• Leslie Van Houten Denied Parole For The 19th Time

Leslie Van Houten Denied Parole For The 19th Time

Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

Jun 5 – Leslie Van Houten was denied parole for the 19th time today in a hearing at the California Institute for Women in Corona, California. She will not be allowed another hearing for five years.

Van Houten, the youngest of those responsible for the Tate-LaBianca murders, was sentenced to death in 1971 for her part in the August 10, 1969 murder of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca. The following year, Van Houten saw her sentence commuted to life after the California supreme court outlawed the death penalty.

On Friday, August 13, 1976, a California court of appeals ruled that Van Houten was denied a fair trial because her attorney Ronald Hughes had disappeared while the trial was in progress. The appeals court reversed Van Houten’s conviction and ordered her to be retried.

“She’s older — a mature woman now. People change their minds even when not in prison, and she’s changed hers,” said her attorney Maxwell Keith in January of 1977. “She’s forsaken the Manson Family. She’s back with her own now.”

That same month, Keith attempted to get a temporary restraining order issued against the CBS Television Network that would’ve prevented the network from airing the movie Helter Skelter.

“It depicts her as a very depraved, malevolent young lady, an unrepentant murderer,” said Keith. “That’s not fair. She is back here for retrial and she is presumed innocent.”

In February of that year, Leslie told journalist William Farr that the Manson family was never as big as the media made it to be.

“There really were only about 10 girls and three guys although people came and went,” said Van Houten.

“He used to be good with cards, you know, play tricks with cards. Charlie would put something in our mind and because he was quick with his hands and wit, we would sort of think we had seen a miracle.”

Van Houten told Farr she was embarrassed to admit she actually believed in Charlie’s Helter Skelter and that she continued to have nightmares about the murders.

“I know that I did something horrible…I don’t expect people to forgive me but I hope eventually they will give me a chance.”

The retrial began on Monday, April 18, 1977 at the new courthouse across the street from the Hall of Justice. The mood was completely different than it had been seven years earlier. Van Houten did not arrive to court smiling or singing as she had in 1970. There were no vigils on the street corners below.

Testimony began the following day, with Deputy District Attorney Stephen Kay first calling Susan Wolk to the stand. Wolk, the 28 year-old daughter of Rosemary LaBianca testified that upon arriving home from a water skiing trip, her brother Frank phoned her, concerned about something at their parents house.

Along with her then-boyfriend Joe Dorgan, Wolk met with Frank and went to the house.

“Joe and Frank went in first,” continued Wolk. “I walked into the kitchen and dining area.” Her brother and Dorgan stopped suddenly and wouldn’t let her continue into the living room. The two turned Wolk around towards the kitchen and out the back door.

Leslie Van Houten sat motionless behind a counsel table, trying her best not to make eye contact with the physical evidence or Wolk. Dorgan took the stand next and told the jury what he had seen in the living room at 3301 Waverly Drive.

“Newspapers were strewn around,” said Dorgan, “Leno was lying between the coffee table and the couch with something protruding from his chest.”

By days end, the jury had also heard testimony from the first officer to arrive at the residence, William Rodriguez, as well as the last person to see the LaBiancas alive, newspaper vendor John Fokianos.

The following week, Linda Kasabian returned and gave an unemotional account of the Tate murders “as if she were describing a traffic accident for which she had no responsibility,” wrote one journalist.

“[Leslie] is being tried for the Sharon Tate murders and she wasn’t even there,” an angry Maxwell Keith told reporters outside of court.

Leslie, dressed in a pink blouse and plaid pant suit, took the stand on Thursday, May 5. She testified that LSD had been smuggled into jail and she took acid throughout her original trial. According to Van Houten, Manson had thrown a razor blade across the table and instructed the girls to carve Xs into their foreheads.

She continued, saying that Manson had told her she would need to testify. Van Houten said that she was visited in jail with instructions for her to say that Manson hadn’t been around at the time of the murders and didn’t have any knowledge of them.

On Thursday, June 9, Leslie Van Houten was back on the stand, talking about life with the Manson family.

