Manson Ends Hunger Strike at County Jail

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 12 – Charles Manson, accused mastermind of the seven Tate-LaBianca slayings, skipped breakfast and lunch in a “hunger strike” Sunday but abruptly ended it when dinner was served.

Manson, 35, the bearded leader of a hippie cult implicated in the seven murders, joined other prisoners in his cell block who were protesting the transfer of three prisoners from central jail.

Twenty-four inmates refused to eat breakfast, a sheriff’s spokesman said, but by midday the hunger strike had narrowed down to eight and only four at dinner.

Two of the men were transferred Friday for creating disturbances and harboring contraband and the third was moved Saturday because he allegedly had been stealing. Two of those transferred are charged with murder and the third is charged with assault with a deadly weapon.

The 31 prisoners housed in the small cell block with Manson are acting as their own attorneys and have special privileges such as the use of the jail law library and pay telephones.

Manson was authorized to act as his own lawyer and is expected to enter a plea this week to charges of seven counts of murder and conspiracy to murder in the slayings at the homes of actress Sharon Tate and Leno LaBianca last August.

Manson occupies a cell isolated from the others but he is permitted to mingle up to nine hours a day with his fellow inmates in the jail library.

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