Brown Reverses Leslie Van Houten’s Parole Grant Again

Friday, January 19th, 2018

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GOVERNOR BROWNS RULING ON LESLIE VAN HOUTEN’S PAROLE RECOMMENDATION

Jan. 19 – Governor Jerry Brown has reversed Leslie Van Houten’s September 6th parole recommendation. The ruling was sent out by Brown’s press secretary today, and reads as follows.

In the late summer of 1968, 19-year-old Leslie Van Houten met Charles Manson and began living at Spahn Ranch. She was one of the youngest members of his cult, known as “the Family.” Manson believed that a civilization-ending war between the races — Helter Skelter – was imminent, and that the Family would emerge from hiding in the desert at the end of the war to take control of the world. By 1969, the Family’s members, including Van Houten, ardently embraced Manson’s apocalyptic and warped worldview. Manson eventually came to believe that the Family would have to trigger the race war by committing atrocious, high-profile murders of white victims to incite retaliatory violence against black people. (See People v. Manson (1976) 61 Cal.App.3d 102, 127-30). At some point, Manson approached Van Houten and asked her “if she was crazy enough to believe in him and what he was doing.” She responded, “Yes.”

On August 9, 1969, several Family members carried out the gruesome murders of Abigail Folger, Wojiciech Frykowski, Jay Sebring, Steven Parent, and the eight-month pregnant Sharon Tate. Van Houten did not participate in the Tate murders, but she heard about them the next day from the news and Family members and reported that she felt “left out.”

On August 10, 1969, Manson instructed Van Houten and other Family members that the murders the previous night had been “too messy.” Manson told them they were going out again that night and he would show them how it should be done. As instructed by Manson, Van Houten took a change of clothes with her in case her clothes got bloody. At Manson’s direction, Linda Kasabian drove Manson, Van Houten, Charles “Tex” Watson, Patricia Krenwinkel, Susan Atkins, and Steve Grogan around for hours, making stops to allow Manson to locate potential murder victims. The group eventually stopped at the home of Rosemary and Leno LaBianca.

Manson entered the LaBianca home, tied up the couple, and returned to the car with Mrs. LaBianca’s wallet. His plan was to plant the wallet in an area with a large African-American population so they would be blamed for the murders, which in turn would initiate the race war. Manson told Van Houten, Krenwinkel, and Watson to go into the house. Once inside the LaBianca home, Watson told Van Houten and Krenwinkel to take Mrs. LaBianca into her bedroom and kill her. Krenwinkel retrieved knives from the kitchen and gave one to Van Houten. Van Houten put a pillowcase over Mrs. LaBianca’s head and wrapped a lamp cord around her neck. Mrs. LaBianca could hear the guttural sounds of her husband being stabbed to death by Watson in the other room. She grabbed the lamp and tried to escape, but Van Houten knocked the lamp out of her hands and wrestled her back to the bed. Van Houten then pinned Mrs. LaBianca down while Krenwinkel stabbed her. Krenwinkel stabbed Mrs. LaBianca with so much force that the knife blade bent on Mrs. LaBianca’s collarbone. Van Houten summoned Watson for assistance, and he came in the room with a bayonet. Watson stabbed Mrs. LaBianca several times with the bayonet and then handed a knife to Van Houten and told her to “do something.” Van Houten said she “felt” Mrs. LaBianca was dead at that point, but she “didn’t know for sure.” She continued stabbing Mrs. LaBianca at least 16 times. Mrs. LaBianca was stabbed a total of 41 times according to autopsy reports. Mr. LaBianca had 13 stab wounds, in addition to scratches, and 14 puncture wounds from a carving fork which was left sticking out of his stomach. A knife was also found protruding from his neck. The word “War” was scratched on his stomach.

After the murders, Van Houten thoroughly wiped away fingerprints from the house while Krenwinkel painted “Death to the Pigs” on a wall in the living room, “Rise” over a door, and “Healter (sic) Skelter” on a refrigerator door using Mr. LaBianca’s blood. Van Houten changed into Mrs. LaBianca’s clothes and drank chocolate milk from the LaBianca’s refrigerator before leaving. Back at Spahn Ranch, she burned Mrs. LaBianca’s clothes and counted the money taken from the home. According to Family member Dianne Lake, Van Houten told her that “she had stabbed a woman who was already dead, and that the more she did it the more fun it was.”
While the residents of Los Angeles and the surrounding areas remained in terror, Van Houten hid out for over two months at a remote location in Death Valley hoping to seek refuge in the “bottomless pit” and fulfill Manson’s prophecy. She was not arrested until November 25, 1969.