“It was a mellow situation,” said Van Houten. “It was an easy, slow life. No one had any goals they were trying to accomplish other than to tune in…to try to get rid of old thoughts, to live only for the moment.”

Leslie’s testimony continued the following week when she told the jury she that at the LaBianca residence, Charles “Tex” Watson had handed her a knife and told her to do something, and that she stabbed Rosemary LaBianca about 14 times in the lower back.

“I know I just kept doing it over and over again,” said Van Houten.

Asked by her attorney how she felt. Van Houten said, “I felt like the shark, like a primitive animal some kind of wild cat that had caught a deer.”

When court resumed the following day, Leslie testify she had been offered and turned down immunity while in Inyo County in November of 1969. The deal according to Van Houten was offered to her by LAPD Sgt. Michael McGann and included immunity, around the clock security and possibly even the $25,000 of reward money. When asked why she didn’t accept the offer, Van Houten responded, “I felt kind of like I was sitting in the seat of Judas.”

Later in the trial McGann testified that when he discussed immunity with Van Houten, he was talking about arson charges, not murder.

Throughout the trial, Maxwell Keith called five psychiatrists to the stand. All testified that Van Houten was mentally ill at the time of the murders and incapable of premeditation, the requirement for first degree murder.

Their testimony was however contradicted on June 21, when Stephen Kay called Dr. Joel Fort.

“She did harbor malice and did manifest an intent to kill another human being,” said Dr. Fort.

Dr. Fort explained his opinion based on that fact that Van Houten had discussed killing before the murders and then made efforts to hide them after they had be committed.

On June 27, Maxwell Keith played a tape recorded interview Charles Manson did with Dr. Fort. Manson continued to claim he did not direct Van Houten and the others to kill the LaBiancas. However, Manson did admit somewhat that he had influence on her.

“Certainly I had influence over her,” said Manson on the tape. “I have influence over everybody I meet. If I showed her the way to herself, and she decided she wanted to do something, no one’s going to wind her up and make her do it

“Man, I’ve seen the broad only a few times,” he continued “I never paid that much attention to her. I’m telling you the truth. I never had that much effect on Leslie because I never — how can one guy have effect over 30 to 50 broads?”

The recording also somewhat contradicted the defense’s contention that excessive drug use had led to Van Houten’s diminished capacity.

“We were not all that much into drugs,” said Manson. “Everybody said we were but that’s not true. The truth was we took acid whenever it was around. Sometimes it would be maybe once a week, sometimes once a month, sometimes three times a month.

“We weren’t into speed or hard drugs. A little hash and a little grass. Just a blaze kind of get-loaded social thing.”

After 10 weeks and 38 total witnesses, testimony had ended.

“The people of the state of California have not only proved Leslie van Houten participated in two of the most brutal murders in American crime,” Stephen Kay said in his final argument, “but we have proved those are murders of the first degree.”

The following day Maxwell Keith told the jury that members of the Manson family were sick and argued that Leslie was guilty of manslaughter not first degree murder.

The jury began their deliberations on Friday, July 10.

After a week of deliberations the jury asked to listen to the 4 hour recording of Leslie and Sgt. McGann, as well as Dr. Fort’s May 1976 interview with Charles Manson. A week later the jury appeared in court to ask legal questions about diminished mental capacity.

On Monday, July 25, after two weeks of deliberations, a male juror had to be replaced because of illness. Judge Edward Hinz instructed the jury that they would need to disregard their previous 13 days of deliberations and start over.

A mistrial was declared on Saturday, August 6, when after 25 days of deliberations the jury was still deadlocked. The split, according to foreman Bill Albee, was seven for first degree murder and five for manslaughter.

Leslie Van Houten was freed on a $200,000 bond on Tuesday, December 27, 1977. Her freedom was spent with friends and family who helped her get reacquainted with the world outside prison walls. Leslie lived a low-key life and got a job working as a legal secretary.

Her third trial began in the spring of 1978. This time Deputy District Attorney Stephen Kay changed his strategy, attempting to get Van Houten convicted on murder committed in the act of robbery because she had taken coins and clothes from the LaBianca residence.

