A few world-changing events happened in the summer of '69: Hippies had their shindig at Woodstock, a man walked on the moon, 9-year-old Bryan Adams was probably a solid year or two away from getting his first boner, and in Southern California Charles Manson and his band of drug-fueled acolytes horrifically murdered eight complete strangers in the hopes of starting a pseudo-apocalyptic race war. (It didn't work.) Without getting knee-deep into the horrific, grisly details that surrounded the actual killings, the key to remember about what became known as the Tate-Labianca murders is that Manson himself didn't commit them. His followers did, under his guidance and insane instructions. The other thing to remember is that Mr. Manson couldn't pull this s**t off anywhere else in the world. Not a chance.
Why Location Mattered
Take a guy like Manson and plop him down in regular ol' middle America, and he's just a crazy guy with a wonky eye and a motormouth. In fact, Manson was a run-of-the-mill screw-up his whole life -- in West Virginia; Ohio; Indiana; Washington, D.C.; and Florida. But then something happened -- he was arrested in California. And it was California that put Manson in prison for seven years in the 1960s, and California where he was paroled in 1967.
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He was free only for about 33 months.