GOVERNING LAW

The question I must answer is whether Leslie Van Houten will pose a current danger to the public if released from prison. The circumstances of the crime can provide evidence of current dangerousness when the record also establishes that something in the inmate’s pre- or post-incarceration history, or the inmate’s current demeanor and mental state, indicate that the circumstances of the crime remain probative of current dangerousness. (In re Lawrence (2008) 44 Cal. 4th 1181, 1214.) Additionally, I am required to give “great weight to the diminished culpability of juveniles as compared to adults, the hallmark features of youth, and any subsequent growth and increased maturity of the prisoner” when determining a youthful offender’s suitability for parole. (Pen. Code, § 4801, subd. (c).) I am also required to give “great weight to any information or evidence that, at the time of the commission of the crime, the prisoner had experienced intimate partner battering.” (Pen. Code, § 4801, subd. (b)(1).) In rare circumstances, the aggravated nature of the crime alone can provide a valid basis for denying parole, even when there is strong evidence of rehabilitation and no other evidence of current dangerousness. (In re Lawrence, supra, at 1211, 1214.)

DECISION

The Board of Parole Hearings found Van Houten suitable for parole on September 6, 2017, based on her growth and maturity while incarcerated, development of pro-social thought processes and healthy coping mechanisms, educational achievements, lack of a significant juvenile or adult record, stable social history as an adult, expression of remorse and acceptance of responsibility, low risk of future violence, and parole plans.

I acknowledge that Van Houten’s crime was committed when she was 19 years old and that she has since been incarcerated for 48 years. She is 68 years old and has made laudable strides in self-improvement in prison. The psychologist who evaluated her in 2016 noted that during Van Houten’s incarceration, she has “exhibited pro-social behaviors throughout most of her imprisonment.” She has never been disciplined for serious misconduct during her incarceration. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees and has received exceptional work ratings as a tutor for the past decade. She also received positive commendations from staff, including several in 2017. She has participated in and facilitated numerous self-help programs, including Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous, Victim Offender Education Group, and Relapse Prevention. She served as Parliamentarian of the Women’s Advisory Council. I carefully examined the record for evidence demonstrating Van Houten’s increased maturity and rehabilitation, and gave great weight to all the factors relevant to her diminished culpability as a juvenile: her immaturity and impetuosity, her failure to appreciate risks and consequences, her dysfunctional home environment, the peer pressures that affected her, and her other hallmark features of youth. I also gave great weight to her subsequent growth in prison during my consideration of her suitability for parole, as well as evidence that she had been the victim of intimate partner battering at the hands of Manson. However, these factors are outweighed by negative factors that demonstrate she remains unsuitable for parole.

In the summer of 1969, Van Houten and other members of the Manson family began their quest to start a civilization-ending war between the races — known as Helter Skelter— by committing atrocious, high-profile murders to incite retaliatory violence. Van Houten played a vital part in the LaBianca murders, one of the most notorious of the Manson Family crimes. She chose to enter the LaBianca home, brutally stabbed Mrs. LaBianca numerous times, and then helped clean up the scene and dispose of evidence. The devastation and loss experienced by the LaBianca family and all the victims’ families continues today.

The murders alone are not the only evidence that Van Houten remains unsuitable for parole. She has long downplayed her role in these murders and in the Manson Family, and her minimization of her role continues today. At her 2017 parole hearing, Van Houten claimed full responsibility for her crimes. However, she still shifted blame for her own actions onto Manson to some extent, saying, “I take responsibility for the entire crime. I take responsibility going back to Manson being able to do what he did to all of us. I allowed it.” She later stated, “I accept responsibility that I allowed [Manson] to conduct my life in that way.”