On Wednesday, July 5, 1978 a jury found Leslie Van Houten guilty on two counts of first-degree murder and one count of conspiracy to commit murder and she was sentenced to three concurrent life terms a month later.

Van Houten was returned back to prison on August 17, 1978 and with a credit of eight years and 20 days time served, she was immediately eligible for parole. Her first hearing was in January of 1979 and although she was denied, she received favorable reviews from prison psychologists and prison staff.

Leslie’s third parole hearing was held on Wednesday, April 22, 1981. The three member board commended Van Houten on her positive adjustment, but felt she needed to serve more time due to the nature of the crime. Leslie’s attorney, Paul Fitzgerald, told the panel that they ought to be ashamed of themselves.

“I find your decision intellectually dishonest and the worst kind of pandering to public sentiment,” said Fitzgerald.

“I feel in a lot of ways I’m being undermined by popular anger. I feel like I’ve become a political commodity,” said the 31 year-old Van Houten. “The name Leslie Van Houten next to Charles Manson’s name can get people elected or not elected. I know that.”

In Fullerton, California, Rosemary LaBianca’s brother, H. Russell Harmon, was happy to hear the news.

“It makes me feel that our justice system is turning around,” said Harmon. “I think criminals are going to have to serve some time and are not going to get off so easy.”

Hearing after hearing, years became decades and nothing seemed to change. Panel after panel praised Van Houten’s progress behind bars but ultimately denied her release because of the nature of the crime and Van Houten’s unstable social history. For decades it seemed as though her release was just one or two years away. But that day never came.

Van Houten’s release had been opposed by the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office since she became eligible for parole in 1978. Deputy District Attorney Stephen Kay – who assisted in her original prosecution, and was the lead in her two retrials – attended her parole hearings until he left the D.A.’s office in 2004.

When friends of Leslie began collecting signatures petitioning for her release, Kay enlisted the help of Sharon Tate’s mother Doris Tate. Kay and Tate together worked on their own campaign collecting several hundred thousand signatures from people opposing Van Houten’s release. Doris Tate went on to become a powerful victim’s rights advocate and campaigned the cause up until her death.

The LaBianca family has opposed Van Houten’s release as well. Leno LaBianca’s nieces and nephews have regularly attended Van Houten’s hearings making victims impact speeches.

In 2006, Leno LaBianca’s nephew John DeSantis read a letter from Leno’s eldest daughter Cory. In the letter, Cory LaBianca related to the board fond recollections she had from time spent with her family at 3301 Waverly Drive and how those memories were fractured by the murders.

“Can you imagine how we must feel having that nightmare interwoven with our most cheeriest childhood memories? We can do nothing to change the events of 37 years ago or to erase those horrible memories from our hearts and minds,” wrote LaBianca. “I ask you, please, do not make a mockery of what we love with your decision here today.”

Van Houten, now 63, has been a model prisoner excelling in countless prison programs during her lengthy incarceration. Her one and only rules infraction occurred in 1976 and is no longer even in her file. Her many supporters both in and outside of prison have argued that Leslie should’ve been released decades ago. Leslie lost her closest supporter in 2012 when her father, Paul Van Houten, passed away at the age of 93.

While Van Houten has an exemplary post-conviction record, she like many others associated with the Manson murders remain unsuccessful in separating themselves from the everlasting impression left by the murders and unforgettable trial that followed.

Leslie Van Houten will not be allowed another hearing until 2018.


Three Murders Listed In Warrant For Watson Tapes

Friday, May 31st, 2013

May 31 – Three murders were listed in the search warrant issued last year for the Tex Watson/Bill Boyd recordings. The sealed warrant, exclusively revealed to Cielodrive.com earlier this week, gave insight into the behind-the-scenes actions taken by the LAPD to acquire the 43 year-old tapes.

The Los Angeles Police Department last October, disclosed their investigators believed that the decades-old taped conversations between Charles “Tex” Watson and his attorney, could possibly link a dozen unsolved homicides to the Manson family. However, the search warrant issued for the tapes that same month only mentioned three murders, none of which occurred within the LAPD’s jurisdiction.

