LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The crimes of the Manson family remain some of the most notorious in California’s history…even four decades later.
The names of their victims…Tate, Folger, LaBianca…synonymous with horrible, brutal, deaths.
Still, one case remains open.
Stacey Butler investigates the story of the missing attorney who represented the Manson family.
She started with the prosecutor, Vincent Bugliosi, himself threatened by Charles Manson and his followers. He, the judge…all on Manson’s marked-for-death list.
Did the same fate befall the man who was trying to keep Manson follower Leslie Van Houton out of death row?
Just before closing arguments were made in November of 1972, Ronald Hughes went missing.
In an ironic twist, Butler reports, the same day the verdicts were read against Manson…the body of the rumpled, overweight attorney was found. No evidence of foul play…the coroner ultimately listed the cause of death as “undertermined.”
One lead investigator does believe the death was accidental…but that won’t keep people from speculating, perhaps forever, that Manson or one of his followers didn’t have a hand in the death.