Van Houten’s statements show that she still has not come to terms with her central role in these murders and in the Manson Family. Van Houten told the 2016 psychologist that when asked to join Charles Manson’s “utopia” at the Spahn Ranch, she “bit into it, hook, line and sinker.” By her own account, she idolized Manson and wanted to please him. At her 2017 hearing, VanHouten explained that she “desperately wanted to be what [Manson] envisioned us being.” She admitted that following the Tate murders, she wanted to participate in the LaBianca murders because she “wanted to go and commit to the cause, too.” Van Houten told the Board she committed the crimes in order to “prove my dedication to the revolution and what I knew would need to be done to, um, have proved myself to Manson.”

As the Los Angeles Superior Court found last year, Van Houten’s recent statements, “specifically her inability to discuss her role in the Manson Family and LaBianca murders without imputing some responsibility to her drug use and her danger of falling prey to the influence of other people because of her dependent personality,” have demonstrated a lack of insight into her crimes. “[She] was not violent before she met Manson, but upon meeting such a manipulative individual she chose to participate in the cold-blooded murder of multiple innocent victims.” The court continued, “While it is unlikely [Van Houten] could ever find another Manson-like figure if released, her susceptibility to dependence and her inability to fully recognize why she willingly participated in her life crime provides a nexus between the commitment offense and her current mental state, demonstrating she poses a danger to society if released on parole.”

Van Houten has made admirable efforts at self-improvement while incarcerated and appears more willing today to accept responsibility for the part she played in these crimes. I considered and gave great weight to evidence in the record that Manson was clearly abusive to her and other Family members at the time of the crime. But even today, almost five decades later, Van Houten has not wholly accepted responsibility for her role in the violent and brutal deaths of Mr. and Mrs. LaBianca.

These crimes stand apart from others by their heinous nature and shocking motive. By her own behavior, Van Houten has shown she is capable of extraordinary violence. There is no question that Van Houten was both fully committed to the radical beliefs of the Manson Family and that she actively contributed to a bloody horror that terrorized the nation. As our Supreme Court has acknowledged, in rare cases, the circumstances of a crime can provide a basis for denying parole. This is exactly such a case.

CONCLUSION

Therefore, for all the above reasons, I reverse the decision to parole Leslie Van Houten.

Decision Date: January 19, 2018
EDMUND G. BROWN JR.
Governor, State of California

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40 Responses to Brown Reverses Leslie Van Houten’s Parole Grant Again

  1. Alex Hill says:

    If she said that it was her fault and not Manson’s Brown would say that she didn’t blame him enough. She’s dammed if she does dammed if she doesn’t.

  2. Roger Wayne Adams says:

    Not right. I feel like she’s earned her release. She can’t change the past. Ah she’s gonna die in there like the others.

  3. J-Dog says:

    Justice is not being served.
    Also she would be under rigorous parole terms no doubt, not exactly freedom.

  4. Wide Eyed in Babylon says:

    Hypercritical of Governor Brown to say that Leslie is putting some of the blame on Manson and not accepting it all herself. The prosecution at the time tried to show that Manson was in control of everyone in order to secure his culpability in the crimes, but now that is seen as the murderers not accepting full responsibility. You can’t have it both ways.

  5. Martin says:

    I think that the passing away of Manson has also something to do with it. It made the headlines again and that can only be a bad thing for Leslie. Plus no one wants to be named as the one who set free a Manson killer. It’s all about politics. Such a shame for the system, going against a parole board filled with experts. Once again Reputation prevails over Right.

  6. karma's colon says:

    Take it to the California supreme court or SCOTUS

  7. Sydney says:

    It is sad isn’t it. I hope she takes it up with the Guild of higher courts. Her lawyers can expose the phony hypocrites .

  8. Sonny says:

    Release her, 48 yrs is Enough!

  9. Lee says:

    LVH didn’t just have a teenage indiscretion. She actively participated in a horrible home invasion/murder. If that wasn’t bad enough, she was fucking gleeful about it afterwards. I don’t care how good looking or young she was when it happened. WTF? You do not get a second chance at freedom after WANTING and almost begging to participate in something so horrible. Would any of you be thinking about releasing a home invader/murderer if it was some scary-looking man? Hell no. Bottom line, none of these people are going to ever be released. They were actually given a second chance after the death penalty was removed, so she just better face the fact that she isn’t going anywhere. Is it fair? No, but neither was what they did to their victims.

