Van Houten Challenges Newsom Denial in Superior Court

Wednesday, June 26th, 2019


Jun. 26 – Leslie Van Houten has filed a writ of Habeas Corpus in the Superior Court challenging Gavin Newsom’s reversal of her parole recommendation earlier this year.

The California Board of Parole Hearings gave Van Houten her third parole recommendation at a hearing held on January 30th. Newsom reversed the decision earlier this month stating that Van Houten lacked insight and must take additional steps that demonstrate she will never return to the type of submission or violence again.

Van Houten’s attorney, Richard Pfeiffer, finds her repeated denials inconsistent.

“This was the third time [Leslie] was granted parole and the third time a governor has reversed that finding. When [Leslie] successfully addresses reasons for a reversal, the governors come up with new reasons that should have been asserted at the first reversal,” wrote Pfeiffer. “This moving target strategy is completely unfair, it prevents [Leslie] from being able to address all of the governors’ concerns in a timely manner, resulting in her continued incarceration.”

Pfeiffer says he has plans to request an evidentiary hearing and have Van Houten brought to the Superior Court in Los Angeles to testify in front of the judge considering her petition.

Van Houten is still waiting on California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal to make a ruling on Jerry Brown’s reversal of her 2017 parole recommendation. That decision is due sometime next month.

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62 Responses to Van Houten Challenges Newsom Denial in Superior Court

  1. John Luckett says:

    This is. Nuts.She should never be released to kill again!

  2. Rich Pfeiffer says:

    Governor Newsom needs to be held accountable for the low blow he gave in the third reversal. Part of the writ reads: the Governor found that when Manson used a drug to sodomize Ms. Van Houten, and she accepted some responsibility for being a rape victim because she was at the ranch willingly, the Governor found that she had “not fully examined her ongoing susceptibility to negative influences and manipulation” which makes it uncertain if Ms. Van Houten is capable of acting differently in the future. (Exhibit A, p. 4.) Ms. Van Houten “must take additional steps that demonstrate she will never return to this type of submission or violence again.” (Exhibit A, p. 4.) First, the Governor does not suggest what “additional steps” Ms. Van Houten must take to demonstrate she would not willingly become a rape victim again. It is a very sad day when our Governor requires a rape victim to have to take some unknown additional steps to demonstrate she will not willingly be susceptible to be submissive to this type of abuse and control in the future.

  3. paul says:

    The governors arguments are becoming more inconsistent and it will be much easier to argue against it in court.

  4. Carol says:

    She didn’t kill anyone. People who done worse have been freed. Tex Watson and Patricia Krenwinkle did the killings not Leslie or Susan. People need to educate themselves on the true facts of this case not lies put out from the media and prosecutors who have made millions off of fantasy. Free Leslie

  5. Janet Palirano says:

    Hmmmm- Maybe her marrying a man who had a female prison guard uniform in his home and her also carrying on a relationship with a male convicted murder through prison letters, in addition to cutting an X into her forehead for Charles Manson after murdering for him raises alarms about her taste in men.

  6. Mike Owen says:

    Leslie Van Houten should be released asap. It’s absolutely ridiculous after 50 years this lady, who’s been a model prisoner and isn’t a threat to anyone, is still in prison. Hope her appeal is successful.

  7. Stan Hardy says:

    Carol don’t know what the hell she’s talking about, Vanhouten stabbed Rosemary 41 times herself, get your facts straight, yourself, she should and will die in prison.

  8. Tate-Polanskidotcom says:

    Oh please. Leslie at least of the decency to die in prison like Susan and Charlie did. You and Krenwinkle should have died in the gas chamber long before now, but California spared your life. Accept you’ll die in prison. Enough is enough. The LaBianca family have been through enough of your crap. Tell me when does Rosemary get out of her prison? When does she get parole? You stabbed this women over and over and over again in the lower back and buttocks. You’re hands are not clean. Stop!

  9. Rich Pfeiffer says:

    tate-polanski.com???? Now I know why you are upset – – rape is OK, right Polanski???? Becareful calling the kettle black

  10. Paul says:

    Stan, Leslie inflicted only around 15 of those 41 wounds so please get your facts straight.

  11. Sarah Clements says:

    Being a victim of Rape irrespective of the victims gender does not give you a license to kill and mutilate people. She chose that way of life. The world is full of drug addicts and rape victims of all genders that have not committed such an appalling crime. Anyone with sympathy for her has serious issues. What about the victims? Rosemary was at her mercy did she show her any? She chose her life. Let her deal with the consequences.

  12. Tate-Polanskidotcom says:

    Well then hey there Rich Pfeiffer, wanna ask Samantha Geimer what she thinks of people like you who continue to vilify Polanski? Never mind, I’ll tell you. She thinks you’re idiots. She has openly called for the Academy to burn in hell for expelling Polanski. She also has called for the State of California to drop all charges against Polanski considering the rank judicial misconduct in the case. She also wants Polanski free of the charges. So please go a head and make your kettle black because you clearly haven’t been keeping up.

  13. Gina says:

    What’s she going to kill? A cockroach in her kitchen a fly on the countertop? Technically she never killed before. The actual murderer of Mrs. LaBianca has admitted that. People who are saying she’ll be a danger to society are not being logical they are being vengeful.

