Manson Associate Bruce Davis Granted Parole

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Bruce Davis, a convicted killer, who was a follower of Charles Manson, was granted parole. Robert Kovacik reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on Wednesday, March 12, 2014. (Published Wednesday, Mar 12, 2014)

    Convicted killer and former Charles Manson associate Bruce Davis was granted parole, officials from the state prison system said on Wednesday.

    The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s Board of Parole Hearings granted the order for Davis, 71.

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    Bruce Davis, 69, was incarcerated for the 1969 killings of musician Gary Hinman and stuntman Donald "Shorty" Shea. After 27 attempts to persuade the California parole board to grant him his freedom, the so-called top follower of mass murderer Charles Manson was recommended for parole on Thursday. Robert Kovacik reports for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Oct. 4, 2012. (Published Thursday, Oct 4, 2012)

    Debra Tate, whose sister, actress Sharon Tate, was stabbed to death by Manson followers in 1969, said "today was a very bad day."

    Kay Martley, the cousin of Gary Hinman, who was killed by Davis, spoke at the hearing.

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    Recommended for parole on Thrusday, Bruce Davis, 69, was convicted in 1972 in the slayings of musician Gary Hinman and stuntman Donald "Shorty" Shea. His attorney says Davis is a changed man and will likely field requests to become a minister if released from prison after nearly four decades behind bars. But victims of the Manson Family's heinous murders say they don't buy it. Robert Kovacik reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on Oct. 4, 2012. (Published Thursday, Oct 4, 2012)

    "I think he's forgotten the terror and everything he brought to other people," Martley said. "I see an old man who says what he thinks we should hear."

    Michael Beckman, Davis' attorney, said he thinks his client, if he is released, will return to Los Angeles County.

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    As many as 12 more cold-case homicides could be tied to the Charles Manson murders, according the Los Angeles Police Department, which is seeking tapes that could shed light on the killings. Patrick Healy reports from downtown LA for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Oct. 19, 2012. (Published Saturday, Oct 20, 2012)

    "I told the board, 'If he isn't the most rehabilitated inmate I've represented, he's the second most,'" Beckman said.

    The decision was made during a parole consideration hearing at California Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo.

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    Detectives are finally listening to recorded conversations between Charles Manson follower Tex Watson and his then-attorney after a judge ruled they could have the tapes in March. The agency is hoping the recordings may yield new evidence. Patrick Healy reports from Downtown LA for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on May 24, 2013. (Published Friday, May 24, 2013)

    The decision was the result of Davis' 28th parole suitability hearing.

    The suitability finding is subject to a 120-day decision review period.

    If the grant is finalized at the conclusion of decision review, the governor may conduct an independent review of the decision.

    Under California law, the governor has 30 days to reverse, modify, affirm or decline to review the Board’s decision.

    Davis was sent to state prison on April 21, 1972, with a life sentence from Los Angeles County for two counts of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder and robbery.

    He was convicted for the July 25, 1969, murder of Gary Hinman and the murder of Donald “Shorty” Shea sometime in August 1969.

    Davis has been granted parole twice – in January 2010 and again in October 2012.

    Davis’ first parole grant was reversed by former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in June 2010.

    Davis challenged the reversal in court, but it was upheld in 2012. Gov. Jerry Brown reversed Davis’ second parole grant on March 1, 2013.