  10. Australian Observer says:

    Political Prisoner. This decision has nothing to do with the application of the laws of an allegedly democratic and civilised nation. Regardless of opinions, this woman qualifies for parole.

  11. Rosie says:

    You get it. I get so tired or reading comments that “Leslie was a child when she committed the murders”, “she has served enough time”, and on and on. I have also read that there are comments that Krenwinkel was only 19 when she participated in the murders. She was 21! Anyway, at 19 you should know the difference between right and wrong and Watson, Krenwinkel, Atkins, Van Houton, Davis and Beausoliel, Grogan took the lives of innocent people. It infuriates me to this day that Grogan was released. So many people in their graves, so many lives ruined. The State of California Supreme Court ruled the death penalty cruel and unusual punishment and all those on death row had their sentences changed to life with the possibility of parole. All you bleeding heart liberals, please tell me, when do the families of the victims get their parole? When do the victims who died horrible deaths get their parole? The killers made their choices in 1969. Now they can live with it…behind bars until they die!

  12. Lee says:

    When the death penalty was lifted, their sentences should’ve been life withOUT the possibility of parole. We wouldn’t be having any of these arguements. What I will never understand are the people making comments on other sites that Bugliosi is to blame. Yep, I read that. If that isn’t the most ridiculous, asinine thing I’ve ever read, or the argument that people have done worse crimes than her, and have been released. Okay, others that committed worse probably didn’t parade around in front of the cameras laughing, smiling and cutting up jokes at the expense of the families of the victims. I am sorry, but 19 years old is not a child. She was old enough to know right from wrong. It isn’t that she isn’t suitable, it’s what she fucking did!

  13. Rosie says:

    Lee, a high five to you! When will people who feel Van Houten served enough time get it? She assisted in the murder of 2 human beings. She had the choice of walking away or doing the unthinkable. Leave drugs out of it. Leave Manson out of it. Manson asked others to murder for him and they said no. Nothing happened to them. People came and went from Spahn Ranch all the time. Van Houten was not a child. She did the unthinkable. She is where she belongs. Each and everyone one of Manson’s followers who made the choice to murder have no right to freedom. For those of you who feel time served is enough, look at the photos of the victims….they were slaughtered. Absolutely no mercy shown. This is not about an eye for an eye. This is about justice. Justice for Sharon Tate, her unborn child, Abigail Folger, Voytek Frykowski, Jay Sebring, Steve Parent, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, Gary Hinman, Shorty Shea, and god knows how many others. Lee, you are right. it isn’t about Van Houten’s suitability, it’s what she “f-ing” did.

  14. Michael says:

    Leslie’s statement on the witness stand when asked if she was sorry for the murders should be repeated every time she comes up for parole: “Sorry is a five-letter word. Why should I feel sorry? It happened.” That alone, to my thinking, ought to seal the deal.

  15. Lee says:

    Rosie, you’re right about justice! People simply seem to forget how horrible the victims suffered. Not only the sheer terror they experienced, but the unimaginable pain they felt as a knife & bayonet was plunged into their bodies over & over again. Rosemary had to hear her husband gurgling to death as Tex stuck him in the throat while alive. This argument people have about Leslie not being guilty of murder because Rosemary was dead already is the most ridiculous damn thing yet. Why was LVH even in their home? She wanted to prove herself so bad for the “revolution” that she chose to go along. Well, f*ck LVH! Michael, you are so right about that too. “SORRY is a five letter word!” Sickening!!

  16. Australia closet says:

    Free Leslie!!

  17. Kathy says:

    I had forgotten about the “Sorry is a five letter word”, but I do remember how the three of them (Leslie, Susan, and Pat) held hands and sung going to the courtroom. Imagine if it was your loved one that they murdered and then made a mockery of it? I think LuLu and the rest of them are getting out the same way Susan did – in a box. And I think it’s fitting.

  18. Donna says:

    No matter what she says or does is going to earn her release.

  19. Charley says:

    I can see both sides of the ‘parole/no parole’ argument. On the one hand, what she did was disgusting and cannot be undone – if you want out, simply give your victims their lives back! Have a time machine? No? Too bad then. On the other hand, there is the letter of the law that currently applies – it’s not a popularity contest, it says what it says. We don’t get to vote that it not be applied because we don’t agree or especially don’t like what a particular criminal did vs another.
    That being said – I find myself wondering why LVH would even want to get out now. She’s not been in the free world since that late 60’s, early 70’s. Everything and everyone has changed. At her age, it would be hard to adapt – I’d be terrified. Why not accept your lot and appreciate the life you’ve been afforded?!

