at Susan Atkins' Compassionate Release Hearing.
July 15, 2008
Lynn Mathews reads on behalf of Janet Parent:
“I’m speaking on behalf of Janet Parent. Her brother Steven Parent was the first victim of the Manson murders at the Sharon Tate house. My name is Lynn Mathews and I’m reading this letter on behalf of Janet.
To the members of the parole board I will start of by saying that Susan Atkins is a cold blooded murderer. She was and still is one of the most dangerous and callous murderers of the Manson girls. Her murderous rampage will always remain in my memory. She originally sentenced to death penalty but was given chance to live by the abolishment of the death penalty. Why should she be given another opportunity to live with her family and friends when my brother has not had the chance to see his nieces and nephews, to get married and have children of his own, to live his life.
In Susan Atkins’ case it looks like she does not have long to live. If she were given a compassionate release, this would set a precedent for the others. Where do you draw the line, a line needs to be drawn.
In closing there is one more issue I would like to address. I don’t think the perpetrators of these crimes realize the lasting effect this has had on the victims’ family members. Because of how heinous and infamous these killings were, each time a parole hearing comes up, understandably the media is all over the case wanting to cover the story. But I wonder if these Manson Family members realize how painful this is for the victims’ families to go through this time and time again. Wouldn’t true remorse show a willingness to take full responsibility for their crimes? In taking responsibility, wouldn’t this include denying themselves any chance of parole. Therefore completing the sentence handed down to them. For the victims’ family members to hear the crime details brought up again and again at these hearings, is causing their wounds to never heal. These families have already suffered so much.
I wish the parole board would consider these things in their decision. I don’t wish suffering on Susan Atkins with this horrible illness but do want the suffering to stop for my family, the family of Sharon Tate, Jay Sebring, Voytek Frykowski and Leno & Rosemary LaBianca. Please for our families, could you show compassion for us?"