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Manson follower Patricia Krenwinkel cleared for parole

Manson follower Patricia Krenwinkel cleared for parole
A sign indicates the entrance of Cielo Drive on August 9, 2019, where actress Sharon Tate was killed along with Abigail Folger, Wojciech Frykowski, Steven Parent and Jay Sebring by members of the 'Manson Family' under the direction of Charles Manson on August 8 1969. Patricia Krenwinkel, who as convicted in the crime spree, is now up for parole. File Photo by Etienne Laurent/EPA-EFE

May 27 (UPI) -- Patricia Krenwinkel, a former follower of late convicted murderer Charles Manson, is up for release from a California prison after the state's parole board recommended on Thursday that she should go free.

Krenwinkel, now 74, was convicted in the 1969 murders of pregnant actress Sharon Tate, Folger Coffee heiress Abigail Folger and Hollywood hairstylist Jay Sebring.

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The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said the parole board's decision moves Krenwinkel's case to the Board of Parole Hearing Legal Division for review. If Krenwinkel clears the review, which could take up to 120 days, it could go to Gov. Gavin Newsom for final review. Krenwinkel was last denied parole in 2017.

Manson had hoped to take advantage of the racial tensions in the country with hope that the Black Panthers would be blamed for the murder and spark a race war. Krenwinkel admitted to stabbing Folger 28 times during the crime spree.

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She is serving a life sentence for the murder spree because California outlawed the death penalty in 1972.

"She's completely transformed from the person she was when she committed this crime, which is all that it's supposed to take to be granted parole," Krenwinkel's attorney Keith Wattley said, according to KCRA-TV.

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"I'm hopeful that the governor recognizes that he shouldn't be playing political games with people's lives. The governor would be blocking her parole not because he's afraid of her, but because he doesn't like her. And the law doesn't allow that."

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Wattley said the families of the victims continued to object to her release but the Los Angeles County prosecutors did not attend because of a policy change under District Attorney George Gascon.

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