Tex Watson Denied Parole for the 18th Time

Friday, October 15th, 2021

Oct. 15 – The California Board of Parole Hearings has once again found Charles “Tex” Watson unsuitable for parole.

Watson, 75, is serving a life sentence for the seven Tate-LaBianca murders. Originally sentenced to death on November 11, 1971, Watson’s sentence was commuted down to life with the possibility of parole in March of 1973 when the death penalty was briefly outlawed.

He has been denied parole 18 times and will not be eligible for another hearing until 2026.

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34 Responses to Tex Watson Denied Parole for the 18th Time

  1. Jez says:

    No surprises there!!

  2. Billy Esquire says:

    Certainly not surprising.

  3. Robbie says:

    I do believe Tex needs to stay where he is. But parole should be granted for the family associates. It makes a mockery of the justice system to parole prisoners whose crimes are much less heinous to have been paroled. It all comes down to whom is killed.

  4. Lisa Wilson says:

    The only way Tex Watson, Leslie Van Houten, or Patricia Krenwinkel should leave prison is in a pine box. Until their many victims can walk out of their graves, none should walk out of prison.

  5. Roger says:

    Not surprising

  6. Sasha Musgrave says:

    He will be a free man when he is dead.

  7. Michael says:

    Over 20 years ago, I read a letter that Watson had written to a friend, in which he said, “Parole does not look good.” I think he’s realized for some time that his chances of getting out are just about zero.

    Parole boards may consider the rehabilitation of Leslie or Bruce to be enough to warrant a release, but no matter how good his record is or how devout a Christian he has become, nothing Watson does could override the magnitude of his crimes. He could walk on water, but he won’t walk out of prison.

  8. Dan Cotter says:

    Kudos to the parole board for making the right decision. Tex will rightfully so die in prison.

  9. Cybele Moon says:

    The horror of those crimes have become a dark chapter of American history in a decade that was suppose to bring great change. There were so many facets to the story, Hollywood fame, cults, the social movement of the sixties, music, brotherhood, communes, innocence, transcendence, peace, love – and Charlie Manson and the gang. What happened!!

  10. Just A Shadow says:

    Charles Watson still doesn’t seem to understand…this isn’t something you should be claiming God forgave you for..your atonement should be to humankind. Especially the relatives of the people whom you senselessly murdered.

    What’s going on in someone’s head that they can’t find the words “ screw you, Charlie, I’m not killing anyone for you”

  11. Michael says:

    Cybele, I think the “What happened?” question is pretty fascinating to mull over. When trying to answer it regarding Manson, people often look to the turbulence of the 60’s for an explanation. But I think the Manson Family tragedy could happen anytime, so long as there are megalomaniacs like Charlie, and susceptible people like Tex and Katie who will make themselves subservient to a narcissist and a cause, no matter how ludicrous. If it happened in the 60’s with them, or in the 70’s with Jones, or the 90’s with Koresh, then I guess it could happen anytime.

  12. Cybele Moon says:

    Michael, yes, and there have been hideous crimes through history. I find the social movement of the sixties fascinating. Middle class kids rejecting middle class values, doing drug, joining communes and reading Eastern philosophies. Jones and Koresh were also the result of the hypocrisies of western society that made certain people want to find utopias or prophets. Jones was totally mad and abused his power too. Waco was a tragedy partly caused by the FBI. Somehow the sixties seemed different . As Hunter S. Thompson said, ” we were riding the crest of a high and beautiful wave….with the right kind of eye you can see the high water mark where the wave finally broke and rolled back.” Kind of an analogy on what happened in 69?

  13. Lee says:

    Look at those repulsive, sunken eyes! Those horrible eyes are the last thing Sharon Tate and many other saw before they died an agonizing death! So, so frightening!!!

  14. Rosie Lowe says:

    Thank God the parole boards keep getting it right. Watson can keep saying “God” has forgiven him but that doesn’t matter. The truth is he took the lives of Sharon Tate, her unborn son, Jay Sebring, Abigail Folger, Voytek Frykowski, Steve Parent, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca and Shorty Shea. Sharon Tate was murdered after her friends after begging to be allowed to live just to give birth, to no avail. Yet once convicted Watson is allowed to marry and father 4 children, who were supported by the state of California. Sickening. And the woman who married him and had his children had to have been mentally ill. The very idea of that monster even touching me makes me sick. Not one of the killers, Watson, Davis, Beausoliel, Van Houton and Krenwinkel should ever be paroled. Atkins died where she belonged. She asked to die at home with her husband…she who showed no mercy to any of the victims wanted mercy. Watson is where he belongs and he can preach until the cows come home. But it all comes down to the fact he is nothing but a cold blooded killer.

  15. sam says:

    tex will never and should never be released, you cant release a serial killer.

