DA objects to early release for Atkins

July 14, 2008 at 8:11 PM
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LOS ANGELES, July 14 (UPI) -- The California Parole Board is being urged to deny early prison release for former Manson family member Susan Atkins, who has terminal cancer, papers show.

Officials will consider whether to give Atkins a so-called compassionate release, saying it will cost the state more than $1.2 million to provide medical care and security for the convicted murderer following her brain cancer diagnosis in March.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the state Board of Parole Hearings has received about 100 letters concerning Atkins' possible release, most of them against allowing her to leave prison.

Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley wrote to the board that Atkins' "horrific crimes alone warrant a denial of her request" to be released because she is dying.

The board is scheduled to hold a hearing Tuesday to consider Atkins' request, which, if approved, would then place the matter before a Los Angeles County judge.

Cooley said Atkins, 60, was not a good candidate for compassionate release because she has "failed to demonstrate genuine remorse and lacks insight and understanding of the gravity of her crimes."

Atkins and other members of Charles Manson's cult were convicted of killing actress Sharon Tate and six other people in the Los Angeles area in two attacks in 1969.

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