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Today in 1969: Manson cult kills five, including actress Sharon Tate

Mass murderer Charles Mason being taken into court to face charges for a grand jury appearance in the murder of actress Sharon Tate and others by himself and members of his 'Manson Family'.
Mass murderer Charles Mason being taken into court to face charges for a grand jury appearance in the murder of actress Sharon Tate and others by himself and members of his 'Manson Family'. (Getty Images)

On this day in 1969, Charles Manson's cult killed five people in a Beverly Hills, California home.

Members of the Manson cult invaded the home of movie director Roman Polanski, killing his pregnant wife, actress Sharon Tate, along with four others.

Manson chose the Polanski house for the attack because he had once unsuccessfully tried to get a recording deal from a producer who lived there. Manson was an aspiring musician. 

The bodies of the victims were found the following morning by Tate's housekeeper.

The coroner's report stated that Tate had been stabbed sixteen times.

Polanski was not home during the murders. Manson himself was not present during the attack. He was later charged with murder, on the grounds that he influenced the attacks. 

Manson was arrested after one of his followers, already in jail, started bragging about the killings.

The Charles Manson trial took the national spotlight. He was eventually convicted and given the death penalty.

After California banned the death penalty in 1972, Manson was given life in prison.


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