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Charles Manson Trial: 1970-71

A "helter Skelter" Scheme

Kasabian explained Manson's bizarre scenario for "Helter Skelter," a scheme to capitalize on a race war between black and white Americans, which he believed was imminent. Manson expected blacks to win, find themselves incapable of governing, and ultimately turn to him for leadership. The Tate and LaBianca murders were committed to provoke the Helter Skelter holocaust.

"Now is the time for Helter Skelter," Kasabian recalled Manson announcing on August 8, 1969. That night he told her to go with Atkins, Krenwinkel, and Watson. The foursome drove to the Tate house, where Watson cut the phone lines and ordered the others to climb over the fence. Watson stopped Parent's car and shot him before ordering Kasabian back to the "Family" car to guard it. As she waited in shock, Kasabian heard screams coming from the house. She ran toward the cries and found Watson stabbing Frykowski on the lawn. When she saw Krenwinkel chasing Folger with a knife, she fled back to the car in horror.

Out of fear for herself and her child, Kasabian drove to the LaBianca home with Manson and other "Family" members the following night. Manson parked and disappeared with Watson. When Manson returned, he said that he had tied up two people in the nearby house. "Don't let them know that you are going to kill them," Kasabian thought she heard him say before he got back into the car and drove away, leaving Watson, Krenwinkel, and Van Houten behind. Kasabian escaped from the "Family" soon thereafter.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1963 to 1972Charles Manson Trial: 1970-71 - Atkins Reverses Course, A "helter Skelter" Scheme, Case Draws Presidential Remark, Manson Speaks