  14. Jason says:

    “She never killed anyone” That’s a load of crap. She helped kill Ms. Labianca.
    “She only stabbied Ms. Labianca 15 times” That’s a joke! Doesn’t matter how many times? She killed somebody. She was convicted of two counts of murder. She’s was there when two people died and did nothing to stop it! Pure and simple!

  15. John Luckett says:

    For you NUTS that think the Manson Killers should go free,I move that you contact their lawyers and petition the Courts to let you know he killer(s) come live with you!

  16. John Luckett says:

    You lawyers are a bunch of CHARLETONS! You volunteer to help killers go free. No lawyer will help me get false death sentence revers d in falsely being declared a Vexatious Litigant for life in CA,TX,NV COURTS IN RE: LIKE CKETT,283 CAL.RPTR.312 (1991),and recovering back some $600K the courts cheated me out of IN RE: ESTATE OF BILL FUS ANDREWS LAS VEGAS,NV PROBATE COURT 20 YR. BATTLE IN COURTS.

  17. John Luckett says:

    IN RE: LUCKETT,283 CAL.RPTR.312 (1991)

  18. Christy says:

    Paul for goodness sakes! Talking about only 15 stab wounds is ridiculous. For all you know Rosemary could have bled out on those alone. You are not helping Leslie with arguments like that.

  19. Christy says:

    And sometimes lawyers are so busy trying to advance their careers they’ve been known to falsify evidence. Those lawyers are known as prosecutors. I’m sure, John, you wouldn’t mind if one of your family members was falsely accused and tried, convicted and sent to prison to satisfy blood lust.

    I agree with you about the Manson prisoners. But don’t throw the baby out with the bath water overall.

  20. Jason Rigne says:

    All the LVH supporters…if your family member was murdered you would be singing a completely different song.

  21. Fred Bloggs says:

    Jason Rigne says:
    if your family member was murdered you would be singing a completely different song

    There are really only five appropriate words with which to reply to that:
    Suzan LaBerge, Rosemary LaBianca’s daughter.

    John Luckett says:
    She should never be released to kill again!

    There are really only two appropriate words with which to reply to that:
    Steve Grogan.

    Stan Hardy says:
    Vanhouten stabbed Rosemary 41 times herself, get your facts straight, yourself

    There are only 15 words with which to reply to that:
    Appraise yourself of the facts of the case because otherwise, you cannot be taken seriously.

    Carol says:
    She didn’t kill anyone

    There are only 11 words with which to reply to that:
    Not according to the evidence in combination with her own words.

    Janet Palirano says:
    Maybe her marrying a man who had a female prison guard uniform in his home

    There are only 6 words with which to reply to that:
    You are clutching at straws, Janet.

    Sarah Clements says:
    Being a victim of Rape irrespective of the victims gender does not give you a license to kill and mutilate people

    This is true. She has never put this forward as any justification for what she did. She didn’t even classify it as rape.

    Anyone with sympathy for her has serious issues

    Find me one person on planet earth that doesn’t have at least one serious issue at some point in their existence. If you can.

    She chose her life. Let her deal with the consequences

    She is dealing with it. And part of the deal is consideration for parole and appealing when she is granted it and turned down by the Guv’nor.

  22. Jason says:

    Oh Fred…I’d knew you’d be back to write your book! LOL!

  23. Cybele Moon says:

    Fred is the devils advocate and a good one, No malice meant!!

    Pfieffer is doing his job and due diligence. But I don’t get the Rape reference- that’s an insult to someone who is violently forced as opposed to someone who is basically seduced into another’s belief and then willingly goes along to a murder spree. But that is something she will have to live with whether she gets out or not. At 19 no one is going to tell me you don’t know right from wrong. At 70 she is probably not physically dangerous. But she will always be a symbol of that horrific story and some people like that horrific story judging by Tshirts and slogans I see on some FB pages. But it’s up to the higher court of course.

    Paul only 15 stabs out of 41 hmmmm- not a great recommendation.

  24. Jason says:

    I agree Cybele. I think her association with Manson will have sealed her fate forever.

  25. Cybele Moon says:

    I understand that perhaps the Governor is using everything he possibly can to keep her in prison and of course others can argue against his reasoning flawed or not. The bottom line seems to be that most of the citizens who know about this crime do not want any of them out and it seems that a huge number have not forgotten- and no matter the time involved can not mitigate the horror that was perpetrated on those nights famous persons or not. Too bad for the murderers that the slaughtered were well known people. They were all once given the death sentence and though I am not a proponent of that then certainly I understand a real life sentence for the terror and pain they inflicted on the community. Anyway if LVH gets out it’s not like she is getting out in the prime of life. Lets hope she lives what is left of her days anonymously. That would seem easiest for all.

  26. Jason says:

    I think they should die in prison like Manson and Atkins. Period.

  27. Fred Bloggs says:

    Jason says:
    Oh Fred…I’d knew you’d be back to write your book! LOL!

    I thought I was the model of brevity, there !

