimony is what Bugliosi secured the indictments with. If they attempted to prove her story wrong, the entire testimony and indictments would go out the window

Why in the world would they want to prove Atkins' story wrong ? Indeed, what about it would any prosecution try to prove wasn't so, other than Susan stabbing Sharon Tate ?

The glasses had no finger prints. Glasses are perhaps the most soiled items you'll find

Yeah, but they also have so many thin parts that only lend themselves to ridges and not enough print detail, as well as going through much finger movement.

not a single person in the orbit of the victims ever came forth and claimed them. They were planted

That conclusion doesn't make. For all you know, any one of the victims that frequented the house, could have borrowed the glasses because they liked the frames and wanted to get a similar pair.

Watson early on and even over the years would express doubt over using the rope. Recently he's gotten a bit more brazen about not only having no memory of it, but flat out stating that Charlie went to the house later that night

Yeah, after stating that he only believed Charlie had gone to Cielo. Not only that he also says Manson went to Cielo with TJ. Poor move, man. TJ had long since fled.
He remembered the rope in 1978. He remembered the rope in 2016. He's fuzzy about it in 2021.
From this point on, nothing Charles W says can honestly be taken as reliable anymore, if it ever was, regarding the crimes. He's long been dodgy on detail and now the dodginess has caught up with and overtaken him.

Charlie did take credit for unexplained glasses

Yeah, and in both instances, he was peddling bullshit. We know, as per Emmons, that the glasses he claims he planted, are ones that he says he used to start fires with. The glasses found at Cielo were for shortsightedness and cannot start fires.
And then he tells George Stimson twice, that he gave the glasses to the killers to drop as a false clue. Atkins utterly contradicts this, the others have never ever mentioned the glasses, a bit of an oversight, don't you think ? Not to mention, admitting that he was part of the conspiracy, something he always denied.

The reports from those closest to the house match up with the time they said the murders occurred and number of bullets used. The reports of shots later do not and all are slightly different, so these people didn't hear the same things at the same time

I agree with you on this. It's also very logical why, on that initial Tate report, all the sounds heard were listed. The police had nothing else to go on. But even a cursory glance would tell the world's leading sceptic that all of those sounds heard did not arise from the same event or even events.

I can say that I know for a fact that what Watson says on the "Tex Tapes" is that

You're fond of saying "I know for a fact" but never backing up what you claim to know for a fact. Just out of interest, have you heard the Tex tapes and if so, how did you get to hear them ?

shoegazer said...

MM: The glasses had no finger prints. Glasses are perhaps the most soiled items you'll find

GT: Yeah, but they also have so many thin parts that only lend themselves to ridges and not enough print detail, as well as going through much finger movement.

As you allude to, there's the possibility that the glasses were dusted for prints, but no usable prints could be lifted. Some then conflate this with there being "no prints" and further run with the ball, taking it to mean that they were wiped.

At this point we cannot definitively state this one way or the other, so it's premature to imply that they were wiped purposely.

MM: not a single person in the orbit of the victims ever came forth and claimed them. They were planted

GT: That conclusion doesn't make. For all you know, any one of the victims that frequented the house, could have borrowed the glasses because they liked the frames and wanted to get a similar pair.

Here's a point you may be more familiar with that I am currently. I'll try to get a better resolution on it if I ever do an article on the glasses and/or trunks, but I spent some time recently going thru the TBL trial transcripts, and to the best of my recollection we have one of the gardeners signing for the delivery of the trunks to the front porch, but not inside. When the gardener left shortly thereafter, they were still on the porch,

Later a guy delivered/exchanged a bike, and so far as I recall, no mention was made of the trunks one way or the other.

So some time before the killers arrived, the trunks were moved in, but by whom? Not Tate or Folger, most likely. This seems to leave Frykowski and/or Sebring.

There's the possibility that they got someone else to help, but this person then never came forward. If such a person existed, the glasses could have been theirs. That's a very thin speculation, but we don't have a lot to go on.

Too, the position of the glasses, as found, at first suggested to me that they had been lying atop the rightmost trunk (from the POV of the LR looking toward the entrance), but looking more, it seems less and less likely. I suspect that they'd have fallen further from the trunks, been less close. Trying to recall, there was a desk more toward the centerline of the room, pushed close to the windows. That said, as a rental (possibly partly furnished) the glasses could have been left in the desk by any previous tenant, one of the residents found them and placed them on the desk, and they may have been knocked off of the desk toward the trunk if Watson rushed along that route to cut off (so to speak) Frykowski as he tried for the door.

Also highly speculative, but at least I'm not trying to pass it off as fact, hey?

..but these are why the glasses are on the anomalies list.

Just a small, but irritating piece.

shoegazer said...

A tiny bit more re fingerprints on the glasses...
glasses


"Helder said there were some fingerprint smudges on the glasses, but no indentifiable “ridges'” investigators could use to trace their owner."

Here's a photo of what purports to be the glasses, theirownselves:

photo of glasses

This illustrates the biggest weakness I see demonstrated in this group: pompous, blustering certainty about "facts" that turn out to be specious.

Torque said...

I would like to offer at least three observations here. They may not be anomalies, but perhaps innocent unexplained elements.

1) Looking at the many available aerial photos of cielo after the murders, I notice Abigail's Firebird parked considerably further away from the fence than Jay's Porsche. The fence I refer to here is the wood rail fence that separates the parking area from the front lawn. Why?

2) Looking at a photo of Roman in Life magazine on the Cielo porch a week after the murders, and I see one of the carriage lights on either side of the front door is burned out. Susan Atkins said that after turning out the lights inside the house, there was enough light coming in the windows from outside to carry out their attack. Makes one wonder if one of those lights was burned out on August 8th. Perhaps those lights were left on for a week post murders, and one of them burned out in that time.

3) Christopher, Rudi Altobelli's Weimaraner, was let out by Bill Garretson, ostensibly unattended. Susan Atkins says she saw a "hunting dog" looking in at her while in the house. I believe this is a true statement, and I believe she saw Christopher. My question is: if Christopher was on the lawn during the attacks, did Tex or Patricia encounter him? How did Christopher make it back to the guesthouse on his own, and unhurt, if he was in the presence of armed killers. It is known that Christopher could sometimes be a mean dog, and at one time even bit Rudi. One would think that he would have barked wildly, and perhaps try to attack at least Tex, Patricia, or even Linda.

shoegazer said...

I'll add these under "minor" anomalies.

Thanks!

shoegazer said...

BTW, these are the sorts of details that really interest me. I don't for a moment think that they turn the case upside down, but in resolving them as best we can, we get a much clearer picture of the event, if we're lucky.

Speculator said...

Shoe - a few observations. I think it’s a noble effort, in principle, to try to arrive at a rational explanation for the various anomalies that you’ve listed. But it’ll be a flawed one. Not for the lack of effort and application of minds but simply because there are so many unknowns and different conjectures surrounding these anomalies. Whichever way you approach each one you’re left having to apply judgment and our own prejudices (in terms of what we believe did or didn’t go down) come into play. We’ll still argue about what we think are or aren’t definitive explanations! That’s not to say that it’s not a worthwhile and interesting exercise. That’s why you have to be careful about accusing posters of pompous blustering as some of the Evidence of the night is definitely open to different interpretations. A few examples. The glasses for instance. You allude to the point that they could have belonged to a previous tenant or some other innocent explanation. That’s an entirely rational suggestion. However, given that the police saw these glasses as a key piece of evidence I’d be fairly sure that they would've asked Chapman whether she had seen them on the property before. And them suddenly surfacing at the time of the murders would be a coincidence to say the least.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Good points.

I get tired of reading the same old suspicions over and over and over over again AS IF THEY WERE PROVEN.

"I know for a fact" kinda stuff.

So far as I'm concerned, anyone can speculate anything, but if we are too fucking dumb to tell the difference between speculation and an attempt at fact-sharing, then this is not the place for me. I'd suggest at least making an attempt to label a speculation as just that, and if you can at least link to what you think may be factual, I'd at least try to follow up.

The problems are interesting, but...

tobiasragg said...

"Susan Atkins says she saw a "hunting dog" looking in at her while in the house. I believe this is a true statement, and I believe she saw Christopher. My question is: if Christopher was on the lawn during the attacks, did Tex or Patricia encounter him?"

This is true, but the sighting happened before most of the violence began. Atkins indicated that she glanced out the window at the time when the victims had been strung up, but no one had been stabbed or shot yet. She added that when she looked again, the dog was gone. Watson describes this period in his book, this was when money was being fetched and Folger was trying to calm everyone down and perhaps sooth the intruders. I place this dog-sighting as happening during this series of events.

As for Christopher, Garretson spoke of that dog's ability to escape out of the little enclosed back yard area associated with the guesthouse, adding that he was the only dog of the three who knew how to do this. He also mentioned that the back door was open that night, so my take has always been that Christopher scooted out and into the front yard and then returned to the guesthouse before the killing spree began. I found the Garretson info in the trial transcript, the police interview, or both.

"I think it’s a noble effort . . . But it’ll be a flawed one . . . That’s why you have to be careful about accusing posters of pompous blustering as some of the Evidence of the night is definitely open to different interpretations"

This was my initial thought when I read this thing. These questions have been pondered, debated and investigated for decades now. What is known is known at this point and far better informed people than those of us here failed to come up with much of a definitive answer. This is especially true of the glasses (will always remain a red herring) and the blood evidence, where the very basis for conjecture was at least in part flawed. All of that and much more has already been explored here in some amount of depth. Info, rumors and topical ideas gleaned from books or from memory or other sources should not be met with derision or insults, as these are offerings meant with good intent. No one comes here out of malice and no one speaking up here is seeking to be put down for sharing what they believe or what they think they know/remember.

tobiasragg said...

"Watson early on and even over the years would express doubt over using the rope. Recently he's gotten a bit more brazen about not only having no memory of it"

Watson is particularly unreliable, especially in parole hearings. Unless the actual Tex Tapes are ever released to the public, the most accurate account we are likely to receive from him is that first book, and even there it seems clear that he is recounting at least some parts of the story from the official narrative. He speaks rather extensively of the rope in this book, in fact he leaves zero doubt as to its role in the events of that evening. In an interview with him I read somewhere, he indicated that he expressed confusion over the rope in his trial, stating that he did not carry the rope when entering Cielo, he had no idea how it got there, etc. He says he testified in this manner on the rope and a few other aspects of the crimes to try and create doubt in the jury's collective mind. These days though, I think he's just confused.

"Also at some point, Sharon Tate comes out and says "What is going on here"?"

This did happen, I believe it was Atkins who shared this detail but I cannot remember where. The question from Tate occurred as she and Sebring were entering the living room from the bedroom hallway however, not after violence had begun. Watson omits this detail from his first book, but there he does describe his reaction in the same way that Atkins did, stating that he grabbed her arm and jerked her into the room

"I can say that I know for a fact that what Watson says on the "Tex Tapes" is that he stabbed Folger in the stomach (not Krenwinkle) in the house......AFTER being outside and coming in."

The Tex Tapes have not been released to the public, so no one can state anything as fact citing that as a source. If you are speaking of the other "Tex Tapes", the ones that served as the source for his first book, he does not mention this at all. There, Folger goes from fighting with Katie to suddenly running across the lawn, he does not account for her actions in between. Somewhere else Tex did share that he stabbed Folger in the gut, though. This happened, he said, after he delivered stab wounds to Sebring. He said he wasn't sure what to do after he'd finished with Sebring, so he stabbed Folger. You'd have to seek the source on this one; I don't think he really addresses much murder-related detail in the second book, so it probably comes from one of those early parole hearings. Again, though, with Watson you never know which detail(s) you're going to get at any given time.

"Krenwinkel checking out the guesthouse door handle was a much later parole hearing admission."

The only reason that this wasn't mentioned until later parole hearings is that the only two people involved (Krenwinkel & Watson) were not exactly in the mood to share such things during their original trials. Bill Garretson did say that he noticed the front door handle had been turned down, but I couldn't begin to tell you when this was said. If it was an early quote, it would be pretty believable. If it came much later than the late 70's, you'd have to question-mark it.

tobiasragg said...

"I recall coming across an interview where Charlie complained about not being able to shave or cut his hair, though I don't know which one."

Let's face it, Charlie complained about most everything under the sun at some point, and I long ago came to the conclusion that the dude just enjoyed complaining. The reason I would call "bullshit" on this particular complaint (not meaning "bullshit" over your sharing it, but the complaint itself) is that Manson did, in fact, change his appearance quite often during that lengthy trial. His might have been self-administered hair changes and head shavings, but even the misc perp walk films from that time reveal the various looks Charlie adopted over the months. In fact, he was clean-shaven as the trial began so he was obviously shaving himself.

Speculator said...

Shoe - I think you’re a bit similar to me. In that one of my fascinations with this case is not only the utterly bizarre and terrifying circumstances of it but also the various anomalies that can lead one down different paths in terms of who really did what and what the possible motive(s) may have been. It’s a pretty unique set of circumstances where the perps have all given their (supposedly) truthful accounts but there are still so many anomalies and bits of mystery. They may or may not all be inconsequential in the overall scheme of things but they are incredibly intriguing nonetheless. So I do applaud you for posting this.

Speculator said...

Tobias - I concur with what you say about Watson’s evidence. The descriptions of the events in his first book are pretty much a regurgitation of the girls’ testimonies- even some of the wording is embarrassingly similar for what is supposedly his own personal account. I think the point that Mythos made regarding them all following the lead given by Atkins and her lawyers in her original statement is a valid one. By for reasons we can only speculate.

shoegazer said...

Bill Garretson did say that he noticed the front door handle had been turned down, but I couldn't begin to tell you when this was said. If it was an early quote, it would be pretty believable. If it came much later than the late 70's, you'd have to question-mark it.

I think it's from a quoted passage from an article on this site. Let me check...

Garretson article 1


Speaking of Krenwinkle, she also mentioned in the same interview that she had approached the guesthouse but, all of a sudden, a wave of guilt and remorse took her over and she walked away without even trying to enter (a very inconclusive statement on her part). Garretson, however, recalled to me how he had stood there and watched an attempt to turn the doorknob from the outside—which was only prevented by the fact that he had already been spooked enough to lock it.

There are these two I read back in 2019. Again, it's sorta hearsay...

Pt 1

Pt 2

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Much appreciated!

tobiasragg said...

"I think the point that Mythos made regarding them all following the lead given by Atkins and her lawyers in her original statement is a valid one. By for reasons we can only speculate."

I feel pretty sure that they weren't following Atkins simply to follow Atkins. I believe that so much aligns with Atkins because so much of what she initially shared was true. Obviously she lied about having stabbed and killed Tate, but she didn't seem to be holding much back at that time, either.

As far as seeking the most honest accounts one can find of the actual murderous portions of this evening, I think one is in fairly safe territory taking Atkins' account from inside the house and Kasabian's account of what she witnessed from the outside. From there, one can take the various accountings coming from Watson & Krenwinkel and seek for points of agreement between what they share and what the first pair has shared. Where we have a decently-close agreement of fact, we're probably in pretty safe territory. On moments that have only one source for a factoid, then we're in best-guess territory.

On Watson, I think his most clear-headed and likely most honest territory came in the late 70s - early 80s, when he felt that he was facing a good chance for parole. One of those hearings is on YouTube and all of them are available via transcript, of course. With him, I look for self-agreement. There are certain details he reports rather consistently and those are likely the most trustworthy.

Another pitfall I see people falling into is in omission. Many times I read people saying "well they didn't mention THIS or THAT detail, so it must not be true" as if parole hearings are meant to capture and record every little fact a perp remembers. There are lots and lots of examples of this, just one being the apparent Parent/fence matter. "No one mentioned hearing this happen, so it must not have happened as Parent was backing out of his parking space" is the point we see making so often. Well, the sound of wood cracking or a car scraping against a curb is rather incidental to the central matter at hand and a detail certainly not notable perhaps as one is preparing to carry out a rather monumental task. It's like someone asking you what you had for lunch and your leaving out the fact that the mailman dropped your mail as you were making your sammich. It simply isn't an important fact.

Another good example of the above is Krenwinkel's aiding Atkins in fetching Tate/Sebring from the back bedroom. There are times she mentions or agrees during parole hearings that she did this and there are times she omits this. So did she or didn't she? You'd have to look to Atkins or Watson over the years for corroboration, as Krenwinkel herself has been quite inconsistent on the matter. The more-recent parole boards never fail to bring this omission up in declining her bid, however.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Here's a sample of the sort of stuff I think about and I like, and what I am hoping for from this forum...

If you look at the autopsy reports for the five Cielo victims, that are available on line at autopsies you find that there is a blood type report for only two of them. No blood type appears on the other three.

This may be OK, but it makes me nervous. It makes me want to double-check the autopsies on the site (re-read, for accuracy), search for another source of autopsies (to compare for consistency/completeness), and to go back over all of Granado's and Noguchi's testimony as to how the victim's blood types were determined.

...and it's no doubt obvious to all here that if there was a mistake in determining Frykowski's blood type--that it was in fact O-MN and not B-MN, this explains a lot, doesn't it?

I've even discussed this with others here two years ago, but I want to really, really check into this.

Similarly, there's no blood on the knife that was found in the chair cushion, which helps to align timing of when it must have been lost, with how the struggle unfolded.

And testimony in TLB indicated that there was something coating the blade, which is intriguing to me. So I want to check further down that path.

Things like if the trunks were knocked over when Frykowski tried to flee the house, and if it's also true that Tate's blood is in copious evidence just outside the front door, and if the sequence in the narrative is essentially true (and I can see no compelling reason it would not be, especially after all these years) then this means someone would have had to haul Tate back into the house, bleeding, directly over the trunks, without either apparently disturbing the trunks, or getting a lot more blood on them than was found. Remember, she's still not dead yet, according to all versions of the narrative.

This is the sort of thing that interests me. The motive doesn't interest me very much by comparison.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Well said, Spec. I was hoping this post would spark an interesting discussion down below. Anecdotally, and yes I know anecdotes are a huge issue in this study, I've personally been told, viewed, etc, things people ask me not to mention publicly. And I'm just dumb Greewhite. I have no problem believing several people are sitting on several enlightening facts. But would anyone believe them anyway?

I get what Shoegazer is trying to do but agree it's near impossible.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

But yes, Shoe, totally. I spend so much time asking for proof on crazy claims. Make this a series you revisit as needed, please.

David said...

Shoegazer said: "....if there was a mistake in determining Frykowski's blood type--that it was in fact O-MN and not B-MN, this explains a lot, doesn't it?"

There isn't.

Granado's testimony is at Vo. 71, pp 9075. He obtained blood from each victim and typed it, upon receipt. Herrera (ME) also typed the blood, independent of Granado (see, old post, image- Granado's Big Mistake) and it came back type B.

Since I am not allowed to state what I also learned independently when I wrote the blood post back then but don't have a link I'll stop there. Suffice it to say Frykowski was blood type B.

By the way, the anomaly of the O blood on the porch was recognized by the court in the Watson trial at Vol.13 page, 2145.

shoegazer said...

G. G-W:

I get what Shoegazer is trying to do but agree it's near impossible.

Let me make clear what I'm trying to do, GW.

I'm trying to make things clearer, more certain, that they are now, on this site. Not for the readers, but for my own satisfaction; if others find similar satisfaction, so much the better, but it's non-essential.

