Watson Claims He Was Mistreated In Jail, Hospital
Wednesday, September 29th, 1971
LOS ANGELES, Sept. 29 — Charles “Tex” Watson, testifying at his murder trial, says he was mistreated while a prisoner at the county jail and a patient at a state mental hospital.
Technicians at Atascadero State Hospital beat him, Watson said.
Watson testified Tuesday for the second time during the nine week trial on charges he participated in the slayings two years ago of actress Sharon Tate and six others.
His testimony was directed at rebutting statements from a state psychiatrist that Watson, 25, feigned mental illness while at the hospital.
Both defense and prosecution lawyers finished their cases and, following a one-day recess, are scheduled Thursday to give closing arguments to the Superior Court jury.
Watson said personnel at the jail and hospital often called him “Manson,” a reference to cult leader Charles Manson who has been convicted and sentenced to death to the Tate killings.
“I felt like a monkey,” Watson said when asked about his antics at the jail.
“I just slipped out in my cell and felt like a monkey and they tied me to a bed.”
Watson has pleaded innocent and innocent by reason of insanity. The defense is attempting to prove that Watson was so dominated by Manson and narcotics that he was incapable of willingly participating in the murders.
The prosecution has tried to rebut statements by defense psychiatrists and called another psychiatrist to the stand who said Watson’s behavior at the hospital was phony.
Watson’s trial had been delayed because he fought his extradition from Texas and he was committed to the hospital after doctors described him as a “human vegetable.”