Half a century after the gruesome Tate-LaBianca murders, the infamous perpetrator of this crime, Charles Manson, is still talked about. Charles Miles Manson is deep-rooted into American popular culture as a cult leader and a delirious criminal. Equipped with his manipulative abilities and a predisposition for crime, the renowned man was considered the epitome of evil. A significant number of factors molded him into the man he became.
Early Life And Childhood
Charles Miles Manson was born on 12th November 1934 to a 16-year-old girl named Katherine Maddox, in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was initially referred to as “no-name Maddox” before being called Charles. His father, though initially unknown, was thought to be Colonel Waker Scott, against whom his mother filed a lawsuit for childbirth outside marriage. Scott was believed to be a conman, who abandoned Kathleen when she was pregnant. She then married William Manson, whom she divorced after a meagre three years. Maddox would apparently engage in excessive drinking and theft. She was considered to be extremely promiscuous and would often leave Charles with babysitters while she was away. When Charles was at a tender age of 6, his mother and his uncle were convicted of an armed robbery at a gas service station. After this Charles was put under the care of his aunt and uncle. Charles’ mother was soon paroled and mother and son were reunited. In fact, Charles fondly remembered the reunion as the happiest time in his life.
Promptly after she returned, Maddox again took to theft and other crimes. She sought several foster homes before sending Charle to a boarding school for delinquent boys named Gibault, run by Catholic priests. It is believed that Charles was a taught student. He showed little interest in education and was excessively detached from his surroundings.
Troubled Teenage Years
Manson started on his list of offenses at a very young age. While in school, he frequently tried to run away to his mother, but in vain. After several attempts, at the age of 13, he fled to the city of Indianapolis where he rented a room for himself and made money by stealing from stores at night. He was eventually caught and sent to a juvenile home, from where he escaped yet again, this time to live with his uncle, who was also a professional thief.
He was imprisoned for the first time, at the age of 16, for stealing a car and driving it across state lines, which was a federal crime. He was sent to a correctional facility in Washington D.C, where aptitude and psychological tests concluded that he was severely antisocial. After a psychiatrist’s advice, he was sent to a minimum-security institution, during which his aunt tried to gain custody of him. However, he was caught sexually assaulting a young boy at knifepoint, after which he was sent to a reformatory. He was labeled as dangerous and was sent to another high-end, maximum-security institution, where he was to stay until he turned 21. However, he was released a year earlier than his expected date of release, in 1954, due to good behavior.
Early Adult Life
Charles Manson married a 17-year-old nurse named Rosalie Jean Willis in 1955. She soon got pregnant and they moved to Los Angeles, California, where Manson was apprehended yet again for moving a stolen car across state boundaries. He was given probation, after which he failed to show up at his court hearings. He was caught in Indianapolis and was imprisoned yet again, now with a sentence of 3 years. While in prison, his wife, who was living with his mother, gave birth to a son named Charles Manson Junior. However, by 1957, she began living with another man, as informed to Charles by his mother.
After being released from prison in 1958, Charles again went back to his old ways. He was newly divorced, free, and engaging in pimping. He was caught yet again in 1959, trying to cash a forged U.S Treasury check and was given 11 years of probation. He was arrested in New Mexico a year later, for engaging in the prostitution of two women. This federal offense cost him 10 years in prison in Los Angeles County prison.
During his prolonged stint in prison, Charles kept himself busy. After trying to apply for probation unsuccessfully, he was transferred to a penitentiary in Washington. While in prison, Manson took up guitar lessons from a renowned gang leader names Alvin Karpis. He also obtained contacts in Hollywood from other inmates. It is believed that Charles was in a relationship with a prostitute named Leona “Candy” Stevens and that she gave birth to his son, named Charles Luther. He also claimed to turn to Scientology, a controversial religious movement, while in prison. Legend has it; he auditioned to be a part of the infamous pop-rock band, the Monkees. However, this is unlikely as he was imprisoned until 1967.