Friday, January 25, 2013
Ultimate Evil Part 2: Manson, Folger... and Shea?
After a little searching online, I found some excerpts that pertain directly to the TLB murders. Maury Terry asserts that (in 1967) Charles Manson, Abigail Folger and Shorty Shea(!) had dinner together at a seafood restaurant in California.
IF this is true, it would put a new spin on later events. However, when dealing with such assertions, we must question the credibility of sources. All Terry's book offers, is that his source "knew both Folger and Manson". Pretty vague huh?
Looking for answers, I tried contacting Maury Terry himself. After pursuing a few avenues, I realized it would be easier to find Brooks Posten or Santa Claus. Next, I contacted the author of another Manson book (who reseached this incident for his own book). I asked him for his gut reaction. to Terry's research.
His response: "I don't know if Terry had it ALL right, but I think he was certainly right on to SOME things...."
Someone on this blog asserted that Sandra Good was the source for this story.... was it Beauders? Whoever it was, I'd be interested in hearing how you came to that conclusion. Anyway... here are the excerpts... you guys can share your own opinions/conclusions.
Vincent Bugliosi suspected Manson had contact with the Process in San Francisco. But the prosecution didn't pursue that suspicion. Similarly, the district attorney's office said it sought but was unable to find a link between Manson and a Cielo Drive victim, which would have significantly altered the perception of the case. But we learned that Charlie and Abigail Folger were friends for a time in San Francisco and that Manson hooked up with the Process there as well.
The Folger information comes from a reliable informant who knew both Folger and Manson. The source said he had dinner one night in September 1967 with Manson, Folger and two other individuals at a small seafood restaurant near Golden Gate Park, not far from the Haight. One of the others at the table was an aspiring actor and stuntman named Donald (Shorty) Shea. He later headed south to Los Angeles and found work at the Spahn movie ranch. Shorty Shea was murdered by the Family in the fallout from the Tate-La Bianca slayings, allegedly because he knew too much.
He indeed did. Unknown by the police and prosecution, Shea had known Manson and Folger in San Francisco two years before the murders and actually went down to L.A. in Manson's company, according to the source. This revelation also seriously impacts the case. Two people seated in that seafood restaurant that night in 1967 were later murdered on the instructions of a third.
Ed Sanders had heard that Manson attended a fund-raising event in San Francisco that was chaired by Abigail Folger's mother. He also knew that in 1967 Manson met disciple Mary Brunner at the University of California, Berkeley, where Brunner worked in the library and Folger at the university's art museum. And he had received information that Manson met Folger at Mama Cass's home. But Sanders wasn't able to flesh out the Folger connection. We were.
"Gibby had more money than she knew what to do with," the source states. "She was into finding herself and new directions, and she was always investing in things, including a surfboard shop in Encinitas [near San Diego]. And not long before the murders, about six weeks, she got involved in putting up some cash for a small recording studio. It's possible that Terry Melcher, who knew Manson well, had a link into that studio." This was another twist; Melcher wasn't believed to have been associated with Folger, but the source says he might have been.
"That night in San Francisco, she loaned ten grand to a small theater," the informant continues. "And she had also given money to Charlie from time to time." But then she stopped. "Manson turned against her when she refused to lay out any more bucks for him, and also because she wouldn't come across for him sexually. Charlie wanted to make it with her, but she shot him down." So Charles Manson, who would soon orchestrate orgies and command sex at will from his young followers, was spurned by Abigail Folger. Add another item to Charlie's own list of reasons for willingness to oversee butchery on Cielo Drive. "It made sense that Shea was killed after that," the contact says. "He knew both of them, and he could tie things together that nobody wanted tied."
And what about the relationship between Manson and the doomed Shorty Shea? "They knew each other well enough in San Francisco to travel up to Seattle together to visit a commune started there by Brother Love Israel," said the informant, who dined with them. "They were tight long before the Spahn ranch and the murders." Authorities had placed Manson in Seattle, but they apparently didn't know why he was there—or whom he was with.
The full page of excerpts can be found here: