Grogan Says ‘Pooh Bear’ Headed Cult
Tuesday, October 19th, 1971
LOS ANGELES, Oct. 19 — Steve Grogan, accused of the murder of movie stuntman Donald (Shorty) Shea, testified yesterday that Charles Manson was not the leader of the so-called “family,” but conceded that “I loved the man.”
Under cross-examination by Dep. Dist. Atty. Burton Katz, Grogan claimed that before Manson was tried for the Tate-LaBianca murders, a child, “Pooh Bear,” then 1 year old, was the real leader of cult activities at the Spahn Ranch in Chatsworth.
“His head was left open and we watched the movements of his soul,” Grogan said when he spoke of the child.
At another point in his testimony, Grogan denied there was any such thing as the Manson “family.”
“That’s a label the newspapers fabricated,” the 20-year-old defendant said.
But Grogan admitted Manson 36, handled the group’s money and property. He also said Manson made all the decisions.
Grogan under direct examination has already denied killing Shea, whose body has never been found.
In yesterday’s session, he denied discussing Shea’s murder with three persons who ultimately became witnesses for the prosecution.
He asked Katz if the prosecutor had paid one of the witnesses for the testimony, but Grogan was admonished by his attorney, Charles Weedman to refrain from making off-the-cuff remarks.
Katz will continue cross-examination today. The jury trial is in the courtroom of Superior Court Judge James G. Kolts.