I do not expect to obtain perfect resolution, only an improved version.

In no way do I think that nothing new can be learned. I'd point, once again, ad nauseam, that I do not think that even a single reader here knew who the architect of 10050 was, but if you had asked, in the form of an open question, if anyone knew, you'd get LOTS of takers. And they'd all be wrong, most likely.

It think it's possible to apply the same methodology used to find the history of 10050 and 10048 to some of the other ambiguous issues we discuss here.

People here are acclimated to the ethos practiced on this site. It's playful, it's fun, but too, it's pretty credulous, and it tends to be compartmentalized. It's as if some of the participants hold tight onto their source material as if it was a sales lead, and they expect to profit by it, somehow. If we ever adopted an open-handed cooperative model, I think we'd be much better off.

Coming onto this forum from other sites, both times--2019 and 2022--this was what first struck me. A bunch of people attempting to hoard information--or worse: they really had no support information, or of very questionable quality, and yet still wanted to believe it, either to hold onto some kind of pissant forum status, or some other needy reason.

"Can you dig it?"

shoegazer said...

David:

Yes, I've read those references, and recently.

I'm saying that this is a paradox--a conundrum. There are mutually exclusive conditions when comparing the narrative and the physical evidence. I want to accommodate both in some some fashion, but at some point we may be forced into disallowing parts of either. The challenge is to determine, as objectively as possible, which parts to accept as having greater likelihood of validity.

That's what I want to work on, to my own satisfaction. I don't expect anything to be definitive, but I hope to make some situations clearer.

Also, the troubling part about two autopsy reports with blood typing requests and three without: do you have any theories as to what that's all about? I'm working with the idea that it had to do with the way the autopsies were scheduled--what person or team did them. Both of the females had the blood typing sheet, and none of the males did.

Maybe there's another, more complete source for the autopsy reports?

David said...

I applaud your plan and this post and I am 'all in' on what you find. [I might add that there is not enough blood on either of the towels to 'write' PIG on the door.]

But the rabbit hole of 'VF's blood type was wrong' isn't a possibility. I'd offer: trust the evidence. The odds of both the ME and Granado getting that wrong are astronomical.

When I wrote that post I was focused on Frykowski and, like you, thought 'what if the original typing is wrong'. I can't speak to other victims except that the image I attached in the post (and referenced) was not in the 'on line' autopsy report. At the time I FOIA'd the autopsy report but that is where I got that image. If I knew how to attach an image from the post or link to it, here, I would it is there if you want to see it.

SOP would have been to have the ME do a blood test and also send blood from the victims to Granado. He would confirm the testing and run his tests. If he followed SOP he did so 3x, which is why he testifies on cross examination that he was running blood test 'weeks after' the crimes. Remember the FBI hired him so he's not a novice.

I believe it is highly unlikely someone breached that chain of evidence by not following the SOP.


David said...

Could he have gotten it wrong? Sure but the odds are so extreme I (IMO) would say 'no'.

David said...

Note "IMO"

shoegazer said...

David:

I read your 7 part series over and over again back in 2019. I believe we may have exchanged privately at that time, as well.

I respect the thoroughness and depth of your work on this, and I'm convinced after reading Granado's testimony last month that he is experienced and competent. So it's less that I'm looking to prove he made errors, but more along the lines of exploring a very unlikely series of logistical errors.

I'm fine with however this turns out--no skin in the game. The lack of resolution due to glaring inconsistencies is personally distasteful: I'm the kind of person who likes as much resolution as I can recognize. It's a long-time quirk.

So in an attempt to retain all physical evidence I try hard to construct a scenario that a) allows for Tate and Sebring to be significantly wounded on the front porch, and b) somehow be conveyed back into the house to the locations where they were found. I'm even willing to suspend credibility of the narrative, just in an attempt to resolve the implied sequence of events. What's physically possible or likely?

And even disregarding the narrative, it's still damned hard to envision how this might be done, at all, under any circumstances. We have the trunks to get over/around with two wounded victims, and very little blood along any path back into the room. We've got the back of the sofa just waiting t absorb any passing blood smears..

I can see a fairly plausible situation where Tate got to the front door and was initially attacked there, and it would still fit within the general outline of the narrative, but the blood spatter is significant: it looks like an arterial hit, spurting out. To get back in, back in front of the sofa, without a big blood trail seems very unlikely.

For Sebring the problem is the opposite: it's hard to come up with anything consistent with the narrative that has him out there, but the blood evidence (less copious than the Tate blood spatter) is plausible since much of his bleeding was internal, according to the autopsy--2500 cc was in his left lung, I think. This could be almost half his total blood volume.

Now, all that said, I see not only no reason for the convicts to carry on an elaborate false narrative that is in general quite consistent in terms of sequence over a period of 50 years, but what's more, I seriously doubt that they could all keep a fabricated story straight and consistent--with no cross-checking with each other to reinforce the false narrative over that period of time, and again, for what reason?

This is great, isn't it ? Tying into problems like this... :^)

David said...

I always tried to follow the process of think-know-prove and freely admit that last one is very, very hard to accomplish in this case.

I am certainly not steadfastly wedded to anything I wrote/researched back then and always hoped on all my posts that something would come forward to prove or disprove what I wrote (still waiting on Atkins killing Frykowski ;-)).

On the blood evidence I have always hoped someone would actually obtain Granado's 'research' and it showed he screwed up. I would frankly yell "thank the gods"! Like you, I have never been able to put together a scenario that placed her on the porch.

It has always seemed to me that that official narrative started with Atkins and Bugliosi set out to prove what she said- but she is not reliable.

His methodology, his way of questioning witnesses, actually assured the outcome he was after and Kasabian was the 'proof' of his theory. But his methodology, frankly, assured that he would never actually prove the 'truth' of what happened that night.

Then again, he didn't need to prove that 'truth'. That wasn't his job. His job was to convict murderers and ensure they received a fair trial. They were murderers (although a couple walked on the conspiracy) and had they had separate trials they would have received a fair trial.

We sometimes believe his job was to find the truth and we bristle when he doesn't. We say he lied or made things up. No he didn't.

I think if we can step away from trying to 'prove' an outcome we desire we begin to see your anomalies.

For example, is it logical that Atkins left the house, walked outside in the middle of that slaughter, walked through all that blood twice and essentially said 'oops, I forgot my knife' while Sharon Tate sat on the couch, alone, in the midst of that horror?

To 'prove' this happened we tend to focus on Sharon. 'Yes' she could have been frozen with fear and not chosen any one of four escape routes, armed herself or tried to hide. That makes sense.

But the real question should be: why would Atkins leave her there and then announce she was going back in, not to secure Sharon, but to find her knife, seeming to ignore Sharon's very existence. Sharon is alive at that moment according to the narrative says.

Now, with one minor change to the narrative that event makes far more sense: that exchange happened inside the house.

Think- Know-Prove. Everything I just said is all 'think' and I freely admit if you can't prove it you really have nothing.

Sorry for all that.

To your point:

Occam's Razor says Granado made a mistake.

And 'yes', it is 'great'. Its why it keeps dragging me back when I try to sit at the beach and watch the sunset over the ocean.

Keep up the good work!
.

Speculator said...

Greene - you surely can’t just say that you’ve been told/seen things people don’t want you to publish without providing a little bit of context?! Even if you can’t reveal the reveals :-) !!

Peter said...

They were murderers (although a couple walked on the conspiracy) and had they had separate trials they would have received a fair trial.


Can you point me to the orders denying their motions for separate trials. I must have missed those.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

LOL, Spec! No one would believe me anyway.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Yes, Shoe. I dig.

grimtraveller said...

GG-W said:

LOL, Spec! No one would believe me anyway

Um, you'd be surprised what people would believe !

tobiasragg said:

The Tex Tapes have not been released to the public, so no one can state anything as fact citing that as a source. If you are speaking of the other "Tex Tapes", the ones that served as the source for his first book

You've kind of lost me here. Aren't they both one and the same thing ? The tapes that served as the source of Watson's first book are the "Tex Tapes."

tobiasragg said...

"You've kind of lost me here. Aren't they both one and the same thing ? The tapes that served as the source of Watson's first book are the "Tex Tapes."

There are two things that people refer to when speaking of the "Tex Tapes". The first is what you are thinking of, the recorded conversation between Watson and the good Rev. Ray that served as the basis for that first book.

The other Tex Tapes are the ones associated with his attorney conversation that happened soon after he was first incarcerated in Texas, back in December of '69 or early '70 or whenever it was. Tex has said that he did a full recounting of his crimes & activities and then various legal strats were discussed, this was in that upstairs conference room in the county jail he was being held at. Those tapes remained in the attorney's possession until his death fairly recently, at which time they became the object of great fascination and desire for some. Leslie Van Houten also sued to have these released, though not necessarily to the public, as part of one of her parole bids. Watson spoke often of her reluctant participation at the LaBianca scene and apparently her feeling was that this information might increase her release chances. That bid worked its way through the courts and hit the headlines, this was just a handful of years ago. The result was that the tapes were transferred to the LAPD, who gave them a listen and then declared there was "nothing new" to be heard there and the matter was declared closed, much to the chagrin of many. One of the Manson obsessives made a noisy bid to have these released but that effort failed. Can't remember who it was, but it was a better-known Manson fanatic. Anyway, those tapes remain with the LAPD and seem unlikely to be aired publicly any time soon. My feeling has always been that whatever is shared there probably largely mirrors what was told to the Rev. Ray, but coming so soon after the crimes there could well be many more remembered details there.

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

There are two things that people refer to when speaking of the "Tex Tapes".

Very good info. Thanks!

David said...

Tobiasragg said: "One of the Manson obsessives made a noisy bid to have these released but that effort failed."

That obviously is not me (at least I hope it's obvious) but back in 2017 I filed a California Freedom of Information Act request to try to get the tapes. A colleague suggested what seemed like an interesting approach as they had previously denied a request saying they did not have to give me transcripts so I broadened the request including going to LA to listen to the tapes, offering a thumb drive, drop box, etc. and certifying I would not seek to financially profit from the disclosure.

Here is what they said to me when they denied the request:

"The so-called "Tex Watson Tapes" remain in the possession of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). As I understand it, the actual tapes were provided to the LADA's office at one time but they were returned to the LAPD. The LADA does have transcripts of the tapes however the transcripts are exempt from disclosure on several grounds. First, the transcripts are a part of the investigative file and cannot be disclosed pursuant to California Government Code section 6254
(t) (hereafter Govt. Code section); moreover, "the exemption for law enforcement investigatory files does not terminate with the conclusion of the investigation." (Williams v. Superior Court of San Bernardino County (1993) 5 Cal.4th 337, 392.); also, documents confidentially disclosed from one governmental agency to another are exempt from disclosure. (see Govt. Code section 6254.5 (e)); records protected by federal and State law, including, but not limited to, provisions of the California Evidence Code, relating to privilege and common law privileges are exempt from disclosure (this includes official information [see California Evidence Code section 1040]).

Lastly, documents are exempt from disclosure if the public interest served by nondisclosure outweighs the interest in disclosing the record, as demonstrated above. (See Govt. Code section 6255(a))."

Translation, since most of that is questionable, legally, they aren't going to give them to anyone.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

There are two things that people refer to when speaking of the "Tex Tapes"

That's news to me. This is the first I've heard of a conflation of any sort.

The first is what you are thinking of, the recorded conversation between Watson and the good Rev. Ray that served as the basis for that first book.
The other Tex Tapes are the ones associated with his attorney conversation that happened soon after he was first incarcerated in Texas, back in December of '69 or early '70 or whenever it was. Tex has said that he did a full recounting of his crimes & activities


The recorded conversation between Watson and Rev Ray is not what I was thinking of. In fact, I'd never given such an artifact any consideration at all. I didn't even know they existed until you linked to a conversation between them a couple of weeks ago on another post.
What you refer to as "the other Tex tapes" are what I have always referred to as "The Tex Tapes" and as far as I have understood, these are the tapes Ray Hoekstra listened to and used in writing "Will you die for me ?" Tex waived any rights to claiming attorney-client privilege, the moment Rev Ray heard those tapes. That has been partly the nature of any wrangling between him, LAPD and any judges that allowed continued use of them by LAPD. Basically, Tex cannot really lay claim to them anymore. That's why LAPD has been able to listen to them.

Those tapes remained in the attorney's possession until his death fairly recently

He died in 2009.

at which time they became the object of great fascination and desire for some. Leslie Van Houten also sued to have these released, as part of one of her parole bids

I think she was after them for a good 6 or 7 years.

Watson spoke often of her reluctant participation at the LaBianca scene and apparently her feeling was that this information might increase her release chances

I kind of suspect that supportive words from Watson would have the same effect, in the parole bids of the women, that Manson's connection with them have had in general !
But really, that 1969 Marvin Part tape recording will always unbalance Leslie. The one word you could use to describe that nuclear weapon of mass destruction is "definitive."

One of the Manson obsessives made a noisy bid to have these released but that effort failed. Can't remember who it was, but it was a better-known Manson fanatic

It was Tom O'Neill and I think he was right to try and get them released.

My feeling has always been that whatever is shared there probably largely mirrors what was told to the Rev. Ray

Same here. Because it's the same tapes ! πŸ€—

shoegazer said...

OPEN QUESTION RE CIELO TIMELINE:

It has sometimes occurred to me that the problem with the narrative, why many here seem to want to disregard it, is that it's composed of different pieces, as viewed from different points of view, and here's the kicker: it causes the timeline to be disjointed.

By this I mean that none of the three main contributors to the narrative (Kasabian, Atkins, Watson) and the sometimes contributor, Krenwinkel, saw exactly the same events simply because they were not directly present when the event in question took place. E.g., Atkins would know nothing of the pursuit up the hall as Krenwinkel chased Folger as she attempted to escape out the back door near the pool.

In fact, only Krenwinkel would know much about that part.

Similarly, Watson knows best about Parent, and Kasabian knows about what she saw as she went around the house to look for open windows/doors.

Now given this, when you add all of this together, you get some implied breaks in time, or at least the possibility that more time passed than one might suppose if you simply read each person's version.

So here are some implied gaps:

1) Immediately after Parent was shot.

After firing four gunshots, there could have been a natural response to wait just a bit, before proceeding, just to see if there was any response from within the house. They might have lingered near Parent's car, or just beyond, out of any illuminated spot, for maybe as long as 90 sec -2 min.

Me, I think not, but common sense does not eliminate this.

2) There certainly seems to be a gap in time around when Atkins attacks Frykowski. It's unclear exactly when Watson was stabbing Sebring--it could have been at the same time as Atkins fighting Frykowski, and also while Krenwinkel (and later Watson) attacked Folger in the LR, before she tried to run off down the hall.

Interestingly, if it's accurate that this took up a bit of time (1-2 mins?) this could be a chance for Tate to try to go out the front door, and be attacked from behind by Atkins, or even Watson, as he passed by to finish off Frykowski at the doorway, and later, beyond.

3) There is a sort of implied gap in time after everyone appeared to be dead. There's some talk of Krenwinkel going to the guesthouse (it doesn't matter in this scenario if she tried to enter or not) and it seems that it would have been during that period. There is also some implied narrative that Watson was essentially in the house alone for a bit after everyone was dead, before they left and before he told Atkins to write something. It was during this period, while Krenwinkel was checking the guesthouse, and Watson checking that everyone was dead inside the house (and if he did indeed check inside the house, he may well have also checked those outside on the lawn, and perhaps Parent in his car, as they left) that Watson may have put the towel on Sebring's head and re-wrapped the rope around it.

All of these are speculative and need to be gone over with a fine-tooth comb, especially #2 & #3--make a spreadsheet with the separate events in narrative sequence, then work at estimating how long each might have taken expressed as a min/max range, then add transit time (how long did it take Watson to from the doorway, to Frykowski, to Folger, and back to the LR to finish off Tate), etc. Other elements might also be added for consideration.

grimtraveller said...

David said:

Tobiasragg said: "One of the Manson obsessives made a noisy bid to have these released but that effort failed."

That obviously is not me (at least I hope it's obvious)


David, it obviously was not you ! 🀫

I am not allowed to state what I also learned independently when I wrote the blood post back then

You know me David, I'm a nosey old chap. Why aren't you allowed to state what you learned ?

tobiasragg said:

I feel pretty sure that they weren't following Atkins simply to follow Atkins. I believe that so much aligns with Atkins because so much of what she initially shared was true

I agree. Her details are all over the place because she wasn't a journalist, lawyer or chronologist, she was a bragger, trying to impress. If you're trying to impress someone with how fast you turned a corner in a car, you're not likely to be bothered with whether you indicated before you made the turn.
But she was simply the first to give shape to what happened inside the house. Now, some of it is corroborated, some of it is not, some of it opens the door to eternal mysteries, which in turn give rise to endless speculation, some of it gives rise to legit questions and forces a harder look at the evidence and some of it is, well, omission, lies, filling in but not witnessed, and later on, back-pedalling.
But I've noticed that quite often, the "Atkins was the first one to tell what happened and everyone followed on from that" line, is used as a pejorative. So often, it is said in such a way or used in such a way that more or less could be read into it, often implying something kind of dodgy or dark, but without coming right out and saying it. It's used in a similar way to Gary Hinman and drug dealing.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good implication ! πŸ‘Ί 🀑

grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

It has sometimes occurred to me that the problem with the narrative, why many here seem to want to disregard it, is that it's composed of different pieces, as viewed from different points of view

Both in this case, and in many other events {the slave trade, WW2, the Beatles, various football matches, biblical stories, the development of various musical genres, 9/11, the making of certain TV series, much history in general, actually}, it is precisely the differing viewpoints of the same event or sets of events, that I find fascinating. Harmonizing the elements aren't a problem for me. That's what life is composed of. Even with film cameras and CCTV all over the place.

Speculator said...

Shoe - a few points in response. You suggest Watson May have placed the towel over Sebring’s head. I’m pretty sure that testimonies show Atkins to be the last person in the house - doing the writing. She said the victims seemed a lot more cut up than she had seen them earlier so presumably that was down to Watson doing his final round of stabbing. She doesn’t refer to the towel over Sebring’s head though. In fact I’m sure that she was specifically asked in one interview/parole hearing where the towel landed when she threw it into the room and specifically whether it had landed on Sebring and she said no. So I’m leaning on the towel not having been tied down by Watson. Was it Atkins who just didn’t own up or was it later visitors? It’s one of those we can never know

Speculator said...

Shoe - your point about them waiting a while after shooting Parent to see if anyone had been alerted by the gun shots is a valid one and one I’ve often thought to be the case to have happened. Whilst the killers are sometimes portrayed as crazed lunatics,’Watson was careful rather than reckless in a lot of his actions that night. I think the problem we have in trying to address the anomalies and fill in the gaps is that none of the interviews with the killers were intended to create a step by step biography/analysis of every single detail of the events. And that is so unfortunate but it does leave us with questions unanswered Whether that’s down to poor interviewing skills is debatable. There are so many occasions when I’ve read trial testimony, interviews, parole board hearings when a really interesting point Is addressed by the questioner (such as the towel) but then not pursued in any further detail. You find yourself thinking why the hell didn’t you prove that further - if only!

David said...

Grim said: "You know me David, I'm a nosey old chap. Why aren't you allowed to state what you learned ?"

