Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

Hot Topic (9/5): Compassionate release of terminally ill prisoners

From FOXNews.com:

CHOWCHILLA, Calif. —  Susan Atkins, the terminally ill Charles Manson follower who admitted stabbing actress Sharon Tate 40 years ago, lost what was likely to be her last bid for freedom.

Atkins, who suffers from brain cancer, slept through most of the four-hour hearing Wednesday during which her husband-lawyer pleaded for her release and families of victims of the Sharon Tate-Labianca killings urged that she be kept behind bars until she dies.

In a dramatic moment — one of the few in which Atkins opened her eyes — Atkins' husband, James Whitehouse, led her through a recitation of the 23rd Psalm, with Atkins concluding in a strong voice, "My God is an amazing God."

Debra Tate, sister of the actress who was 8 1/2 months pregnant when she was killed, told the parole commissioners that she would have a 40-year-old nephew if her sister had lived. She said of Atkins, "I will pray for her soul when she draws her last breath, but until then I think she should remain in this controlled situation."

Parole commissioner Tim O'Hare said that he and the other commissioner who presided over the hearing, Jan Enloe, based their decision heavily on the "atrocious nature" of the 1969 killings and said that Atkins never fully understood the magnitude of her crimes.

Atkins, 61, had been expected to die of brain cancer over a year ago but continues to cling to life. She also had a leg amputated.

She was denied compassionate release in July 2008 after she was diagnosed and given only months to live. Wednesday's hearing at the Central California Women's Facility at Chowchilla was her regular parole hearing as a life prisoner. She stands convicted of the seven Tate-LaBianca murders, one of the most notorious mass murders in California history.

The gruesome murders that made the Manson cult infamous were discovered on Aug. 9, 1969, when a maid ran screaming from the home shared by Tate and her husband, director Roman Polanski.

Five people were killed in a ritualistic manner, including Tate, coffee heiress Abigail Folger, and celebrity hairdresser Jay Sebring. Two others were killed at another home. Polanski was not at home at the time of the slayings.

The next night, wealthy grocer Leno La Bianca, 44, and his wife Rosemary, 38, were found stabbed to death in their home across town

Atkins admitted stabbing Tate to death as Tate begged for her life and that of her unborn son. Atkins claimed she and other cult followers acted on orders from Manson and were on LSD.

It was Atkins who led police to arrest members of the Manson clan when she confessed to a cellmate after she had been arrested in a robbery.

At a hearing in 2000, Atkins acknowledged, "I sinned against God and everything this country stands for." She said she wanted to make amends for what she did.

Whitehouse, 46, has said his wife has made him a better person in their 21 years of marriage and should be released if for no other reason than to keep taxpayers from having to cover her hefty medical expenses.

Manson, Atkins and two other followers, Patricia Krenwinkle and Leslie Van Houten, were convicted and sentenced to death. The sentences were commuted to life when the death penalty was temporarily outlawed in the United States in the 1970s.

* * *

Do you believe in "compassionate release" of prisoners with a terminal illness?

Why or why not?

 





Please join:
 Advice for Moms        The CafeMom  Newcomers Club The CafeMom Newcomers Club
Kids, Fun & Photos! Kids, Fun & Photos!    Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics
The Cafe                        CafeMom Hollywood

by on Sep. 5, 2009 at 1:59 AM
Replies (11-19):
texmexmom
by Member on Sep. 5, 2009 at 10:30 AM

clappingwell said!! I could not have said it better! I concor!!

Quoting waiting4it2snow:


Quoting stormcris:

I think perhaps they should be released in order to have to pay for their own medical treatment, but on the other hand it would depend on what the conditions of their crime is. The real question here is the person still a danger to society. In this case I think she is not. Manson was a master of hypnotic speech and that combined with the drug use could cause even the most sane person to commit horrendous acts. Putting her in her home under house arrest would serve the public better. Without the ability for compassion, we lose any hope for society.

I really liked what Stormcris had to say, especially about whether the individual is a current threat/danger to society.  Also, I think the parole board has to take into account whether the person is sorry for thier crimes - afterall, isn't prison supposed to bring about rehabilitation? 

However, I do feel that the wishes of the surviving family members of the victim should be strongly considered, (as they were).  In this case, the family strongly objected to Mrs. Atkins release.

I am comfortable with the decision the parole board arrived at in this case.


~Molly



KELLI2L
by Member on Sep. 5, 2009 at 11:46 AM

In My Opinion:

People can say what they want about releasing criminals before their sentence is up - but I am against it.  It is the duty of our legal system to make sure offenders pay for their crimes or we will be fostering chaos when people find out that the law is not serious. . . .

