One of Charles Manson’s followers convicted of a brutal murder has been recommended for parole.
Leslie Van Houten, who was once sentenced to death for her part in the cult leaders killing spree, has now been deemed suitable for release.
It was the fourth time she had applied for parole.
The 70-year-old will now be subject to a 120-day review process and need the approval of California Governor Gavin Newsom before being allowed out.
“As with any parole suitability recommendation, when the case reaches the Governor’s Office, it will be carefully reviewed on its merits,”
spokesperson Vicky Waters said in a statement.
Van Houten is serving a life sentence for helping twisted Manson, and others kill Los Angeles supermarket owner Leno LaBianca and his wife, Rosemary, in August 1969.
At the time of the murders, she was 19-years-old.
During her trial, the court heard how Van Houten and other cult members stabbed the LaBiancas, sliced up Leno LaBianca’s body and smeared the couple’s blood on the walls.
The murders came the day after other Manson followers killed pregnant actress Sharon Tate and four others. Van Houten was not involved in those deaths.
In March 1971 she was convicted of murder along with the other defendants.
During her sentencing phase of the trial, in an apparent attempt to exonerate Manson, Van Houten testified she had committed a killing in which she was not involved.
She was sentenced to be executed, becoming the youngest woman ever condemned to death in California.
As no death row for female prisoners existed at the time a special unit had to be built.
Her sentence was automatically commuted to life in prison after the California Supreme court invalidated all capital punishments in the state before 1972.
Manson gained infamy for the 1969 Los Angeles killings of Tate and six others.
The Manson Family, as the cult leader’s followers were called, slaughtered five of its victims on August 9, 1969, at Tate’s Californian home.
They included the actress who was eight-and-a-half-months pregnant, coffee heiress Abigail Folger, celebrity hairdresser Jay Sebring, Polish movie director Voityck Frykowski and Steven Parent, a friend of the estate’s caretaker.
The next night, the LaBiancas were stabbed to death in their home across town.
Prosecutors said Manson ordered the killings to spark a race war he believed was prophesied in the Beatles song Helter Skelter.
He died in 2017 of natural causes at a California hospital while serving a life sentence.