    Cybele Moon says:
    Paul only 15 stabs out of 41 hmmmm- not a great recommendation

    It looks awful, let’s not beat about the bush.
    However……..Paul isn’t saying “only” in the sense that “well, she’s not that bad, she only stabbed 15 times….,” the context of his “only” is Stan’s blatant misinformation wherein he states “Vanhouten stabbed Rosemary 41 times herself”, after which he then has the brass neck to tell Carol “get your facts straight, yourself.”
    Not that Carol is blameless, stating “she didn’t kill anyone,” something that no human being on this planet either then or now can know for sure. But one thing we can know for sure is that Rosemary was alive when Leslie went at her. She may have been a heartbeat away from death, she may not have. But Leslie’s words and the autopsy show that Rosemary was alive.
    But this is what I mean when I talk about nuances. I ask myself, are we actually mature enough to have debates and conversations that can handle nuance ? If we are, then we’d be able to manage conceding certain points while still holding to our specific viewpoint. One could still believe Leslie should not be released yet acknowledge her mindset at the time, how she got there and understand and credit her for moving away from it. Similarly, one could believe she should be released yet acknowledge that it’s risky for a number of reasons or hold that her sentence should have been life without parole.

  28. Jason says:

    Keep going Fred! Like an energizer bunny. You can write your memoirs while your at it! LOL!

  29. Cybele Moon says:

    Fred, I do see your point about concession. I still have a problem with her “mindset” at the time but perhaps it’s because I can’t understand how morality and/or compassion can vanish in such a short time for people who really didn’t have it bad in society or in their families- and that is in less than a year. Jim Jones followers were there for many many years , some who grew up in the cult, likewise Aum Shinrikyo whose cult was formed back in 1984 before the deadly 1995 attacks. But I’m sure LVH has tried to improve herself or seek redemption since finding herself in prison.
    Apparently Japan executed Aum and six of his most rabid followers so to me a life sentence is a reprieve in that they are given their lives and time to reflect and change. Will it benefit or be negative to society to release them? I guess many will have a view on that one.

  30. Jason Rigne says:

    Cybele…Fred’s mindset is that of a groupie for killers!

  31. Riff Raff Rackus says:

    Fred Bloggs is a voice of reason and logic, right on Fred!!! Keep on keeping it real!!

  32. Cybele Moon says:

    Fred, I just thought of something as I often find myself in the slow lane after the barrage of arguments..
    Yes Paul was correcting Stan’s blatant misinformation however, I don’t totally agree with your conclusion of only trying to straighten facts, because the LVH supporters have for years been trying to mitigate her participation in whatever way they can. Hence this totally unsubstantiated claim that LVH never killed anyone, she only stabbed Mrs Labianca 14 times after she was dead, that she was a reluctant participant who was forced to put a pillow case and a cord around Rosemary’s neck to hold her down ( as she screamed) and call for Tex to finish her off because Tex after all was standing over Leslie with a bayonet you know. yada yada yada. Ok her supporters think she has served her time but don’t insult the victims of this horror by portraying Leslie as the poor brainwashed kid who only went along for the ride and did the least amount of damage. She was there in support of her fellow cohorts to do the devil’s business as Tex said.

  33. Cybele Moon says:

    PS and Fred, I always found that statement interesting we are here “to do the devil’s business!” not that we are doing this for Jesus or Charlie or that we are doing this because we love you and want to free you from this mortal coil with it’s chains of hypocrisy,and materialism. We are here to do the devil’s business!.

  34. Jason says:

    Really Riff. Voice of reason and logic! Advocating and letting cold blooded murders out of prison. NOT!

  35. Paul says:

    Cybele Moon we have been in this debate for a long time now and you have always said I’ve tried to mitigate her involvement when all I have done is state what parts of the crime where physically attributed to her and what was not, that is not excusing her involvement so please quit it with accusing us of the mitigating her actions. We are not mocking the victims or the families involved.

    Those statements you are trying to dismiss as unimportant about her reluctance in the actual crime are vital to the board and her suitability. If those little details had suited your side of the debate I’m sure you would be all over it.

  36. Cybele Moon says:

    whatever Paul! I’m not talking about just you and your 14 stab wounds. I’m talking about those who say she never killed anyone ( oh really?) or that she was forced to do what she did. If she was so reluctant she should never have gone at all or acted like she could have cared less for the lives lost afterward or at the trial etc etc. No one knows for sure when Rosemary Labianca drew her last breath. And fill your boots with the little details for her suitability. I get that. There will always be some nuance or other in legal argument. My side of the debate only hinges on my belief that she still is a murderer in one of the most vicious murders in modern history , whether she is paroled or not. If she is paroled I can accept that but never her poor little “I’m not as bad as the rest of them defence.”

  37. Paul says:

    Cybele well it’s true we can’t be sure she inflicted anything expect postmortal wounds, whether you think it makes a different or not. Leslie believed what they were doing was right and even though she was reluctant didn’t think it was wrong because she believed in Manson’s philosophy. She actually felt bad that she wasn’t as enthusiastic as Pat and Tex because she just didn’t have the mentality that her co-defendents has to commit something so horrible. I will say it again, The whole crimes was gruesome but only a small portion of it can be attributed to Leslie so the whole Lawerence debate is flawed on both brown and Newsom.

