Charles Manson, the crazy-eyed cult leader who orchestrated a string of gruesome killings in Southern California by his Manson family of young followers, shattering the peace-and-love ideals of the late 1960s, has died, according to TMZ. Manson was 83-years old. The information has been verified by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, which said Manson died from natural causes at 8:13 PM on Sunday at a Kern County hospital. The 83-year-old had been in prison for more than four decades, since 1969, after he ordered members of his cult, which he dubbed "the family," to go on the murderous two-day rampage.
Charlie Manson reportedly died from natural causes, surrounded by 5 police officers. Michele Hanisee, president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys, issued a statement Sunday evening saying that Vincent Bugliosi, the deputy district attorney who prosecuted Manson, "provided the most accurate summation: 'Manson was an evil, sophisticated conman with twisted and warped moral values.'" Hanise went on to say.
"Today, Manson's victims are the ones who should be remembered and mourned on the occasion of his death."
Local law enforcement in Bakersfield confirmed earlier last week that Charles Manson had been hospitalized, but state prison officials had declined to comment on his condition, citing federal and state medical privacy laws, "from commenting on protected health information for any inmate in our custody." Though it had leaked that Manson's condition was critical and news spread in January of this year that he was suffering from internal bleeding. Sources say that it's amazing that he lived as long as he did.
3 members of Charles Manson's "family," Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkle, and Leslie Van Houten killed 7 people including pregnant actress Sharon Tate, Abigail Folger, Wojciech Frykowski, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, Steven Parent, and Jay Sebring. Manson had ordered his "family" members to slaughter Tate, who was eight-and-a-half months pregnant at the time, and three of her friends at her home above Beverly Hills. Stephen Parent was the fifth victim that evening and was only there to sell a clock radio. The following night the "Manson family" butchered small business owners Leno and Rosemary La Bianca, in their home in Los Angeles.
Although Charles Manson did not personally kill any of the 7 victims, he was found guilty of ordering their murders. He was later convicted of ordering the murders of music teacher Gary Hinman, who was stabbed to death in July of 1969, and stuntman Donald "Shorty" Shea, who was stabbed and bludgeoned that August. Manson was sentenced to death for the Tate-LaBianca murders, but his sentence was commuted to life in prison after the California Supreme Court abolished capital punishment in the state in 1972.
Born Charles Milles Maddox on November 12th, 1934, in Cincinnati to a 16-year-old girl, Manson spent much of his youth tossed between relatives and juvenile detention halls. By the time Manson was 13-years old, he had already been convicted of armed robbery. Newly paroled from prison in 1967, he began attracting members of his "family" in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district, which had become a haven for the hippie youth culture. Charles Manson became a messiah to the runaways, outcasts, and criminals who were drawn by his charisma, intimidation, and twisted spiritualism, which led to some of the most brutal murders in American history. News of Charles Manson's death first came from TMZ.