Linda Kasabian died at the age of 73. Her death was reported on February 28 by The New York Times, which reached an obituary in the local newspaper, the Tacoma News Tribune. The American was one of the members of Charles Manson’s sect, as well as a key witness in the trial that allowed for his conviction. In her later years, she tried to avoid the media.
Linda Kasabian is mainly known for her role in the 1970 trial of the religious sect known as Charles Manson’s “family”. “Without her testimony, it would have been extremely difficult for me to convict Manson and the other co-defendants,” Vincent Bugliosi, the prosecutor in the case, said in 2009. We all owe Linda a huge debt of gratitude. Had Manson been released, there is no doubt that he would continue to kill. He would kill as many people as he could,” he told Larry King Live during a performance with Kasabian.
“The girls worshiped him”
As Linda Kasabian admitted years later, she joined the sect in search of “love and freedom”. Recalling its leader and members, she emphasized the strong bond that existed between them. – The girls seemed to worship him. They would die to do something for him.
In an article after Charles Manson’s death, the New York Times wrote that the leader of the sect – before he became famous after a series of murders – “was semi-illiterate, a common criminal and a musician who did not make a career.”
The night Sharon Tate was murdered
According to prosecutor Bugliosi, Kasabian’s testimony was of particular value due to the fact that she herself was not guilty of the murder. During the night of August 8–9, 1969, she was waiting in a car when the other members of the group brutally murdered five people, including a pregnant Sharon Tate, at a home in Los Angeles. The next night, when Manson’s followers committed crimes at the LaBianca family home, Kasabian left the property while its owners were still alive.
According to the New York Times, it was Manson who sent some members of his sect to the villa Roman Polanski with orders to kill its inhabitants. The next day, he also took part in the murder of the LaBiancas.
She tried to live a normal life
Years later, Kasabian said that in her youth “she went through a lot of drugs, alcohol and self-destructive behavior and probably should have used some kind of psychological help.” She then added that since the end of the trial, “she has been trying to live a normal life, which has been extremely difficult.” She rarely spoke in public, trying to stay out of the limelight. She also changed her first and last name several times. The last of her fake identities was ‘Linda Chiochios’.
The causes of her death have not been made public.
Main photo source: Bettmann Archive/Getty Images