Friday, September 08, 2006

LuLu Still in Jail. Rosemary Still Dead.

Former Manson Cult Member Van Houten Is Denied Parole

From a Times Staff Writer

September 8, 2006

A two-member panel of the state parole board refused Thursday to release former Manson cult member Leslie Van Houten, who was convicted of first-degree murder in the 1969 deaths of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca in Los Feliz. It was the 15th time her parole had been denied.

Although the commissioners praised Van Houten's spotless disciplinary record at the California Institution for Women in Corona and her work tutoring inmates, they said they would wait a year and review her record.

Van Houten, 57, was not involved in the murder of pregnant actress Sharon Tate and her houseguests at the beginning of the Charles Manson cult's notorious crime spree.

But her eyes filled with tears when she expressed remorse for the deaths of the LaBiancas. She addressed the members of the victims' families who opposed her release at the hearing.

"It's very hard to know there's never going to be a way to make it OK. I just want them to understand that when they voice their sorrows, I'm listening," she said.

Decision suggests hope for Van Houten parole

10:00 PM PDT on Thursday, September 7, 2006
The Press-Enterprise

Leslie Van Houten, the former homecoming queen and the youngest of the Manson Family killers, will spend at least one more year behind bars, a parole board ruled Thursday.

The 57-year-old inmate has served almost 37 years for her role in the infamous cult killing spree that left seven people dead, including actress Sharon Tate. Thursday marked the 16th time a parole board has denied Van Houten's bid for freedom.

Thursday's decision offered a glimmer of hope for Van Houten,
who transformed herself from a "brainwashed" drug addict to a "model prisoner," said her attorney, Christie Webb. Since her conviction in 1978 for the murders of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, boards have tended to deny her parole for two-year increments, Webb said.

"Certainly, a one-year denial is an indication of something positive," Webb said. "At some point we have to have a (parole) decision based on who she is now. She can't do anything to change the day of the crime, but she improved herself and she is no longer a danger to society."Patrick Sequeira, of the Los Angeles district attorney's office, said he's disappointed the board decided to let Van Houten try again next year.

When Van Houten was convicted, the courts weren't allowed to sentence inmates to life without the possibility of parole as they do now, he said.
"If the crime had been committed today, we wouldn't be here," Sequeira said.

For several of the people crowded into the stuffy, wood-paneled conference room at the California Institution for Women near Chino, the hearing was part of a macabre routine. Neither Van Houten nor the four relatives of the victims cried as the parole board commissioner read the bloody details of the slayings.

No one disputed the details of the murders, which were largely random and part of a larger effort by Charles Manson to incite a race war between blacks and whites.

Leno LaBianca was stabbed 42 times with a bayonet and a carving fork. The word "war" was carved into his chest. Rosemary LaBianca struggled to free herself as she listened to her husband's death gurgles. Van Houten held her down before taking her turn in stabbing LaBianca 16 times.

She later told a friend it got more fun with every stab, Sequeira said.

Van Houten, slight of frame with gray hair coiled into a bun behind a girlish headband, sat stoically. Only her nervous feet betrayed her mood as her Converse high-tops tapped rapidly beneath the table.

Years of therapy have helped her to overcome her drug addictions and penchant for destructive relationships, she said. The two parole board members reviewed files the size of phonebooks, including several letters of support for Van Houten from corrections psychiatrists as well as people offering jobs and housing to Van Houten.

In a soft-spoken voice, Van Houten described her prison journey through narcotics anonymous, a bachelor's degree in English literature, and her work as a tutor and counselor for other inmates.

"I do what I do in here because that's how I live with myself," she sobbed.

A few feet away, nephews of the LaBiancas and Tate's sister sat with guarded expressions.

"It is always a painful process for us to relive the moment Miss Van Houten and her terrorist gang visited upon our family," said Louis Smaldino, the LaBianca's nephew.

Riverside County resident Debra Tate is the only surviving member of Sharon Tate's family. She's attended dozens of Manson family parole hearings as a voice for the victims.

