DOC ☆ READER Helter Skelter The True Story of The Manson Murders ✓ 9780393322231 ☆ VINCENT BUGLIOSI

DOC ↠ Helter Skelter The True Story of The Manson Murders ☆ Vincent Bugliosi

Prosecuting attorney in the Manson trial Vincent Bugliosi held a uniue insider's position in one of the most baffling and horrifying cases of the twentieth cent DISCLAIMER I READ THIS BOOK UNDER THE CONSTANT INFLUENCE OF THE WHITE ALBUM BY THE BEATLES Hello Charlie You crazy F expletive has been deleted because for some crazy reason I’ve got a bunch of kids following my reviews R”’How are you going to get the establishment You can’t sing to them I tried that I tried to save them but they wouldn’t listen Now we got to destroy them”’ Charlie Manson to a friend in the summer of 1969The number of people killed by the Manson family in the 1960s and 1970s could be as many as 35 There are still bodies missing and murders that fit the profile of The Family that were never proven for lack of evidence For the prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi the goal was to get Charlie Manson along with his most fervent followers out of circulation for a long long time From moment one he felt the strain of making a misstep that would give the judge or jury reasonable doubt The most famous of these murders were the five people killed in what is referred to as The Tate Murders The murder case was named for the wife of famed director Roman Polanski Sharon Tate was not only brutally murdered but was also eight months pregnant It changes the score right When you ruthlessly kill a pregnant woman it isn’t just murder any ; it is a heinous crime against humanity Bugliosi who wrote this book does a wonderful job laying out the evidence and also explaining our legal system pitfalls The crimes themselves though interesting in a ghoulish shiver inducing way are in a sense immaterial when compared to the feral genius of Charlie Manson He wasn’t book smart but he had his own brilliant way of discovering the weaknesses of most people he met and turning them into brainwashed zombie followers He was a career inmate He purposely committed crimes with the highest federal punishment for instance like stealing the US Mail which has mandatory sentencing much higher than say stealing cars to make sure he stayed in jail longer When he was released from the prison for the last time he begged the warden to let him stay He understood prison but he couldn’t understand the real world It only makes sense that he would create his own reality ”I may have implied on several occasions to several different people that I may have been Jesus Christ but I haven’t decided yet what I am or who I am” Most of the people he brought into The Family were between the ages of 17 to 27 with a heavy emphasis on 17 He had a man by the name of Paul Watkins who was a good looking lad who would hang around areas where high school girls would be and recruit them into The Family There was no end of young women from middle class families who had runaway from their families or wanted to Manson offered them a haven in the desert Paul Watkins the pretty boy girl recruiter Charlie would say “Paul I’m horny Go get me a new girl” and Paul would go get oneHe would interview them discovering that generally they had Daddy issues and exploit their resentments against their parents All he was offering was freedom and free love and plenty of drugs but in reality he was breaking them down so that they would do what he wanted without uestion He would first have sex with them Then have them have sex with a woman Don’t be uptight girl It is all part of being free Then they would over time have sex with all the men in the group He would organize orgies in which they had to participate or face excommunication from the group By this time he had shattered the pillar of their moral compass and now had fresh clay to build them back up into who he needed them to be The transformation from who they were to who he made them was truly disheartening and frightening to witness The Manson girls look just like the girls we all went to highschool with So the uestion is how did he turn them into killersThese girls came from very sheltered existences They were angry at their parents for a whole host of reasons but probably the unifying theme was that they didn’t want to be told what to do Manson offered a delusional freedom that wasn’t free at all but actually shackled them to him and his demented visions of chaos One of the girls said “I’ve finally reached the point where I can kill my parents”Manson became completely enad with The White Album by The Beatles He thought The Beatles were giving him specific instructions of what had to go down Helter Skelter which is the name of one of the songs on the album became the defining words of the new world he hoped to create When he sent his minions out to kill the people at the Tate residency he was hoping to start a war He wanted to leave evidence that black people were killing white people and then they would kill each other The Black connections they were hoping to make were pathetically attempted and at no time did the police think the Black Panthers or some other armed black resistance were behind the murders The only whites who were going to survive this racial war were those living in the desert with Charlie Manson How do you get people to believe this stuff”Charlie was always preaching love Charlie had no idea what love was Charlie was so far from love it wasn’t even funny Death is Charlie’s trip It really is”He had his own agenda to get even with everyone He wanted to instill fear He wanted to destroy the world He wanted people to pay for the shambles of his own life People have made comparisons between the mesmerizing abilities of Adolf Hitler and Charlie Manson They were both small men with large ideas about who they should be They could both convince people to do things that any rational person should reject Neither one of them respected life I usually don’t like comparisons to Hitler because he is often evoked in modern politics erroneously but there are certainly some aspects about their characters and their power over people that makes the comparisons unfortunately very valid At times Manson had hundreds of followers a small army of potential assassins All he had to do was say the word They all wanted to make Charlie happy and underlying all the love they felt for him was a real fear of the conseuences of disappointing him It is scary to think about how easily Manson gained control of these young people I’m sure there were people who spent five minutes in his presence who started looking for the nearest exit but his ability to convince people of his own importance and power is fortunately a very unusual trait among madmen Could another Manson come along Absolutely Will they find followers Absolutely This book was thoughtful and well researched and certainly proved to be a page turner for me sometimes deep into the heart of darkness If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger page at