I was commenting on the comments up there that you should not state something as fact without a link/proof. I had typed a bit about a phone conversation I had back then but don't have a link or a cite so I deleted that and was trying (poorly) some humor.


Peter said: "Can you point me to the orders denying their motions for separate trials. I must have missed those."

I never said there were any orders.

Speculator said...

Shoe - one thing that I do find very odd is rye absence of reference to the rope prior to the perps entering the house. For instance, they refer to Watson getting the bolt cutter out of car. Specific reference to bolt cutters. They say we threw our change of clothes and knives over the fence before climbing over. Specific reference to clothes and knives. But absolutely no reference to the rope. And it was a fairly hefty length of rope too. So who was carrying it, why no referecne to it when everything else is referenced in their evidence? Is it just me that finds that strange?

Speculator said...

David - I’ve just read your point about the approach from Bugliosi ensured the pricing of his narrative and secured the convictions but didn’t reveal the truth of what happened that night. I agree entirely. The job of the prosecution is to convict the accused but not necessarily provide a biographical account of the events. And in many ways it helps them to avoid filling all the gaps in case anomalies can pick apart their case.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

You suggest Watson May have placed the towel over Sebring’s head. I’m pretty sure that testimonies show Atkins to be the last person in the house - doing the writing. She said the victims seemed a lot more cut up than she had seen them earlier so presumably that was down to Watson doing his final round of stabbing. She doesn’t refer to the towel over Sebring’s head though. In fact I’m sure that she was specifically asked in one interview/parole hearing where the towel landed when she threw it into the room and specifically whether it had landed on Sebring and she said no.

Yes, I can recall Atkins being asked about whether there was anything on Sebring's head and saying "no".

Ah...from her interview with Caballero...

RICHARD CABALLERO: What did they pull over her head?

SUSAN ATKINS: They didn’t put anything over their heads. They didn’t have anything over their heads when we left, except Sharon Tate – I threw a towel over her head.

RICHARD CABALLERO: When you threw the towel over her head, was her head near Sebring’s?

SUSAN ATKINS: Sebring and Sharon Folger —

RICHARD CABALLERO: Sharon Tate.

SUSAN ATKINS: Sharon Tate was laying curled up near the couch and Sebring was coming out this way from the fireplace and their heads were probably close together.

RICHARD CABALLERO: I know the incident about the towel that you were relating to Mr. Caruso, but what I want to ask you is when you did so —

SUSAN ATKINS: I didn’t even look – I just threw it.

RICHARD CABALLERO: So, could it have fallen therefore over Jay Sebring’s head as well?

SUSAN ATKINS: Yes.

RICHARD CABALLERO: Okay, that explains it.


Now the Grand Jury:

A: I turned around and threw the towel towards the living room area towards where Sharon Tate and Jay Sebring were lying.

Q: Did you see where the towel landed?

A: No, I didn't.


A little different...

I'll come at this from two different directions...

They were talking about Tate at first something over her head. Atkins expanded this to "They didn’t have anything over their heads when we left, except Sharon Tate – I threw a towel over her head."

So there's a bit of bouncing around as to who they were talking about, and what time frame (earlier, and when they left).
Later, she says she didn't see where the towel landed.

OK, the other point:

Were the lights on or off when they left? What's more, were they on in any portion of the house when they left?

Atkins mentions not, that it was light enough with them off, and if true, how well could she have seen when leaving, what was on Sebring's head, across the room? She was apparently wrong about the towel on Tate, so...

Of course, nothing there is definitive, or even close.

This is a lot of fun, isn't it, trying to make some sense of it.

...and of course this could be used to demonstrate that Manson (or someone) did this later, but for this scenario I'd like to leave him out.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Yes, they don't mention the rope, and it would have been awkward to handle, for sure.

But it's for certain (or as close as we'll ever get) that they brought it, so rather than seeing the omission in mentioning it as grounds for any anomalies, I tend to see it as a demonstration that certain fundamental points slid beneath their notice, and hence dropped from their memories.

It means we'll got to be doubly circumspect when evaluating the parts of the narrative, allowing for how each personality might tend to notice some things, and be relatively oblivious to others.

TabOrFresca said...

Shoegazer,

Do you have a contact email address on this site or a private one that can be used to send you data related to these topics?

tobiasragg said...

"What you refer to as "the other Tex tapes" are what I have always referred to as "The Tex Tapes" and as far as I have understood, these are the tapes Ray Hoekstra listened to"

Ah, I see now why you were confused. Yes, Watson did make the atty recording available to Rev Ray as background, but the tapes that formed the basis for the first book were recordings of an extended conversation between Ray & Watson (hence the "As told to..." subtitle). The whole point of the book was to provide a "personal" reflection from a now-faithful Tex Watson on his life, the crimes, and his process of religious conversion. The verbal (cum print) recountings of the August 8/9 crimes is not based on the conference room confession he made back in late 1969, rather it is a mid-1970's recounting of those events through his new religious lens.

P.S. I refer to 2009 as "recent" the scope of this story, meaning that the death event happened "relatively recently" in the 50+ year span between 8/69 and now.

tobiasragg said...

I should have added that one of the things that makes the confessional Tex Tapes so interesting to some out there is that it is the very first known (recorded) accounting of those crimes that had been captured. The conversation happened around Thanksgiving of '69, meaning that it was uninfluenced by things like the Atkins grand jury testimony & the reporting associated with that.

The Rev Ray "Tex Tapes" are obviously being recorded at a much different time and they involve a much-different Watson. There he is very obviously speaking from the point-of-view of a fully-informed Charles Watson who is well familiar with what people here call the "official narrative", calling on it to fill in things he admits verbally he doesn't personally remember.

shoegazer said...

Yes. sawfish666@gmail.com

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

Spec:

Look what I just found right this instant, in the Watson trial on cielodrive.com!

Q: Okay. Did Tex take anything out of the car with him?

A: Well, I just remember we were walking up, that he had rope around his shoulders.

Q: Do you know what type of rope this was?

A: Type?

Q: Yes, what color was it, for instance?

A: I don't know. I just remember he had rope around his shoulder.


Talk about coincidence!! :^)

shoegazer said...

There was an earlier question about the porchlight that was not on, and we wondered if it was not on 08 Aug.

From the Watson trial:

Q: Do you know what is shown on this photograph, Linda?

A: Yeah, it's the light on the front porch.

Q: This is the light right to the right of the front door of the Tate residence?

A: To my left.

Q: Right. Facing the house, the light is to the left of the front door?

A: Right.

Q: And coming out, it is to the right; is that correct?

A: Yes.

Q: Was that light on on the night of the murders?

A: Yes, it was.


Since she makes a point of identifying only the one on the left, as you face it from outside, I'd conclude (until shown otherwise) that the right side was burned out on the 8th.

grimtraveller said...

David said:

I had typed a bit about a phone conversation I had back then but don't have a link or a cite so I deleted that and was trying (poorly) some humor

I remember a few years back, Simon Davis made a point I'd never heard anyone say until then, and it's long stayed in my mind. He said that it wasn't necessary that every point made by a witness like a Linda Kasabian had to be corroborated. He pointed out that if, say, their first 55 points had been corroborated and the witness showed themselves as trustworthy up to that point, then a jury could consider the uncorroborated point because the reliability of that witness merited it.
Or something like that !
I think you've shown yourself to be reliable and trustworthy in Cyberspace. You've rarely been one to make a statement without some kind of evidential back up somewhere along the line. You generally make it clear if you're speculating.
So fire away !

Speculator said:

one thing that I do find very odd is the absence of reference to the rope prior to the perps entering the house....Is it just me that finds that strange?

I can't see anything remotely strange about this. Atkins tells us there was rope in the car when she got in it. She later tells us she tried to tie Frykowski's hands with it and that Tex tied three of the victims with it. So we know it was there. It matters not who carried it, whether it was slid under the fence or thrown over, if it was heavy or carried over the left shoulder as opposed to the right. Everything has details but not every detail is relevant or important.

The job of the prosecution is to convict the accused but not necessarily provide a biographical account of the events. And in many ways it helps them to avoid filling all the gaps in case anomalies can pick apart their case

Of course, one could just as easily argue that if the anomalies were that important,the defence were free to bring them up, emphasize them and make them more important than they weren't. 🀭

Speculator said...

Shoe - well done for finding that. However, that is presumably part of the LK testimony and I think her testimony smells a little bit too much of providing a first hand account that everything the prosecution wanted her to. It’s just a bit too convenient for me. Many will equally argue what reason is there to disbelieve her and how did the rope get there if Watson didn’t carry it. But I just instinctively think there’s something not right about it. I mean they’ve all talked at one time or another about “conversations” they had on the way up etc. you’re supposedly taking a huge length of rope along with you and the question of what is it for doesn’t figure in these conversations?! It wasn’t the kind of short length you’d tie anyone up with so if Watson did take it I’d say they all knew that they were going to be stringing people up when they got there. Do Atkins or Kren mention the rope stung over his shoulder? I don’t recall that in any of their accounts

David said...

Grim said: "So fire away !"

Grim, it's not that significant. The other evidence proves Frykowski was blood type B.

Assuming she and I were talking about the same person, suffice it to say "his" conscription records show the same thing.


Speculater said: "The job of the prosecution is to convict the accused but not necessarily provide a biographical account of the events. And in many ways it helps them to avoid filling all the gaps in case anomalies can pick apart their case."

I agree with you 100%. Their job is not to write history.



shoegazer said...

David:

"his" conscription records show the same thing.

Can you supply any lead to where I can find this? I believe you when you say it, but I cannot convince myself that I know this to be a fact (or as close as we'll ever get given the limits implied by epistemology) unless I see some convincing evidence with own eyes, and this is especially true if we're referring to an actual document.

Even just where I might start looking would be quite good enough, because I so far haven't a clue on how to see 60+ year old draft records from Poland.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

Watson did make the atty recording available to Rev Ray as background

I think they were more than just background. Watson says in his 2nd book:
The facts of my book 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."

but the tapes that formed the basis for the first book were recordings of an extended conversation between Ray & Watson (hence the "As told to..." subtitle)

I'd say that was debatable.
For example, why would Rev Ray need to hear the tapes that Watson did with Bill Boyd back in '69, even as background, if he was talking with Watson ?
You know, Watson's book has sufficient dodgy information to make one doubt pretty much all of it. And it's that book that really demonstrates that he had scant memory, even back then ~ which is why Rev Ray needed to hear the "Tex tapes."
For example, Watson states in the book that "During the trial itself - along with Katie and Leslie - she [Susan] would try to lay the entire blame for the murders on me, thus absolving Charlie" ~ well that's not true.
Him stating getting bail money for Mary {and the complete lack of mention of Sandy is another weird one}, being one of the motives is demonstrably untrue. But it's a biggie.
So when he says Ray Hoekstra got the facts of the murders from listening to the tapes, I believe him, because Watson himself clearly wasn't much help !

The verbal (cum print) recountings of the August 8/9 crimes is not based on the conference room confession he made back in late 1969

Well, that's not what he said in 2005. He said the opposite to that. We know that Tex's recountings have always left much to be desired and it is a point worth considering, that his book came out the year he had his first parole hearing. In future years, part of the reason he would say to parole board members that if they wanted to know the details of his crimes, check out his book, is precisely because what is in there, when it comes to the crimes, came from those 1969 recordings.
I've come to realize that it's not all that unusual. I know a number of people that hardly recall any aspects of their lives. I know people whose autobiographies would just about make a pamphlet !

David said...

Shoe said; "Can you supply any lead to where I can find this? I believe you when you say it, but I cannot convince myself that I know this to be a fact (or as close as we'll ever get given the limits implied by epistemology) unless I see some convincing evidence with own eyes, and this is especially true if we're referring to an actual document."


You know, this is why I didn't mention it in the post back then or the comment, above, or any other post I wrote. I am now being asked to 'prove' the comment. Let's understand if I could prove what I heard I would have done so at the time.

My original comment was a poor attempt at humor given that others had stated 'facts' and received this kind of response. I deleted the 'fact' from my comment for that reason.

I do recall this may have been discussed on the other site that brought me into this in the first place- Cat's site- I think that is where Deb referred me back then although I am hesitant to drag her into this based upon that memory- on the way back machine as the site was down by then and I went from there.

Short answer is: 'No'. I have nothing on my electronic leashes.

I could look through my handwritten notes when I am back in Portland and see what I have. That will not be until next week.... if you really want me to do that let me know.

I may have a name, an international phone number and some cryptic notes that leads to the district where he signed up. To be frank, I might not even have kept those notes as I didn't use them, closed my practice and retired. At the same time I made a decision to leave all this, dumped a lot of information, all the transcripts, etc, etc and got rid of a lot of those notes- phone calls with people hesitant to talk, etc, etc.

PS: I actually found the name of the blog to be an issue and mentioned that to Matt on my first tour. When I contacted people and said Manson Blog I had to constantly say 'its not a pro-Manson blog" and one person went to the blog and then e-mailed me back and told be "BS you are hyping Sitmson's book".

Let me know if you want me to look. Happy to do so. It will be next week.

tobiasragg said...

"why would Rev Ray need to hear the tapes that Watson did with Bill Boyd back in '69, even as background, if he was talking with Watson ?"

"Watson's book has sufficient dodgy information to make one doubt pretty much all of it."

You've rather answered your own question there, I'd say.

By 1977, Charles Watson had separated himself from the entire affair. What happened back in 1968-69 belonged to "Tex" and he had long since left that behind and tried his best to put it out of mind. Watson referred Ray to the tapes as background in the same way that he refers parole boards to Ray these days. It is a defensive, (self) protective move on his part.

"I think they were more than just background. Watson says in his 2nd book:
The facts of my book were taken from tape recordings I did with my attorney"

Yes, to be sure the conference room Tex Tapes recordings served as the springboard for the conversations that became Die For Me, but a 1969 Tex Watson would not have mumbled ". . . and write messages on the walls in their blood. When he started listing what he wanted written — things like HELTER SKELTER and RISE — I told him I couldn't remember all that" and "If she had not been in custody, Mary would most likely have been the one sent with us that night, instead of Linda, since Mary had the other valid driver's license in the Family"

Details like these are the product of a well-informed 1977 Charles Watson, as is "Charlie never gave up using the acid and his teaching to break down our egos and completely dominate us." 1969 Tex Watson did not have that level of insight.

Completely agreed that the atty tapes served as their reference point, but anyone who has read the Jesus-soaked reflection that is "Will You Die For Me" by Charles Watson as told to Chaplain Ray Hoekstra is based on the "Tex Tapes" he recorded as basis for the book, while the "Tex Tapes" that served as his initial confession are a different beast altogether. I think it a silly point to debate however, so feel free to have the last word if that is something that is important to you.

shoegazer said...

David:

Were/are you at the Oregon coast? Did it snow there on Monday?

David said...

Between Seaside and Astoria or if you know the area just north of Gearhart.

It did in fact. First time I have seen snow down here in the 35 years I have been coming here. Great hail too. Would attach pictures but don't know how.

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

Speculator said...

... one thing that I do find very odd is rye absence of reference to the rope prior to the perps entering the house. ...absolutely no reference to the rope. And it was a fairly hefty length of rope too. So who was carrying it, why no reference to it when everything else is referenced in their evidence? Is it just me that finds that strange?


Here is what Tex said at his trial. I wonder if the confusion over the rope is because it was brought up in that second visit to Cielo later on that night?


Box 16 Vol5020 pg5of166
Tex Watson trial, 9-2-71
Q: Now, when you left in the car at that time, Charles, are you aware of any rope in the car?
A: No, I didn't see any rope or anything in the car.
Q: Did you see anybody carrying any rope at any time during that experience on the night of the 9nth(referring to the Tate crime scene)?
A: No. I didn't see a rope.


pg46of166
Q: Now, when you stabbed her was there a rope around her neck?
A: Not that I could see.
Q: Was there any rope connected her with Mr. Sebring?
A: I didn't see anything like that.



pg90of166
Tex Watson trial, 9-2-71
Q (Bugliosi): Did you, in fact, carry the rope over your shoulder?
A: No, I did not.
Q: You never saw any rope on the night of the Tate murders; is that correct?
A: That is correct.



LADA files DVD 1 of 4 Box 20
pg153of277 Tex Watson trial, 8-17-71
Kasabian: Tex had a rope around his shoulders as he is walking up the hill to Cielo, but she doesn't see any rope in the car.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

You've rather answered your own question there, I'd say

It was the classic question that contains its own reply, but with a twist 🀩 !

It is a defensive, (self) protective move on his part

Oh, I agree wholeheartedly. I guess I'm pointing at the irony of the fact that the very thing he does to protect himself, because he has little memory of what he actually did {which shows how dispassionate he was, which then goes on to severely worry the panel members} goes a long way towards actually making it worse for himself, especially when what he says in his book actively contradicts what he is now telling them.

a 1969 Tex Watson would not have mumbled ". . . and write messages on the walls in their blood. When he started listing what he wanted written — things like HELTER SKELTER and RISE — I told him I couldn't remember all that" and "If she had not been in custody, Mary would most likely have been the one sent with us that night, instead of Linda, since Mary had the other valid driver's license in the Family"

No, of course not. The book "Helter Skelter" hadn't been written, no trial transcripts he could peruse at will existed. But that 1969 Tex was pretty astute and calculating. He had enough good sense and preservational instincts to be separating himself from the Family ouvre even then. He was sufficiently clued up to be cutting his hair and making moves that would support an insanity defence....
The second quote is particularly instructive of the mind of Charles Denton Watson, circa 1977 {and, I have to say, subsequently}, the one about Mary. Much of his information comes from other sources, not his own recollections or reflections. That's actually, as a Christian, what I've always found really irritating about "Will you die for me ?", the lack of genuine, real time self-reflection. The point about Mary isn't his. It follows directly from Bugliosi's speculation about why Linda was selected for the murders. His 2nd book is much better on that score. Not much, but better.

1969 Tex Watson did not have that level of insight

No. But 1970 Vincent Bugliosi did.

anyone who has read the Jesus-soaked reflection that is "Will You Die For Me"

I find it surprisingly Jesus bare.

I think it a silly point to debate however

I find it a point to discuss and swap views over.

David said:

First time I have seen snow down here in the 35 years I have been coming here

As I sit here after a 7 mile bike ride, in the north west London sunshine, in shorts and a T shirt, I'm finding it hard to conceive of snow, even in the Arctic !

I am now being asked to 'prove' the comment

I invoke the Simon Davis privilege !! 😼

starviego said:

LADA files DVD 1 of 4 Box 20..pg153of277 Tex Watson trial, 8-17-71
Kasabian: Tex had a rope around his shoulders as he is walking up the hill to Cielo, but she doesn't see any rope in the car


Probably because it was in the back.

Speculator said...

Grim - so if you’re happy that they were all aware of the huge length of rope that was in the car and being carried by Watson up to the house, are you also happy that they all knew the victims were going to be strung up. And thereby that they all knew in advance what the trip was all about? Contrary to what they’ve often claimed.