  20. Travis says:

    This has moved beyond Leslie. It’s now a question of whether the Crown is going to obey it’s own damn laws just as it requires the rest of us to do. In Anglo-English law the central concept of holding the monarchy to common law goes back to the Great Letter. This, in effect, prevents the Crown from being arbitrary and capricious.

    In this case the state in effect made a contract with Leslie by requiring her to do certain things and show certain behaviours to prove she is no longer a threat. Those assessing these elements have judged her acceptable for outside life and, as we know, recommended parole twice. According to the state’s own laws, she earned parole, but the state, in the form of disgusting Governor Jerry Moonbeam Brown came in at the last minute and reneged on its half of the agreement. If the sovereign can do this to Leslie in a highly publicized case, that is, at will, violate its own precepts, it can damn well do it to me and to you.

    Had Leslie been executed for her crimes, well then, fine. That is the law. Had Leslie been sentenced to life without, fine, that is the law as well. But she got life with possible parole and that was contingent on her doing x,y, and z which she did. And that by god is the law too.

    It makes no difference my opinion about what should have happened to the killers. That is irrelevant. I think that at least Watson and Krenwinkel should have been executed but the law doesn’t care about my opinion and that is as it should be. What the law says is, however, important. No matter what I may think of her commitment crimes, that’s not important.

    By allowing the governor to approve or disapprove a recommended parolee, subjects the law to political influences. Codes and courts are removed from the city square to avoid these precise pressures to prevent public lynchings instead of weighing the evidence and coming to a reasoned conclusion. By giving Brown the final chop kicks the case to the whims of public opinion and the very thing the courts try to avoid. Well, that, regrettably, is the legal privilege granted to the Governor. Most states see the danger in this process and the Boards of Pardons and Paroles have the final say.

    Moonbeam should have recused himself from this decision and that of parolee Bruce Davis, because he, Moonbeam, moved in the same circles with the Hollywood elites at the time of the murders. He was too close to those who personally knew Sharon, pedophile Polanski, and maybe Abigail. Thus he cannot make an objective choice in Leslie’s parole.

    According to Stoner Van Houten, Arnold Schwarzenegger was close to one of the Tate girls. Thus, when Bruce Davis received a parolee recommendation, Arnold should have deferred to someone else for the decision. He didn’t thus he likely acted to do a favour for the Tates.

    Some are of the opinion that if it wasn’t for Manson, the same type killers, would have been paroled years ago. Yeah probably. Yet the missing element here is that Manson and crew struck at Hollywood elites and planned to attack others if Susan can be believed. Had Manson led raids on those not associated with Hollywood, hell, even Manson himself might have been paroled.

    Yes, the state law allows for denial of parole based on the nature of the commitment crime. But this is meant for the Parole Boards to apply, not a no-nothing political hack such as Moonbeam to use for political grandstanding. Once the Board decided that Leslie’s crimes no longer prevented her parole, this should have been the end of that particular consideration. Tex Watson will always be denied because in his hearings will be the specter of his knife and gun murders.

    Brown’s assessment of Leslie not taking full responsibility is ludicrous. Manson is forever in the mix of Leslie’s stupidity and criminal actions. Any explanation she has for the crimes she committed must take Manson’s influence into consideration. Without Manson she would never have committed murder. You can say that about the others as well and in parole hearings they don’t talk about their crimes in isolation. It’s always with Manson the central issue.

    In the background is the race war Helter Skelter invented by Bugliosi. He did so to inflame the jury and the community because he had little evidence, and he was a 35 year old government employee going nowhere. He needed a big win and publicity and, into his lap plopped a bunch of nobodies.

    Linda was it and she participated in TLB herself. To show how weak the state’s case was, Bugliosi gave Kasabian full immunity. The invented race war was the insurance policy. This myth of course is used today as a bludgeon against the Manson gang. Leslie did, it seems, believe that a revolution was coming, but she showed no animus toward blacks. In fact none of the group used racial slurs concerning blacks.