Of the three murders mentioned in the warrant, only two were specifically named – Karl Stubbs and Fillipo Tennerelli.

In November of 1968, friends of 80 year-old Karl Stubbs found him severely beaten in front of his home in Olancha, California. Stubbs was described by friends as a religious man who befriended anyone he came upon. Shortly before his beating, Stubbs was seen with a group of hippie types and was acting out of character. Stubbs was still alive when he was found, but died later in the hospital. Before his passing, Stubbs told investigators that he was beaten by 2 young men and 2 young women, who giggled the entire time they beat him.

The body of 23 year-old Fillipo Tennerelli was discovered in a Bishop, California hotel room on Wednesday, October 1, 1969. Tennerelli died from a shotgun wound to the head and his death was, and always has been, ruled a suicide. Weeks after Tennerelli’s death, the California Highway Patrol reported finding his abandoned Volkswagen in the Panamint Valley, north of the Barker Ranch. According to reports, blood was discovered both in and outside of the vehicle, leading some to suspect that Tennerelli’s death was not a suicide.

According to the warrant, the LAPD became interested in the two cases after reading the Desert News article, More Manson Mysteries in Inyo County. The 2008 article, written by Tom Weeks, covered the still lingering suspicions surrounding both the Stubbs and Tennerelli deaths.

The third murder listed in the warrant is that of an outlaw biker. The warrant doesn’t identify the biker by name, but does identify LAPD’s source for the information – a 2008 taped interview Bill Boyd did with author Tom O’Neill.

The LAPD became aware of the tapes in March of 2012, after the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office was contacted by Department of Justice Trustee Linda Payne. Payne had been assigned with the task of liquidating the assets of the law firm Boyd/Veigel after the firm went bankrupt in December of 2009. Bill Boyd, had died in August of 2009, suffering a heart attack while running on his treadmill. While going through the firms assets Payne found two boxes of legal files and 8 cassette tapes pertaining to the Charles “Tex” Watson case.

Watson was arrested in McKinney, Texas on November 30, 1969 after California issued a warrant in connection to the seven Tate-LaBianca murders. Three days later, Watson retained the law firm of Boyd, Veigel and Gay to represent him in and signed over all of his property to the firm. Bill Boyd fought Watson’s extradition to California for nearly a year before the appeal was denied by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on Friday, September 11, 1970.

Payne contacted both Watson and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office about the files and tapes. On March 19, 2012, the LAPD sent Department of Justice Trustee Timothy O’Neal a formal request for the tapes. Payne filed a motion, asking for a court order to turn over the recordings to the LAPD.

A hearing was held in Plano, Texas on May 31, 2012. Watson’s lawyer argued that the tapes were protected by attorney/client privilege. O’Neal, however contested the claim and introduced into evidence a document signed by Charles Watson in September of 1976 that waived his attorney-client privilege. The agreement signed by Watson, allowed for Boyd to sell certain things in order to raise money for his legal defense bill.

Copies of the recordings were sold in 1976 to Chaplin Ray Hoekstra for $49,000. The recordings became the basis for Watson’s book with Chaplin Ray, Will You Die For Me?

Judge Brenda Rhoades ruled against Watson at the conclusion of the hearing, stating that he had failed to prove that the attorney-client privilege still existed. Rhoades ordered the tapes be turned over to the LAPD.

Both Watson’s attorneys and Watson himself appealed Judge Rhoades’ order in June. Watson filed a pro se motion with the court requesting the LAPD only be allowed to listen to the tapes and asked the tapes then be turned over to his attorneys.

According to the search warrant, LAPD homicide detective Dan Jenks met with the author Tom O’Neill in July of 2012. In the meeting, O’Neill let Jenks listen to the 2008 interview the author recorded with Boyd. In it, Boyd discussed having approximately twenty hours of taped recordings of Watson discussing the Tate-LaBianca murders. Boyd also revealed that Watson also discussed other murders committed by Charles Manson, including the murder of a biker.

That same month, Jenks contacted detective J.D. Ross in Fort Worth, Texas, requesting assistance in recovering the tapes. Jenks had learned from Payne that the tapes were locked in a safe at her residence. With information supplied to him from Jenks, Ross put together a warrant.