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

if you’re happy that they were all aware of the huge length of rope that was in the car and being carried by Watson up to the house, are you also happy that they all knew the victims were going to be strung up. And thereby that they all knew in advance what the trip was all about? Contrary to what they’ve often claimed

That's a good point.
But it also applied to the gun and the knives, yet it doesn't invalidate their claims. I don't deny that at some point, they knew murder was on the agenda, although it wasn't couched as 'murder', which is an important distinction. It's murder to you and I and most people that think conventionally {and yes, I do think that in most instances, conventional thinking is far and away the best way, despite what comes out of it at times !}. And our point of contention has been, when exactly were the women aware that they were expected to kill ? Was it at Spahn, a minute into the journey, when they got lost, when they got to Cielo ? Atkins' earliest recorded statement, in private to her lawyer, was that she didn't know until she got to the house.
But yeah, having all that rope should logically have told them something. Quite what, who can tell ? When Charlie had gone to deal with Lotsapoppa, there was no rope. When Bobby, Mary and Susan had gone to Gary Hinman's there was no rope. Yet deaths {even if one was only an assumed death} occurred. So it doesn't necessarily follow that having 64 feet of rope on board meant death to someone. There wasn't rope the following night, either. Or with Shorty.
When they found out there was to be killing, it would be interesting to know if any of them even thought about the rope. Until Susan was told to tie Wojiciech.

shoegazer said...

Yep, know it, vaguely.

Great!!! Snow, ice, hail!

My wife is from Hawaii, and one time one of her friends, who also moved here, said, in pigin:

"We get beach in Hawaii. But you guys don't get beach. You get coast."

Take care, David.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Re the rope, Watson says a funny thing about it in 2016:

INMATE WATSON: I did. I actually tied a rope around Jay's neck and throw it over the beam and tied it around Sharon Tate's neck, yeah.

PRESIDING COMMISSIONER PECK: What was the --

INMATE WATSON: What that was about, you know, you know we were supposed to make it look as crazy or as gruesome as possible and you know we had the rope for something. I don't know what we had it for other than to tie up people maybe. Manson had, you know, given us the rope, the bolt cutters, and the knives and stuff and sent us on our way and we carried it into the house and that's just what we did with it.


My feeling at this time is that the bolded part could be very close to how Watson viewed it: "Here's this stuff you'll need. Make it as grim as possible."

He might even have suggested this to Watson when he gave him instructions.

It might be interesting to speculate on the conversion--the one that Atkins ad Kasabian say they saw between Manson and Watson just before Watson got into the car.

E.g., Manson might have said, "Don't tell the girls what you're going to do until you're actually going to do it. Don't give them time to think about it, and maybe have qualms."

Pure speculation on my part... :^)

Peter said...

Then they got a fair trial.

shoegazer said...

GT:

Until Susan was told to tie Wojiciech.

This part is very interesting.

Atkins' version has her tying Frykowski the first time with the rope--strongly implying that at that point she and Watson saw the rope in its conventional utilitarian role as being used to tie something.

From the Caruso interview:

SUSAN ATKINS: No, I didn’t. I came back out and I told Tex, there’s three more in there. And so he told me take the rope and tie up what ever, his name is —

PAUL CARUSO: Jay Sebring? Sharon Tate?

SUSAN ATKINS: No, this is the man that was on the couch. The man —

PAUL CARUSO: Wojciech Frykowski

SUSAN ATKINS: Frykowski. And I was shaking so bad I couldn’t tie his hands but I got the rope around and couldn’t pull it tight.


Then she switches to a towel, and this then implies that a decision had been made between the time time to first tie up Frykowski and the re-tying with a towel, to use the rope in another fashion.

This further implies instructions from Watson at that point, and it's confirmed at the Grand Jury:

I took the money and put it in my pocket and walked her back to the living room where then Tex had me retie Frykowski with a towel that I had gotten from the bedroom (sic).

[ASIDE: Did anyone else think: "A towel? They expect to tie someone up securely with a towel?" Right there we can predict a disaster from their POV.]

Last divergent point and I'd surely welcome feedback...

Reading the statements/testimony of the various participants, you can begin to get a sort of intuitive sense of how they tend to describe things.

Watson, for example, seems to have a very poor memory, and I don't mean this facetiously. I don't wish at this time to speculate as to the cause(s), but just note that I believe in truth that he can sorta see the actions as short videoclips, but he cannot accurately sequence them. In point of fact he has admitted to extremely heinous acts, with variations in sequence, and other fairly min or details.

But Atkins in a way is more reliable. She basically tells a consistent story, but she has a tendency to be additive--she may embroider her recollections and mix in some of the stuff she thought about after the fact. I think she has an innate need to try to impress, and this can come out in her narratives.

If you want to get a gut feeling for who she is at the core, it's this simple exchange at the Caruso interview:

SUSAN ATKINS: People gave us things. Charlie had such a way of communicating with us we were just all together in the bus going through our changes, getting to know each other, getting uninhibited so we could make love each other freely. And he put me through a few changes with Lynn and he would make love with Lynn and I’d feel jealous and so would everybody else in the bus for the simple reason he always picked her. In all three years he only made love with me six times.

PAUL CARUSO: That’s strange. You’re a very attractive girl.

SUSAN ATKINS: Thank you. I’m aware of that.


She doesn't seem to realize that likely as not, they're jerking her off to gain trust/favor. She eats up the superficial flattery with a spoon and acts as if its truth is evident to all...which is as she would like it to be.

Huge, gaping weakness to be manipulated.

Kasabian is interesting. Addressing her demeanor now, and not so much how she recounts an event, she is compliant and somewhat submissive--sometimes buying herself some "space" by claiming to not understand, or to not know. But at a certain point under pressure, she gets very firm--makes a stand--not really pushing back, but digging in.

Whereas Altobelli pushes back regularly and gets to that point fairly quickly, if he thinks he's being jerked around.

My opinions, of course, not "facts".

shoegazer said...

Peter:

Then they got a fair trial.

You know, it's not that hard to get into Manson's philosophical view re right/wrong and good/evil, if you have not been raised within a religious background.

This is because if you adhere to the belief with some sincerity, the definitions of good/evil, etc,., are supplied by an infallible external source: everyone in the congregation recognizes and accepts this, else they are schismatics...or worse. The individual therefore does not need to construct his own set of rules, merely to judge which of these external, absolute rules to apply to any given instance encountered in life.

So for these folks the arguments are not about the body/intent of the rules (they're a given) but which rule the instant case falls under.

But without this you have to make up your own "good/evil". Often this can be greatly influenced by your parents' example or teachings, but here's the important difference: the instant that you consider yourself as your parents' equal as an adult human, you then realize that you could, in fact, make your own rules and they'd have every bit as much authority as theirs. All you then have to worry about is a) do YOU feel bound by them; and b) will the members of the society in which you live tolerate them?

This then applies to "justice" in the same way. You can come to see that justice is simply what the majority of those who hold power over you want to do as regards your interests. Having written laws tends to moderate excesses, but...

Everything is, in essence, "likes" or "dislikes". A popularity contest.

It's why they'e all still in jail.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

I'm not so sure Charlie was trailer park trash. Guinn does, however, and influenced generations of late comers to the mix. Bugliosi did too and had the wrong father stabbed to the floor. Genealogy mistakes were easier to make in the 1970's and continue to happen nonstop in today's family research world, albeit via faulty paper trails as opposed to the science. I can look beyond it having made my own mistakes over the years. I fear stoning from my tribe but the Schreck mistake on Rostau doesn't make or break him for me, either.

Anyhoo, an hour on Ancestry or your genealogy site of choice, Ancestry for sure, will provide a researcher with newspaper articles calling Charlie's aunts things like popular girls in town and the like. Both went to college. One died at twenty after a week's illness.

Their father, a career rail road man, died young. Charlie's grandmother remained in their home for the remainder of her life. Kathleen's oldest sister married a career railroad man, and was Charlie's constant advocate during his childhood. Uncle Luther essentially served a life sentence after committing the world's dumbest crime, and died soon after being released. Eager to change, Luther was an ordained minister at the time of his death.

We hop on people for saying racist and classist things here. Does classism get a pass? Working class hillibilles, yes. Moving up into the middle class which was supposed to be the American Dream? Also yes.

Manson's family doesn't have to be the Hillbilly Bears cartoon ever time we mention his childhood. They were not. Charlie's mother made foolish choices that carried heavy consequences and the ball started rolling.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

*racist and sexist...derrrr

shoegazer said...

G. G-W:

I'm not so sure Charlie was trailer park trash.

The term is pretty vague, and of course no one who would be regarded as TT by 85% of the populace would ever admit to it, I suspect.

It's a lot like trying to find a Nazi amongst the regular German population after WWII...

[In strong German accent]

"Me, I was never a Nazi. I knew many, many Nazis, of course, but I, myself, was never a Nazi...".

So far as you know, was Manson's father Colonel Walker Henderson Scott Sr.--and "Colonel" was not an army rank, but his first name? Was his mother 16 when she gave birth? Did she spend 5-10 in jail? Did he spend much of his life in institutional settings?

Trailer trash is not primarily a question of heredity, but of behavior. I grew up among such people from 1st-HS graduation. I will stand by my opinion.

Speculator said...

Grim - re. The rope. You’ve actually moved onto my next point. Were they all not only aware that they were going to commit murder from the outset but also that they were going to create the macabre scene of victims strung up by said rope. Let’s face it, you don’t take a 64 ft single length of rope to individually tie the hands of one or more robbery victims do you? Whatever way you look at it it’s hard to think that conversations didn’t go on or that that weren’t all clued up ahead of the event. Watson heads up to Cielo looking like he’s about to tackle Mount Eiger?!!!!! And no questions asked??!! They took a particular prop to create a particular scene.

Speculator said...

And if Atkins had 64 ft rope at her disposal why did she go looking for a towel to tie Frykowski?!! Presumably because it was taken there for more theatrical purposes than simply tying hands

Speculator said...

Shoe - with respect I disagree about your view of Atkins. I’ve always seen her as a manipulative little bitch. You’ve only to look at her YouTube interviews and those cold callous eyes and the front she puts on. I think In the example you cite with Caruso she was actually playing the player.

Speculator said...

Shoe - Watson is a plain and simple liar. He wants us to believe that he was given the bolt cutters and rope to decide by some mystic guidance as to what to do with them when he got there?!! BS. He worked out what the bolt cutters were for pretty quick it seems and given that he didn’t try to strangle anyone with the rope (!) or lassoo the dogs I’d hazard a guess that he already had a pre-planned use for it before he left Spahn!

shoegazer said...

Spec:

That's fine, and it's sure possible. But if we consider that Atkins is accurate about at first tying Frykowski with the rope...

And so he [Watson] told me take the rope and tie up what ever, his name is —

If this is accurate--and from Atkins' POV, why would she lie about this?--it sure looks like they hadn't decided yet what to do.

Here's a wrinkle, a sort of compromise, but possible...

Manson did indeed tell Watson to use the rope to hang the people there (not knowing how many there's be, maybe only one, the rope would then have worked well) but once there Watson either a) was at first reluctant to actually hang the people; and/or b) he was momentarily confused just HOW to use the rope to hang the four people present, and only resolved this partway into the action. And it was the very definition of half-assed.

There is an odd mixture of competence (climb pole, cut wires, slit screen, send people to look for others) and clownish impromptu on-the-fly decisions--telling them "You're all going to die", how to use the rope).

Quick departure: did it ever occur to you that they could have been up shit's creek if anyone was in the kitchen/nursery areas, because they seem to have completely overlooked those areas.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Respectfully disagree. She seems to me to be very transparent, easy to see her attempts at manipulation. I think she believes herself to be effective.

I see the two attorneys as seeing right straight thru her, coddling her along.

Torque said...

Shoe, indeed what if someone was in the kitchen or nursery? I've thought about this for a long time. Could be that Tex, when he gained entrance to the house, conducted a quick check of those areas before letting the girls in, or not at all. I would think that both those areas would have had their lights switched off at that late hour. Perhaps that was enough to convince Tex that nobody was present in those rooms.

Speculator said...

Shoe - yes I’ve actually wondered myself as to whether the rope was taken with an expected number of victims in mind. Afterall, there would be little way Watson could have properly strung up four people with one length of rope. One or two though, yes. And if you are to believe that it then suggests that one or more of them had prior knowledge of who they expected to be at the property and that the killings could have been targeted. You see how some of these apparent anomalies can lead to other lines of thought don’t you?! And as you also highlighted in your comment, I’ve wondered myself whether Watson was faced with a moment of confusion regarding use of the rope and then number of victims that he faced. It’s seems
nonsensical that Watson would give Atkins a 60ft length of rope to tie one man’s hands! But if Atkins is to be believed that’s what he did and it might’ve been done to his confusion

grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

ASIDE: Did anyone else think: "A towel? They expect to tie someone up securely with a towel?"

You know, when I first read the book "Helter Skelter" as a 15-year old, that's one of the things that stood out to me. It struck me as bizarre that anyone would try and tie someone up with a towel and I was unconsciously irritated by that. I remember that we used to roll up towels and use them as whips. We called them rat's tails. And they were really hard to roll up, let alone tie someone with them. I can still do a rat's tail, actually. And towels are unwieldy things. Unless you rip one into strips, how does one tie someone up with one ?

There is an odd mixture of competence (climb pole, cut wires, slit screen, send people to look for others) and clownish impromptu on-the-fly decisions--telling them "You're all going to die"

It was a psychedelic crime, planned by a psychedelic thinker and carried out by psychedelic murderers. It's paradoxical, but more than possible to understand.
The thing with psychedelic drugs is that most of them don't render a person incapable of either deep thought or practical thought, with the matching actions. Although they can. They didn't with Tex. He was quite capable of driving to Cielo, even if he did get lost {the fact that he eventually found his way attests to his clear mind}; he was able to shinny up a pole in the dead of night and cut phone wires, not electrics; he had the presence of mind to slit the screen, sneak into the house and come and open the door for the women; he had sufficient tactical nous to leave a look-out and go on in with two assailants, etc, etc. None of this takes away from the fact that some things were nonetheless, improvised or out of the ordinary.

Speculator said:

Shoe - with respect I disagree about your view of Atkins. I’ve always seen her as a manipulative little bitch

I'm in agreement with aspects of both of your observations. I think she was manipulative. But she, along with Linda, were far and away better describers of events than Pat and Tex. Observing a conversation between those two would be painful to behold. Susan had a certain spark and flow about her. Yes, she lied, she embellished and often paraded herself either as the super hero or the put upon victim ~ but she did it with brio. Pat and Tex were the "uh, um" twins. Bedtime stories from them would have you asleep in moments. πŸ₯± 😴 🀀

shoegazer said...

Spec:

Afterall, there would be little way Watson could have properly strung up four people with one length of rope.

Hah! This poses little problem for someone as clever as me.

I'd have simply brought along one of those service ticket dispensers you used to see at Baskin-Robbins, where you pull out a number on a piece of paper, and then the vendors would call out: "Serving number 37. 37 please."

You could just line them up and handle it that way...

"Now serving number 3. Step forward, please."

;^)

Speculator said...

Grim - please don’t give me thoughts of either of those two reading me a bedtime story aaaaarrggghh ;-) !!

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

Let’s face it, you don’t take a 64 ft single length of rope to individually tie the hands of one or more robbery victims do you?

You might. They had knives. Logically, they could have cut whatever lengths they needed.

Whatever way you look at it it’s hard to think that conversations didn’t go on or that that weren’t all clued up ahead of the event

And yet, that's what 3 of the women said, independently of each other.
Here's a thing though ¬> it is easy to overlook why these crimes were able to succeed. They succeeded because the killers were of one mind, essentially. And in order to be of one mind, they had to walk their talk, live the life. And part of the code was that "no sense makes sense." Another was "Never ask why." Manson was often about not thinking {when it suited him} and paraded that to his cohorts. It made up a significant part of his trial testimony. And so to fit in with what initially seemed like an easy, irresponsible way of life, that was full of love, acceptance and belonging, Family members had to go along with the dynamic. It was by doing that that the benefits accrued.
I don't speak of "no sense makes sense" as a cheap get out clause for every awkward thing that comes up that is hard to explain; it was part of the way this crowd thought, genuinely. They often did not adhere to conventional thought. Susan Atkins was genuinely nonplussed when Virginia Graham didn't understand her concept of by killing Sharon, she was killing herself. LVH saw killing others as her showing she was willing to die. These were people that genuinely believed that Manson had died on the cross. They operated within an arcane misogynistic framework by even the standards of the patriarchy that existed in the USA at the time, yet they counted themselves as freer than anyone else. So going out on a possible creepy crawl, with 64 feet of rope, no, it is entirely in keeping that they would not have asked questions. They were not you and I and we are not them.
I think it is important to understand this otherwise, we just tread the same old suspicions and speculations over and over and it doesn't matter what anyone says; if one doesn't put oneself on their bank of the river, you'll never see how the land lies from their side or accept anything they've said, even if some of it is fused with lies.

Watson heads up to Cielo looking like he’s about to tackle Mount Eiger?!!!!!

This however, was priceless ! 😹

Speculator said...

Grim - I honestly think it’s too easy to excuse some of the anomalies involving their behaviour by putting it down to their alternative mindset/lifestyle. I mean they tell us that they argued in the car going up to Cielo. Atkins supposedly couldn’t bring herself to stab Frykowski etc etc. they weren’t automatons. I’m sure that regardless of mindsets they most surely would have discussed and wondered what was the crack with the bolt cutters and 60 odd foot length of rope! Maybe Watson just told them to stfu but none of them have come clean about what was said in the car have they? They describe what was said in the car afterwards (hands aching etc) but not before. I wonder why.

Speculator said...

Grim - another tell-tale point for me regarding the rope is no rope on night two. Manson uses the thongs to tie Leno. Much more appropriate and effective than a 64ft length of rope. I reckon the rope was definitely taken as a prop to crest a scene that first night. Maybe the knowing the layout of Cielo went so far as remembering the rafters in the living room and hence the rope for stringing up. Who knows.

shoegazer said...

Spec:

I think that the point that some people are trying to make (me, for sure) WRT the rope is not that they were going to use it to tie people up--they were not real sure exactly what to do with it. Maybe hang the bodies upside down, like with Mussolini, etc. They just weren't real sure, but it was to be used for something BAAADDD.

Only after they got going inside the house did they begin to focus on maybe hanging them, but even that plan appears to be half-baked.

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

I honestly think it’s too easy to excuse some of the anomalies involving their behaviour by putting it down to their alternative mindset/lifestyle

It can be with some things. But I find that it is a general trend to go wholly one way or the other. And more often than not, the deciding arbiter is the stance of the person and whatever it is they are holding to. It's not easy to acknowledge a murderous perp and try to genuinely understand where they are/were coming from, especially if one never met or knew them. But I've done that and as a result, I don't find them and many of the anomalies that surround them difficult to grapple with, at all.
I kind of do that with pretty much everyone I encounter, either in real life or historically.

I mean they tell us that they argued in the car going up to Cielo

No, actually, they do not. Charles Watson stated that in 2016, for the first time.

Atkins supposedly couldn’t bring herself to stab Frykowski etc etc. they weren’t automatons

Precisely. The Family code, in general, was lived out in their own isolated little world. There were escalations of tests, but killing in cold blood is another matter. It wasn't quite so difficult for Tex, with a gun in his hand. In a sense, there was a reason {in his mind} for using the Buntline on each of the victims that it was used on ~ seen by Steve, authority challenged {even if tied and seated} by Jay, Wojiciech fleeing. It was somewhat harder for Susan and Leslie to just kill in cold blood, unprovoked. Leslie actually alludes to killing after having absorbed society's codes, when she talked with Marvin Part. And the very fact that when in jail, all the women put the hat on Manson prior to the trial and then all the killers turned against him and back society's way, shows that they weren't totally gone, like Squeaky and Sandy.
Nevertheless, the perps were a work in progress. But once Wojiciech began to fight for his life, Susan had little trouble in stabbing him, possibly even administering one of his fatal wounds. And Leslie, once she started stabbing, just kept on and on.

shoegazer said...

