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Sentencing/Post Conviction

Dying Manson Follower Denied Release from Prison

Posted Jul 16, 2008 7:50 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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California’s parole board has refused to release a Charles Manson follower so she can die of cancer outside of prison.

Supporters of inmate Susan Atkins said she was remorseful for the Manson family murders and should be released on compassionate grounds, the Los Angeles Times reports. Atkins was convicted of murder in the cult killings and has served 37 years in prison, more than any other woman currently incarcerated. She has been diagnosed with brain cancer and is expected to die within months.

Atkins’ supporters spoke for 90 minutes, while opponents talked for only about 20 minutes. One of them was Lynn Matthews, the sister of a woman who was murdered by Manson family members. "I will start out by saying that Susan Atkins is a cold-blooded murderer," Matthews said.

Atkins stabbed actress Sharon Tate and wrote “pig” on the wall with her blood, the Associated Press recounts in its story on the parole board decision.

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