  38. Flip says:

    LVH doesn’t have to personally minimize her vicious, brutal participation in the horrible torture-murders of Rosemary and Leno LaBianca….she’s got Rich Pfeiffer to do that for her. Among other bullshit claims he has made in her support over the years is that her relatively clean record in prison “proves that she is suitable for release”….as if there could ever be actual proof of such an opinion. Lawyers, in my opinion, very often egregiously blur the line between “fact”, which can be proven or disproven with appropriate evidence, and “opinion” which can be bolstered or undermined by evidence. Opinion, even Rich Pfeiffer’s, is not actually subject to proof, folks, and don’t let him tell you that it is….he thinks if he says it enough times, some of the people some of the time, will believe him. Read up on what Lincoln said about “some of the people some of the time”….Spoiler alert: You can fool them.

  39. Jason says:

    Paul I do not understand your reasoning sometimes. Very questionable.

  40. Paul says:

    It’s only bullshit to you flip because you can’t let yourself think differently. Even if Leslie were “fooling” us, you will never be able to %100 say any parolee is being sincere. The closest you can get is through her records and psychiatric reports which are all expectional. And Jason what is it you don’t understand exactly?

  41. Cybele Moon says:

    Paul, I get your point of view whether or not I agree with everything you believe from your perspective. Of course if you are going to bat for an offender then there are always mitigating circumstance or what would be the point. It is true that everyone does look at it from a differing perspective- prosecutor or defender.
    Just for interest though the potential for mistakes in psychiatric evaluations can be quite huge. So many factors come into play, such as environment, social etc etc. Prisoners are in very structured environments for example. Psychiatry is relatively new. Changes, new labels and diagnoses are updated and/or discarded frequently. But of course it’s a guideline like everything else. Ho

  42. Cybele Moon says:

    oops disregard the Ho. I got cut off in a train of thought lol.

  43. Christy says:

    Fred, Steve Grogan was not of legal age but Leslie was. He also contacted the man that prosecuted him and told him where he could find Shea. That is not a small feat, if this had been found out someone could have killed him for being a snitch. And he was only released a number of years after the body was found and only released from parole years later.

    I think Grogan was old enough, and less a Manson celeb, that he could hide. I don’t think Leslie is. Unfortunately I think she’d be more of a draw than Patricia would even though her involvement is less due to her looks as a young woman. But Grogan was both underage and not stupid enough to draw attention to himself.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again the Manson murderers put themselves on the map like so many of the American 30s bankrobbers did. And the ones that killed people were rarely paroled. From what I gather one was a prison friend of Manson.

    I’m sorry about Leslie. I honestly don’t think she’d try to hurt anyone now. But I wouldn’t want her anywhere near me, I don’t think it’s my job to put up with a neighbor that might have fans that think she should recreate 50 years ago. Or someone who tries to kill her and hits me instead.

  44. Christy says:

    Cybele, you’re exactly right about highly structured environments with prisoners.

  45. Stephen Craig says:

    With all due respect to Paul, trying to justify LVH’s participation in the LaBianca slaughter by claiming she only stabbed Mrs. LB is appalling. I am truly ‘alarmed’ by this thinking/rationale, and the lack of compassion for what these victims had to endure is disturbing. I understand that he/other supporters of LVH feel she has “atoned” for her participation in this senseless slaughter, but, my God! what are you thinking? Is counting wounds the best you can offer in your attempts to mitigate her participation? I wonder what Mrs. LB would say about all this? I mean, after all, she is the one who had to endure this barbarism. Oh, well, poor, poor Leslie! What’s 15 stab wounds in comparison to 41? A mere drop in the bucket…

  46. Jason says:

    Good point Stephen! We need to think of what the victims went through that night instead of poor leslie..poor Leslie! Geez!

  47. Flip says:

    Well, Paul, it’s obviously not important to you, but the way attorneys misuse semantics to advance their causes is of interest to many.

    The “proof of suitability” concept that Pfeiffer throws so blithely is important because its constant use convinces some suckers that there is some incontrovertible fact that does prove his assertions are correct. Even the least educated among us may associate the word “proof” with its mathematical usage–you actually can’t argue with a properly demonstrated proofs because they are not opinion, they are incontrovertible conclusions that may arise from the application of mathematical logic to very specific questions. That is exactly what lawyers, including LVH’s lawyers of course, hope that you will infer from their constant use of the word “proof”—i.e., that their opinions, which are usually well paid for in some type of currency, are unassailable and incontrovertible. “Some of the people, some of the time”……

  48. Fred Bloggs says:

    Jason Rigne says:
    Fred’s mindset is that of a groupie for killers!

    I love and follow God who from time to time forgives the best and worst of us for our lousy thoughts and the actions that may arise from those thoughts……so being labeled a groupie for killers, far from taking it as the insult it is so clearly meant to be, I’ll take that as a backhand compliment, thank you very much.
    By the way Jason, your earlier quote was that if a family member was murdered, those that in any way are not part of the “they should never be paroled” mindset would be singing a different story. But I notice that you steered very clear of answering my reply of “Suzan LaBerge,” the daughter of Rosemary LaBianca who forgave Charles Watson for her Mum’s murder. So maybe some people would not be singing a different tune. Maybe some people have had loved ones, be they friends or family, killed and have been able to forgive and move on. Which is not to say that those that don’t should, but rather, there’s more nuance to this debate than you are willing to acknowledge, even though it glints in your eye like the sun.

