Charles Manson Essay

1279 Words 6 Pages
Charles Manson

The capture and conviction of Charles Manson took over one and a half years to complete. Within this time period many law enforcement officers and forensics professionals put in countless numbers of hours collecting, preserving and testing the physical evidence they found. In addition, the forensics practices used in this case as well as the police investigation techniques serve as a valuable lesson for those in these fields today. In this paper we will look at some of the crimes that were committed by the Manson Family, the mishandled investigation that followed and the forensic techniques used to aid (and sometimes hinder the efforts) in obtaining convictions against those involved.
The first five murders, later to
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Leno and Rosemary LaBianca were found stabbed to death in their home. He had been stabbed multiple times and a knife and fork were found protruding from his body and she had been stabbed forty-one times. The departments working on the two investigations were the Los Angeles Sheriffs Office (LASO) (LaBianca) and the Los Angeles Police Department ( LAPD ) (Tate). This would later play a very important role in the investigation in the year and a half due to mass miscommunication between the two departments concerning the two crime scenes.

Lack of communication between the two law enforcement entities put both cases in jeopardy several times during the investigations. For example, the word "PIG" was printed on the door at the Tate scene and the detectives from the LASO approached LAPD detectives and told them of the writing of the words "Death to Pigs" in the victim's own blood at the LaBianca scene. When presented with possible evidence that the two crimes might be linked, Los Angles Police Department (LAPD) inspector K.J. McCauley told reporters "I don't see any connection between this murder (Tate) and the others. They're too widely removed. I just don't see any connection" (Bugliosi 64). This was the official stance taken by the LAPD and the detectives proceeded to work solely on their own cases. In addition to the communication problems, the officers also encountered emotional, political, and mental stress from the shear senselessness of the crimes.

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