Charles Manson, the evil man who orchestrated ten murders committed by his cult of followers in 1969, has died and gone to hell at the age of 83.
The end came for Manson at a hospital in Bakersfield, California.
Convicted of the murders in 1970, Manson has been in a California prison ever since.
The Associated Press recounts the crimes and subsequent trial:
A petty criminal who had been in and out of jail since childhood, the charismatic, guru-like Manson surrounded himself in the 1960s with runaways and other lost souls and then sent his disciples to butcher some of L.A.’s rich and famous in what prosecutors said was a bid to trigger a race war — an idea he got from a twisted reading of the Beatles song “Helter Skelter.”
The slayings horrified the world and, together with the deadly violence that erupted later in 1969 during a Rolling Stones concert at California’s Altamont Speedway, exposed the dangerous, drugged-out underside of the counterculture movement and seemed to mark the death of the era of peace and love.
Despite the overwhelming evidence against him, Manson maintained during his tumultuous trial in 1970 that he was innocent and that society itself was guilty.
“These children that come at you with knives, they are your children. You taught them; I didn’t teach them. I just tried to help them stand up,” he said in a courtroom soliloquy.
“Michele Hanisee, president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys, reacted to the death by quoting the late Vincent Bugliosi, the Los Angeles prosecutor who put Manson behind bars. Bugliosi said: ‘Manson was an evil, sophisticated con man with twisted and warped moral values,’ ” AP reported.
“Today, Manson’s victims are the ones who should be remembered and mourned on the occasion of his death,” Hanisee concluded.
“The sister of Charles Manson’s victim Sharon Tate said a prayer for his ‘soul’ after she was told of the notorious cult leader’s death at the age of 83 on Sunday,” the Independent reported:
Debra Tate, whose pregnant sister was among those killed by the Manson Family cult, told US broadcaster CBS that she was called shortly after his death by the prison where he had been incarcerated.
She said she was still processing the news, but added she had “said a prayer for Manson’s soul and has forgiven the family but refuses to forget what they did”.