Torque:

I would think that both those areas would have had their lights switched off at that late hour. Perhaps that was enough to convince Tex that nobody was present in those rooms.

I agree that I think that area was dark, most likely.

This then implies the reactive nature of the execution of the crime, to a degree.

They note the lighted areas and check those out, because that's where they focused, and apparently they were not overly thorough.

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

another tell-tale point for me regarding the rope is no rope on night two

I mentioned that earlier. It would seem in Charlie's mind that the second night was going to involve a different style of killings, perhaps more gun conscious.

I reckon the rope was definitely taken as a prop to crest a scene that first night

Well, much of the discussion about the rope has been about what it did tell or should have told the women. I have no qualms with the notion that Watson took that rope along with the intention of "hanging pigs upside-down by their feet" {very HS} or something along those lines. My line of argument has been that while it should have told the women something, in the context of their way of being, as well as having knives, a gun and a change of clothing, it does not surprise me that they did not challenge this.
Basically, when it comes down to it, you think they knew before they left Spahn, that they were to commit murder, even though they all have said the only instructions they were given were to do whatever Tex said. I don't believe they knew it. I think they found out very late in the day ~ but still went along with it. Which actually made them a more dangerous proposition.
There's a big difference between the women on Cielo night, and them on Waverly night. That second night, there's more all round reluctance and I think that's partly because they had plenty of time to think about it. If what Leslie told Marvin Part is true, Pat didn't enjoy killing and felt it seemed wrong that young people were killed at Cielo. And Susan wasn't arguing with Linda at Ocean Front Walk, when the Nader hit was foiled. She couldn't get out of there fast enough, after having a relieving crap on the landing.
But to return to the original rope point, the rope not being mentioned in subsequent re-tellings doesn't strike me as at all odd.

grimtraveller said...

GG-W said:

I fear stoning from my tribe but the Schreck mistake on Rostau doesn't make or break him for me, either

For me, it's big enough to dent his credibility, but not destroy it. What destroys it for me is the entirety of his book. I've said, many a time, it's an excellent book and was worth every penny of its exorbitant price. It's a modern day fairy tale. In a weird way, it's almost the book version of Susan Atkins !

grimtraveller said...

Torque said:

indeed what if someone was in the kitchen or nursery?

Had Mrs Chapman stayed over that night, as she was invited to do by Sharon, she would have been in the nursery.
Back in March 2017, George Stimson did a really interesting post called "10 What-ifs ?" and one of the what-ifs was, what would have happened to Mrs Chapman as a Black woman, had she stayed over that night and run into Watson and co ?

David said...

In response to the above on the rope.

I think the evidence (in a broad sense)related to the rope fairly well establishes the rope was intended to serve an “all of the above” purpose.

I believe it intended to be cut and used to tie the victims. After all, this is what Manson did the second night using thongs because there was no more rope available (because Brunner was in jail and the shopping list went unfulfilled).

Similarly, the rope was to be used to intimidate the victims into submission once their hands were tied as a noose. Again, this is what played out with lamp cords the second night although I do not recall if the three did that or Manson did before he left.

Finally, the rope was intended to be used to ‘hang the victims [white devils] at Cielo from the rafters’. We know this was part of HS because we have read reports of several people saying this was part of what Manson said would happen when Helter Skelter ‘came down’ including, if I correctly recall, some random patrons at a diner in lower Topanga.

It is also what Wallace Fard, the founder of the Nation of Islam said would happen when the black man rose up. Fard said they would come into white homes in the middle of night with knives (Fard’s followers, especially the women, carried knives) and murder the ‘white devils’ and then ‘string them up from the rafters’. Manson’s HS relies on Fard. It would be too long a comment to explain why this is the case.

It was all theater to Charlie: Now is the time for Helter Skelter.

shoegazer said...

Branching again...

Lights inside Cielo: ON/OFF?

hallway/BRs:

if/when switched off; were they ever switched back on?

LR/entryway:

if/when switched off; ever switched back on?


Me, I think I an recall reading that they were switched off in the hallway after the victims were brought out, and I'm less sure they'd go all the way back into each BR to switch them off.

LR/Entry, I'd hazard a guess that the entryway light was never on. I realize that Atkins says (or implies) at one point that the lights in the LR were then switched off (Watson orders?), and tha there was enough light from outside to see.

But thinking about the LR in detail, how much light would there have been?

The light sources would have been the left porch light (as you face from outside), but its location might not have allowed much light into the LR:

porchlights

Then there were the lights that illuminated the lower path (scroll to 9th photo):
path light example

Of course these would have to have been on, but I see no indication in any version of the narrative that they were on. (It might imply that Parent went back to his car over the lawn.)

There were the Xmas lights on the split rail fence, but there's not be a lot of light from these.

Then there'd be the ambient light coming up from the city, and this could be a significant amount.

There was no moon that night, or rather it was a waning crescent that rose around 1:30 AM on the morning of the 9th.

moonrise

So, how well would anyone see the bodies inside after they were dead? How well could they see the victims while they were still alive?

Common sense is leading me toward the lights being on during the murders at least, but no real evidence that I'm aware of.

Intriguing as hell, isn't it? :^)

David said...

Shoegazer said: "Lights inside Cielo: ON/OFF?"

Sorry, I'm not grasping the point, here.

Atkins testified that Krenwinkle turned off the lights at Watson's command. This is when she saw the dog.


The remaining lights would have been:

The lights in the bedrooms and perhaps a light in the hall to the pool: no one says these were turned off, specifically, but perhaps Krenwinkle darted about the house turning off all the lights.

Atkins references 'lights outside':

The Christmas lights on the path to the guest house- I recall these were 'on'.

I believe there was testimony that Chapman turned off a light at the garage- a yellow sort fo bug light.

There is a diagram that shows other lights outside but my recollection was they were not mentioned in testimony.

There are no lights in the pool.

shoegazer said...

David:

WRT the lights, I'm just shaking the box and looking at it again.

There's a minor inconsistency in that many of the activities described would be fairly hard to do with the lights off, even with a fair amount of ambient light from outside.

I'm not saying that it did not happen that way, but I'm also becoming increasingly aware that with Atkins, and especially Watson, they are capable of scrambling small parts of the sequence, e.g., Watson seems confused exactly when he first put the rope on Sebring and Tate.

Basically, I'm saying that they, themselves aren't very sure about a lot of things, and especially about sequential order.

I'm playing with the idea that they actually turned the lights out as they left, to test to see if it could be possible. I an easily envision that after the lights had been off for a minute or so, they could see fairly well, but were talking about going around, tying people, finding a towel and re-tying them (hard to do, especially in a strange house), chasing and stabbing in the dark (easier to do), holding Tate and accurately stabbing her in the area of the heart. At some point putting a towel over Sebring's head and doing a fair job of wrapping the rope around it.

Coming over, in the partial dark, finding and stabbing Folger in the abdomen. Shooting Sebring in the dark.

The available light sources outside seem insufficient to do a lot of these things with any degree of certainty or competence. One can argue that it was sloppy, but they did in fact get it done in pretty short order. I'm using by comparison what I an see in my own upstairs BR, with a significant street light directly across the street. Much of what they must have done in Cielo would be pretty hard to do if the lighting was similar.

And I suspect that there is *more* ambient light in my BR than what would have been available in the LR of Cielo.

So I'm just playing around with these ideas.

tobiasragg said...

"Shoe - one thing that I do find very odd is rye absence of reference to the rope prior to the perps entering the house"

This is an example of a pitfall I see many falling into here. This is to say, the absence of a mention is tantamount to the subject not existing. The rope was already in the car as the girls climbed in, according to Atkins, who saw it laying there in the back. Tex hauled it with him as they scaled the embankment, and things proceeded from there. Why such a focus on why some failed to mention this over the years? It wasn't a shockingly notable detail, by the time they climbed that embankment, every one of the climbers knew what the purpose of the mission was. Seems to me a rather silly detail to focus on, unless one is simply yearning for new things to focus on at this point.

"I'm not so sure Charlie was trailer park trash."

There were a couple of trailers that others owned on Spahn, but personally I view Charles Manson very much as trash without an associated trailer;)

"Were they all not only aware that they were going to commit murder from the outset but also that they were going to create the macabre scene of victims strung up . . . "

The answers to these kinds of questions are quite evident, provided one knows how to weed through the bullshit. Working backward . . .

-Tex informs the others of the nature of their mission as they enter the Benedict area. Apparently there is discussion or argument, but in the end they all get out of the car and trudge up that road and they all knew at that point why they were doing so.

-Manson enters the trailer and asks Krenwinkel/Van Houten if they are willing to do what must be done. According to LVH, both answer "no" (they don't really want to kill) but "yes" (they knew it had to happen, so yes they were willing to do so). Toss out everything Big Patty has uttered over the years in parole hearings, if LVH is to be believed Patty knew quite well why she was getting into that car.

-Side note to the above: We've no evidence of Manson questioning Atkins in this way, but Atkins had already proven herself with Hinman so perhaps she was spared the double-check this second time. From what we know, it appears that only Kasabian was in the dark as to what was about to happen that night.

-If Watson is to be believed (Manson had quibbles), Charlie pulled him aside and laid out exactly what he wanted to happen in the Cielo house, down to the words he wanted to see in blood and the shocking scene he wanted to leave. This presumably included the rope and the rafters, though as no one has called this out specifically we must call that detail speculation. Watson did very much as he was told that night, so I feel it can safely be assumed that the rope and some kind of hanging/stringing up was a part of the instruction set.

"Watson is a plain and simple liar. He wants us to believe that he was given the bolt cutters and rope to decide by some mystic guidance as to what to do with them when he got there?!!"

Well no, Watson was pretty clear about the bolt cutters. Charlie told him to fetch them from his jeep (where they were regularly housed, returned to, and discovered by law enforcement) and to use them to cut the telephone lines. Watson was quite plain-spoken in speaking of this - no mystical guidance involved.

tobiasragg said...

" ..indeed what if someone was in the kitchen or nursery? I've thought about this for a long time. Could be that Tex, when he gained entrance to the house, conducted a quick check of those areas before letting the girls in, or not at all."

I think this is one of those "well they didn't mention it, so it never happened" matters. Atkins speaks of checking the bedrooms because she found people in those rooms. It could very well be that she checked the other spaces and left them unmentioned because their emptiness rendered the checks incidental to the tale. Or not. Watson tells us in his book or in one of those first couple of parole hearings that he DID check the loft (probably on Manson's suggestion) though he does not tell us when he did this. My assumption has always been that he did so either prior to waking Voytek or after the girls were inside and Voytek was awake. Impossible to determine which it was.

"It was a psychedelic crime, planned by a psychedelic thinker and carried out by psychedelic murderers"

What on earth does that even mean? I do have to giggle sometimes when I read some of the drug-related comments here. I imagine at least some here have done acid but it's obvious that many have not. The psychedelics had little direct influence over the crimes themselves, despite what Charles Watson would like us to believe. Acid and the like don't have that effect. Rather, it bends and fucks with your perception of reality - often in really delightful or wonderous ways, but not always. In the "not always" lane (e.g. "bad trips") the negative reaction involves fear and an impulse to self-destruct, not to cause destruction. Charlie didn't use acid to incent violence. We know enough about the relatively infrequent acid experiences the family embarked on (about once a week, give or take) to know how Charlie used acid. It was used to pull people together, spiritually and/or sexually, and as a convincer of sorts. LVH describes how he would reenact "his" crucifixion during some trips, others have described the fire dances and the more dark or evil stuff that would be explored once they hit the desert. Charlie used acid to bend reality to his favor, it could be said, but not to directly incite murder.

Speed and methamphetamines, that's another kettle of fish. That buzz will make you aggressive and often quite efficient at whatever it is you are seeking to do.

tobiasragg said...

"Pat didn't enjoy killing and felt it seemed wrong that young people were killed at Cielo"

This is true, if LVH is to be believed (and I find her the most credible of those incarcerated), but this "wrong" feeling apparently did not stop Patty from digging through LaBianca drawers in search of cutlery soon after entering the kitchen!

"Had Mrs Chapman stayed over that night, as she was invited to do by Sharon, she would have been in the nursery."

What might she have slept on, the floor? The room had just been painted that morning. I'm not aware of too many photos of that room, but it seems there was little there except perhaps some baby furniture. Could be wrong on that one, but one presumes Tate would have had her slumbering on the sofa had she stayed.

"It would seem in Charlie's mind that the second night was going to involve a different style of killings, perhaps more gun conscious."

Interesting that he chose to take the only gun involved with him as he left Tex & Co to do their thing. Not sure where this one is coming from, honestly.

"Another was "Never ask why." Manson was often about not thinking {when it suited him} and paraded that to his cohorts. It made up a significant part of his trial testimony."

Charlie never testified in any of his trials. He was allowed to make that one lengthy statement though, so if that is what is being referred to did he actually speak of instructing his people to not think and to never ask why? Perhaps he did, but this doesn't like something he would admit to - he was more about the "I let them be free" messaging" I think.

Speculator said...

Here’s another point regarding the rope. In her GJ testimony, Atkins states that as well as Sebring and Tate, they also tied the rope around Folger’s neck. In the crime scene photos however I don’t recall seeing any length of rope running away from Tate or Sebring (other than rope linking them to each other) that would’ve been of sufficient length to tie Folger and/or Frykowski. So did someone play with the scene afterwards or are the photos just too inconclusive to tell one way or the other?

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

The answers to these kinds of questions are quite evident, provided one knows how to weed through the bullshit

Well, that’s what I tend to think. Of course, the key is what one thinks is the bullshit is and how each individual decides that.

Manson enters the trailer and asks Krenwinkel/Van Houten if they are willing to do what must be done. According to LVH, both answer "no" (they don't really want to kill) but "yes" (they knew it had to happen, so yes they were willing to do so). Toss out everything Big Patty has uttered over the years in parole hearings, if LVH is to be believed Patty knew quite well why she was getting into that car

This is a good example of how one wades through the bullshit. If one looks at LVH’s Marvin Part interview, if you took literally what she says, then the whole conversation between her and Charlie and Pat took less than 30 seconds and she and Pat were the only Family members that recognized killing had to be done.
Which is unlikely, to say the least. Timing in human discourse doesn’t work like that.
So, wading through the bullshit, it is clear that what Leslie says there, is a prΓ©cis of a much longer conversation. And what comes across, to me at least, is that her and Pat were looking after the kids and Charlie was chatting in general. In fact, a bit like Linda’s revelation of her individual discussions with Charlie, or years later, Dianne Lake’s, we get an interesting window into Manson with the smaller numbers and how he might chat in general. The points that he makes in that late night trailer conversation, are in a more general vein. He asks them if they can see why he believes they {the group} have to kill. That’s really significant. More significant than asking them if they want to do it too, although that is hardly minor. But there’s absolutely nothing that implies that he’s talking to them about an event that is going to happen that night, that they are going to partake in.
So when they go to sleep and later on, Charlie comes in and wakes Pat up and tells her to go with Tex and do whatever he tells her, I can fully understand why Pat may not have concluded that they were going out to murder {as an aside, one has to ask oneself why Leslie, if she was on board, wasn’t selected to go to Cielo. But that’s not particularly important}. She had had no direct preparation for it. I don’t mean in a general sense, I mean specifically. Soldiers are trained to kill and protect, but they are also told when they will be going into battle and briefed.
Part of being a psychedelic crime, is that these guys weren’t.

but this "wrong" feeling apparently did not stop Patty from digging through LaBianca drawers in search of cutlery soon after entering the kitchen!

No...
That’s partly why she’s in such shit soup.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

Watson did very much as he was told that night, so I feel it can safely be assumed that the rope and some kind of hanging/stringing up was a part of the instruction set

Well...in the overall scheme of murders taking place and cutting the wires and things being gruesome, yeah, Watson did pretty much as he had been instructed. Perhaps too well. Again, as an aside, I think Charlie got a little jealous when the news exploded the way it did.
But that’s a side trip.
There were things that he was told to do {according to him} that he simply did not do. In fact, this is one of the things that screws him up big time, in the modern day parole hearings, because it becomes clear that he acted with a degree of autonomy {using the gun willy nilly, not getting the amount he claims he was told to get for bail ~in itself a lie~ , not going to the other houses to do the same, going to rinse off and the way he talked to Rudolf Weber, leaving the victims hung etc} which can be made to seem to make a nonsense of his claim that he was being controlled. These are murky waters, but I can see why Parole board members feel as they do, even though I don’t think they are interested in understanding how multiple things that appear to contradict, can be true at the same time.

What on earth does that even mean? I do have to giggle sometimes when I read some of the drug-related comments here. I imagine at least some here have done acid but it's obvious that many have not. The psychedelics had little direct influence over the crimes themselves

It wasn’t a directly drug related comment. A psychedelic crime is one that arises from a psychedelic mindset. Charlie was possessed of a psychedelic mindset.
I find it interesting that George Stimson tries to play down that aspect of the crime by, for example, pointing out how common it was for messages in blood or red lipstick, to be left at crime scenes or implying that it wasn't a particularly unusual crime.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said.:

Rather, it bends and fucks with your perception of reality

You’ve hit the nail firmly on the head. Acid takes you and your perceptions elsewhere, hence the term a ‘trip’. Susan Atkins said this back in 1976:
“You’d have to understand what acid does to the mind in order to understand how a person can get confused behind drugs. And that would take a thesis, writing a book on what LSD can do to the mind...I used to think that you came down off an acid trip after 12 hours; that’s not true. Every time you take LSD you [inaudible] expand, the moral fibre of your character which is put in you or when you grow up - everybody grows up with different morals according to their culture - when you take acid, your mind expands beyond these moral characteristics and your concepts of right & wrong so you step out beyond those bounds and when you step out beyond those bounds the imagination begins to take over and the imagination can be a very deceitful thing, it’s a fantasy. When you take acid, you go out beyond that and you think you’re coming back to where you started from originally. You don’t. And every time you drop acid, you get a little bit further away from reality. And I took so much acid that I was what I would term ‘spaced’ and it took me many years to, what I term now, ‘re~enter’ and that was just through not having any acid and having to deal with reality every day.”
The taking of LSD is only one aspect of what contributed to making this a psychedelic crime.
And Watson said something related, in an uncharacteristic moment of articulacy and clarity:

“All your life you had been taught a certain way to think, a certain set of moral values, a certain perspective on the world, how it worked, what was real. Most of these things you never questioned; it never occurred to you that they were a framework in your head which you used to understand and organize the constant sensory perceptions and information and experience that were being poured into your brain. You didn't think about this framework because it wasn't what you thought about, it was the way you thought. But acid changed all this by letting you see your familiar little mental world as separate from the sensory data it arranged in such neat, conventional packages. Acid shattered the connection between raw experience and your handy pre~programmed responses and judgments and categories. Space and time melted in your vision to take new forms; common objects could become monsters or revelations of God.”

