Charles Manson, One of the Most Notorious U.S. Criminals, Dead at 83
"You might say I'm kinda like Satan," Manson said in one of his many interviews. Fox News reporter Casey Stegall has the story.
NATIONAL — Charles Manson is dead at 83-years-old after spending four decades in prison. The notorious 1960s cult-leader died Sunday of natural causes and left behind a troubling history of violence and murder.
“You might say I’m kinda like Satan,” Manson said in one of his many interviews.
His name, Charles Milles Scott Manson, is synonymous with pure evil. He’s one of the country’s most well-known criminals, who will forever be a dark stain on American pop culture.
Manson’s mother, Kathleen, was just 16 when he was born on November 12, 1934. He never knew his father. His aunt and uncle raised him after his mother went to jail for armed robbery.
“The only thing my mother taught me was that everything she said was lie,” Manson said. “I learned never to believe anyone about anything.”
His own criminal career started at just nine years old. By the time he moved to California in the late 60s, he had already spent more than half his life in jail. Manson arrived in San Francisco at the height of the hippie culture. He preached on the streets, claiming to be the second coming of Christ. He attracted a devoted group who dedicated their lives to his religious teaching. They were known as “The Family.”
Manson’s drug use helped elevate his paranoia and he prepared the Family for what he believed the Beatles song, “Helter Skelter” referred to: A race war, destroying the country. He had complete control over his followers and that was never more clear than what happened during a two-night rampage in 1969.
On August 8th, four followers killed for Manson. First, pregnant actress Sharon Tate and five others at a Los Angeles home. On the front door, the word “pig,” was written in Tate’s blood. The next night, a businessman and his wife were killed.
What followed was a trial that gripped a nation. Manson and his followers faced first degree murder charges and a jury convicted all of them.
“They enjoyed killing,” said chief prosecutor, Vincent Bugliosi. “Death is Charlie’s trip. Manson spoke constantly of death. Their life was murder.”
Manson received a death sentence in 1971, but after California abolished the death penalty a year later, it was changed to life in prison. He was denied parole 12 times and he died a prisoner, never taking responsibility for the murders.
“I never broke nobody’s will,” he said once in another interview. “I never told anybody to do anything other than what they wanted to do.”