California Supreme Court to Review Van Houten Parole Reversal

Wednesday, January 8th, 2020

Jan. 8 – The California Supreme Court has granted a review of Leslie Van Houten’s 2017 parole recommendation reversal. Briefing will be delayed until a pending case cited in Van Houten’s petition is resolved.

Van Houten was found suitable for parole in September 2017. Then Governor, Jerry Brown, reversed the decision in January of 2018, citing the heinousness of the murders. Brown also accused Van Houten of downplaying her role in the murders, stating she had attempted to shift blame to Charles Manson.

Van Houten’s attorney, Richard Pfeiffer filed a writ of Habeas Corpus challenging Brown’s reversal, arguing the decision relied on isolated negative factors to support the conclusion that Leslie Van Houten posed an unreasonable risk if released. The Superior Court upheld Brown’s reversal in June of 2018, stating that the Governor had met all due process requirements.

Pfeiffer challenged the ruling in California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal. The appellate court granted review and heard oral arguments last April. In September, the three justice panel ruled 2-to-1 to uphold Brown’s reversal. Now the matter will be addressed by the state’s highest court.

Van Houten is also waiting on a Superior Court ruling due in the next few days, regarding Governor Gavin Newsom’s reversal of her 2019 parole recommendation.

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20 Responses to California Supreme Court to Review Van Houten Parole Reversal

  1. NoJusticeNoPeace says:

    Well there’s always ill health that can occur and bring final justice this bitch and her attorney can’t appeal. Toe tag parole is what she has earned.

  2. Linda pickenheim says:

    It really isn’t a case of how she behaves on the”outside”, now, is it?
    She was a murderer. IS a murderer. No matter how long ago that crime, and I remember it clearly, does not take away from the cruelty, the images it still puts in my head and the heinous essentially it was.
    Forget it. No way should she walk free.

  3. starviego says:

    We love you Lulu!

  4. Jonathan Hart says:

    What a waste of time. The politicians and judges will do what they always do. They are the real law breakers.

    If they were interested in justice and doing the right thing, she would have been out long ago. She’s simply a political prisoner now, and it doesn’t look like that will ever change, unfortunately.

  5. Paul says:

    The politics in California are pathetic, if you cannot follow the guidelines of the law then you should not be working in the political world or anywhere to be honest. They have cheated her case so much.

  6. Stephen Craig says:

    “We love you Lulu!” “They (the politicians) are the real lawbreakers.” With all due to respect, are you serious? Have you any idea what an affront that is to the memory of her victims and the hell that they endured at her (and the others) hands?

  7. Julie lee says:

    It is quite ridiculous how long this woman has served. She would of been out long ago any where else if this was not Hollywood related. She’s done her time let her out stop listening to others protesting she’s a risk because they can’t let go and move on after all these years. I live in the uk and when I see this all I see now is politics and people frightened to do the right thing because of relatives still living who never want to rest Incase they slip out of the media

  8. Jonathan Hart says:

    Stephen, do you have any idea that she has met the conditions of parole many times over?

    That’s the only thing we’re discussing here….whether or not she has met those conditions, and the parole board has said she DOES how many times now? Why do we have parole board and its members if the Governor can simply overturn everything they decide….forever?

    You may not like the fact that she didn’t get life without parole, but THAT’S the circumstances. How many murderers have gone free over the past 50 years that did a lot worse things than LVH? The REASON they went free was because they met the conditions for parole. Do you think ANY family members that have lost a loved one by murder would agree that the murderer should EVER go free? Of course not! But they do because THAT’S the conditions.

    All that should matter here is whether LVH has met the conditions to be paroled. And of course she has. Case closed.

    The Governor(s) refuse to follow the law, however, and don’t take their job seriously. They make up things that aren’t true in order to keep her in prison indefinitely. Not because she’s truly a danger to others, but because they don’t want the political fallout from letting a “Manson girl” out of prison.

  9. Cybele Moon says:

    This is a very passionate and always disturbing case. Yes, it seems like she has met the requirements. No I don’t think the surviving family as someone said here “never want to rest In case they slip out of the media.” That is pretty callous considering what they lost but very typical of LVH supporters. The victim’s families do have every right to want to deny her parole. I don’t look at Leslie as a heroine of injustice but rather someone who has paid dearly for a very terrible crime. They are lucky the death penalty was overturned at that time. It’s obvious that Justice means different things to different people.

    I hear people talk about the terror of that time and the brutality of the many Manson murders and then others say ” let them go it was 50 years ago” as though that means murder is wiped off the slate. This case has never died. but not because of Sharon Tate. So many other factors played into it such as the whole “peaceful, enlightenment seeking, anti war” (social) Hippie movement which came crashing down because of this.
    Anyway folks the woman is over 70 years old and not much life left to live anyway not that I don’t think she has deserved what she got. It’s not as though she can start over at this age but hopefully won’t make money from “her story.” I hope she has found her own peace and redemption. At any rate the court may free her at some point if her lawyer doesn’t give up. She has spent her life in jail. The question is now whether she will die there or not.

  10. NoJusticeNoPeace says:

    Cybele you kick ass and take names girl. Stephen you freakin’ rock.

    Question answered: She will rot in prison, as she should. Her victims have been rotting in their graves, our society has been rotting from HER crimes SHE ASKED to BE A PART.

    Far as I’m concerned her supporters can suck on her rotting toe nails as they cart her sorry murderous carcass from prison. Maybe sell their suck story on Ebay or wear it in their perineal and sell tickets to their ass-holiness LVH.

  11. Gail Purretta says:

    Show her the mercy she showed her victims – NONE! She was one of those who stabbed a pregnant woman to death as the woman begged for her life and the life of her unborn child. She should rot in jail and burn in hell.