That acid enhanced {read: ‘psycheedelic’} way of looking at the world is partly what made this a psychedelic crime.

Dan S said...

The rope is more evidence that Tex et al are trying to fill out the fantasy shat out of Charlie's mouth more than being soldiers following Charlie's sensible orders. When they come back having gone through the reality, and putting Charlie on the spot, where's the rope on HIS night? If they wanted a ritualistic connecion the rope would have been the piece de resistance on top of the blood writing.
As far as speed making you focused, every tweaker I've seen (and San Francisco '96-2010 gave me many many examples to see) has always taken things apart and left them that way; also the lifestyle is three days of work followed by a week bedridden.

David said...

Grim quoted: "And every time you drop acid, you get a little bit further away from reality."

I think that is a way of looking at acid that allows Atkins to, as she is prone to do, avoid direct responsibility for her actions.

There are an awful lot of people in the US between the ages of say 55 and 85 who took/dropped acid and in some cases a lot of acid, sometimes in groups or as couples or at big open air concerts with tens of thousands of others or in smaller halls in the midwest. Not every one of them became detached from reality.

Didn't she also blame speed later in her life.

The other problem I have with this as to her is well, she wanted to kill people years before she became acid soaked. Perhaps what acid did do with Manson's help was break down the barriers moral and otherwise that stopped her from shooting a county sheriff outside Salem, Oregon in 1966. I'd give you that one.

grimtraveller said...

Blasted double e's !

shoegazer said...

Here's an interesting detail in Kasabian's testimony under X-exam in the Watson trial...

Q: I think you told us also, Mrs. Kasabian, that there were four changes of clothing that were taken when you first started to go to the Tate residence; is that correct?

A: Yes.

Q: Now, three of them were thrown out; is that correct? [NOTE: The "changes" were not thrown out; the clothing the left Spahn wearing was.]

A: Yes.

Q: How about yours? Did yours stay behind?

A: I never changed.

Q: Did you take the change with you?

A: Yes, I did.

Q: What happened to that?

A: It stayed in the car. I never bothered to change.

Q: When you were told to throw the clothing out, you never threw out the clothing that you had taken to change; is that correct?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you remember what happened to it when you got back to the ranch?

A: No.

Q: Did you ever see it again?

A: Yes.

Q: When?

A: The next night.


I really like details like this because if you add this sort of info to the understood narrative, it injects additional insights.

When Atkins tells the narrative, in the Caruso interview she says:

SUSAN ATKINS: Now, we went, you know the button that you use to open the gate? Tex pushed that button, but I don’t think he used his fingers, I think he used his arm or something. And we picked up our clothes which we had stashed by the gate, we all knelt and picked up our second change of clothes , walking down the road not too conspicuous, and Linda was in the car. She had started to start the car and Tex told her to get over, excuse the expression, what the fuck did she think she was doing? We got in the car and there was nothing but just [long drawn out sigh]

...and to the GJ, she says:

Q: What happened next?

A: Then he told us to get our changes of clothes and we all walked back up the hill and walked to this fence.


So what all this implies is:

1) That when Watson cut the cables, they got back into the car, parked at the bottom and walked back up, he had already told Kasabian that she did not need the change of clothes. He had already decided who'd be involved, and Kasabian would not need to change with the others; or

2) They had all left their clothes in the car and for some reason Atkins gets the details of this wrong twice.

Now extend this a bit...

Does it really make any sense to take the changes of clothes with you up the hill and over the gate? To my mind, no, not really. It's just one more thing to worry about removing from the scene, and would it really be necessary to change at the scene, or afterwards in the car, as they actually did according to all accounts?

What do you think, fellow-sufferers?

grimtraveller said...

David said:

I think that is a way of looking at acid that allows Atkins to, as she is prone to do, avoid direct responsibility for her actions

I don't dispute that.
But neither do I dismiss the reality of what she was saying there, because I have read or heard so many people say the same thing. Not necessarily in a negative light {in fact, often quite a positive one}, but definitely enabling/causing them to see life and reality in a completely different way to how they saw it prior. Even Paul Fitzgerald acknowledged that.

tobiasragg said:

Charlie didn't use acid to incite violence. We know enough about the relatively infrequent acid experiences the family embarked on (about once a week, give or take) to know how Charlie used acid. It was used to pull people together, spiritually and/or sexually, and as a convincer of sorts...Charlie used acid to bend reality to his favor, it could be said, but not to directly incite murder

I’ve never once claimed that acid was used to incite murder. I think that would be ridiculous in the extreme. In fact, Irving Kanarek brought it up during the trial and asked if it was possible to turn people into robotic zombies with it. It actually came out that people tended to be not violent under the actual influence. And Bugliosi pounced on that, emphasizing that under the influence, committing murder would be highly unlikely. In doing that he was seeking to blow away any defence based on “they were so drugged out that they couldn’t tell the difference between fantasy and reality.”
However, you don’t need acid to incite murder. Just the attendant packages around taking it fosters a bond and warmth that help create the environment in which murder {or for that matter, anything else} can take place.

Back in 1970, prior to the trial, Rolling Stone observed:
"Charlie's rap is super acid rap – symbols, parables, gestures, nothing literal, everything enigmatic, resting nowhere, stopping briefly to overturn an idea, stand it on its head, and then exploit the paradox."

Pretty perceptive, I thought. When they interviewed Gypsy, she said ”When Sgt. Pepper came out there was so much love – everyone in the street and in the parks loving and hugging each other. There was no end to it. Then all of a sudden people stopped taking acid. Everyone went back to the plastic city, went back to their jobs, went back to their wives. Their egos got fat again. We were the only people who stuck with it.”

Acid wasn’t a benign factor, any more than it was on the music of “Revolver” ~ but it didn’t make the music.

shoegazer said...

OBSERVED effects of acid on behavior. Here's an anecdote, so take it howe ver you like.

I never took LSD, but there was a lot of interest in in among my group--and this was college people, blue collar kids in junior college in the process of getting a bachelor's the cheapest way possible.

More similarities with Harold True than with Manson people. Not as crass as True appeared to have been, but within shouting distance.

It was in Marin county, and this was in the summer of '66 or '67 I think.

A car full of us were driving up to Tahoe to spend the weekend at the cabin of one of the peoples's parents. My close friend, truly an exemplary socially well liked guy, started acting strangely after we were into the trip about 1 hour. He was usually talkative--he life of the party, usually, but he got quiet and seemingly pensive. We stopped for gas and to use the restroom. During this time he got out of the car and wandered off. We couldn't find him for a while.

It's important to note that he told no one that he had taken a tab when we left. No one had done anything like this up to that point, although several did this later--gradually separating from the social circle.

Maybe 10 minutes later we tracked him down to the swimming pool next to the station. He was simply impulsively swimming in his underwear. He enjoyed swimming and as he described to me later, he saw no impediment to simply acting on his immediate desire to go for a swim. It never entered his awareness to even consider his immediate circumstances.

He was very comically shame-faced about it later. It was a big joke for a while.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said.:

What might she have slept on, the floor? The room had just been painted that morning

Hey, I’m only going by what Mrs Chapman testified. She stated that when she slept over at Cielo, she slept in the room that was being turned into a nursery.
The room was painted that day, {the paint would have dried on a hot day long before the killers got there}, but she obviously slept on something in the room before it was in the process of becoming a baby’s room.

Interesting that he chose to take the only gun involved with him as he left Tex & Co to do their thing. Not sure where this one is coming from, honestly

Once ensconced in the house with the tied up LaBiancas, the gun was not needed by Tex. The point I was making is that whereas, there is an element of what David refers to as ‘theatre’ on Cielo night, that was missing from the instructions pertaining to Waverly and Ocean Front Walk. The gun was used to render the LaBiancas harmless and later, Clem was instructed to shoot the actor. The previous night, I seem to recall {though, naughty, naughty grim, I can’t recall where !} there being an instruction to use the knives rather than the gun, if possible.

David said:

The other problem I have with this as to her is well, she wanted to kill people years before she became acid soaked

Yeah, as early as 1966. The difference there though, is that she was on the run, so there was a degree of self-preservation there, as opposed to the deliberations of TLB. But in the final analysis, it's moot, I agree, because acid may just have been a catalyst that brought closer to the surface what had been bubbling away, undetected {by everyone other than Charlie !}.
However, I wasn't quoting her in order to show that LSD turns people into axe wielding homicidal maniacs {😀}, rather, to demonstrate how its continual use and the continually shifting perception can open up vistas not usually accepted.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said.:

Charlie never testified in any of his trials. He was allowed to make that one lengthy statement though, so if that is what is being referred to did he actually speak of instructing his people to not think and to never ask why? Perhaps he did, but this doesn't like something he would admit to

I generally refer to his trial statement as his testimony, even though the jury was absent. In his statement, he said things like:
”It is hard for you to conceive of a philosophy of someone that may not think. “
“When you take LSD enough times you reach a stage of nothing. You reach a stage of no thought.“ and
“The power of suggestion is stronger than any conspiracy that you could ever enter into. The powers of the brain are so vast, it's beyond understanding. It's beyond thinking. It's beyond comprehension.“

Then to Steve Alexander in earlier 1970 he had said:
“I have showed people how I think by what I do. It is not as much what I say as what I do that counts, and they look at what I do and they try to do it also,” and also
“You know, I don’t have any philosophy. My philosophy is ‘don’t think.’ You know, you just don’t think. If you think, you are divided in your mind. You know, one and one is one in two parts. Like I don’t have any thought in my mind, hardly any at all, it is all love. If you love everything, you don’t have to think about things ~ you just love it. Whatever circumstances had to you, whatever dealer deals you, whatever hand you get handed, you just love the hand you got, you know, and make it the best you can.”

To Rolling Stone in ‘70, he said:
“Children function on a purely spontaneous level. Their parents make them rigid. You're born with natural instincts and the first thing they want to do is lay all their thoughts on you. By the time you're nine or ten, you're exactly what they want. A free soul trapped in a cage, taught to die” &
“Kids respond to music. They can hear it, they're not so conditioned they can't feel it. Music seldom gets to grown-ups. It gets through to the young mind that's still open. When your mind is closed, it's closed to God” and also
“He who thinks is lost, because if you have to think about something, to doubt it, you're lost already. My philosophy is: Don't think. I don't believe in the mind that you think with and scheme with.”


Thinking {!} along those lines, he obviously put that across to the Family. Hence, when Rolling Stone spoke to Gypsy in ‘70, she could say "Charlie knows the truth because he knows nothing. He knows the power of an empty head...Charlie taught us that instead of dying slowly and treacherously – aging – you can speed up the process and do it in your mind. Because you're right at the point of life and death all the time. Every time you're totally willing to die, it brings you right back into living. The point of death is rebirth….In order to love someone, you have to be willing to die for them. I'd do it. I'd give up my life for you. That's what Charlie's doing. He's giving his life for the whole world!”

The author of the piece followed up what Gypsy said {she said lots of stuff, actually} with: “When Gypsy says stupid, she means it in the family's positive way, like empty-headed or mindless or innocent.”
That’s why the notion of not thinking or questioning was prized by the Family and isn't quite so surprising in its occurrence during the murders. But sometimes, I wonder if Charlie caught himself marvelling at how gullible they all were.

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

In the crime scene photos however I don’t recall seeing any length of rope running away from Tate or Sebring (other than rope linking them to each other) that would’ve been of sufficient length to tie Folger and/or Frykowski

All I can say, having worked with rope for many years is that if I had 64 feet of it, tying up 4 people would not present a problem for me.

shoegazer said...

Dan S:

When they come back having gone through the reality, and putting Charlie on the spot, where's the rope on HIS night? If they wanted a ritualistic connecion the rope would have been the piece de resistance on top of the blood writing.

I tend to see taking the rope to Cielo as implied evidence of a level of familiarity with the property. It implies that someone (Manson, Watson) already knew about the exposed support beams, inside, out of view, where they could have the opportunity to hang the victims.

They had no such level of familiarity with the locales on the night of the 9th/10th, and one can imagine the comic scenario where they've got the victims, perhaps already dead, and they're searching outside frantically for a suitable impromptu gallows.

No, I think the rope went up to Cielo because they knew in advance of the opportunity to use it theatrically up there.

Dan S said...

They've got it all planned out to the rafters huh? Then the death drive??!!! c'mon abbott nd costello here

grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

When Atkins tells the narrative, in the Caruso interview she says

Bear in mind, that there are things she tells Caballero and Caruso on December 1st, that she completely changes when she speaks to the GJ on the 5th.

So what all this implies is:

1) That when Watson cut the cables, they got back into the car, parked at the bottom and walked back up, he had already told Kasabian that she did not need the change of clothes. He had already decided who'd be involved, and Kasabian would not need to change with the others


I can't see anything that says for definite that Linda didn't have her change of clothes with her. I might have missed something in the transcript, but I don't readily recall either way, what she said.
Now, Watson may have decided who'd be involved in what {although, he didn't know what was about to ensue}. It would be logical to pick Pat and Susan as he'd known them longer, knew Susan had been involved in Hinman, and knew Pat was close to Charlie.

Does it really make any sense to take the changes of clothes with you up the hill and over the gate? To my mind, no, not really. It's just one more thing to worry about removing from the scene, and would it really be necessary to change at the scene

Well, they did so at the scene of the crime the following night.
Also, I don't know to what extent it was known, but Bobby had been found with the knife he killed Gary with and some of the clothes he'd been wearing. I think the thinking behind a change of clothing was logical, as was changing at the scene. If, perchance, the cops stopped them for whatever reason, they wouldn't be bloodstained or wearing clothes that they might have been seen {near or at the scene} in.

shoegazer said...

Dan S:

They've got it all planned out to the rafters huh? Then the death drive??!!! c'mon abbott and costello here

It's hard to tell for sure what your comment means, but I assume it means that they knew about the rafters. Yep, that's what I'm saying is entirely possible.

There's sworn testimony that Manson was at Cielo looking for Melcher; there's the implication that he may have been up before, and that that's how he knew where Melcher lived when looking for him and he talked to Altobelli; there's some narrative (maybe) that Watson had been there on a separate occasion, perhaps inside.

Not sure what you mean by "death drive", and Abbott & Costello implies that it was sloppy and haphazard, and some parts of it sure seemed that way.

shoegazer said...

GT:

can't see anything that says for definite that Linda didn't have her change of clothes with her.

It's possible that she did take it over the fence, but did not change in the car.

Again, the changes of clothing were not thrown away, I'd suppose, but the original clothing, now bloody, was thrown away. She saying that she did not throw her extra change away because she never changed, not being bloody.

This comes from Watson in Will You Die for Me?

We gathered up our clothes and weapons and quietly slipped back up the driveway. I carried the white rope over my shoulder.

...and

There was a steep, brushy embankment coming down to the right side of the fence, so we tossed the extra clothes over the gate and climbed up the slope, dropping to the other side.

...and

We found Linda at the car, with the engine already started. Katie had grabbed our extra clothes from the bushes, and we all tumbled in — Linda squealing away.

Yes, it seems likely that Kasabian kept her extra clothes separated from the bloody clothes, as the other changed. This is why she says "It stayed in the car. I never bothered to change.".

That eliminates that scenario, where Watson tells Kasabian that she wouldn't need to change, she would not be involved in the actual killing.

starviego said...

shoegazer said...

...there's some narrative (maybe) that Watson had been there on a separate occasion, perhaps inside.

Melcher admitted in his testimony that Tex had been up to Cielo six times.

shoegazer said...

star:

Thanks!

starviego said...


grimtraveller said...

...I wonder if Charlie caught himself marvelling at how gullible they all were.


(Grand Jury Transcript of Dec. 8, 1969, pg 22, statement of Susan Atkins)
"...starting about a year ago(late '68), he (Charles Manson) said "I have tricked all of you. I have tricked you into doing what I want you to do and I am using (you?) and you are all aware of that now and it is like I have a bunch of slaves around me" ... and he often called us "sheep."

Can't say Charlie didn't try to warn them!

tobiasragg said...

"it is clear that what Leslie says there, is a prΓ©cis of a much longer conversation ... He asks them if they can see why he believes they {the group} have to kill. That’s really significant. More significant than asking them if they want to do it too, although that is hardly minor. But there’s absolutely nothing that implies that he’s talking to them about an event that is going to happen that night, that they are going to partake in. So when they go to sleep and later on, Charlie comes in and wakes Pat up and tells her to go with Tex and do whatever he tells her"

It appears to me that the girls had a very good idea of what was going to happen that night. By "girls" I mean Leslie and Katie. To Part, LVH says:

"And then Charlie came in and woke her up, and I didn’t know why, but I sort of had an idea it was to go do some, you know, knock somebody off."

LVH describes this moment with more clarity in the Diane Sawyer interview years later. Of course, Katie claim in parole hearings that she had no idea why she was being told to do the things that Manson instructed her to do. Personally, I call bullshit on that one given the circumstances involved with her relating this, but that is just a judgement call on my part. I think it fair to say that Krenwinkel had a little more going on mentally at the time than LVH, who used to read as rather flighty and dim back then - so if silly little Leslie had a clue, I feel quite certain that Big Patty did, too.

shoegazer said...

Back to the lights ON/OFF in Cielo...

It's difficult to resolve tying up people, shooting them , stabbing them, throwing a rope over a rafter and hauling them up, somewhat, with the amount of light likely to have come in the front window of the LR.

So I and playing with the idea that they did indeed turn of the lights, but later in the intrusion, not right after all of the people had been brought forward from the bedrooms.

Kasabian testimony at Watson trial

This part below Kasabian is describing what she saw as she and Watson approached the house after shooting Parent. This is likely before they got toward the front of the house, where lights in the LR might be visible.

******

From the Watson trial, Kasabian:

Q: Did you see any lights on in this house as you were approaching?

A: I remember the light on the garage.

Q: Any other light that you remember being on?

A: No.


...

******

Same as above: before they got to the front.

Q: Well, you hadn't anticipated the shooting of the youngster in the Rambler, had you?

A: No, of course not.

Q: Did you say to Tex, "I am going back, I want no part of this"?

A: No.

Q: Did you see any lights on in the main house, now?

A: No.

Q: You had seen the light on the garage, hadn't you?

A: Yes.


...

******

Then, from a bit earlier testimony, concerning the garage and porch lights...

Q: Do you know what is shown on this photograph, Linda?

A: Yeah, it's the light on the front porch.

Q: This is the light right to the right of the front door of the Tate residence?

A: To my left.

Q: Right. Facing the house, the light is to the left of the front door?

A: Right.

Q: And coming out, it is to the right; is that correct?

A: Yes.

Q: Was that light on on the night of the murders?

A: Yes, it was.


...

******

Back to later testimony, this is fuzzy. Is she talking about the porch light, or light coming from within the house when Frykowski comes out. You will note that the question say "in the house". This can mean not the porch light, but interior lights.

Q: Had you seen any lights on anywhere in the house?

A: Before all this?

Q: Yes -- no, after the driver of the Rambler had been shot.

A: Well, only when I saw the man come out of the front door, I saw a light.


...

******

Again, confirming what she saw before they had gotten to the front of the house.

A: How far did I walk?

Q: Yes, to approach the main house.

A: I don't know. I don't know.

Q: Did it take a matter of minutes?

A: No, I guess not. I don't know.

