Ex-Girl Friend, Jailer Testify at Watson Trial
Thursday, September 23rd, 1971
LOS ANGELES, Sept. 23 — A former girl friend and a jailer of Charles “Tex” Watson, yesterday described the mannerisms of the Manson family cultist before and after the Tate-LaBianca mass murders.
He “seemed the same” except that he “made love animalistically,” testified Denise Mallett 21, who dated Watson before he left Texas in 1967.
She also said she saw him frequently the last week before he was taken into custody in November
During their dates, she admitted smoking marijuana a number of times and that he seemed “strange” while under the influence. But she said she could not say in what way.
He “had a lot of new ideas” which he talked about sometimes, she said, adding that he seemed more serious in 1969.
They discussed going to Northern California together. He talked about different places where he
had lived in California, but not about people, she testified.
She said he told her that he and one other person were the main leaders of a group of 30 women and a few men who lived together.
Another witness, Robert E. King, Watson’s jailer in Texas who is now a justice of the peace, described Watson as a “model prisoner.”
Watson was allowed to have television, a radio, record player, magazines and an ice chest in his cell as well as to send out for whatever food he wanted, King said.
He noted that Watson’s uncle was the sheriff of the county and Watson was treated well.
King said Watson was well-behaved and had no emotional problems and he did not engage in “bizarre behavior.”
Watson has pleaded innocent and innocent by reason of insanity to the mass murders.
On Tuesday, a prosecution psychiatrist said Watson was psychotic at the time of the murders, but not necessarily incapable of premeditation.
Dr. Grosvenor Bailey said mentally ill persons can still premeditate murder and, in fact, it has often occurred.
He said he did not find Watson to be brain damaged or mentally retarded during his examination a few months ago, but he did not dispute testimony by a previous neurologist who said he found Watson to be brain damaged last spring.
“Our examinations were at different times. I have no doubt that his findings were true at that time,” Dr. Bailey said.
Dr. Bailey noted that Watson showed his capacity to harbor intent to kill and malice aforethought by the fact that he met each task in the murders rapidly and with appropriateness to his purpose.
He said no one could have coached Watson to kill Stephen Parent when he drove from the Tate driveway because no one knew Parent was going to be there.
The prosecution plans to call three more rebuttal witnesses, followed by several defense surrebuttal witnesses.
The defense rested Tuesday.
Defense attorneys Maxwell Keith and Sam Burbrick ended their case after calling one final witness, Los Angeles Police Officer Frank R. Escalante.
The policeman testified he was on duty in the Van Nuys Division jail on April 23, 1969, when Watson was arrested for being under the influence of narcotics.
Escalante, who also testified at the earlier trial of Charles Manson and three of his female followers for the seven slayings, said in his opinion Watson was “severely” under the influence of drugs.
He said Watson was very cooperative while being fingerprinted but was incoherent.
Watson has admitted taking part in the slayings, but the defense contends he was a virtual robot acting under the orders of Manson.