    Leslie’s case is now more about state lawlessness than about her. State lawlessness that goes back to the original trial. The Crown feels it was cheated out of its executions and now, for spite, it is imposing sentences not authorized by the courts.

    As an aside, Governor Brown should have already been arrested for federal immigration violations because of his fetish to hide illegals and welcome more in. All violations of the INA. Why is Brown playing footsie with illegal aliens? Well, eventually for votes. But now I suspect he is tapping into the billions of dollars associated with the drug trade. He’s bought and owned by the Mexican Drug Cartels. The money is laundered into the Democrat party apparatus where party apparatchiks line their pockets.

    When the five times deported illegal Mexican murdered the beautiful Kate in San Francisco as the direct result of Brown’s tolerance of sanctuary cities, his reaction was to make the whole damn state a sanctuary for criminal Mexicans many with drug and gang ties further endangering citizens. And this bastard who makes political hacks look good, claims Leslie, by inference, is a threat to society? God save the Queen.

  21. Lee Flippin says:

    Those who keep repeating the same sort of tune about how the “letter of the law” somehow insists that LVH must go free–well, no, it doesn’t.

    The “letter of the law” insists that LVH is eligible for parole board hearings, whether we like it or not, and her parole boards can make recommendations for her release, or not, as they see fit.

    The letter of the law also insists that the current governor of California may review those PB recommendations and either accept or deny them according to his interpretation of the crime and the criminal’s suitability.

    The governor’s actions in this regard are not illegal, regardless of what LVH’s friends and supporters may think.

  22. Lee says:

    Bugliosi did not make up Helter Skelter, sir. Ridiculous!

  23. Travis says:

    I guess you are particularly dense. Those advocating for the rule of law have always agreed that the final legal step in the parole process is a review by the governor.

    Yes the Governor may approve or disapprove a parole under California law, no matter how misplaced that law is. It’s also possible that the governor, especially this one, in the name of Moonbat Brown, is outside the legal parameters of that law.

    The purpose of the review is just that, a review to make sure the PB did not miss a critical element they should have assessed and that their process is legally sufficient. The review is meant as a final backstop when releasing convicted murderers. The law does not require that the governor re-analyze the case which is what POS Brown has done. In effect, he is redoing the PB’s job.

    The only purpose of the PB is to determine if public safety is at risk if an inmate is released. In Leslie’s case they ruled, twice, that she does not pose danger to the public. Brown says in essence she does. Who knows the inmate better, the PB or Brown? Who is in the best position to make that call? Hint, it ain’t Wetback lover Brown.

    A state judge could rule that Brown overreached his authority, but hell, all the judges in that state are now democrats and they are not going to overrule Brown.

  24. Travis says:

    “Bugliosi did not make up Helter Skelter, sir. Ridiculous!”

    Of course not, the Beatles did, Mr. Pompous Ass.

  25. Michael says:

    Kip, your repulsive comment about Sharon Tate makes it impossible to seriously consider anything else you say.

  26. Susan W. says:

    As she should be. No one that does what she and the other did did it purely due to drugs,manson,the times. They all did it because they were already capable of it. Drugs don’t cause others to do those things. If it were so then ALL addicts would be murderous killing machines. As for manskn causing it?. No, all of them had the chance to walk away many times. And linda kasabian (sp?) should be locked up to. I really can’t believe her story of just being a driver. Manson made sure van houten not only went but took an active part in the la bianca murders. All of them should die in prison hideously. Manson shouldn’t have been given a ‘cushy’ death. I hope their victims spirits were at the deathbeds of atkins and manson, then tortured their souls once they popped free of their bodies!.

  27. Susan W. says:

    As she should be. No one that does what she and the other did did it purely due to drugs,manson,the times. They all did it because they were already capable of it. Drugs don’t cause others to do those things. If it were so then ALL addicts would be murderous killing machines. As for manskn causing it?. No, all of them had the chance to walk away many times. And linda kasabian (sp?) should be locked up to. I really can’t believe her story of just being a driver. Manson made sure van houten not only went but took an active part in the la bianca murders. All of them should die in prison hideously. Manson wouldn’t have been given a ‘cushy’ death. I hope their victims spirits were at the deathbeds of atkins and manson, then tortured their souls once they popped free of their bodies!.