The warrant, which was signed by Judge Michael Snipes on October 3, 2012, called for the search and seizure of all forms of audio recordings within the residence of Linda Payne.

The warrant was blocked two days later by Judge Richard Schell. According to Schell’s order, the LAPD had not offered any explanation as to why the bankruptcy appeal should be circumvented.

Almost six months later, Judge Schell denied Tex’s appeal, stating that Payne was within her right to turn over the tapes because Watson had signed over all of his possessions to Boyd to pay his legal fees. Watson’s only legal right to the tapes was the attorney/client privilege, which he also signed away in the book deal. Concluding his ruling, Schell wrote, “Watson clearly states that he has no objection to the LAPD listening to the contents of the cassette tapes. Such statement alone constitutes a waiver of the attorney/client privilege.”

The LAPD last week revealed that they had finally flown to Texas to take possession of the tapes. The tapes were turned over to the Scientific Investigation Division who made digital copies and homicide detectives as well as the District Attorney’s Office have begun analyzing their contents. The tapes will not be disclosed to the public at this time.


Audio Archives: Manson & Hypnotism

Saturday, April 6th, 2013

Apr. 8 – For this installment of the Audio Archives series, we will listen in on conversations with a pair of doctors regarding the power of hypnosis. This tape was not marked so I don’t know the names of the doctors, the interviewer or whether he is from LAPD or the District Attorney’s office. The tape was also not dated, but the conversation seems to indicate it took place in December of 1969, shortly after the indictments. At that time, Susan Atkins’ attorney Richard Caballero was telling the press that Susan was among several followers who were under Charles Manson’s “hypnotic spell.”


LAPD to Get Watson/Boyd Recordings

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013

Mar 26 – Judge Richard Schell Sunday ruled that recorded conversations between Manson family member Charles “Tex” Watson and his attorney Bill Boyd are no longer protected by the attorney-client privilege, according to a report by the Associated Press.

“The LAPD is pleased that the judge ruled in our favor,” said LAPD public information officer Andrew Smith. “We are looking forward to getting these tapes and thoroughly analyzing their content”

Smith indicated that there’s still is a 30 day window for Watson to appeal, and that detectives will wait for that time to transpire before they depart for Texas to take custody of the tapes.

Bill Boyd represented Charles “Tex” Watson in Texas after his arrest for the Tate-LaBianca murders in late 1969. Boyd fought Watson’s extradition to California long enough so that Watson wouldn’t be tried with Charles Manson, Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkel and Leslie Van Houten.

Bill Boyd died in 2009, and his law firm, Boyd Veigel has since gone into bankruptcy. Department of Justice Trustee Linda Payne was put in charge of liquidating the firm’s assets. Among the thousands of legal files were audio recordings made between Charles Watson and Bill Boyd in 1970.

Upon learning about the recordings, detectives from the Los Angeles Police Department, Robbery-Homicide division became interested in them because of the possibility that they might discuss other unsolved murders the family may have committed. In March of 2012, Chief of Police Charlie Beck sent a letter to Department of Justice Trustee Timothy O’Neal asking for the tapes

Last May, Judge Brenda Rhoades ruled that the tapes were no longer protected by privilege because Watson had allowed Boyd to sell copies in 1976 to assist Chaplin Ray Hoekstra with Watson’s autobiography Will You Die For Me? Rhodes’ ruling prompted a series of appeals from Watson and his attorneys.

In October, the Los Angeles Police Department disclosed that Judge Schell had blocked their attempt to take possession of the tapes via a search warrant issued by the Fort Worth Police Department.

“The Manson crime spree is one of the most notorious cases in Southern California’s history,” said Smith. “We owe it to the victims and their families to ensure every facet of the case is thoroughly and completely investigated, and we plan to do exactly that.”


Audio Archives: Rudolf Weber, December 29, 1969 interviewed by Sgt. Robert Calkins

Sunday, March 10th, 2013

Mar. 10 – For this installment of the Audio Archives, we travel back to Monday, December 29, 1969 and listen to Sgt. Robert Calkins interview Rudolf Weber.