I am very much FOR keeping this woman imprisoned no matter what.  She participated in a horrendous crime (at the time, she did not care about the welfare of her victim(s), and although she has been through a lot of hardship in prison (losing a leg; getting brain tumor, etc.) - this IS her punishment while on Earth.  If the great creator wants to forgive her when her time is up - that's a different story. . . .

 

witch_e_woman
by Bronze Member on Sep. 5, 2009 at 12:49 PM
Nope, they shouldnt be realeased what so ever.
Raven (WitchE)


*****************)O(******************
~* "I AM a Wife, Mother/Grandmother, Supporter of OUR Brave Men & Woman Fighting to Keep this Country Safe, Feminist, Nature Loving Conservationist, ProChoice Advocate, Advocate for Abused/Exploited & Neglected Children, Advocate for Abused Animals, Member of the Local Humane Society, Harley-Davidson Member, Member of the NRA, Member of the Democratic Party, Heavy Metal/Rock-n-Roll listener, Beer Drinking, Whiskey Drinking, Smoking, Lesbian, Witch - & YES, I AM Damn Proud of Who & What I AM"!!! *~
**************************************
stormcris
by Christy on Sep. 5, 2009 at 1:27 PM

Yes it does.

Quoting mymichelle2002:

Does this same logic apply if she kills YOUR child?

Quoting stormcris:

I think perhaps they should be released in order to have to pay for their own medical treatment, but on the other hand it would depend on what the conditions of their crime is. The real question here is the person still a danger to society. In this case I think she is not. Manson was a master of hypnotic speech and that combined with the drug use could cause even the most sane person to commit horrendous acts. Putting her in her home under house arrest would serve the public better. Without the ability for compassion, we lose any hope for society.



cowgirlsr2
by Silver Member on Sep. 5, 2009 at 3:06 PM

Let me tell you a little story then you might change your mind about trusting the terminally ill. We had a neighbor who had advanced MS. He only had body function from the chest up.We lived in a 6 apartment complex and everyone tried to help him as much as we could. Well turns out poor mister ill was a pedophile he put his hands on my daughters backside and had done it to the girl that lived in our apartment before us. When we called the law he ran but we eventually caught him and he went to prison but never came out.


sweetmom1007
by Member on Sep. 5, 2009 at 3:59 PM

No, I dont think she or any other terminally ill prisoner should be released.  What she and the others did was so sick.  My mother was pregnant with me and my twin brother at that time.  That poor baby would of been my age.  Sick bastards should rot in jail.  Who cares.

surprised

Sweetmom1007

Mergath
by Silver Member on Sep. 5, 2009 at 4:49 PM

I honestly don't know.  I can see both sides of the argument, and I'm equally swayed by both.  I suppose it should be decided on a case by case basis, and as I wasn't even born until 1983, I just don't know enough about the Manson murders to have a valid opinion.


Lilypie 1st Birthday Ticker


jaxTheMom
by on Sep. 5, 2009 at 8:07 PM

No.

Now, I have compassion for her - I truely do.  She was one fucked up young woman.  If she even realizes half the horror to a family and a nation that she personally caused (and I think she does), then I have even more compassion for the person she's evolved into as she has to live with what she did every day of her life.  It's truely tragic.

That said, she committed a heinous crime, she was convicted and sentenced to death, and the only reason she's had so many years (a whole lot more than her victims or the unborn child of Sharon Tate, who was stabbed to death as she plead for his life - he'd be what, 40 now?) is because California did away with the death penalty.

If we could go back all that time, we'd see a nation in horror - could anybody predict she'd still be around, wanting to die in the comfort and peace of her family?  What would we say? 

I'm not sorry to say it - let her die in prison; that was the punishment that was deemed fit for her horrible crimes.

ellieemc2
by on Sep. 6, 2009 at 4:00 PM


Quoting DevilDuckie:

Absolutely not !  Her victims did not get to go home with their families and die in peace.  She got life and prison and that is how long she should serve.  Just because she is ill doesn't change the fact that she did something wrong.  She should have thought about this before she committed a crime.  Who cares if her husband thinks she is a better person now - her victims are still DEAD.

It pisses me off how much money this monster has wasted through her parole hearings.  She doesn't deserve to get out because honestly she hasn't taken her sentence seriously.  She is the one who keeps questioning the court just because she got sick.  Oh well.  It is her own fault she is where she is.

She should be happy she didn't get the death penalty and shut the hell up.  I wish her sentence had been life WITHOUT the chance for parole. 

 

I applaud you for this post!

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)