DOC Helter Skelter The True Story of The Manson Murders

Helter Skelter The True Story of The Manson MurdersUry the cold blooded Tate LaBianca murders carried out by Charles Manson and four of his followers What motivated Manson in his seemingly mindless selection of “My father is the jailhouse My father is your systemI am only what you made me I am only a reflection of you” Testimony of Charles Manson November 20 1970 given outside the presence of the juryWhen I started Helter Skelter it did not have an ending; by the time I finished by an odd uirk of timing it did On November 19 2017 with about a hundred pages left in my paperback chronicle of his infamous deeds Charles Manson – cult leader convicted murderer synonym of charismatic depravity – died of “natural causes” at the age of 83 A mundane end to a homicidally tumultuous life To be sure other members of the “Manson Family” remain behind bars serving out multiple life sentences though with the possibility of parole But the end of Manson feels like the closing of a final chapter The end of something Though he never took part in the brutal slayings that killed seven people at two different crime scenes he is the one that will be remembered for it Part of the reason is Helter Skelter written by Manson prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi with help from Curt Gentry Originally published in 1974 Helter Skelter is said to be the number one selling true crime book in history Certainly it stands alongside Capote’s In Cold Blood as the most famous true crime writing It casts a long shadow which is why – spurred on by Netflix’s serial killer exploration Mindhunter – I finally got around to reading it It almost goes without saying but Helter Skelter tells the well known story of the so called Tate LaBianca murders committed by members of Manson’s Spahn Ranch cult in August 1969 Among the victims was actress Sharon Tate who was pregnant and coffee heiress Abigail Folger Manson acolytes Tex Watson Susan Atkins Patricia Krenwinkel and Leslie Houten were eventually convicted for committing the murders Manson was convicted for orchestrating them All were sentenced to die but had their sentences commuted to life when the California Supreme Court ruled the death penalty unconstitutional Bugliosi Gentry begin their tale with the discovery of the murders at two separate crime scenes This to me is probably the strongest part of Helter Skelter The opening line – “It was so uiet one of the killers would later say you could almost hear the sound of ice rattling in cocktail shakers in the homes way down the canyon” – is a classic hook This section is detailed objective and presented in the third person After setting the gruesome scene Bugliosi Gentry take us into the investigative phase This includes the troubled biography of Charles Manson who spent most of his pre Tate LaBianca life in jail of course he spent all of his post Tate LaBianca life there as well At this point Bugliosi begins to appear often and the style turns to the first person as he shares his knowledge insights and opinions And he has plenty of opinions He does not blunt his judgment that LAPD nearly made a botch of the investigation It’s unusual to see a prosecutor say anything negative towards law enforcement at least in public so Bugliosi’s take was rather refreshing Of course based on a history of racism corruption and incompetence maybe he’s just going after the low hanging fruit Unsurprisingly based on Bugliosi’s central involvement the trial itself is dealt with extensively All the ins and outs are covered from pretrial motions and jury selection to witness examinations and the sentencing phase Bugliosi Gentry often uote the trial transcript so that you get to see the exact interactions recorded by the court reporter This is a thorough book My 20th anniversary paperback weighs in at over 600 pages of text You really feel the length during certain trial sections The level of detail is exacting at times witness by witness meaning there is a lot of repetition At times tedium set in as I imagine it must have set in for the actual jurors on the seven month trial Bugliosi claims in Helter Skelter that this was the longest criminal trial in US history It might have been the true then; it certainly isn’t now In any event it was lengthy My general rule though is that too much information is better than too little I appreciated Bugliosi’s unwillingness to skimp or summarize even when that came at the expense of the pacing What did irritate me however is Bugliosi Gentry’s portrayal of the central character Bugliosi himself I don’t like reading first person accounts for the reason that they inherently lack objectivity That’s the case here The underlying theme of Helter Skelter – frankly “underlying” is putting it mildly – is that Bugliosi was always right and everyone else was either wrong or getting in the way He criticizes the LAPD