Rudolf Weber was awoken by the sound of running water around 1 a.m. on Saturday, August 9, 1969. Expecting to find a burst pipe, Weber instead found Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkel, Linda Kasabian, and Charles “Tex” Watson using his water hose just minutes after the group had committed the Tate murders less than two miles down the canyon.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Mr. Weber, we now have a tape recorder running and uh, we’re on tape and, we’re here with Jim Rabe, the uh – our reporter. My name is Sergant Calkins, to identify myself. You’re name is Rudy Weber –

RUDOLF WEBER: Rudolf Weber, yes.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: – is that correct? And uh, could you tell me Mr. Weber your home address and your business address?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, I live at 9870 Portola Drive, Beverly Hills – that’s post office Beverly Hills.

And I work as Stewart at Brentwood Country Club, 590 South Burlingame, West L.A., 49

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Alright, now your house I believe you say has a mailing address of Beverly Hills, it’s actually in the city of Los Angeles.

RUDOLF WEBER: It’s actually West L.A.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: West L.A., right, ok.

Now…Your residence on Portola Drive, I believe that street’s a dead end street; is that correct?

RUDOLF WEBER: It’s just a dead end street.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Your house is uh, on the south side of the street, about, what about two or three hundred yards from Benedict Canyon?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, I would say that —

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: approximately.

RUDOLF WEBER: – about three hundred feet.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Your house is uh, somewhat of a hillside house –

RUDOLF WEBER: It is, yes.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: – where the lot runs up behind the house —


SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: – very steeply to the south.


SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Now, on – in the early morning hours of August, the ninth, 1969…uh, an incident occurred at your house that, we’re interested in.

Would you go back to the time, that you went to bed – or approximately the time you went to bed, and relate to us, as best you can, everything that happened as far as you know?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, to the best of my recollection…we went to bed around 9 o’clock which is our usual bed time –

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Who…Who is we? excuse me.

RUDOLF WEBER: My wife and I.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Would you identify your wife, please?

RUDOLF WEBER: Her name in Mila(?)

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Alright, thank you.

RUDOLF WEBER: We, uh – ‘cause I have to be at work at 6 o’clock in the morning. So, about – it must’ve been about 1 o’clock, I heard the uh, the sound of, running water. So uh, I jumped out of bed, and grabbed the flashlight, and I went downstairs, under the basement, opened the garage door; thinking that something had gone wrong with the plumbing.

Uh, there was nothing wrong with it. I couldn’t see any water of any kind. And then I heard voices…on the street, outside.

So I went over, and here were four people standing. And of course you know the exact place.


RUDOLF WEBER: Around the corner there.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: That’s actually in the street.

RUDOLF WEBER: In the street, uh. And uh, I put the flashlight on them. And I said, ‘Just what do you think you’re doing?’

And the man says – he looked to me like – they all looked to me like teenagers. And this one man, the only man, of course – a rather tall fellow, just looked at me and says, “Hi”.

He says, “We’re just getting a drink of water…and we’re sorry we disturbed you.”

And looking over, the people, I figured well, they’re just teenagers out on a Friday night.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Would you describe the people, each one if you can?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, I cannot describe the people except the man – the boy – was rather tall, the girls I hardly saw, except I knew one of them was rather, short stature.

So, uh —

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Were they all caucasian? Or were they negro? Or did you make that determination?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, that I couldn’t say, but from what I would guess, they were all caucasian.

So, uh, I went back and turned the water hose off – turned the water off. And in the meanwhile, the girls did not say anything, he’s the only one who spoke.

The girls started walking down, and then I – then I look down the street and see a car parked, facing west; towards the main canyon, Benedict Canyon. Uh, which looked to me unusual because all around, residences on the street, nobody parks on the street. We all have a parking space.

So I said, “Is that your car?”

“No it’s not, we’re walking.”

Uh, so they started to precede to go down the street toward the car…in front of me, and I followed them. And when they got to the car…he I believe opened the back door, to the, to the back seat. And the girls got in. And the dome light was on and I happened to look inside the car and it was all messed up and dirty and so on and so forth, and uh, things on the floor.

