Charles Manson’s Right-Hand Man in 1969 Murders Sees Parole Denied

A California review board denied parole Thursday to Charles “Tex” Watson, the self-described right-hand man of Charles Manson and a key figure in the Manson family’s 1969 killing spree in the Los Angeles area.

Charles "Tex" Watson is shown in 2014. (Credit: California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation)

Charles “Tex” Watson is shown in 2014. (Credit: California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation)

Watson, 70, was initially sentenced to die in San Quentin’s gas chamber for his part in the murder of pregnant actress Sharon Tate and six others. In 1973, his sentence was commuted to life in prison after the state Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty was unconstitutional.

The panel’s decision, reached late Thursday, marks the 17th time that Watson has been denied parole, according to Luis Patino, a spokesman for the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. He’ll be eligible for parole in five years.

Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey condemned Watson after the parole board’s decision was reached.

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