Leslie Van Houten was one of Charles Manson’s former followers who participated in his 1969 murder spree that resulted in Leno LaBianca and Rosemary LaBianca being executed. Recently released from California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation prison after 53 years spent behind bars, Leslie may now begin an exciting new chapter as she takes steps toward adulthood.

Van Houten’s New Beginnings
After her release, Van Houten was transferred to a transitional housing facility where her lawyer reported she is exploring employment options and planning on reconnecting with family and friends. According to California parole regulations, she will receive up to three years of parole supervision with annual reviews to assess compliance.

Gavin Newsom’s Decision
California Governor Gavin Newsom had challenged Van Houten’s parole grant three times prior to this one, yet decided not to fight it this time around. While Erin Mellon expressed disappointment at this outcome, she conceded it likely wouldn’t succeed on appeal before the California Supreme Court.

Van Houten did not participate in the Manson Family Murders
Van Houten did not directly take part in the murders of Sharon Tate and four others killed the night prior to LaBianca murders by Charles Manson or any of his followers he ordered murdered; these killings were carried out under his orders but carried out independently by their followers under Charles’ control and orders until Manson eventually passed away while imprisoned in 2017. He passed away while behind bars.

Van Houten in Media
Van Houten’s involvement with Manson Family, and subsequent imprisonment have long been topics of discussion amongst the general public. Film and television adaptations featuring her crimes with “spoof images” frequently portray Van Houten this way.

Charles “Tex” Watson remains one of the central members of the Manson Family today and remains one of its most controversial members; even without knowing its exact separation date he remains linked with crimes perpetrated by their group.

Van Houten’s Personal Life
While serving his time, Van Houten married William Syvin. Within two months after this event occurred, however, the two separated for reasons which remain undetermined.

Leslie Louise Van Houten is best-known as an ex-member of the Manson Family. At 19 years old, Leslie Louise Van Houten was charged and later found guilty in California’s LaBiancas murder; following court rulings that prohibited capital punishment she received life imprisonment instead.

Trials and Sentencing
Van Houten had her original conviction overturned in 1974, leading to mistrial and retrial proceedings which concluded without reaching a verdict. Three years later she was found guilty on two counts of murder and conspiracy and received seven to life imprisonment as punishment.

Van Houten’s 53-year incarceration came to a close on July 11, 2023 following multiple failed parole requests and reversals, marking an important turning point in her life as she begins her transition back into society under parole supervision.


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