  28. W G from his mother down under says:

    Leslie poses no more risk to society.

  29. BU says:

    it’s funny all these people claiming she should be released, let me ask all of you this question what about if it was one of your family member would you be screaming for her release.

  30. Lisa K. says:

    Is this a reelection year? Or h has governor Brown became such an close minded bureaucrat like he used to fight against? I would have thought that he might be a little open to finally let her free…time has been served…

  31. CybG says:

    The big problem in this case, and all the cases involving the Manson Family members, is that a bad politician tries to “correct” one injustice with another injustice.

    All of them were sentenced to death at the time. Maybe it was the fairest sentence they should have, or at least life without parole at the hardest conditions in a supermax prison. But, unexpectedly, the sentence was changed to “life with the possibility of parole”, which is the first (and biggest) injustice.

    The system offered the Family members the possibility of “rehabilitation”, knowing that the sole perspective of release anyone of them would cause a big pain to the victims’ families. How much money wasted in parole hearings and attorneys for something that is inherently unfair, the release of a heinous murder.

    But, if the system offers the possibility of rehabilitation and the convict (especially after almost a half century in prison) fulfills the requirements to be granted parole, normally he/she should be released. Governor Brown reversed the parole decision on arbitrary reasons. This is the second injustice which tries to correct the first one.

    If Governor Brown only had invoked the sole reason “the circumstances of a crime can provide a basis for denying parole”, it should have been fine. It’s a way to say: this kind of crime will never deserve to be considered to parole. Instead of this, he gives additional “excuses” on the “commitment” of the convict, which are unnecessary and even false. This is hypocritical.

    Why the parole committees don’t tell every Family member that there is no chance for them to get released and it’s a waste of time and money to try again a parole hearing ? Why the Governor does not say just that ?

  32. Ben Sharp says:

    The governor is obviously thinking about number 1. He is breaking the law to keep his nose clean. If he can’t make the right decision then don’t make it at all. The law states that Leslie is more than suitable for parole, it’s an inarguable fact. They cannot satisfy everybody forever.

  33. Suzanne says:

    Thank you, Governor Brown.

  34. Flip says:

    Travis–I get the distinct impression that “disagrees with Travis’ opinions” = “dense” in your understanding of the world. It’s a wonder that the world has not awakened and adopted you as its official guiding light. And, just an FYI, the Beatles didn’t actually invent the concept of Helter Skelter either, did they? Wasn’t Helter Skelter an amusement park ride that inspired the song of the same name? But, really, Travis I think Lee was simply trying to point out that the Helter Skelter motive didn’t spring from Mr. Bugliosi’s mind…that it actually represented part of the Manson cult’s group hallucination.

    Ben–I’m afraid that there is very, very little–maybe nothing at all–in the legal sphere that
    is “inarguable”. Argument is the life-blood and the essential basis for all proceedings in
    the law.

    LVH can rot in prison, legally, for the rest of her life if she continues to be denied.

  35. Louise says:

    Ben, do you even understand the law, as effed up as it might be? Whether we like it or not, the law says the gov has the right to make a final decision. I don’t like it, but it is what it is.

    Don’t be a spreader of #fakenews

  36. Cam says:

    It would be interesting how many convicted murderers have come and gone inside Leslie’s prison during these 48 years. It must be tough for her to see them do the 15/20 years then set free. Free LVH.

  37. D.J.S says:

    Good answer and you are totally right!!!!Finally someone said it,there is nothing illegal about the Govener’s decision.

  38. PC says:

    Thank God for Governor Brown

  39. Lee says:

    Some of these commenters amaze me. I think they associate LVH with the young, cute girl she used to be. Newsflash…..she is an elderly woman now. Nobody would give a shit about some random, elderly inmates release, but people fantasize about LVH when she was young, and somehow come to her defense. If Leslie was fat, I guarantee NOBODY would be caring about her release one bit. Or, say, if she had been ugly when she was young, you wouldn’t hear a peep. LVH has become this cult figure that people fantasize about, simply because the way she looked back in the late 60s. These same people rooting for her release completely disregard her participation in a bloody home invasion, simply because she was a young, good looking girl when she did it.

  40. Louis says:

    lol PC….Thank God he’s almost out

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