    Cybele Moon says:
    to me a life sentence is a reprieve in that they are given their lives and time to reflect and change

    But Cybele, isn’t that exactly what has happened ?

    Will it benefit or be negative to society to release them?

    Now, that’s an interesting question. With a paradoxical answer. For me it’s neither and both.

  49. Fred Bloggs says:

    Cybele Moon says:
    Yes Paul was correcting Stan’s blatant misinformation however, I don’t totally agree with your conclusion of only trying to straighten facts

    If you look at what Paul said, those words are a correction to misinformation, and pretty serious misinformation too. He addressed Stan directly {“Stan, Leslie inflicted only around 15 of those 41 wounds so please get your facts straight”}, didn’t make a general point in the midst of a general comment and said nothing else surrounding it. I already acknowledged that at first glance, it looks awful and that is how every responder to that point has seen it and taken it. I live between the cracks that many others don’t want to dwell in or enter and I can see exactly what Paul was saying.
    Around 146,000 people died in the first nuclear bomb drop at Hiroshima, some on the day, some in the ensuing months. If I came on and said 3 million people died as a result of the bomb on Hiroshima and someone else said “actually, only 146,000 people died” their comment would not be minimizing the 146,000 deaths, it would be in the context of me having said it was 3 million. True, I’m like a scratched record {or a jumping CD !}, but I’ll say it again ~ we have no need to fear conceding points in this debate. It doesn’t make one’s stance illegitimate to state LVH “only” stabbed 14-16 times if prior to that, someone has said she stabbed almost 3 times the amount. In point of fact, the person that made the “LVH stabbed 41 times” comment is either grossly ignorant and shouldn’t be trotting out what they do not know as though they did or they are clearly trying to make a murderer look worse than they are. And when people go down that road, one has to question their motives. The answers are usually not pleasnt ones.

    LVH supporters have for years been trying to mitigate her participation in whatever way they can

    What that demonstrates is that both sides of the equation are riddled with people that are way more interested in their own position and in “being right” than they are in looking at known facts and seeing how these facts affect their position.
    Now, there is mitigation in LVH’s situation. In my opinion, to deny this is not being realistic. However, just because there may be some mitigation, that doesn’t lead to any hard and fast conclusion one way or the other. Even if one were to say that LVH’s action was lesser than the other murderers during TLB, that doesn’t mean that, pro rata, her punishment should have been lesser if the crimes committed were the same. To put it another way, if a sentence is death, you’d die whether you killed one person or 100.

    Hence this totally unsubstantiated claim that LVH never killed anyone, she only stabbed Mrs Labianca 14 times after she was dead, that she was a reluctant participant…and call for Tex to finish her off because Tex after all was standing over Leslie with a bayonet you know

    Examining those 4 points once again shows the nuances that this case threw up.
    She genuinely, back in 1969 did believe that she stabbed a body after the possessor of that body was dead. That is ultimately what got her convicted. She told Diane Lake she’d stabbed a body after it was dead. Once it was discovered that indeed, some of the wounds were post mortem, then slamdunk LVH. So, far from that being an excuse to trot around, it put her in a position from which she has never been able to break out. So when I say to her detractors they have nothing to fear by conceding that she thought Mrs LaBianca was dead, this is the kind of thing I’m talking about. It also throws up other questions about her mindset that do not show her in a good light at the time.
    Then to Leslie supporters, the nuances crop up even further. Instead of saying all she did was stab a dead body and thus didn’t kill anyone, you really need to read the Rosemary LaBianca autopsy, the 1969 Marvin Part transcript of their interview and her trial transcript and subsequent parole hearings. She has frequently put the number of times she stabbed at 14-16. The autopsy tells us that {and this is crucial} some of the 14 stab wounds around the lower back and buttocks were post mortem. I know I’m a maths O level failure, but even I can see that that can only mean that less than 14 occurred after death. Less than 14 is less than 14-16 ~ the difference could be anywhere from 1 to 3. That means Rosemary was alive when LVH began stabbing her. One can choose to deny this but that’s like denying that 2+2=4.
    So the question is, how does a supporter deal with this ? By continually saying she never killed anyone when by her own admission she “could have done” some on the back and up by the neck, isn’t dealing with it and serves as grist to the mill for her detractors.
    To her detractors, you do not lose any part of your argument by conceding that once she was in the LaBianca house, she got cold feet and couldn’t kill. And neither should supporters crow about Tex making her “do something” as somehow lessening her responsibility because what he made her do was what she had set out to do in the first place but found she didn’t have the stones for. He infused her with the backbone to do what she was otherwise quite willing to do.
    So really, when all is said and done, there is a lot more said than done ! I can argue both for and against Leslie, I can argue both for and against the way the law is applied in her case. Because life is packed to the gills with nuances.

  50. Fred Bloggs says:

    Paul says:
    well it’s true we can’t be sure she inflicted anything except postmortem wounds

    Once that Rosemary LaBianca autopsy has been read, oh yes we can.

    Cybele Moon says:
    the potential for mistakes in psychiatric evaluations can be quite huge

    Does that not run both ways ? Both with psychiatric evaluations that go against a potential parolee {ie, it could be mistaken/biased} and that the potential for being bang on the money also can be huge.