"It seems to be getting harder to keep the board in the mindset of the spirit in which these crimes were committed," said Tate. "The perpetrators get to dance their prison victories before the board, but (the board) doesn't hear from the people who were murdered

Manson Follower Van Houten Denied Parole

Former Charles Manson Disciple Leslie Van Houten Denied Parole for 16th Time in California

The Associated Press

FRONTERA, Calif. - Leslie Van Houten, the former Charles Manson follower convicted of taking part in a murderous rampage that terrorized Los Angeles 37 years ago, was denied parole Thursday for a 16th time.

The once raven-haired homecoming princess, now a gray-haired 57-year-old prison inmate, was convicted of murder and conspiracy for her role in the 1969 slayings of wealthy grocers Leno and Rosemary La Bianca.

The La Biancas were killed in August 1969, one night after Manson's followers killed actress Sharon Tate, celebrity hairdresser Jay Sebring, coffee heiress Abigail Folger, filmmaker Voityck Frykowski and Steven Parent, a friend of the Tate estate's caretaker.

Van Houten did not participate in the Tate killings, but went along the next night when the La Biancas were slain in their home. Prosecutors said at Thursday's hearing at Frontera's California Institute for Women that she had felt "left out" of the first night's carnage.

As she has during past hearings, Van Houten apologized to the victims' families, but the parole board wasn't swayed. Board members determined she was an "unacceptable public safety risk and a danger to society" and unsuitable for parole, said board spokesman Tip Kindel.

Van Houten, Manson and two other followers of the cult leader were originally sentenced to death, but their sentences were reduced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after California's death penalty was briefly suspended in the 1970s. None of them have been released.

Although Thursday's ruling keeps her in prison, Van Houten won one small victory when the board told her she may reapply for parole in one year rather than the usual two.

"She can't do anything to change the day of the crime, but she improved herself and she is no longer a danger to society," Van Houten's attorney, Christie Webb, said afterward.


Former Manson Disciple Denied Parole

POSTED: 6:42 pm PDT September 7, 2006

Former Charles Manson disciple Leslie Van Houten was denied parole for the 16th time Thursday for the 1969 murders of a Los Feliz couple.Van Houten, now 57, was allowed to plead her case before the parole board at the California Institute for Women in Frontera. She expressed remorse and apologized to the victims' family.However, at about 5 p.m., the board turned down her parole request, said parole board spokesman Tip Kindel. The board determined Van Houten was "unsuitable for parole," Kindel said.She was also deemed an "unacceptable public safety risk and a danger to society," he said.However, the board said she could seek parole in another 12 months, he said.Van Houten has previously been denied parole 15 times -- most recently in August 2004, when a state panel also concluded that she was "not yet suitable for parole."Van Houten was convicted of murder and conspiracy for participating with fellow Manson family members Charles "Tex" Watson and Patricia Krenwinkel in the Aug. 9, 1969, slayings of grocers Leno and Rosemary La Bianca at their Los Feliz home.The former cheerleader and homecoming princess from Monrovia did not participate in the Manson family's slayings of pregnant actress Sharon Tate and four others in a mansion near Beverly Hills the night before.Van Houten was sentenced to death. But in 1972, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty was unconstitutional, and she -- and Manson -- were re-sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.Van Houten has acknowledged her role in the La Bianca murders, acknowledging at the 2004 hearing that she stabbed Rosemary La Bianca 14 to 16 times after the woman had already been stabbed by Krenwinkel and Watson.At earlier hearings, she said she believed La Bianca was already dead at the time, and said it was "very hard" for a woman in her 50s to "look back on the behavior of who I was at 19."Manson and many of his other former followers, who have repeatedly been denied parole, also remain behind bars.

Last month, a two-member parole panel split on whether former Manson Family member Bruce Davis should be released from prison. Davis was convicted in 1972 of the murders of musician Gary Hinman -- whose left ear Manson chopped off -- and stagehand Donald "Shorty" Shea.The split meant the entire parole board will decide whether Davis should be released from prison.

When asked why she thought about these developments Rosemary LaBianca replied "
newlamp....why...arrrgh ptup flankusch."