the LASO his own DA’s office the judge at times even though he got just about every ruling he reuested and – most of all – the defense attorneys Bugliosi may be right in some of his judgments but he’s certainly wrong in others; of course since he is the one telling the story you won’t see that mentioned For instance Bugliosi who is generally extremely negative towards the defense attorneys directs a lot of ire at Patricia Krenwinkel’s attorney Paul Fitzgerald Fitzgerald who was called “legendary” by the Los Angeles Times left his job at the Public Defender’s Office in order to keep Krenwinkel as a client Bugliosi continually criticizes Fitzgerald as ineffective and even intimates that Krenwinkel would’ve walked on the LaBianca slayings had Fitzgerald done a better job This opinion is not shared by others who watched the trial including a member of the DA’s office You don’t read any dissenting views in Helter Skelter; instead Bugliosi Gentry tell the story from Bugliosi’s point of view discounting even the possibility that there might be any other worth noting In the 20th anniversary afterword Bugliosi pulls back from his criticism of Fitzgerald perhaps mellowed by time and reflection Another example of the singularity of viewpoint comes from the fact that Stephen Kay who assisted Bugliosi rates only six mentions even though Kay eventually had to retry Krenwinkel whose Bugliosi conviction was overturned I read than my share of true crime while acknowledging that it can be a sordid genre When done right true crime provides a fascinating insight into the darkness and fragility of the human condition At its worse it is simply gratuitous There is nothing gratuitous or exploitative about Helter Skelter It is written in a matter of fact style It never rises to the level of artistry but makes its points in the manner of a prosecutor’s brief There are times when Bugliosi who has already proven his case to the jury seems intent on proving his case to the reader as well This does him credit He does not shy away from explaining what he thought the holes in his own case were Of course he never lets even a smidgen of human doubt creep onto these pages or ever acknowledges that he might have made a mistake In my own career doing criminal defense the certainty of prosecutors has never ceased to amaze meWhen Manson finally died it was front page news It begs the uestion why Why do we remember Charles Manson and his deeds It’s a tough uestion to answer This wasn’t an epoch turning crime where America “lost her innocence” as though we ever had it To the contrary this took place at the height of the Vietnam war; My Lai had already occurred No there was no innocence to be lost Further despite Bugliosi’s claim to the contrary these slayings were not sui generis in their horrors Rather the annals of American crime are filled with eually brutal slaughters such as the ax murders of eight people including 6 kids in Villisca Iowa in 1912 Today the Tate LaBianca murders seem – in a terrible way – almost uaint How do they compare after all to what has happened since Two high schoolers go into a library and begin methodically executing their fellow students A young man takes a high powered rifle into an elementary school and riddles 20 children and six adults with bullets Fifty eight people die at a concert in Vegas; twenty six are murdered at a Texas church As Tommy Lee Jones says at the start of No Country For Old Men “The crime you see now it’s hard to even take its measure” It’s a uestions Bugliosi tries to answer a bit defensively in the 20th anniversary afterward His explanations though are not

Vincent Bugliosi ☆ Helter Skelter The True Story of The Manson Murders READER

DOC ☆ READER Helter Skelter The True Story of The Manson Murders ✓ 9780393322231 ☆ VINCENT BUGLIOSI ☆ Prosecuting attorney in the Manson trial Vincent Bugliosi held a uniue insider's position in one of the most baffling and horrifying cases of the twenVictims and what was his hold over the young women who obeyed his orders Here is the gripping story of this famous and haunting crime 50 pages of bw photographs The Book of Books about one of the most shocking crimes ever committed Written in simple clear almost surgical language it demands the reader's full attention and leads us right into the hell of one of the most evil minds to have walked this Earth the mind of Charles MansonAlthough everyone knows the particulars of the massacres committed by the Family the lack of remorse the sheer power of all the brain washing done to the Girls of Manson's sect never fails to shock me and amaze me How easy it is for a human being to turn into a beast under the influence of drugs sex and the vague promise of a self proclaimed ''Messiah''It is not an easy read Far from it It reuires the right mentality it reuires us to stay calm and try to let ourselves unaffected as the Helter Skelter unfolds in front of our eyes