  16. Cybele Moon says:

    Sam I don’t think Tex fits the psychological profile of a serial killer as such but he is a mass murderer for sure- and looking into those eyes probably a psychopath as well who has found religion in the very structured environment of prison. Who knows what he’d do if he got out. What I never understood is why he was allowed the privilege of getting married and having children!! Poor kids!

  17. Mick says:

    Even if Charles ‘Tex’ Watson is born again and saved and forgiven by God, he must still serve his life sentence with no parole. He should only get out of prison when his spirit gets out of his body. It is the penance he must pay, its better than going to Hell.

  18. Fred Bloggs says:

    Just A Shadow says:
    Charles Watson still doesn’t seem to understand…this isn’t something you should be claiming God forgave you for

    Why not ? Are you afraid that it just might be true ?
    God forgives. It is in God’s nature to forgive ~ as long as the person seeking forgiveness is genuinely repentant for what they’ve done.
    This does not mean that the forgiven person “escapes” whatever sentence they may be under, whether it’s death, or a life sentence without the possibility of parole, or a major league whipping with the cat o’ nine tails or whatever. Those that follow Christ, if we have done wrong, and we genuinely turn from the mindset that brought those wrong actions and God forgives, hey, we still have to take our lumps. God may be ever loving and ready to forgive. But humans are not ! And that is not actually necessarily a weakness on the part of various justice systems. Sometimes, a person’s acts necessitate them spending their life in prison, even if God has forgiven them. What that means is that their earthly life in Christ has to be lived under the circumstances that they happen to find themselves in.
    Bur God’s forgiveness is no less real and it would be dishonest of Watson to leave out that highly significant detail. The irony is that it is proclamation of his faith in Christ that goes a long way towards keeping him in jail.

    your atonement should be to humankind. Especially the relatives of the people whom you senselessly murdered

    Him being in jail is atonement to humankind because it is humans that have crafted the laws that he lives under.
    And if you read his various parole hearings, he apologizes ad nauseam to his victims’ families.
    They don’t care. They don’t want to hear his apologies. And when someone like Suzan LaBerge does hear him and responds by forgiving him, she gets vilified.

    What’s going on in someone’s head that they can’t find the words “ screw you, Charlie, I’m not killing anyone for you”

    One could, I suppose, ask that of millions of people {yes, including soldiers who felt they were on the side of “right”} throughout history, many of whom, some “right-thinking people”, feel are heroes. I’m not defending Watson, but being wise 52 years after the event makes me wonder, exactly where are you going with that point ?
    Loads of “law-abiding” citizens lynched black people in America’s history and were never even investigated, arrested, let alone saw the inside of a court of law. They continued to walk the streets, in their hatred, knowing what they had done. And there were many others in various communities that knew what they had done, and continued throughout their lives to say nothing, to love and make love with those men, to have children with those men….
    Life and making sense of life ain’t easy, is it ?

  19. Fred Bloggs says:

    Michael says:
    I think he’s realized for some time that his chances of getting out are just about zero

    Back in 2005, as I was getting to grips with the internet {I was a late convert !} I copied this book from his website called “Right-hand man speaks out.” In it, he states that he’s resigned himself to never leaving jail. I don’t hold it against him for seeking parole ¬> it’s part of his sentence. All the naysayers ought to recognize the folly of their position when they say things like, “if he was truly sorry, he’d eschew parole and stay in prison.” By applying for parole, he’s obeying the law. Remember, he’s where he is because there was a time when he didn’t obey it !
    However, equally, a parole board exists to determine whether or not he is suitable for release. And they continually deem the answer to be a resounding “no !” And that is equally within the law and, I think, fair.

    no matter how good his record is or how devout a Christian he has become, nothing Watson does could override the magnitude of his crimes

    I’d go further and say that whatever the crime, nothing can override its magnitude.
    But that is very different from whether or not a person should be paroled. That’s on a case by case basis with so much to balance and so much nuance to take into account, even if the person has done the most dastardly of things at some point in their life.
    I support Charles Watson in his changes because as a Christian, I know that if someone is genuine, the changes God brings a person to are incredible. And wonderful. And Watson has been in Christ for 47 years, no small thing. It’s hard to fake. Not impossible, but hard and unlikely.
    I also think he’s where he should be. I believe in rehabilitation. I think punishment runs alongside that. It’s not a dirty word, although some abuse it and make it a dirty action.
    One might ask, why rehabilitate someone if you’re never going to release them from jail ? To me, that’s like asking, why cure someone old of a disease that will kill them if we’re all going to die anyway ?

    Cybele Moon says:
    a decade that was suppose to bring great change….What happened!!