Salem said...

so Ms Tate shows up once again huh?

spookycatz said...

Unless Leslie seriously screws up during the coming year, I believe they are going to give her parole.

She looks very old.


Salem said...

I think she 's fit, has been fit for parole quite awhile now.
Yes, she has really aged.
I was trying to figured the age difference between Leslie and Susan.
CRS syndrome has set in here! LOL

foraplex sucks said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Salem said...

Susan Lucci Syndrome said...
As much as i hate to admit it, this 16th parole denile almost puts her in the same category as the soap actress, Susan Lucci, who was rejected 18 consecutive times before finally winning an emmy award.

***** After eighteen failed nominations in a row, it came as a shock to both her and the viewing audience when she finally won it in 1999. [1] Today, in popular culture, to be "like Susan Lucci" is usually a negative connotation, marked by never quite getting what you want or deserve. *****

5:42 PM, September 08, 2006

well thats one way to put it!

spookycatz said...

I have a comment which may not be very popular.

When I came to the Col's blog, I was dead set against parole for any of the "Manson Gang." I have since thought about why. I've also had time to study facts about the case(s). I have personally seen people who have committed far worse crimes than Leslie receive parole. I think she deserves a shot at a life outside prison. While she still has any life to live at all. Were it not for the sensationalism attached to TLB, Leslie would have been paroled long ago.

As for Tex, Katie and Susan, I cannot find it in my heart/mind to feel the same about them. IMO, Susan is still full of $hit as she ever was. Tex, ditto. Katie, well, she seems to hate herself for her actions those summer nights in 1969. That is just.

Anyway, those are my thoughts on this Saturday morning.


chasingbunnies said...

Leslie is no more a danger to society than my kitty cat. The only reason she is still in prison is because of her connection to the name Charles Manson. Folks hear the word "Manson" and freak out. And, Spooky is correct. There are people serving life terms, and who are on death row for much more heinous crimes than LVH commited. I'm not justifying her stabbing Rosemary LaBianca 16 times, and for her to say Rosemary was all ready dead is not helping Leslie much. Who pronounced Mrs. LaBianca dead, besides Leslie, I mean? Something to think about. Also, Isn't this an election year?

Salem said...

good morning
I think she deserves a shot at a life outside prison. While she still has any life to live at all. Were it not for the sensationalism attached to TLB, Leslie would have been paroled long ago.


Salem said...

I'm not justifying her stabbing Rosemary LaBianca 16 times, and for her to say Rosemary was all ready dead is not helping Leslie much. Who pronounced Mrs. LaBianca dead, besides Leslie, I mean? Something to think about. Also, Isn't this an election year?

says CB

G' Morning:)
No, Leslie sure didnt know for sure that Rosemary was already dead. *that quote never flew with me either*
in my mind ,I just see Tex standing over her saying DO SOMETHING! STAB HER! DO IT!*
leslie overheard something, and tex wanted to make sure leslie did something. So he could throw it up in her face. *get her hands dirty*

Salem said...

ptup means set up.

Salem said...

Ouchas means thief?
i failed spanish!

Salem said...

help COL!!!!

4Sharon said...

I don't feel Leslie would be ANY threat now...there are far more scarier serial killers out there now, to worry about.

Dok said...

I believe LVH should be released, but the nature in which her crime was commited is what binds her to those bars.

Salem said...

hi Dok
nice to see ya back:)

Deb B said...

Even is she did get parole, there's the fact that the Governor would have the ability to revoke the Board's decision. I think there would be a lot of pressure on him to do that.

16 times is a lot of stabbing to do for someone who was supposedly reluctant. Just sayin'.

Deb B said...

Marie Ford, oldest daughter of Patti Tate, was also there.

Deb B said...

Marie Ford, oldest daughter of Patti Tate, was also there.

4Sharon said...

They've been in prison THIS long...let them finish out their life term. They are out of touch with reality AND the world, so keep them where they can do the most good - helping other prisoners, or in Charlie's case, sweeping the chapel floors.