He closed the door and he got into the driver’s seat. So, in order to uh, scare ‘em, I acted as if I was going to reach for the keys. And that minute he stepped on the starter and took off before he closed the door – down the street.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Did you notice which way they turned, uh, when —

RUDOLF WEBER: That, I couldn’t say —

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: — they got to the canyon.

RUDOLF WEBER: — after they – they took off like that, I walked back up again and we went back to bed again.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Ok now, just a couple of things – you said it was 1 o’clock, or approximately 1 o’clock when you uh, heard water running. Was that A.M. or P.M.?


SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Alright, now —

RUDOLF WEBER: It would be Saturday morning A.M.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: The plumbing underneath your house is exposed from the garage is that correct, most of it?


SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Is that the reason you ran into the garage?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, the plumbing is all underneath the house —


RUDOLF WEBER: — but you can see every single pipe, and uh, connect with everything else.


Now, just – let me describe the front of your house and see if you agree with me. Uh, you come down a rather steep few steps, from the east side of the house. And uh, at the base of the steps, uh, against the house is where the hose is connected.


SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: And you keep your hose in that general area, and so it runs out into the street and to the right, and up into uh, a sort of a planter area, that you water.


SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: And so it would be visible, very readily from the street, is that correct?

RUDOLF WEBER: That’s right. Anybody that would go down the street would see it.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: And it’s there most of the time, and it was there that night?

RUDOLF WEBER: It’s there most of the time because the hose connection is so hard, to connect, for some reason. That’s – we just leave it on, and uh, the hose (inaudible) stay in that area. Water there and then take the hose and water the other part of it.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: At the night – the night we’re talking about – about – or the very early morning hours, the hose was out there so it could be seen from the street?

RUDOLF WEBER: Could be seen from the street.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Now there’s no curbs, and there’s no sidewalks in front of your house, is that correct?

RUDOLF WEBER: No curbs, no sidewalks and no street lights.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: So, it’s quite a dark area, is that correct?

RUDOLF WEBER: Yes, it is.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Alright, now, there – where the car that was parked there, that these people got into and left, that’s an illegal parking area, is that correct?

RUDOLF WEBER: That’s right, it’s right next to the sign that says no parking at anytime.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Alright. You had a flashlight with you, correct?

RUDOLF WEBER: I had, yes.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Was it in pretty good working there?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, I’ll say yeah.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Alright. Now, at the time you followed these people down to the car, did any of them make any statements at all except the man?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, after they started towards the car, nobody said anything.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: I see. Then what was the only statement the man made?

RUDOLF WEBER: Uh, he only said “Hi” and uh, “We’re just getting a drink of water, sorry to disturb you” and when I asked him, “Is that your car down the street?” he said, “No, we’re walking.”

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: And that’s all that was said.

RUDOLF WEBER: That was all – all that was said that I can remember.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Now, at the time you walked down towards the car, your wife was with you, is that correct?

RUDOLF WEBER: No, she was staying behind. I was actually behind (inaudible)


RUDOLF WEBER: — (inaudible) about three or four feet.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: As you approach the car, did you take notice of the license plate?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well I (inaudible) I pointed the flashlight on the license plate.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: On the rear license plate?

RUDOLF WEBER: On the rear license plate, yes.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: And did you memorize that number?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, I memorized it at the time, but later on I wrote it on – when I got back home again I put it on a piece of paper. And, uh, kept it there for awhile. But then I remembered the number so I through the paper away.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: I see. So what is the number that you memorized?


SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: And that was a California license?

RUDOLF WEBER: A black background with yellow letters.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Ok. Do you know what kind of car, uh?

RUDOLF WEBER: No, it was an old car, and the paint on it wasn’t – it wasn’t shiny anymore; it was all – what do you call it?


RUDOLF WEBER: Oxidized and to me it seemed to be a Beige, color or that type – Tan or Beige.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: It was a fairly light car, anyway.

RUDOLF WEBER: It was a light car and to it was – I couldn’t tell you, it might’ve been a Ford or Chevrolet, I just didn’t know.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: It was a rather older model, anyway.

