I’m going to create a segment that outlines people who are misunderstood. They’ll have wild stories but without investigating them closely, the details will be muddled. This leads to misinformation and incorrect perception. My thought is that if I was not aware of it, many others are probably the same way. So as I come across stories in my life that I find fascinating and I was hazy on the truth, I will share them in this segment.

Charles Manson
Charles Manson
Uneducated Thought: He was one of the most notorious serial killers who murdered dozens.

Reality: He is the brains behind 2 mass killings but did not actually partake in the actual carnage.

Charles Manson sparked my interest after reading this Rolling Stone piece. He is a complete psychopath, there is no doubt about that, but he didn’t physically kill the 8 people that he is known for. Here’s the summary of what happened from what I gathered through the internet and interviews.


Manson’s Murders

The “Manson Family” was a group of people led by Manson whose ideas were perfect for people with an undefined life path. He gave them direction. At the Spahn Movie Ranch in California, Manson gathered this Family who would do drugs like PCP and live under Manson’s values and ideals. A theory is that Manson had this idea known as “Helter Skelter” where the blacks would rise up against the whites and create chaos with riots and murders. After listening to the Beatles White Album, specifically the song Helter Skelter, he believed the album was directed at the Family itself, an elect group that was being instructed to preserve the worthy from the impending disaster. When questioned about this theory in present day Manson says, “…I’m too stupid to get involved in something of the magnitude of Helter Skeleter.” Whether Helter Skelter existed of not, he told a friend named Tex Watson to defraud a black drug dealer for money to support the Family against the uprising of blacks. The money was stolen and the dealer responded by threatening to wipe out the Family at Spahn Ranch. Manson responded by shooting him but failing to kill him.

A short time after in a separate shakedown, Gary Hinman was killed by Manson’s cronies for some inheritance money. Manson told Family members at Spahn Ranch, “Now is the time for Helter Skelter.” On the night of August 8, Manson directed Tex Watson to take Susan Atkins, Linda Kasabian, and Patricia Krenwinkel to “that house where Melcher used to live” and “totally destroy everyone in [it], as gruesome as you can.” The current occupants of the house, all of whom were strangers to the Manson followers, were movie actress Sharon Tate, wife of famed director Roman Polanski and eight and a half months pregnant; her friend and former lover Jay Sebring, a noted hairstylist; Polanski’s friend and aspiring screenwriter Wojciech Frykowski; and Frykowski’s lover Abigail Folger, heiress to the Folger coffee fortune. Without going into horrific detail, these 4 people were murdered by knife stabs ranging from 15 to 50 times by Tex Watson and the females. Charles Manson was not present.

The next night, six Family members—Leslie Van Houten, Steve “Clem” Grogan, and the four from the previous night—rode out at Manson’s instruction to carry out another mission. Displeased by the panic of the victims at Cielo Drive, Manson accompanied the six, “to show them how to do it.” They went to the home of supermarket executive Leno LaBianca and his wife, Rosemary, a dress shop co-owner. Manson helped initiate the murders by tying up the occupants, and then left the scene. The LaBianca’s were murdered by Tex and the family using the same stabbing method as before.

Members of the Family were being questioned about these murders and information was spreading about whereabouts and who was involved. This process lead to the arrest of key members of the Family, including Manson. Next, evidence started piling up against the people at the crime scene and this lead to a trial for the members involved. The trial was a circus act with Manson as the ring leader but he ultimately was sentenced to death. A law was passed against the death penalty around this time and his sentence was changed to life in prison opposed to death which is where Charles Manson has been since 1971.


Manson’s Legacy

The everlasting story gets even wilder with a member of the Family trying to assassinate Gerald Ford in 1975. Many other bodies kept popping up after his sentencing. It shows the influence that Manson had over this network of people. From what I gathered, he almost murdered 1 person and was the assumed leader of all of this other hoopla that took place. I always thought he was a serial killer but he wasn’t. His interviews are great too. He comes off as a complete kook which I suppose he is. The Rolling Stone piece described a bit about his current life and it wasn’t anything too spectacular. He’s had 108 infractions of the rules during his time behind bars and seems pretty docile. He even has a 25 year old piece of ass who worships him. His account for the murders is far different than what supposedly happened but I don’t think that’s much of a surprise to anyone. I should also add that he’s a pro environment enthusiast.

[dropcap background=”yes” color=”#333333″]”What a life, man.  One great big fucking piece of shit.”[/dropcap]


He’s a whack dude who masterminded some people to murder other people and probably had affiliation with more murders no one is aware of. I feel like there are people out there 100x worse than him still roaming around. He’s exactly where he should be of course but I found him and this entire saga unbelievably entertaining. There’s something about his craziness that is almost enchanting which other people obviously felt as well. He’s so crazy that you almost have to believe he knows what he’s talking about. Plus there are so many twists and varying accounts that it makes it so it’s impossible to know what actually happened. Decide for yourself.

“I don’t think you understand the gravity of the situation, man. How can you interview Jesus when He’s dying on the cross?”

“My thoughts are more interesting than anything I can read”