The Life of Charles Manson


serial killer in California

Autumn Harnois, Staff Writer

Charles Manson, widely known for creating a cult and killing multiple people, had a life before that drove him into craziness. Manson was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on November 12, 1934. Reportedly, in his childhood his mother, Kathleen Maddox, would sell him to women for a pitcher of beer. These women who wanted children would buy Charles and use him. The only way that Manson returned to his home was when his uncle found him. Manson is known to have at least two kids.

From an early age Manson struggled with many mental illnesses such as, schizophrenia, paranoid delusional behavior, along with being manipulative and very controlling. He was sent to Gibault School for Boys in 1947 at the age of 12 and was in and out of these homes until he was an adult; from there he struggled with living on his own. He was sent to prison for various crimes and didn’t get out until 1967. When he was released he told the police, “Oh, no, I can’t go outside there…I knew that I couldn’t adjust to that world, not after all my life had been spent locked up and where my mind was free.” From there he went to San Francisco where he met Gary Hinman, who introduced him to Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys.

He quickly attracted a group of followers who enjoyed his music, which later became his cult members who helped him kill people. Manson’s record producer Terry Melcher, declines working with him further and Manson is left angry. Melcher later moves out of his home on Cielo Drive, and the house is then leased to film director Roman Polanski and his wife, actress Sharon Tate.

One of his followers, Bobby Beausoleil, with the help of Mary Brunner and Susan Atkins, killed Gary Hinman in July 1969. This was the first of the Manson murders. On the days of August 8-9, 1969, Manson and and small trusted group of his followers brutally murdered 5 people. The victims are Polanski’s pregnant wife, actress Tate, writer Wojciech Frykowski, coffee heiress Abigail Folger and celebrity hair stylist Jay Sebring. Also killed is Steven Parent, who was a friend of the family’s gardener.

On August 9-10, Manson and the same group of followers head out in search of more victims due to the fact that he was displeased with the sloppiness of the previous murders.

Manson and his followers weren’t arrested until October that same year for auto theft. During the period of time after the murders, the Manson family hid out in caves along a mountainside in Chatsworth, California. These caves are still in place today and is a spot where urban explorers visit and some cults have their meetings.

Later, in December,  the police found out that they were responsible for the murders. The trial began on June 16, 1970 and Manson appears in court with the carving of an “x” on his forehead. On January 15, 1971, after a seven month trial, all of the defendants guilty. In 1972, the death penalty was abolished in California and Manson was denied parole. Later the police found out that they were responsible for the murders. Manson’s next parole hearing is set for 2027, when he will be 92. But in November of 2017 he was sent to the hospital and died two days later he died of natural causes.

The Manson Murders are one of the most famous serial killings in history.