    That’s an easy one. The movers and shakers were human. So they, like us, like our ancestors, were flawed. Capable of some wonderful and loving and innovative moments mixed in with the inner darkness from which we, sometimes frequently, sometimes rarely, find ourselves unable to escape from. From a cosmic {read:Godly} perspective, the 1960s was no different from any other decade before or since. The same inner problems beset mankind and expressed themselves. There was just neater music !
    But there was plenty that was negative about the 60s, as well as much that was good. The Family were merely part of the dark side. This whole thing about Manson being the man who ended the 60s is bollocks.
    That said, many of the changes that gained real traction in the 60s have gone on to sprout some interesting results in the decades subsequent…..which is both logical and normal to humans.

  20. Fred Bloggs says:

    Mick says:
    Even if Charles ‘Tex’ Watson is born again and saved and forgiven by God, he must still serve his life sentence

    Personally, this is pretty much my stance on Charles Watson.

    its better than going to Hell

    Many people simply won’t get this but hey. But really, Watson, if genuine about Christ, is on a win-win. In the sense that, whatever his life condition, he has the benefit of a real relationship with God and because of that lifetime process of transformation, gets to be with him after he has physically shed this mortal coil.
    There are lots of Christians in this world that are in appalling situations in the world. They’re not even in the position where they are fed 3 times a day {even if the food is sometimes swill}, have free healthcare, a job etc. We tend to think of prison as the worst possible situation, but there are some that are worse.
    If one genuinely believes in eternal life and that they will enter that life, then 50+ years in prison, while not fun, is not the worst thing that could happen to a person.

    Lisa Wilson says:
    Until their many victims can walk out of their graves, none should walk out of prison

    For a very long time, I’ve had little patience with this view. I think it actually cheapens the discussion. It certainly does not address the actual matter at hand.

    Sasha Musgrave says:
    He will be a free man when he is dead

    Arguably, from the day he began to understand what it meant to be forgiven by God, he’s been a free man. One can be free in whatever situation one finds oneself in, whether self-inflicted or not.

    Rosie Lowe says:
    Yet once convicted Watson is allowed to marry and father 4 children, who were supported by the state of California. Sickening

    It was wrong. But that’s what California allowed at the time. I don’t agree with it, but I’ve taken the time out to understand why, in various parts of the world, certain law enforcements went with conjugal visits and jailhouse marriages. You can’t blame Charles Watson for that.

    And the woman who married him and had his children had to have been mentally ill

    Really ?
    Ultimately, the heart loves what the heart loves. There are tons of men and women right now and throughout the history of any country or region you care to name, that have married or got together with someone whose actions would make many of us puke. The fact that one may love an individual with the death of many on their hands doesn’t make them mentally ill.
    Furthermore, mental illness isn’t a pejorative. In many different ways and strands, various mental illnesses strike many people.

  21. George Vreeland Hill says:

    He will be released one day ….. In a casket.

  22. Peter says:

    He can go if he wants to go.
    He can stay if he wants to stay.
    He can go crazy or stay sane.

    If he can do it on six feet of chain.

  23. Pam says:

    Fred, please stop using God to give this butcher a pass. Even God would find TW repulsive.

  24. Not a supporter but pointing out says:

    They let Rick stevens out of jail after killing 3 people

    They let the guy out of jail who killed stringbean from hee haw and his wife

    They let out of prison the guy who killed comedian professor backwards

  25. Bill Jordan says:

    California for you.

  26. CYNTHIA says:

    Didn’t realize that he slashed Sharon’s face. Wasn’t mentioned in the autopsy report.

  27. Fred Bloggs says:

    Pam says:
    Fred, please stop using God to give this butcher a pass

    For the longest while now, Pammy, I’ve had serious doubts about your ability to read something, comprehend it and engage in sensible discussion. But I ask you, where have I given Charles Watson a pass ?
    You can’t stop God loving him. Your refusal to actually have conversations as a balanced person doesn’t prevent God from forgiving him.

    Even God would find TW repulsive

    If he genuinely has turned away from his former sinful state and is living under Christ’s hand, then you’re as wrong as it is possible to be. Don’t conflate your repulsion with that of God.

    Lee says:
    Look at those repulsive, sunken eyes!

    I hope the neighbourhood kids don’t say that about you !

  28. Cynthia says:

    Watson seemed a bit hazy when recalling the details of the crime. He referred several times to slashing Sharon across the face. The autopsy report doesn’t note this. Perhaps he meant Abigail Folger? Also, he said that he stabbed Tate in the chest area. That being said, then who stabbed her in the back? Inconsistencies are irritating. Any thoughts?

  29. Greg Bura says:

    “and susceptible people like Tex and Katie who will make themselves subservient to a narcissist and a cause, no matter how ludicrous.”
    ” then I guess it could happen anytime.”

    hence today we have “climate change” and “wokeness” and “covidism”

    the body count from these causes will be beyond anything Manson could have ever dreamed of.

