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Court Denies Parole to 'Rehabilitated' Manson Follower

Leslie Van Houten's attorney says she's been rehabilitated, will appeal
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 21, 2019 7:30 AM CDT
In this Sept. 6, 2017, file photo, Charles Manson follower Leslie Van Houten attends her parole hearing at the California Institution for Women in Corona, Calif.   (Stan Lim/The Orange County Register via AP, Pool, File)
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(Newser) – Looks like no one's getting parole this week. The latest to find out she won't be leaving prison: Manson follower Leslie Van Houten. The Los Angeles Times reports that a California appellate court rejected the 70-year-old's latest bid for freedom, citing the "extreme gravity" of the crime she was put away for—helping to murder Leo and Rosemary LaBianca in August 1969—and for her continued "minimization" of what role she played in the slayings. The LaBianca murders took place just a day after members of the Manson family killed actress Sharon Tate and four others.

Fox News reports two of the three judges on the appeals panel stymied Van Houten's release by upholding former California Gov. Jerry Brown's 2018 decision to keep her behind bars. He'd reversed the parole board's ruling to free her, a move he also made in 2016. In June, current Gov. Gavin Newsom nixed the parole board's third OK to let Van Houten out. Van Houten's attorney says he'll appeal, noting his client isn't a threat anymore after being rehabilitated. "I expected her to go home within a week or two, I really did," he says. "And that's not happening. Two things you can bank on: She's gonna get out, and I'm not giving up until she does." (Read more Leslie Van Houten stories.)

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