Q: After these shots was there any noise, did you hear any noise?

A: No.

Q: Did you hear any barking dogs?

A: No.

Q: I take it no lights appeared in any of the windows of the house.

A: No, not that I saw.


...

******

This is very early on, when Watson has cut the screen but not yet entered. It confirms that there were probably lights on at that time.

Q: Did you see any lights shining through any of the windows in front of this house?

A: I think I saw a light coming from a room where I saw the flowers, but I'm not sure.

grimtraveller said...

starviego said:

Can't say Charlie didn't try to warn them!

I've wondered about that statement ever since the first time I saw it. If he really said that to them, he clearly wasn't being serious and even if he was, they clearly didn't believe him. They probably thought he was being playful Charlie.

tobiasragg said:

Personally, I call bullshit on that one given the circumstances involved with her relating this, but that is just a judgement call on my part. I think it fair to say that Krenwinkel had a little more going on mentally at the time than LVH, who used to read as rather flighty and dim back then - so if silly little Leslie had a clue, I feel quite certain that Big Patty did, too

A couple of things on that.
Firstly, Leslie's feeling that there may have been some murderous shenanigans going on is Leslie's feeling, not Pat's. It's hard to conclude that one person thinking something means that someone else thought it too. But Leslie's thoughts are somewhat offset by her first response to Marvin Part when he asks her about Cielo. Before she says that she had a feeling they were going to knock someone off, she says: "I can’t remember knowing before they left that they were going to go do that."
I also find it interesting how we see the two of them back in the day, so differently. To me, Leslie is the one on the ball, bright answers, articulate. She's the one that had recess conversations with Stephen Kay about the merits or lack thereof, of the death penalty, showed some fire on the stand and stuff like that. Whereas Pat wrote poetry that was very intense but very personal and rarely gave the impression of being anything other than an acid-wrecked casualty. The psych doc, Joel Hochman, felt she had the most tenuous hold on reality.
I also find it interesting that right from her first parole hearing in '78, she has been consistent about not knowing what was on the agenda that first night. And it's never benefitted her. I don't think any of the boards have ever really believed her.

tobiasragg said...

"Leslie's feeling that there may have been some murderous shenanigans going on is Leslie's feeling, not Pat's. It's hard to conclude that one person thinking something means that someone else thought it too."

This is true, and I acknowledge this in the post you are speaking of. But the reality of the thing leads us to what seems like a very logical conclusion: if Leslie knew what was up, then Pat most assuredly did, too.

Pat was much, much closer to Charlie than most anyone else in the group, save for Squeaky and Mary. Charlies' relationship with each of those three was quite different, but Pat was the favored child - probably because she was about the most tuned-in and obedient of the followers. Charlie assigned Leslie to Pat in a kind of apprentice role, as we know. This tells us a lot.

When Charlie was organizing his troops that night for what was to come, he singled out his most fanaticals: Tex Watson, Sadie - and Pat Krenwinkel. There is no way to prove it definitively, but I feel it all but certain that Pat knew what she was being asked to go do that night, even though she likely knew none of the particulars until Tex filled them in later.

shoegazer said...

Diversion...

Manson appears to have begun to ramp up the Family's unlawful; activities in the spring of 69, I'm thinking--and I'm sure others will chime in here.

But even to me, not greatly interested in the human side of the crimes, one can trace what appears to be an increase in the scale of the crimes. It went from (to me) vaguer property crimes, to the shooting of Crowe (to sort out a drug dispute for Watson), to Hinman (an attempt at extortion), to Tate (proxy revenge against Melcher, and by extension, the entire recording industry), to the night of LaBianca (maybe the most outrageous--an extended whimsical hunt for people to kill, mostly at random).

To what degree do you suppose that having evaded any legal culpability for the earlier crimes, especially up thru Crowe, was Manson emboldened to less restraint?

shoegazer said...

...e singled out his most fanaticals: Tex Watson, Sadie - and Pat Krenwinkel.

I'm not seeing Watson as fanatical so much as eminently malleable. You probably meant it in a more convenient conversational sense though, and the only reason I'm mentioning it is not to see if I can piss higher up the wall, but because I'm gradually getting a bit more interested in the personality stew that was the Family.

So I'll throw my two cents in, and maybe I'll learn something from the responses...

Of the Manson people so far I have a workable picture of Watson, Atkins, Krenwinkel, Beausoleil, kasabian, and Manson. I barely know much about any of the others. But as to the selection of who to send to kick off Helter Skelter, Manson's choices seem to make sense, although I can't well compare the against other possible Family members.

Watson was directionless, almost begging to have a direction assigned to him, and he really craved approval from an authority figure. He was extremely malleable, without very much finesse needed to get him to follow orders without pushback. There was nothing in it for him, except approval, whereas with Beausoleil, I suspect he always had an eye out for what was in it for him.

Atkins was a willful narcissist who could be bent fairly easily with flattery and apparent recognition that she was "something special". She had a streak of the Bonnie Parker in her, I think, and probably would love publicity. It was a glaring vulnerability to could be used to manipulate her. Atkins would almost certainly go along with the action if someone kicked it off; figuratively she could enthusiastically join a lynch mob, but not lead one. She would do it in part because of a need for notoriety, and she was really fairly amoral, somewhat like Manson and Beausoleil.

Krenwinkel appears to me to have been a dog-like cypher. I doubt that she could imagine much of a life without Manson, who had bolstered her desperate need for self-esteem. If Charlie said it, she'd do it, I think. She may have been to most solid bet to actually kill (or anything else) on command.

Kasabian still seems to me to have been a questionable choice. She was superficially submissive, and this may have fooled Manson a bit, thinking her more under his influence than she actually was.

So I think Krenwinkel would have killed on her own, without the need of a support group, if Manson told her to. Manson judged Watson to be physically capable, and open to direction, but as yet untested, so Manson must have had some doubts there, and when he sent them off, he may have thought that 50-50 Watson would not be capable.

Dan S said...

Wasn't part of the helter Skelter spiel to hang the pigs from the rafters? Watson was trying to do what charlie always rambled on about. When it came to reality it was a hassle and they couldn't get the bodies to dangle. The idea that there was any good thinking or planning is specious. That being said, knowledge of the rafters at Cielo may have still been inspiration for trying that night.

And the Death Drive is stupid and comical. Charlie flailing about to show Tex et al that he's for real; his diarrhea mouth is real shit and not just hot stinky air.

Doug said...

I have always wondered why Twx didn't take the bolt cutters into the house with them...you'd have to think that they could serve as a weapon of significant destruction if utilized as such

Doug said...

*TEX*
Twix are for kids...

tobiasragg said...

"I have always wondered why Twx didn't take the bolt cutters into the house with them...you'd have to think that they could serve as a weapon of significant destruction if utilized as such"

Well Charlie DID say he wanted to cut the dicks off little kids and stuff them into their mothers' mouths - those woulda come in handy.

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

But the reality of the thing leads us to what seems like a very logical conclusion: if Leslie knew what was up, then Pat most assuredly did, too

It's certainly logical. And possible.
I just don't think it happened.

Pat was much, much closer to Charlie than most anyone else in the group, save for Squeaky and Mary. Charlies' relationship with each of those three was quite different, but Pat was the favored child - probably because she was about the most tuned-in and obedient of the followers. Charlie assigned Leslie to Pat in a kind of apprentice role, as we know. This tells us a lot

I agree, it does. In fact, it speaks volumes. And the fact that Leslie, back in '69, said she wanted to be like Pat, to the extent that she's the only one of the perps that actively wanted to go and kill people {we can deal with Cappy, Vern Plumlee and Ouisch later}, says a huge amount about the esteem that was accorded Pat within the Family, amongst the women.
It's also ironic that it is this willingness to kill, this wanting to go and murder, that has actually served Leslie well, in terms of parole. She's generally quite open about it. So the parole boards, if not Gav the Guv, can see where she started from, chart her progression {for want of a better word} to and through murder and then the road since. There's little to be guarded about. Once she got over saying that Rosemary was already dead when she stabbed her, and took responsibility for her role in all matters, board members could breathe easier.
Pat on the other hand, is ironically hamstrung by her honesty. We'll just beg to differ on this one and I don't discount that you could be right, but I think she didn't know what was on the menu on Cielo night, before she left Spahn. Her saying that, far from mitigating or minimizing, just looks terrible and leaves her in shit street. It's hard to logically explain how you could go from being a person of no violent inclination, {even if she said she saw the need to kill for the revolution} to murder. In less than an hour.
Few are honestly going to trust such a person, even half a century later. And every so often, there have been little outbursts or howlers from Pat, whether observed and remembered by Stephen Kay or Nicky Meredith or whoever, that add more nails to her coffin.

When Charlie was organizing his troops that night for what was to come, he singled out his most fanaticals

Sadie's the only one I would describe as even near fanatical. She also happens to be the only one with any torture and murder experience.
I wouldn't describe Pat as fanatical. I'd describe her as dangerously in love. Which is probably worse !

grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

To what degree do you suppose that having evaded any legal culpability for the earlier crimes, especially up thru Crowe, was Manson emboldened to less restraint?

While I suspect that Charlie may have looked over his shoulder from time to time in the aftermath of Crowe, his fear was more connected to the Panthers than the police.
I think he went along to meet Lotsapoppa at Rosina's apartment with absolutely no intention of any resolution that involved returning the $2700 ~ which he easily could have done. All his shit about how Tex owed him ~ Tex would have owed him if he'd returned the money. Because then, he'd be looking like a fool and failure and everyone would know it and Charlie could use that as a good bargaining tool.

However, I digress.

I don't think Charlie was worried about the police because, as he explained to Al Springer, he had his well thought out tactic ¬> "no matter what happens, the girls will take the fall." He wasn't in any immediate danger after Crowe {after all, he thought he was dead and his friends didn't know who he was}, couldn't see any problem with Hinman as he hadn't killed him, the cops were so far off the track regarding Cielo, and as he hadn't been there, how could he be guilty ? So yeah, that may well have emboldened him to cruise the streets randomly looking for someone to kill. And when he eventually got to Waverly, he wasn't going to be connected to the True house because, if Harold True's 3 housemates were his intended target, he wasn't someone that would be connected with them and whoever the guy was in the LaBianca house, he didn't know him from Adam, so.....
This even extended to the murder of Shorty, who was actually killed in broad daylight, in a place where they could have been spotted.
Impulse control was not Charles Manson's greatest legacy to mankind.

Dan S said...

Impulse control and CM in the same sentence always will have a "NOT" in it.

Logically you can get to murder very easily if you start with certain principles "beyond good and evil"

"Some people say the truth is meant to be hidden. Others maintain that nothing is forbidden. The key to the mystery..."

Btw, shoe, Your character analyses are spot on.

shoegazer said...

TG:

I'm curious, too. Did Manson have any parole obligations? Was he required to meet with parole officers? If so, did he meet those obligations, or did it appear to him that these, too, were toothless threats?

shoegazer said...

Dan S:

Gracias, amigo!

shoegazer said...

Big what-if...

Disregarding that one of the supposed motivations for the Cielo killings was "copy-cat" in a simple-minded attempt to throw blame from Beausoleil for Hinman, do you suppose that if Beausoleil had been available on the 8th of Aug, Manson would have sent him as the male catalyst instead of Watson?

He was at that point proven, whereas Watson was not.

Might be fun to develop a list of "field commanders" that Manson might use for Cielo, then speculate on what and how things might have gone.

I'd leave the grunts (women) out for this exercise, otherwise it becomes hopelessly confused. We could deal with them in a separate chain of specualtion.

I don't know, maybe all this has been done here multiple times?

tobiasragg said...

"It's hard to logically explain how you could go from being a person of no violent inclination, {even if she said she saw the need to kill for the revolution} to murder. In less than an hour."

Well that's the point - she didn't.

You'll hold your opinion, but what you suggest here is not logical and it is in direct disagreement with things we have been told have happened. The notion of going out and killing people was hardly a new one within this group. Charlie had been singing that tune since the latter part of 1968. Killing pigs was a part of the shared lingo. Hell, even Paul Crockett made the connection between Cielo and Charlie while watching the news out in Las Vegas - and he wasn't even a part of the family.

A middle-aged Pat Krenwinkel sat in front of a parole board and told them that, even while approaching the Cielo house after Parent had been shot, she still had no idea that she'd soon be using that knife she fetched to bring with her to murder people. Believe what you will, but the notion that Krenny had no idea what she was being asked to do is laughable.

shoegazer said...

Easter morning and we are treated to a wall-pissing contest.

It's good that some things can be relied upon. Brings stability to our troubled times...

Speculator said...

Shoe - re. your suggestion the BB night have been sent to Cielo rather than Watson had he been available as he was “proven”. I’d have to say how can we be certain that Watson hadn’t already killed prior to Cielo. Afterall, he took to it pretty well and pretty immediately. I know others will say that was due to the drugs etc but I’ve often wondered had he killed before. There are afterall stories of people/drifters whatever going missing from the group at Spahn. And Watson mentions that he and Manson had earlier expeditions out together. Didn’t he admit to them attempting to follow an older couple from a casino car park in order to kill them but they got spooked. Who knows if he killed prior to Cielo.

Speculator said...

Shoe - re Manson’s parole conditions, I think O’Neill touches on how poor his parole officer performed his duties.

David said...

Shoe said: "Easter morning and we are treated to a wall-pissing contest."

Best comment of the week award.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Spec, Parole officer Roger Smith says O'Neill is full of beans on that. I believe Smith fwiw.

David said...

Shoe said: "Did Manson have any parole obligations?"

Technically, Manson was not paroled. He was a mandatory release and remained on probation for the remaining duration of his original sentence. He was required to send in monthly reports, which it appears he did.

grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

Easter morning and we are treated to a wall-pissing contest

I'd be more inclined to say that two people are discussing a difference of opinion across time zones. As far as I'm aware, that's how conversations work. especially in Cyberspace.
Besides, with my prostate wrestling the vital tubes, I'd lose any kind of pissing contest, let alone one up a wall ! πŸ˜’

Big what-if...

Disregarding that one of the supposed motivations for the Cielo killings was "copy-cat" in a simple-minded attempt to throw blame from Beausoleil for Hinman, do you suppose that if Beausoleil had been available on the 8th of Aug, Manson would have sent him as the male catalyst instead of Watson?


No. The reason Bobby wasn't at Spahn wasn't because of being arrested for murder; he'd absconded to SF. His old flame Gail, had just given birth to the first of the three kids he was the father of al at the same time by three different women, and he was on his way to see her when he was arrested. I don't think he was for hanging around Spahn too much !

Return of the Middle aged men on the piss 😳
_____________________________________________

tobiasragg said:

Well that's the point - she didn't

So you say. Pat doesn't say what you say.

You'll hold your opinion, but what you suggest here is not logical

Half the reason we discuss many of the things we do and half the fun resides in the fact that much about this topic is not logical !

and it is in direct disagreement with things we have been told have happened

It is also in direct agreement with things we've been told happened.
i. The women ~ told by Charlie to go with Tex and do what he tells you. They are very specific about this. And, for the record, so is Manson. He wasn't going to get his hands dirty with direct commands to multiple people to kill.
ii. Atkins, tells her lawyer she was instructed on what to do through Tex.
iii. Atkins tells her lawyer, before there was any GJ, that she did not know what was happening until she got to the house.
iv. Pat has been adamant since at least '78 that she did not know what was on the agenda when they set off for Cielo.
v. Linda states a number of times that she thought they were going on a creepy~crawly.
vi. LVH says "I can’t remember knowing before they left that they were going to go do that." Then she says she had an inkling that maybe they were going to kill someone. Which of the two, said by the same woman in the same few sentences, does one take ?



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

"I'd be more inclined to say that two people are discussing a difference of opinion across time zones."

Agreed with grim. I respect his opinion even while I disagree with it. There has been too little of that here lately, perhaps. Newbies asking newbie questions and then insulting those who try to answer. Thanks, grim - you make great arguments:)

grimtraveller said...

tobiasragg said:

You'll hold your opinion

Until I have sufficient reason to no longer hold to it, yes, I will.
I've changed my views about lots of things.

The notion of going out and killing people was hardly a new one within this group

Um, it's not as black and white as you make it seem. The notion that they were going to be the ones to kick off the killing for Blackie, came pretty late in the day and was a marked departure from what HS had originally looked like. As Linda so succinctly put it in the Watson trial, when asked if she knew that HS involved violence:
SB:Now, you know helter skelter involved violence, didn't you?

LK:Yeah.

Q:Did you tell anybody, did you tell Mr. Manson that you didn't want to be part of any violent scheme?

A:No.

Q:You knew that it involved the killing of people, didn't you?

A:But I didn't know that that was our part in it.

Q:What did you think your part was going to be?

A:Well, that when helter skelter came to the city, when the blacks and whites were getting it in the city, and the city was burning, we were supposed to go in the dune buggies, with the children and bring them back to the home in the desert.

Charlie had been singing that tune since the latter part of 1968

What, that the Family were going to be killing people ? 1968 ?

Killing pigs was a part of the shared lingo

Reactively, not proactively.

Hell, even Paul Crockett made the connection between Cielo and Charlie while watching the news out in Las Vegas - and he wasn't even a part of the family

Interestingly, when Crockett supposedly made this statement, he had never come across Charlie.

A middle-aged Pat Krenwinkel sat in front of a parole board and told them that, even while approaching the Cielo house after Parent had been shot, she still had no idea that she'd soon be using that knife she fetched to bring with her to murder people

Oddly enough, on first glance, it does seem utterly ridiculous. But on further reflection, maybe not so. Charlie was the one that "killed" Lotsapoppa. Bobby is the one that killed Gary. Tex is the one that has killed Steve and he's the one with the gun. He's the one that shoots Jay. The women's roles up to a point were quite perfunctory. He was calling the shots {no pun intended}. They weren't questioning anything he did. Perhaps she thought her role was to assist and that Tex would do the actual killing {particularly with them not knowing what they might find in the house}. After all, up to the point they were walking to the house after Steve was shot, that's how murder in the Family had been. The women served the men, the men did the men's work. They did the target practice, etc, etc. Even in the house, Tex assigned them their roles ~ "go check to see who's here" "bring them out to me" "tie up this man..."

Believe what you will, but the notion that Krenny had no idea what she was being asked to do is laughable

When have I ever said that ?
Her stance has long been, that prior to leaving Spahn on Cielo night, she did not know. I happen to believe her. There is more direct evidence {including from the other two women that were along} to back up her assertion than the speculating one has to do to make the opposite case. Whether or not it's laughable, I guess, depends on one's sense of humour.

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

re Manson’s parole conditions, I think O’Neill touches on how poor his parole officer performed his duties

From time to time, we touch on books or articles that we regard as a "must read." One that I'd add to that list is Samuel Barrett's trial testimony during the penalty phase. While it is easily arguable that Manson got away with too much while he was out {and thus, invites the CIA conspiracy theories}, Barrett explains why Manson's probation wasn't revoked. he is questioned on it at length.
But just as significantly, he goes onto explain precisely why he began making moves at the start of October, to have Charlie's status revoked and him sent back to prison. He began this process independent of anything that had happened out in Death Valley. When Manson was eventually arrested, there was actually a 3 way noose around his neck ~ all independent of each other. There was the earth digger connection, the LaBianca detectives and Samuel Barrett.

tobiasragg said:

Agreed with grim. I respect his opinion even while I disagree with it

I respect my opinion, even when I disagree with it ! πŸ€₯ πŸ˜„

Agreed with grim. I respect his opinion even while I disagree with it

I enjoy frank and robust conversations, especially when people like yourself give me good stuff to think about.