  30. Fred Bloggs says:

    Having now read the transcript, even if there was some extremely remote chance of Watson ever attaining parole, the reasons the board gave for denial this time around have blown that remote possibility out to the furthest reaches of the recently found planet, Proxima B. The one it would take 10,000 years to reach.
    There is nothing that he can say that is going to change. If the reasons he gives haven’t altered since 1978, they’re hardly going to change now. I mean, if you’re 75 years old and you’ve spent the best part of 43 years trawling the depths of your life in order to show you understand the path you took, what is going to happen by the time you hit 80 that is going to be of such magnitude that you won’t run the risk of someone saying “why didn’t you say these things all these years ? You can’t be trusted. Denial for 5 years !” ?
    The irony is that I think that he has explained how he came to be a murderer as well as he possibly can. As a Christian, he has actually put it in the only way he can really understand it. And it’s not good enough for a parole board. I’ve made this observation since 2016, someone that doesn’t share the lens he sees through can’t get him. You can’t blame the panel for this. It’s a true irony that the very thing that has enabled him to come to terms with his life and crimes is the very thing that keeps him from being paroled. The love and acceptance of God. I don’t know if Watson has reached that conclusion, but if the thought has ever occurred to him, the irony, while being crushing in one sense, should give him a wry smile. He hasn’t got long to go.

    One thing that was really interesting and a real standout was two of the victim’s family members, in their statements, brandishing the club of Shorty Shea. They both outright stated that he murdered Shorty. Now, whatever the truth of that {and for the record, I believe he was one of Shorty’s killers}, as far as I know, he’s never even been questioned by the police about that crime. LA County decided not to prosecute him because he’d already received 7 death sentences for his part in TLB and they didn’t think it was worth it {although they went after Manson for Shea, in the aftermath of all those death sentences}. There is also no independent evidence of his involvement in the crime, and the testimony of his accomplices can’t be used without independent corroboration ~ of which there is none.
    However, I thought the family members were out of order mentioning the murder of Shorty. You can’t foist on someone a crime for which they haven’t even been charged, let alone tried and convicted. Watson’s lawyer didn’t even get her objection in with any fervour. She was kind of told to let the speaker carry on. I thought there’d be legalities involved there. Not that it would have made any difference to the overall decision.
    It was interesting that they were prepared to take the words of Bruce and Clem in involving Watson in the murder ~ but watch what Debbie Tate will say about Bruce when it comes to his next hearing. She won’t be giving weight to his words then !! 😂

  31. Fred Bloggs says:

    Cynthia says:
    Watson seemed a bit hazy when recalling the details of the crime. He referred several times to slashing Sharon across the face. The autopsy report doesn’t note this. Perhaps he meant Abigail Folger? Also, he said that he stabbed Tate in the chest area. That being said, then who stabbed her in the back? Inconsistencies are irritating. Any thoughts?

    I’ve thought for a long time that he doesn’t remember many details. And now that he’s getting older and older, he remembers the details he never remembered, even less ! He always sounds to me, and I mean always, like he’s recounting details that he’s read elsewhere and trying to give the boards a concise account of what he thinks is part of the record. Sharon Tate, as you pointed out, doesn’t have knife slashes on her face. Yet at the same time, most of her stab wounds were to her back and he has never ascribed any stabbing of her to Pat or Susan.
    I was also surprised that he said he’d put a pillowcase over Rosemary LaBianca’s head and secured it with a lamp cord. Then he slipped up when he said he didn’t want to take responsibility for what he never did. Old man ramblings. Old man that can’t remember details ramblings.
    His 2026 hearing will possibly be toe curling. If he’s around for it.

  32. jim says:

    lets not forget the individuals who participated in the holocaust , after auchwitz was liberated, many of the high ranking officers in the reich were able and helped by many countrys to leave zGermany after the fall. they were allowed to live ” normal” lives in foreign countrys under false names.

  33. Fred Bloggs says:

    jim says:
    lets not forget the individuals who participated in the holocaust , after auchwitz was liberated, many of the high ranking officers in the reich were able and helped by many countrys to leave zGermany after the fall. they were allowed to live ” normal” lives in foreign countrys under false names

    Not entirely sure where you’re going with this, Jim, but from time to time, those officers get recognized, brought to trial and sent to jail for the crimes they committed years ago.
    And so they should be.
    But which countries actually helped them to escape ? Most of them went under the cover of night and assumed new identities.
    What exactly is the point you’re trying to make ? It sounds like it could be interesting, especially if you’re going to tie it up to Charles Watson. But right now, it only succeeds in being like the “writer” of Led Zeppelin’s “Hats off to Harper” ~ that is, Charles Obscure……..

  34. Michael says:

    Cynthia, Watson described the details of killing Sharon in his 1978 book pretty much the same way, and even if the autopsy reports don’t show a face slash, the morgue photos definitely do. He also clarified that he inflicted all the stab wounds on Miss Tate, and that Susan did not.

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