• Mother ‘is sure’ son didn’t kill



Mother ‘is sure’ son didn’t kill

LANCASTER, Ohio, Aug. 11 –  William Garretson, 19-year-old Lancaster youth held for questioning in the brutal slayings of Hollywood star Sharon Tate and four other persons, was described by his mother as a nonviolent person.

Garretson was arrested Saturday after the bodies of Miss Tate, and four friends were found dead in the actress’ suburban Los Angeles home.

The youth, who was employed in the house of movie director Roman Polanski — Miss Tate’s husband — had left his Lancaster home last October.

His mother, Mrs. Mary Garretson, said she found it hard to believe her son was capable of murder.

“He never wanted to hunt or fish,”  she said. “He was never interested in killing.”

“I don’t know if he killed them or not. No mother wants to believe that.”

Garretson had been in trouble with the police in Lancaster as recently as two years ago when he was given a one-year suspended sentence for furnishing beer to a minor. In 1964 he was arrested for shoplifting, but charges of grand larceny were later dropped.

Mrs. Garretson said her son called her regularly and was homesick.

The youth apparently met Polanski when the director offered him a ride while hitchhiking in California in February and then offered him a job looking after his dogs.

She said she last heard from her son when he telephoned her collect last Tuesday to wish her a happy birthday.

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3 Responses to Mother ‘is sure’ son didn’t kill

  1. lisa says:

    it was a miracle that the killers didn’t discover him in the guest house. if so, there would have been yet another victim. it must make him shudder to know that he was the sole survivor that night.

  2. Derrick Wildstar says:

    Charles Tex Watson did send Patricia Krenwinkel to the guest house. She jingled the door handle and then turned back. She didn’t look into the windows or anything. She later stated that she had had enough at that point.

  3. Serena says:

    I think they knew William Garretson was in the guest house and I wouldn’t be surprised if Pat Krenwinkel figured that there was at least someone in the guest house with Altobelli’s dogs when she purportedly went to check it out, and just chose to let it go for whatever reason. I do think that someone returned to Cielo later (after the murders) and this was more than likely Charles Manson, and he threatened him and scared him into not talking. There’s no way in my mind that William Garretson didn’t hear anything during the carnage and he was likely hunkered down and hiding in the guest house, praying not to be found.

    (Polanski didn’t even know William Garretson nor had he ever picked him up hitch hiking or offered him the caretaking job on the estate. William Garretson worked for Rudy Altobelli and even though Garretson probably wasn’t gay, Altobelli openly was. Garretson was a bit of a hustler, which his mother probably didn’t realize, and she was also clearly mistaken when trying to explain his position as the “caretaker” (rather than dog-sitter) to the authorities.

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