Helter Skelter

Essay title: Helter Skelter

1. Identify the following individuals and their relationship to this case?

A. Winifred Chapman: She was the housekeeper for the Tate residence.She was also the first one into the house the day after the murders and noticed blood splatters and bloody towels on the floor. She also saw a body on the lawn through the front door, which was ajar.She ran down to the next house, 10070 Cielo Dr, but no one answered and she proceeded to the next house, 10090 Cielo Dr, where Jim Asin called the police at 0833 hrs.When asked about certain evidence, Mrs. Chapman stated that she had not seen the rope anywhere on the premises before but she did say that the American flag had been there for several weeks.

B. William Tennant:He was Roman Polanski’s business manager and close friend.He also identified Voytek Frykowski, Abigail Folger, Sharon Tate Polanski and Jay Sebring, but he was not positive about Sebring because his face was badly beaten.Tennant was the one who called Roman Polanski in London to tell him that Sharon, Voytek, Gibby and Jay were dead.

C. & D. Leno LaBianca and Rosemary LaBianca:Leno was the president of a chain of supermarkets in Los Angeles.He was forty-four, 220 pounds and he was Italian.Rosemary was a thirty-eight and owned her own dress shop, Boutique Carriage, in Los Angeles.She had two children from a previous marriage, Suzanne Struthers, twenty-one, and Frank Struthers Jr., Fifteen.On August 9, 1969, the LaBiancas and Suzanne were diving home from Lake Isabella; Frank had stayed with friends for a couple more days.They had dropped off Suzanne at her apartment at 0100 hrs and then proceeded to a newsstand on the corner of Hillhurst and Franklin where they chatted with John Fokianos, the last person to see them alive, about the Tate deaths.On August 10, 1969, Frank arrived home at 1630 hrs but did not have a key and no one was answering his knock so he went to a pay phone and when he reached his sister, she told him that she and her boyfriend, Joe Dorgan, would pick him up.The three entered the house but only Joe and Frank went to search for the LaBiancas when they saw Leno on the couch dead, they turned and called the police.

2. Explain what relationship the Esalen Institute, in Big Sur, has with this investigation?

On August 5, 1969, Manson and Stephanie Schram drove to Esalen Institute, which Manson called a “sensitivity camp”.Manson thought that Esalen would be a good place to share his philosophies and music but the people there did not care for his music.They left there on August 6, 1969 making a gas purchase near Spahn Ranch.The other significance of Esalen Institute is that on July 30, 1969 around 1100 hrs, a call was made from the Tate residence to the Institute.

3. What was the Buntline Special?

It was a Hi Standard .22 caliber Longhorn revolver made to look like the gun Western author Ned Buntline had made for Marshal Wyatt Earp.The gun had nine shots, 9 ½ inch barrel, 15 inches overall length, walnut grip, blue finish and it was 35 ounces in weight.According to Ed Lomax, the product manager of Hi Standard, said that this particular gun was a very unique revolver.

4. Who were Steven Weiss and Michael Watson?Explain any mistakes that may have occurred in collection of any evidence.

Steven Weiss was a ten year old boy who was fixing a sprinkler behind his house on September 1, 1969 when he found a gun.Since he watched Dragnet a lot he knew to handle the gun by picking it up by the tip of the barrel so no to erase any prints.Steven’s father called the police after Steven had showed him what he had found.Michael Watson was the officer that responded to the call out.Steven Weiss testified that Michael Watson had put both hands on the gun when Steven handed it over to the officer.This would put Watson’s prints all over then gun overlapping whoever had their last touched the gun.

5. Who was Charles Older?What did he have to do with the investigation?

Judge Charles H. Older was assigned to the Manson trial when Mason filed an affidavit against Judge William Keene.He saw the trial through to the end.

6. Explain who attorney Ronald Hughes was.What happened to him?

He was one of the first lawyers to Mason when he was arrested and put in the Los Angeles County Jail.He had a long beard, was overweight and balding.On March 19, 1970, Mason requested that Ronald Hughes be substituted for his present attorney, Charles Hollopeter.But two weeks before the trial started, Irving Kanarek was substituted for Ronald Hughes.On July 17, 1970, Hughes was substituted and stayed as Leslie Van Houten’s attorney.