On Tuesday, former Manson family member and convicted murderer Leslie Van Houten was released from California prison.
What is the Complete Story?
On Tuesday, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation spokesperson Mary Xjimenez announced Van Houten was released from California prison to parole supervision. Xjimenez said Van Houten would have a three-year maximum parole term with a parole discharge.
On Friday, California Gov. Gavin Newsome announced it would not challenge a state appellate court’s panel, opening parole possibilities for Van Houten.
Since taking office and defending against her challenges of those decisions, Van Houten’s parole was revered three times by Governor Newsome. However, the Governor was disappointed by the court’s decision to release her.
But he will also no longer make efforts to challenege release further as they will unlikely to succeed. The reason behind this is that the California Supreme Court accepts appeals in very few cases, and if it does, it would not select cases based on the fact-specification determination.
Who is Leslie Van Houten, and Why was She in Prison?
Born on 23 August 1949, Van Houten is an American criminal who was involved in the infamous Manson family murders in 1969.
She was one of the followers of Charles Manson, a cult leader. She was convicted for her role in the killings of supermarket executive Leno LaBianca and his wife, Rosemary.
On 10 August 1969, Manson instructed Van Houten, along with Patricia Krenwinkel and Charles Watson, to visit Leno and Rosemary’s home. Van Houten, with two others, killed the couple by stabbing them multiple times.
After murdering, Van Houten also wrote Rise on the couple’s refrigerator with their blood. In 1971, Van Houten was convicted of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder.
Initially, she was sentenced to death but later commuted to life imprisonment after the California Supreme Court invalidated the state’s death penalty statute. Over the years, she has been denied parole multiple times.
She has expressed remorse for her actions and has participated in various rehabilitation programs while in prison. Her parole applications have been met with significant opposition from the victims’ family and others who argue that she should remain imprisoned due to the heinous crime she committed.
Is Leslie Van Houten Married?
She was married to William Syvin in 1982. The same year the couple ended their marriage for some unknown reasons.
Where is Leslie Van Houten Now?
For 53 years, she was in a California prison for murdering Leno and Rosemary LaBianca. On Tuesday, she was released to parole supervision. Her team and she were thrilled after this announcement.
Van Houten’s attorney, Nancy Tetreault, said after being in custody for so long, she would participate in a transitional housing program to help her with employment training. It would also teach her how to get a job and support herself.
Tetreault added she’s never used an ATM and never had a mobile phone. However, Van Houten discussed the livelihood with her attorney of her being overwhelmed as she transitions back to daily routine activities.