Grand Jury Hearing For The Indictment of Charles Manson
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On August 8, 1969, Charles Manson directed Tex Watson to take Susan Atkins, Linda Kasabian, and Patricia Krenwinkel to the former home of music producer, Terry Melcher at 10050 Cielo Drive in Los Angeles. According to Watson, Manson told them to kill everyone there. The home had recently been rented to actress Sharon Tate and her husband, director Roman Polanski. Also in the home that night were Jay Sebring, Abigail Folger, and Wojtek Frykowski. Steven Parent was in his car after visiting the caretaker’s home. Roman Polanski was not at home that night. The intruders viciously murdered the five people they found.
The following night members of the Manson “Family” drove to the home of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca and brutally murdered them.
The murders created a nationwide sensation.
This is the Grand Jury Hearing to indict Charles Manson, Charles Watson, Susan Atkins, Linda Kasabian, Patricia Krenwinkel, Leslie Sankston and Steve Grogan to stand trial for these murders.
Susan Denice Atkins testified on Friday, December 5, 1969
Tex told me to take care of Sharon; and Katie was struggling with Abigail and was asking for help.
Q. Did you do anything to Sharon Tate at that point?
A. I went over and grabbed her by the hand and put my arm around her neck. She looked at me and begged to let me have her sit down and I was told before we even got there no matter what they beg don’t give them any leeway.
Anyway, I went over and put her down on the couch and looked into her face knowing that anything that I would say I was saying to myself, in a sense reassuring myself. I looked at her and said, “Woman, I have no mercy for you.” And I knew at that time I was talking to myself not to her.
Q. Did Sharon say anything about the baby at that point?
A. She said, “Please let me go. All I want to do is have my baby.”
Q. Had Sharon freed herself from the rope at that point?
A. Not to my knowledge. I believe she still had the rope around her. There was a lot of confusion going on and I sat there and held her while Tex went over to help Katie and I saw Katie be released from Abigail’s grip and I saw Tex stab Abigail Folger and just before he stabbed—maybe an instant before he stabbed her she looked at him and let her arms go and looked at all of us and said, “I give up, take me.”
Q. Abigail Folger said that?
Q. Did you observe Frykowski—strike that.
You observed Tex strike Abigail—or, stab her several times with a knife?
A. Once only. She grabbed her middle section of her body and fell to the floor.
Q. You are talking about Abigail, now?
A. Yes, and then I saw Tex go back outside and then he came back inside and at that time Katie and I were standing by Sharon and she was out of her mind.
Q. Was she saying anything?
Q. Was she screaming?
Q. Were you still holding her hand at that point?
A. I was just standing in front of her.
Q. Did Tex do anything to Sharon Tate at that point?
A. Tex told me to kill her.
Read the entire Susan Atkins morning testimony
Dr. Thomas T. Noguchi, Forensic Pathologist, testified on December 5th 1969:
Q. Now, with respect to the stab wounds, did you examine the stab wounds to determine whether or not the same instrument caused all or substantially all of those stab wounds?
A. Yes, I do have an opinion; sir.
Q. What is that opinion; sir?
A. Based on the stab wound characteristics, the size and shape and angulation of the wounds, the 21 stab wounds appear to be caused by the same type of a sharp cutting instrument, sir.
Q. Could you describe that instrument further for us, such as a knife or fork or anything else?
Could you describe whether or not this instrument was like a dagger with two sharp edges or a triangular instrument with three sharp edges on it?
A. I would say, based on the general survey of the 21 stab wounds, it shows some similar characteristics which were—the item 1—stab wound was sharp and indicating sharp edges of one cutting edge, and other portion was a dull and tearing action, or, tearing appearance, and other shows two equally sharp cutting angulations, and the stab wounds themselves are veritably deep and the deepness was—could best be described because, I might say, because of a position change and the force involved it is rather difficult to establish the exact length of the depth of the wound, but I would say that there are—five to six inches stab wounds were observed in the body, sir.
Q. Now, some of these wounds depicted on Exhibit 20 are the stab wounds that you have just described; is that correct?
Q. Some of those wounds were what we might call superficial wounds; is that correct?
Q. And did they all appear to be of the same recent origin?
A. That is true, sir.