RUDOLF WEBER: It was an old car, yes.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Is there anything else about the car that you remember? Was there any fenders dented?

RUDOLF WEBER: That I couldn’t say, because once the girls get in and he got in the car and then he took off.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Did they turn their lights on as they took off or do you remember?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, that I don’t remember.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Do you remember seeing any tail lights as they drove off?

RUDOLF WEBER: I’m not sure of that.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Ok. Now, you said you saw some of the material or something on the floor of the car when the dome light was on, when they opened the door. Did you determine if it was clothing or do you have any recollection of any of it?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, I don’t think it was clothing. It looked to me like blankets or something like that.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Ok, Did you determine whether it was dark or light?

RUDOLF WEBER: It was not dark, it was uh, – well, uh – it was definitely not dark.


RUDOLF WEBER: But I only saw a hint of it, because as soon as they got in he slammed the door.


Now, uh – in the past, have you had trouble with uh, hippies, or uh, young individuals up in the canyon, or up at your house? Have you had cause for concern?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, yes we’ve had. Uh, because uh, quite a few houses are for rent. As a matter of fact there’s not too many people that actually own their house – most of them are rentals.

Well, a bunch of hippies would come in, perhaps one person would rent the house. And – any house were awful high rental, rent was high. And the first thing, three or four or five or more would move in. And then they stayed for awhile and then they move out again and others come in. Uh, I mean we’ve – other unsavory types of, like this. Like – I don’t know – you might say, marijuana smokers, stuff like this. And so the neighborhood has been plagued by these uh, (inaudible) . Uh, we have some vacant houses across the street that haven’t been lived in for a year. And somehow, it seems to have an attraction to all these hippie type people. They come along and they can sense that this house is not occupied. So they park and they snoop around, and go behind the house, and uh, in other words, they do something they’re not supposed to do.

So we’re all concerned with something happening on the street. And that was my only concern, that, uh, I took all that trouble with these people, to see what the car was, what the license number was. In case something might’ve happened in that particular street. So later on I could say that this particular car and these people had been in the street. But then, nothing had happened so uh, I didn’t pay much attention to any of it.


RUDOLF WEBER: (inaudible) I said well, they’re a bunch of teenagers out on a Friday night and they’re (inaudible) around. And I thought, if I do call the police, and tell them about that, I’m afraid possibly I wouldn’t get much response because they say uh, “well, it’s a bunch of teenagers using your water, so what?”

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: But this was part of the fact that you have an unoccupied house across the street and that it is a fairly lonesome area up there. This is, this is one of things that was in your mind when you went out and saw these people.

RUDOLF WEBER: It is, yeah. Just (inaudible) the street to see if anything had happened?


RUDOLF WEBER: And as I pointed out before, when this story broke, uh, it never occurred to me to connect the two of them together.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: What’s the address of the unoccupied house across the street from you?

RUDOLF WEBER: 9863 Portola.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Alright, thank you.

Now, we were out there today uh, yourself, and Mr. Bugliosi of the D.A.’s office, and myself and a photographer from the police department. And we photographed, the front of your house and the area in which this incident occurred. And, that this time, that area is substantially the same as it was the night of the incident, except of course for the darkness.

RUDOLF WEBER: Exactly the same.

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: And the hose is in the same position.

RUDOLF WEBER: The hose is stuck in the same position.


I can’t think of anything else. Do you have anything else that you can think of?

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, now, what about this girl that lives two houses up?

SGT. ROBERT CALKINS: Well, we’ll take care of that later, we won’t put that on this now.

I think that’s about it.

JIM RABE: Mr. Weber give me that license number again to make sure I get it right.

RUDOLF WEBER: Well, G as in George, Y-Y 4-35.

JIM RABE: 435, and your address, how do you spell that? P-O-R?


JIM RABE: And the number again was?


JIM RABE: Just wanted to make sure I got those too.

Ok, thank you.

RUDOLF WEBER: I don’t see how you can make that stuff out again.

JIM RABE: (laughs) Sometimes you can’t, then you’re in trouble.

Thank you very much.

RUDOLF WEBER: No, thank you.