    Jason says:
    Paul I do not understand your reasoning sometimes. Very questionable

    Jason, do you even try ?
    I’ll tell you something I do with a view I may disagree with, but it’s really difficult. I try to examine it and understand it so well that I could passionately argue it as though it were mine and I actually held it.

    Christy says:
    Steve Grogan was not of legal age but Leslie was

    Christy, are you aware that Grogan was sentenced to death ? He was of legal age to be tried, convicted and sentenced.

    He also contacted the man that prosecuted him and told him where he could find Shea

    He didn’t even think to do this of his own volition. He was advised to do this by none other than Bobby Beausoleil. The irony of which is immense !

    I think Grogan was old enough, and less a Manson celeb, that he could hide

    That’s partly true. He had no reason to call attention to himself. The reason I mention him is simply in answer to the point that Flip frequently {and I have to say, correctly} brings to the table, that of there being no proof that someone has been rehabilitated. I agree with him, one cannot prove it. Many criminals of various shades have been released on the belief they were rehabilitated and they re-offended.
    However, there is an important point to bring up here. Rehabilitation shouldn’t be equated with “perfection.” In a criminal justice sense, rehabilitation means preparing someone for re-entry back into society. There could have been many inmates that were adequately prepared and who stayed out of trouble for 10 years or whatever and then for whatever reason {anger, protection, desperation, blackmail, a brief lapse….} found their way back to crime. Equally, there have been people that just said the right things at their hearings and to their psychs and were believed. Maybe they actually believed what they spouted, maybe they were just convincing.
    Only time tells and that is the risk. There is no “proof,” only indications. But equally, if one is going to put forth the arguments Flip has about lack of proof regarding LVH, the vice is also versa; that is, his views of her standing and current being are not proof of anything untoward and in order to comment on “current suitability” we need to see evidence and indications that show precisely why she’s a bad bet for parole.
    Other than talking about 50 years ago, there really has been none forthcoming. All there really has been have been people’s beliefs that murderers should stay in jail forever. None of which addresses right now 2019. Or that it’s a different matter in the structured environment of jail, as though prisoners are not coming out of jail every day of every year.
    But thus far, Steve Grogan has been out of jail since 1985 and as far as we know, has never been in trouble. So a “Manson murderer” {as the world would see them} has shown it is possible to not only move away from the entire Manson ouvre, but lead an honest, productive life.

  51. Paul says:

    Fred, i have read so many different answers and numbers from different sources including Rosemary’s autopsy and Bugliosi’s Helter Skelter. During the trial, the prosecution asked the coroner who made the report if any of the wounds where inflicted post-mortem and he answered yes, citing the lower back wounds that has been accounted to Leslie. I’ve never been able to rule out either.

  52. Jason says:

    “Jason, do you even try?” Hey Fred…UP YOURS!

  53. Jason says:

    I don’t owe you anything!

  54. Flip says:

    re: “But equally, if one is going to put forth the arguments Flip has about lack of proof regarding LVH, the vice is also versa; that is, his views of her standing and current being are not proof of anything untoward and in order to comment on “current suitability” we need to see evidence and indications that show precisely why she’s a bad bet for parole.”

    Fred, If you believe that parole suitability questions for torture-murderers should be equally balanced between factors “for” and factors “against”…well, I heartily disagree. That issue is addressed by the Sullivan precedent, to the effect that some crimes are so egregious, so horrible, that the nature of the offense can be legally used to argue against parole.

    For a convicted torture-murderer who believed that her brutal crimes would spark an all-out race war in furtherance of her mentor’s plans, there is no question in my mind that a parole decision should not be equally weighted with “for and against” evidence from her post-murder life in prison.

  55. Cybele Moon says:

    ha Fred, you need to write a book. I can see you are having fun with all the pro’s and con’s of the argument.

    Fred, as far as psychiatric evaluation goes, I happened to see an interesting documentary about child killers the other day 0n A&E ( a lot of crime dramas lately) and how many were being retried due to the finding that sentencing children to life was unconstitutional. (under 18)
    There was psychological testimony about the emotional storms in the brains of the young and the inability to make good decisions etc. Now that they were adults they had matured and would no longer be dangerous ( probably, but not absolutely) said the expert. Yet the judge still found that these particular crimes were so heinous and in one of the cases so not explained as to why a 14 year old bludgeoned and stabbed his 8 year old neighbour to death, that they were all given the same sentence as adults- life without parole.
    Fred along your lines of thinking then, what creates a perfect storm and are we all capable of this? We certainly hope not. It seems that certain circumstances that come together along with the right companions ( mob mentality) all hell can and does break loose among certain individuals.
    Paul said that Leslie believed what she was doing was the right thing to do according to her leader Manson.
    I often wondered if the Nazi’s actually in their deepest souls believed they were doing right and it was Germany above all and the rest of the world be damned as well as any means justifying the ends.- or was it just that”power is sweet” ( in whatever horrifying form) and creates a whole new reality.

    I still believe though that in spite of it all some should remain in prison for life who have committed this type of crime.

