IQ: 122 in 1972
He was found guilty of conspiracy to commit the murders of Sharon Tate and Leno and Rosemary LaBianca carried out by members of the cult at his instruction. He was convicted of the murders through the joint-responsibility rule, which makes each member of a conspiracy guilty of crimes his fellow conspirators commit in furtherance of the conspiracy's objective.
Manson believed Helter Skelter to be an impending apocalyptic race war, which he described in his own version of the lyrics to the Beatles' song. He believed his murders would help precipitate that war
Charles Manson was born in Cincinnati, Ohio to 16-year-old Kathleen Maddox. Kathleen had run away from home at the age of 15 and spent the next few decades drinking too much, with periods of time spent in jail.
Since his mother couldn't take care of him, Charles spent his youth at the homes of various relatives and often at special reform schools and boys homes. By age nine, Charles Manson had already started stealing and soon added burglary and stealing cars to his repertoire.
In 1954, at age nineteen, he was released on parole after an unusual bout of good behavior. The next year, he married Rosalie Willis, a waitress, and they had a son together, Charles Manson Jr. (born March 1956). Even while married, Manson had continued making extra money by stealing cars. In April 1956, he was again sent to prison. After Manson had been in prison for a year, his wife found someone new and divorced Manson in June 1957. He also married again, to a prostitute named Candy Stevens (real name Leona), and fathered a second son, Charles Luther Manson.
In 1958, Manson was released from prison. While out, Manson began pimping, stealing checks from mailboxes, and conned a young woman out of money. Manson was again arrested on June 1, 1960 and sent to the McNeil Island Penitentiary off the coast of Washington. Manson spent the next six years in prison. On March 21, 1967, Manson was once again released from prison. This time he headed to San Francisco where, with a guitar and drugs, he began to get a following
It was during this time that he befriended the infamous Alvin "Creepy" Karpis, former member of Ma Barker's gang. After Karpis taught Charles Manson to play the steel guitar, Manson became obsessed with making music. He practiced all the time, wrote dozens of original songs, and started singing. He believed that when he got out of prison, he could be a famous musician.
Through an acquaintance, Manson met and hung out with Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys. The Beach Boys did record one of Manson's songs, which appeared as "Never Learn Not to Love" on the B-side of their 20/20 album.
Through Wilson, Manson met Terry Melcher, Doris Day's son. Manson believed Melcher was going to advance his music career but when nothing happened, Manson was very upset.
Denied parole over a dozen times
Next parole hearing 15 yrs from now
Manson's death sentence was changed to life in prison after California's death penalty was overturned for a period during the 1970s.
Manson dropped out of school at 3rd grade when he was 9 years old, and he spent years in boy reformatories. But he hasn't used his prison time to obtain a GED, which is an alternative high school diploma, according to Robles and Peck.