Speculator said:

I’d have to say how can we be certain that Watson hadn’t already killed prior to Cielo

We can't be. But then, if we're going down that road, how can we be certain that Linda never killed anyone or that Pat didn't gun down Wojiciech ? How is it possible to be certain of most things, given that we are finite ?
Every murderer has their first time. Most do pretty OK first time around.

shoegazer said...

GT:

There was the earth digger connection,

This is a head-scratcher that I don't claim to know anything about. Taking it superficially, it looks like a colossal blunder, inviting major problems where much less serious problems had been.

The way I have it now, they were out in the desert, after the killings, and at some point felt provoked enough to start a BLM (or another such public agency) on fire. Was there any plan to this, or was it more-or-less spontaneous?

Let me repeat: they were hiding out, and decided to vandalize in a spectacular fashion some earth-moving equipment.

Can anyone give a brief overview on what it was all about?

Speculator said...

Tobias - with respect I wouldn’t belittle “newbies” as surely it should be a case of the more the merrier on any blog. And newbies as you call them are the life-blood of keeping blogs going and thriving.
Unless you prefer to talk to yourself. Some of the stuff on here might be read as wackier than others but it all makes for the foundation of healthy discussion. And I’m not trying to have a dig by saying this. I simply think the blog should welcome all surely.

Speculator said...

Tobias - with respect I wouldn’t belittle “newbies” as surely it should be a case of the more the merrier on any blog. And newbies as you call them are the life-blood of keeping blogs going and thriving.
Unless you prefer to talk to yourself. Some of the stuff on here might be read as wackier than others but it all makes for the foundation of healthy discussion. And I’m not trying to have a dig by saying this. I simply think the blog should welcome all surely.

grimtraveller said...

Speculator said:

surely it should be a case of the more the merrier on any blog. I simply think the blog should welcome all surely

Couldn't agree more. There's little better on a blog than a wide range of people, with a wide view of matters being discussed. Yes, it could potentially appear unwieldy, but what's a little unwieldy between friends ? Or even enemies !
Different people express themselves in varied ways and that's a good thing. David used used one word {'theatre'} to sum up my 90 million word novel on what a psychedelic crime was. I loved that.
We used to have a lot of 'lurkers' and in one post a few years ago, many of them came out of the woodwork and I remember thinking "I wish they were regular contributors." I still do. When Shoegazer first appeared on the scene, there a couple of newcomers with him, Diana and Destroyer of Opinions. They were both very different in their approaches but both potentially brilliant for the blog. I wonder what happened to them. Actually, until he returned, I wondered what happened to Shoe.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Grim, a quick look at MB stats reveals monthly readers from 200-ish countries. Something like 1/3 of 1% of our daily readers comment. Even with Greenwhite joining the band last summer, Matt and Co. have maintained amazing numbers here for more than a decade. You all in the small minority of readers who comment are a huge part of that success.

G. Greene-Whyte said...

Repeated points of entry appear to indicate research being done around the globe, I should add.

tobiasragg said...

Newbie blood is good blood. It is the maltreatment that should be discouraged. Posing a question as a newbie or otherwise and then calling people who have attempted to answer a "fucking idiot" and the like because the answer does not suit you is the best way to motivate people not to bother trying to speak up. Trust me;)

Speculator said...

Tobias - agreed. No need for insults to fly about.

shoegazer said...

GT:

When Shoegazer first appeared on the scene, there a couple of newcomers with him, Diana and Destroyer of Opinions. They were both very different in their approaches but both potentially brilliant for the blog. I wonder what happened to them. Actually, until he returned, I wondered what happened to Shoe.

Oddly, a strange observation occurred to me when I woke up: in 2019 it seemed like there were more female posters than now.

Do you think that we may have discouraged them, in the way we banter?

I mean, in some sense it's like from Faust, the "jolly fellows' drinking bout", with much arm-wrestling, loud flatulence, etc...



grimtraveller said...

shoegazer said:

Do you think that we may have discouraged them, in the way we banter?

I wouldn't be surprised.
Then again, some of the lurkers alluded to the rough and tumble that goes on here {and, in most forums I've ever been on}, so it wouldn't be limited to females. And most of the females here and elsewhere more than hold their own. Also, back in the day, the banter here could be savage. But that didn't stop them from contributing {or dishing it out at times !}

they were hiding out, and decided to vandalize in a spectacular fashion some earth-moving equipment.
Can anyone give a brief overview on what it was all about?


That's kind of it in a nutshell. Manson was pissed at the earth mover impeding his path and the general tenor of the Man spoiling up nature in the desert and so he, Watson and a couple of other decided to burn it ! As Dan S said earlier, "Impulse control and CM in the same sentence always will have a 'NOT' in it." Here's some stuff from the Dec 4th '69 interview with Stephanie Schram:

DEPUTY PALMER: Were you up in the desert when they burnt the tractor?

STEPHANIE SCHRAM: Uh-huh.

Q: You know who burnt it?

S: Um, Clem, Charlie and Tex, I think. I can’t, you know, I’m not positive.

Q: Were you there when they did burn it?

S: Yeah. We were coming out from the hot springs and ah, they had blown up the road or something so he said nobody could get through. So we fixed the road up and went through it. So then they saw that thing there and we took all the gas out and then burn it.

Q: Whose idea was it to burn the tractor down?

S: Probably Charlie’s. You know, no, he’s the only one that ever has any ideas and everybody else just does what he says.

Q: How come everybody does what Charlie says?

S: Don’t ask me. Either, well, the reason I did it was because I’d either get beat up and killed if I didn’t do it, you know. And I couldn’t leave so I’d just do it, when, you know.

Q: So it was ah, Charlie and Clem and what, Tex?

S: I think so. I think those were just about the only guys down there.

Q: And any of the girls there?

S: They didn’t help with burning it up. We were all there, but they didn’t help.

Q: Were you driving on the road?

S: Yeah, we just sat in the cars and the guys ran out and did it. And then we drove on.

Q: Then the three of them came back and the thing burned. Did they laugh about it, did they make a big sport out of it?

S: Yes...Uh-huh.

Q: That was a $40,000 tractor.

S: I can imagine

Gorodish said...

The torched earth moving machine was a large Michigan 175B front end loader, just like the one in my avatar. In my younger days I operated a 175B and its even huger brother, the 275B, in a Massachusetts gravel plant. The merry raiding party of arsonists were supposedly Manson, Tex, Clem, and Scotty from Ohio (not to be confused with ed fromohio of the Minutemen spinoff band Firehose). I've always wondered whatever happened to Scotty, who was a partner of the hapless Zero Haught.
On a funny note, H Allegra Lansing, in her article about the Family in Death Valley, refers to the earth mover as "The Michigan Freeloader". Sounds like she was confusing it with a panhandler from Ann Arbor.

David said...

Gorodish said: "Sounds like she was confusing it with a panhandler from Ann Arbor."

More likely from East Lansing (wink).

G. Greene-Whyte said...

A ninety year old woman, maybe one hundred years old even, shot me the bird in Ann Arbor one cold November Saturday morning long ago. I deserved it.

Doug said...

You made me laugh and inhale my water...

Tex = asshole, multiple murderer, McStabby and, brit milah specialist!!

Doug said...

Ed Crawford!

Doug said...

Can anyone get on board with my "revolutionary" take on motive?

The "Tex earns the privilege of growing a beard" motive?!

- Tex kills 7 to earn Charlie's seal of approval and, the beard that comes with it!

Anyone? Bueller?

Crickets....

Ugh

Doug said...

Just my sad attempt to "lighten" up the mood...my rope pissing skills are horrendous these days

Gorodish said...

Doug typed:

The "Tex earns the privilege of growing a beard" motive?!

- Tex kills 7 to earn Charlie's seal of approval and, the beard that comes with it!


The irony of that was: "Blackbeard Charlie" Melton comes to Spahn in spring 1969, to visit Paul Watkins...Tex makes his alleged comment about "maybe Charlie will let me grow a beard like that". Then, a scant 3 months later, a bearded Tex talks Linda Kasabian into stealing 5 grand from Melton......

Doug said...

Damn!

My theory has some real live traction...

shoegazer said...

Doug:

- Tex kills 7 to earn Charlie's seal of approval and, the beard that comes with it!

I think there's real potential here, Doug.

It kinda makes you wonder if he gone to the LaBiancas and participated, maybe he'd have only been permitted to grow a goatee.

OK, lessee...

If he had also participated in Hinman, later photos would have had him looking like Bigfoot, with hair over his entire body.

Yep. I LIKE IT!!!

shoegazer said...

CORRECTION...

It kinda makes you wonder if he [had not] gone to the LaBiancas...

Big diff, huh? ;^)

Doug said...

πŸ€”πŸ€”πŸ€”πŸ€”

🀐

Doug said...

Indeed

Unknown said...

Anyone else intrigued by the idea that the Kotts dinner party just completed a few minutes before the trek up Cielo by the killers? Imagine if they encountered them? Personally, the motive is minute in this whole thing as is the blood evidence. This topic is really great though and highly informative. Biggest question for me has always been, Did Manson return?? This would totally ruin those sympathizers of his who said he never was involved in Cielo.

shoegazer said...

Anon:

WRT to the major anomalies (physical evidence and consistent narrative evidence for >50 years do not agree on key points), there are two figurative Get Out of Jail cards.

1) The blood evidence was mishandled badly by the forensic team; or

2) Someone visited the scene after the killers left and artfully rearranged or otherwise modified the evidence.

Neither seems very likely, so we're still here after all these years.

David said...

Shoe said: "there are two figurative Get Out of Jail cards"

Or three- Sharon or Jay were on the front porch at some point. That is what Granado believed.

Watson Trial:

Judge Alexander: I have a couple questions I would like to ask. Maybe I was mistaken listening to your testimony. You say on the pathway outside the house you found blood O with a sub type MN; is that correct? The early part of your testimony.
A: Walkway. Okay.
Q: The walkway?
A: Yes.
Q: Am I correct in that?
A: Yes; O MN.
Q: O MN. The only bodies outside the house were those of Abigail Folger and Wojiciech Frykowski; is that correct, sir?
A: That is correct.
Q: Neither one of them has O with sub type MN; is that correct?
A: That is correct.
Q: Can you account for the O MN blood type outside the house when the only bodies outside of the house were Wojiciech Frykowski and Folger and neither one of them had O sub type MN?
A: Unless one of the two O—the O MN bodies had at one time been outside bleeding and brought back in.

Of course, that contradicts everything we 'know'.

shoegazer said...

David:

Yes I agree with this. I'm still working from the idea that the narrative is basically sound. I didn't mention this, though.

At some point I'd consider dropping the narrative, but I'm a long way from it now.

So assuming the narrative is more-or-less accurate, I have a very tough time getting Tate back into the house without leaving a significant blood trail after wounds that would have caused the spatters. I don't have much trouble getting her out there, though.

Sebring is real tough to get him out there and back in, again with little ot no blood trail.

Still, I want to think it through a lot more...possibly a fool's errand, but hey!...I'm retired!

David said...

Shoe said: "At some point I'd consider dropping the narrative, but I'm a long way from it now."

I am not an advocate for dropping the official narrative.

I view it the same way I view everything Ed Sanders wrote, either in The Family (where he cites nothing) or in his Free Press-articles where he offered a few very interesting tidbits (remember he was first and close to it): I look for independent ways to prove (or disprove) the narrative. I am not driven to disprove it but I think we can all see the anomalies.

For example, the blood on the towels as "spots" seems insufficient to write "Pig" on a door. But those missing purple ribbons.....hmmm...but that, again, questions the official narrative.

Too many factors could have influenced that narrative:

The way memory under stress or after the passage of time or after hearing others' story actually creates memories. It's not a video it's a jigsaw puzzle missing pieces where these things fill in the blanks.

Bugliosi's method of questioning witnesses.

The fact that the perpetrators have nothing to gain from deviating from the narrative and get in trouble when they do- Krenwinkel in 2016.

Atkins' proclivities towards exaggeration and the fact she at least lies by omission-and she is the source of the narrative.

The possibility someone returned after the fact.

A forensic mistake.

..and on and on.....

A witness does not need to lie for any aspect of the official narrative to be inaccurate. Many factors could cause that and, again, Bugliosi was not trying to create a historical record.

But I think when some say "that's it. the official narrative is absolutely correct" I offer this: the towel is wrapped around Jay's head and under the rope. That is a given from the photographic evidence and the testimony and yet the official narrative says that never happened.

Ooo-ee-ooo.

Shoe said: "I'm retired!"

Me too.




Jay said...

The blood evidence for me is intriguing. Hard to think of it now, but at the time, it wasn’t very technical or advanced. I would also think that mistakes could have been made as well, considering the chaotic nature of the crime scene.
The towel around Jay’s head certainly looks like it was put there, not haphazardly tossed into a room.
I wouldn’t be surprised if there were other visitors to the scene after the killers left. Who though? Manson is the obvious choice. I thought I saw somewhere that Nancy was rumored to have gone. The only ones I would say couldn’t have gone would be Tex, Katie, Linda, or Sadie. If they would have, they would most likely have mentioned it over the years at some point.

shoegazer said...

David:

Too many factors could have influenced that narrative:

The way memory under stress or after the passage of time or after hearing others' story actually creates memories. It's not a video it's a jigsaw puzzle missing pieces where these things fill in the blanks.

Bugliosi's method of questioning witnesses.

The fact that the perpetrators have nothing to gain from deviating from the narrative and get in trouble when they do- Krenwinkel in 2016.

Atkins' proclivities towards exaggeration and the fact she at least lies by omission-and she is the source of the narrative.

The possibility someone returned after the fact.

A forensic mistake.

..and on and on.....

A witness does not need to lie for any aspect of the official narrative to be inaccurate. Many factors could cause that and, again, Bugliosi was not trying to create a historical record.


This is pretty much where I am now. I think that there are multiple POVs to the events, composed of multiple factors, and one way to look at it--and many here do, seems like--is to search for any anomalous aspect of POV A (for example), and then use that erroneous aspect to disqualify the entire POV.

"Atkins at one point says she stabbed Tate, and at another says she didn't.

Therefore, everything Atkins says should be excluded."

That's a mistake in all general cases, and with Atkins in particular because she, herself, seems to need to embroider ornamentation to many stories concerning her participation, but is also aware of backing herself into a corner of culpability, so you get seeming contradictions, when often what it is more, or less, ornamentation.

Basically, she's a raconteur doing what raconteurs do.

Then, too, there's just plain flawed human memory, and some level of repeated drug intoxication during the period she was in the Family--and yet the actual observed events were in there, but were subject to distorted retrieval.

I think the best way for me to go about it is to try to identify as many main info sources as I can, evaluate them, maybe disqualify parts of them based on either collisions with physical evidence or failing the Occam's razor test when compared with other sources covering the same event.

Then work up an entire scenario and test it as a whole.

Repeat as necessary.

One thing NOT to do is to accept verbatim what posters here *tell* you as their conclusions. These are loaded with personal biases (at worst) or sometimes simple misunderstandings. I feel that I'm going to have to grind thru all if it myself, to be satisfied.

I expect to never get a better than 80% certainty, and maybe not even that high.

..and there's a fair chance I won't get anywhere farther than I am now, especially given that I'm not willing to go the extra mile, petitioning for records, etc. This is more along the lines of a hobby, not a mission.

But gosh, being retired and needing mental stimulus of some sort... :^)

shoegazer said...

Jay:

FWIW, my opinions...

The towel around Jay’s head certainly looks like it was put there, not haphazardly tossed into a room.

Having looked at the best photos I could find, then reading TBL trial testimony of the investigators on the scene, I, personally, would say that the chance it was thrown over his head is <5%. Much less. It is possible that it had been thrown over his head at some point before the rope was looped around his neck, perhaps many minutes later; this is alternative to having someone return, find a towel, place it over his head, then wrap (or re-wrap) the rope. If his hands were unbound, it would indicated that both the towel, but especially the rope, were placed after he was dead, or close to it.

I wouldn’t be surprised if there were other visitors to the scene after the killers left.

Currently, I do not think anyone went back. I say this based on multiple projections of the time involved to return to Spahn, tell Manson what happened, have this sink in to Manson's consideration, round up a car and perhaps a companion, drive back to Cielo.

This now puts Manson and his companion--neither of whom want to get caught at the scene of a crime that neither committed, I feel pretty sure--in a very risky situation. Manson can *say* they checked for police activity before going up--that's fine--but there's a very real possibility that the police might be en route, and if you go up there, and especially over the gate, you're basically in a sack. There's no getting out.

So once up there--what? The lights are off (supposedly). Do you turn them back on? Think of prints--lights on (attracts attention) maybe you can do a good job--lights out in a strange house, hard to see how you could do much of a job--or even evaluate the crime scene, for that matter. Now you've got to find the bodies, and two of them would be hard to see, out there on the lawn.

And all this risk to what end? Bragging rights, years later?

Now, as far as I know, only Manson told this story. It means that a) his companion (if any) steadfastly remained silent, even to the other family members, and b) no one in the entire family saw Manson leave, or return--or if they did, they remained steadfastly silent over the years.

Speculate yet further. If he went back, do you think it would have been in character to tell Watson and the others "You made such a poor job of it that I had to go back and sort things out." And implicitly "Now you OWE me...", like with Crowe.

...and there's money to be made, and attention to be gotten by spilling the beans years later, if for no other reason than to jerk off forum readers like us.

I think it's >20% chance he (or anyone else) returned.


Who though? Manson is the obvious choice. I thought I saw somewhere that Nancy was rumored to have gone. The only ones I would say couldn’t have gone would be Tex, Katie, Linda, or Sadie. If they would have, they would most likely have mentioned it over the years at some point.

Yes, this is a major point. There is no actual corroboration that I'm aware of for Manson's alleged admission that he'd been back to tidy up.

Manson you have to be really careful with. He WILL relate factual information, but typically only if it neither hurts him, nor if this is no longer a factor, if it puts him in what he considers to be a "bad light". So this means that first he'll not relate incriminating facts, and if he's already found guilty, he *may* relate criminal facts that make him look good.

He would never do what Watson has done, portray himself in less that total control.

He needs to show mastery and competence, to a degree. Not desperately, like some of his followers, but simply along the lines of "I may be trailer trash, but I'm smart trailer trash...".

Of course this is all my own opinion, which may vary from others.

grimtraveller said...

Jay said:

I would also think that mistakes could have been made as well, considering the chaotic nature of the crime scene

I wonder if fire and brimstone might fall on the head of the person that suggests that this also could apply to one or more of the killers or eyewitnesses.
Is it totally beyond the realms of possibility that they too, might have made mistakes in their recollections ?
Of course, this would heavily imply that at least one of them was lying and has been for 50+ years.
What ? Murderers lying ? 😱 But that would be like saying there was a Saturday last week.
But is every recollection of the perps infallible ? One only has to read what Susan said on Dec 1st and what she said to Bugliosi on the 4th and what she said to the GJ on the 5th to see, verbatim, that things can change, not only over 50 years, but in 4 days. With a stop in between.

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