  56. Fred Bloggs says:

    Paul says:
    i have read so many different answers and numbers from different sources including Rosemary’s autopsy and Bugliosi’s Helter Skelter

    I love the book “Helter Skelter” and it is definitely one of the leading tomes, if not the definitve one, connected to the case. But it is flawed. There are assumptions, inaccuracies and misleading information and some of these through the annals of time take on the mantle of ‘fact’ when they are not. I myself went along with many of its assumptions {eg, Manson saw Sharon Tate at Cielo, the number of times Rosemary was stabbed, the sounds heard in the vicinity on the night of the Cielo murders etc} for decades but in the light of more recent information, some of the inaccuracies can be highlighted and some of them can be argued to contain sinister connotations. If you have “Helter Skelter” and the actual autopsy of Rosemary LaBianca and it’s a choice between the two, then there really is no contest. The autopsy trumps absolutely everything. It is the autopsy together with Diane Lake that provides probably the most unassailable evidence against any of the killers that were part of the Manson troupe. One could argue away everything against any one of the killers but the one thing that cannot be argued away is how LVH could have known that some of the 41 stab wounds to Rosemary could have been post-mortem. She knew it sufficiently to tell it to Diane Lake.
    I too have seen different numbers and answers and frankly, they all may as well not exist. That autopsy is the clincher.
    With that in mind, we then have to ask ourselves, what has LVH said about how many times she stabbed. She has posited 14 ~ 16 times. She’s posited that for decades. The autopsy says the only post mortem stab wounds were in that lower back/buttock area. There were 14 wounds in that area. But only some of the 14 were post mortem. The specific number isn’t given but it doesn’t really matter. ‘Some’ is not ‘all.’ ‘Some’ means less than 14. That means Rosemary was alive when LVH began stabbing her. I’ve said this a number of times; she may have been on the way to death. She may have been a few heartbeats away from the end. But she wasn’t dead yet.

    During the trial, the prosecution asked the coroner who made the report if any of the wounds where inflicted post-mortem and he answered yes, citing the lower back wounds that has been accounted to Leslie

    Lesllie admitted that she could have stabbed Rosemary’s back and up by the neck. There were fatal wounds in those areas.
    You know, during her first trial when she testified during the penalty phase, her methodology was highly curious. On the one hand, she was trying to get Charlie off the hook and present Linda as the mastermind. Yet she was strangely honest about her own participation. She placed herself at the Hinman murder when everyone and their dog knew she’d never been there. And though she lied frequently during her testimony, she made slip ups where she didn’t lie.

  57. Fred Bloggs says:

    Jason says:
    Hey Fred…UP YOURS!

    Up my what ? You’ll have to help me out here.

    I don’t owe you anything!

    That’s right. Not even common courtesy.

    Flip says:
    If you believe that parole suitability questions for torture-murderers should be equally balanced between factors “for” and factors “against”…well, I heartily disagree….a parole decision should not be equally weighted with “for and against” evidence from her post-murder life in prison

    This might surprise you, but I agree with you. Columbo said recently that it should be damn difficult for murderers to be paroled and I’m with him on that. I agree. That’s partly why you’ll not hear me use words like “deserve” when I address the issue of parole.
    But I do believe in parole. Not as a mandatory thing for everyone in jail, but I do believe in it because I do believe that some lives can be repaired and won’t spurn a second chance. The issue always has to be taken on a case by case basis. I just cannot argue from a blanket viewpoint. Someone like LVH is actually the epitome of the “for” and “against” factors not being given equal weight.

    That issue is addressed by the Sullivan precedent, to the effect that some crimes are so egregious, so horrible, that the nature of the offense can be legally used to argue against parole

    I’ll say two things on that.
    Firstly, I totally agree that there are some killers that should never be allowed out of prison. In fact, in some instances, I wouldn’t limit it to murderers. Rapists and child sexual abusers would be part of that category for me.
    The second thing is that where the rubber hits the road is in determining whether or not Leslie Van Houten fits that bill.
    If after every “yes” by the board the Guv’nor just came out and said “well, this crime was so awful she’s not coming out, end of story !” legally, from what I can see, they would be within their rights. But they don’t do that. They add all kinds of things like not having insight or minimizing their crime and their part in it or whatever the things that have been trotted out over the last few years. And that demonstrates that they are on shaky ground. Particularly when the very things they are stating are demonstrably untrue. It’s those untruths actually, that undermine and challenge the supposed cast iron “win” that they do possess. And more and more people can see that and the argument gathers ground and that’s why every few months we gather here to air and debate our views, both for and against.
    It’s also worth bearing in mind that for better or for worse, views change, which accounts for so many of the changes one sees by the time one is an older adult that weren’t there previously.

  58. Jason says:

    “Up my what ? You’ll have to help me out here.” Figure it out on your own energizer bunny!

  59. Fred Bloggs says:

    Jason says:
    Figure it out on your own energizer bunny!

    Hey, if you won’t tell me specifically, then I’ll just have to remain in the dark.

    Cybele Moon says:
    I can see you are having fun with all the pro’s and con’s of the argument

    What I often find interesting in looking at the pros and cons is the number of protagonists that don’t acknowledge the areas where I agree with them because of other areas where I don’t. Also, I’m of the opinion that the more people that look at a scenario and comment on what they see, the richer one’s conclusion can be because many others have seen things that I, at that particular point, just haven’t seen or understood or encountered or thought about.
    Equally, I can also know precisely where someone may be coming from and if I disagree, because I’ve learned to see their point, I know how to argue with it.