  12. Michael says:

    In fairness, Gail, Leslie was not present the night Sharon Tate was murdered. But her crimes were indescribable, regardless. Her behavior during the trial (caught in film footage that’s played regularly and stirs up a violent reaction in me to this day) was also so heartless and contemptuous that I can’t muster up much sympathy for her, even though I believe she’s reformed and remorseful. So many wasted lives because of this craziness, including hers.

  13. BeentoCieloBeentoWaverly says:

    Michael says: January 13, 2020 at 1:31 am
    “In fairness, Gail, Leslie was not present the night Sharon Tate was murdered…”

    To me, this fact makes Van Houten less, not more, deserving of leniency. She knew the slaughter that occurred the first night and still volunteered to go the second. If that’s not evil defined, I don’t know what is.

    Van Houten’s supporters can make a case she’s met the revised terms the state of California set – and LvH has – but “only” being at Waverly and not Cielo condemns, not absolves, Rosemary Labianco’s murderer.

  14. BeentoCielo... says:

    Please excuse my misspelling, LaBianca – my apology.

  15. The Lost Weekend says:

    This case seems to me to be about whether you want to live under a legal system that has the power to say one thing and do another. Because that is what’s happening here.

    LVH was given life with the chance of parole and despite meeting the parole conditions on numerous occasions she is denied it. She is political prisoner.

    Ask yourself whether you would want to live under those conditions. If you were imprisoned would you want to the legal system to be able to deny you your rights and extend your sentence as they saw fit because it meant the governor getting re-elected? Would you be happy is those self same conditions affected a member of your family?

    Would you want to be made an example of while people guilty of far more heinous crimes walk free? Or would you want the system to follow the law and to honour the original conviction and the law as it stands?

    This really isn’t about the crimes themselves, it’s about accepting that allowing yourself to fail prey to a double standard isn’t alright. It’s not OK to want one things for ourselves (fairness and even-handedness) and something else (unfair treatment, endless incarceration) for someone else, no matter who they are.

  16. Stephen Craig says:

    I’d like to respectfully disagree with two points brought up by The Lost Weekend:

    1. For me, someone who opposes the release of LVH, it is about the crime itself, the abject brutality visited upon the LaBiancas, the loss of their lives and all that entails, and the wreckage visited upon their families/loved ones because of this senseless crime. The “powers that be”, clearly didn’t “think it through when abolishing the death penalty, and commuting the sentences to life with the possibility of parole. That decision, was as “senseless” as the crime itself, and an insult to the suffering/loss of the victims.

    2. I completely support the idea/concept/practice of every first degree murder case/defendant being scrutinized with the same fervor of the Manson murders/murderers. My concern is not that LVH and the others are still incarcerated, but that those who committed similar atrocities against innocent people are no free. That is a real travesty of “justice” (IMO).

  17. NoJusticeNoPeace says:

    The Lost Weekend “LVH was given life with the chance of parole and despite meeting the parole conditions on numerous occasions she is denied it. She is political prisoner. Ask yourself whether you would want to live under those conditions.”

    As I try to contain my fingertips the only thing I see with this particular quote is you have NO compunction about what the CONDITIONS of the VICTIMS were left in by Lulu.

    Bet the LaBianca’s would love to live as a political prisoner…at least they would be
    ALIVE. This will always and forever BE ABOUT THE VICTIMS. Don’t like it?

    Go find another lost weekend to wank over.

  18. Cybele Moon says:

    No Justice, No Peace and Lost Weekend

    There is no justice really in this case. There are those who go by the letter of the law and those who cannot wrap their heads around the terror and brutality of the Manson crimes no matter time passed.To this day the most famous and emotional crimes of the last century, along with Leopold and Loeb, Lindbergh kidnapping, OJ Simpson are the Manson murders. Interestingly only the Lindbergh Kidnapping resulted in a death sentence and that may have been a travesty.
    The law often just means having a good lawyer (like OJ).
    Yes, unfortunately there was one famous person in the Manson slaughter, who everyone who supports LVH says is the reason she is still in jail. However, although that did make headlines, there were other factors as well, the death of the sixties social movement, the fact that these were young women who committed such brutality, hippie cults, brainwashing etc etc. The media loves a story like this-good girls gone bad, the middle class spawning blood thirsty killers and conservative America’s confirmation that the hippie movement was subversive and no good all along. So it is not forgotten. But.. there were very real victims in this story. who must have experienced such terror and pain, who begged for their lives, whose families suffered the horror as well. Yes, what is true justice here.

  19. Pam says:

    This is so ridiculous, what mercy or second chance did this cold blooded killer give to her victim? Now watch Fred come in here with his BS about her rights

  20. Ken Chapman says:

    Those arguing for continued incarceration are at least honest–they see punishment as the reason to keep Van Houten in prison. That, however, is not the law. A grant of parole is based on an assessment of dangerousness. Van Houten had no history of violence prior to her participation in murder in 1969, and no incidents, violent or otherwise during her 50 years of incarceration. During her second trial there was a hung jury and she was granted bail. When she was convicted at her third trial she was still in her 20’s and presumably far less rehabilitated than now, but she turned herself in without incident. She has the support of a number of correctional staff, who are not known as soft touches. There is no rational argument for dangerousness.

    Technically, Van Houten was able to apply for parole as early as 7 years post conviction. The first time that the Parole Board granted parole was after over 45 years of incarceration. This Supreme Court review is not after 10 years, 20, 30 or 40 years, but only after 50 years. Can anyone really believe that if her name didn’t have a connection to Manson, that she would still be incarcerated?

    There is no doubt that if the name “Manson wasn’t

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