    There was psychological testimony about the emotional storms in the brains of the young and the inability to make good decisions etc. Now that they were adults they had matured and would no longer be dangerous (probably, but not absolutely) said the expert

    That’s always going to be the difficulty in looking at things people did when they were younger. I have no doubt that many young offenders of whatever stripe {from shoplifting to murder}, once older and matured would severely regret what they did and take every stride to ensure they never got there again.
    I also have no doubt in my mind that many young offenders would continue in crime or criminal thinking and would continue to pose a danger that would adversely affect many that come into contact with them. Which is partly why matters can only be taken on a case by case basis and why coming out of prison for someone on a long or “life with the possibility of parole” sentence shouldn’t be easy. Society needs more from an inmate than just reflection when the psychiatrist comes to evaluate.

    what creates a perfect storm and are we all capable of this?

    I think we are all capable of the most heinous acts in the same way that I think someone that is afraid of and paralyzed by flying is capable of piloting an aeroplane.
    We need to understand that capability doesn’t mean either desire to do nor inevitability that one day we will do. Perfect storms are really only calculable in retrospect, for the most part. If we look at the Family, while there may have been many that chose not to follow or followed but left after a while, I would gladly wager that not a single soul said to themselves “I’m not joining this bunch; they’re going to end up committing murder.” Even when the talk was switching to “we have to kill if necessary, because of what is going to happen when the Blacks go on the rampage” the talk was essentially of self defence. It was very late in the day that Charlie started telling people that they were going to have to do the killing to kick it off. I always thought Linda Kasabian’s reply to the question of didn’t she realize there would be violence and killing during this revolution, was fascinating. Yes she said. But she didn’t envisage the Family doing it. It was one thing to speak of the need for pigs to get a good whacking, another altogether to be the ones to deliver said smacks.
    We’ll never know exactly how they got to that point. We can analyze and speculate but even some of the people that were there and lived it couldn’t tell us. How much of it was already there under the surface, how much of it was only awoken by that particular interaction at that particular time ?
    But the same could be asked of Nazi Germany or the varying strands that created and sustained many of the groups that came together under Al Qaeda. Or any number of unsavoury situations that have arisen in the world.

    We certainly hope not

    When one looks at things people do that make one sick to the stomach and beyond, it’s hard to even contemplate the thought that under other circumstances, we may have done likewise or worse.
    I’ve often observed the situations I’ve been in that brought things out of me that I had no idea were there. Even in something as simple and minor as being married or being a parent or being in a job. We can find ourselves in circumstances or situations that present something in which we react in a way totally differently to how we would otherwise have thought about ourselves. So I’m not inclined to say “I’d never do such and such.” I hope I wouldn’t……..but how can I know ?

    I often wondered if the Nazi’s actually in their deepest souls believed they were doing right and it was Germany above all and the rest of the world be damned as well as any means justifying the ends

    I do believe they thought they were doing right. Things like filming the shooting of unarmed people and bundling them into mass graves tells me that these were people who did not have any worries that what was happening was wrong. They saw it as part of the road to glory.
    Lots of people of all eras and many nationalities or cultural groups and all races have been there and done that.

  60. Cybele Moon says:

    Fred, thanks for your thoughtful replies and
    “I do believe they thought they were doing right. Things like filming the shooting of unarmed people and bundling them into mass graves tells me that these were people who did not have any worries that what was happening was wrong. They saw it as part of the road to glory.
    Lots of people of all eras and many nationalities or cultural groups and all races have been there and done that.”

    The Germans were meticulous record keepers unfortunately for them. I think part of that was that they actually thought they would win and take over Europe and thus not need to answer to anyone else- However, not everyone bought into it, there were still many Germans that had grave doubts. The rest of the world did not show much mercy afterward.

    On smaller scales there are still delusional people, and the Manson Family was sadly followed by other weird and doomed cults.

    anyway absolutely terrifying and evil!!

  61. Fred Bloggs says:

    ybele Moon says:
    However, not everyone bought into it, there were still many Germans that had grave doubts

    As was seen on the night of the long grey knives.

    The rest of the world did not show much mercy afterward

    No. Which is not surprising.
    Yet at the same time, there was a concerted effort both by the West and by the Soviet Union to make their halves of Germany in their own image and part of that did actually mean a curious kind of, well, I was going to say…..forgiveness, almost. I think the powerful nations of the world learned from the mistake they had made at the end of the first world war {if there was ever a title that shouldn’t be, it’s that one !} with the treaty of Versailles when they brought Germany to its knees, in effect. Second time round, there was almost a bending over backward to get Germany prosperous, make union with them {hence what went on to become the EU…}. Better they became an economic powerhouse than a resentful military one again.

  62. Pimpius says:

    Oh I get it. We need to learn the facts of the case and stop spreading lies. And how is it you know for a fact that she didn’t kill Rosemary? Because Leslie said so? What did Leslie use her vast experience as a coroner to determine Rosemary was already deceased and ensure her stabbing frenzy was carried out with the highest ethical standards? How kind and considerate of her! Your argument that Leslie did not kill anyone is speculation, not fact. PERIOD. And I’m sorry but even if she was already dead at that point it does not distinguish Leslie from the other killers. PERIOD!

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