Sister versus Sister Across Eight States
You probably thought this was another of my true crime stories, huh? Well, this certainly could have become a crime but thankfully, cooler heads prevailed. Instead, this is a story all about how my life got flipped, turned upside down and I’d like to take a minute, just sit right there — I’ll tell you how I became…
Wait. I didn’t become the Prince of Bel Air. But I did take charge of my life at a great cost and that’s the story I wanted to share.
As a true crime writer who specializes…
The alleged children of the cult leader keep showing up, four years after his death
Oh Charlie, Charlie, Charlie — ye of such potent sperm, such virile loins, such a vanguard legacy — everybody wants to call you ‘Daddy!’ But is it true? Did you really father all these children — these lost souls, these glaze-eyed men and women longing to attach themselves to your fame, your infamy, and your name?
What say ye, Charles Manson?
Charles Milles Manson was born November 12, 1934 in Cincinnati, Ohio to a 15-year…
and other comments from the peanut gallery
As we reach the tail end of the sunny month of June, I’m once again sharing some of your top comments from the past month to my articles here at Medium. This author always welcomes your thoughts and ideas, and constructive criticism about my writing. This month, however, brought out some rather unconstructive and belittling comments but I’m going to share them anyway!
The Story of the Oakland County Child Killer, Part 1
Mark. Jill. Kristine. Timothy. Between February 1976 and March 1977, four children in the Detroit Metropolitan Area were abducted, held between four and nineteen days before being murdered, each of their bodies dumped in the snow. The killer or killers, never apprehended.
Other children were suspected of being victims of the spree killer known as the Oakland County Child Killer, and thousands of children in Southeast Michigan saw their childhoods destroyed in the aftermath of the shocking crime wave.
I was one of those children.
This is the first of…
The story of the Manson Family at the Hog Farm commune
The Manson Family were a nomadic commune, a warped counterculture movement, a messianic cult, and ultimately a bunch of thrill-kill savages, responsible for the heinous August 1969 Tate/LaBianca murders. They killed several people, in part to start a race war which their guru/father figure/cult leader Charles Manson had prophesized. When the race war (which he called “Helter Skelter” in homage to the Beatles’ song) didn’t happen naturally, Charlie gathered several of his doped-out followers and ordered them to the Hollywood Hills home of actress Sharon Tate. Tate, 8-months pregnant…
I’m way more interested in how Elizabeth Short lived
It’s the shocking story of a woman killed and mutilated, her body cut in two and left for all the world to see.
Discovered 74 years ago by a housewife walking with her daughter, the cold and lifeless severed body of Elizabeth Short was dumped in a vacant lot in Los Angeles. The woman who found her initially thought she was looking at pieces of a department store mannequin. The body was bisected with surgical precision, drained of blood and disemboweled.
The victim had multiple cuts, bruises, contusions showing signs of…
“Recovering Alcoholics Reading This Are All nodding”
Your top comments this month to my stories
I started doing this last month — sharing some of the comments that others at Medium have shared to my stories. You may not always agree with my perspective, and I may not always love your responses but I do think it’s instructive to acknowledge them.
To my first story about Patty Hearst (the second was more about my own feelings about the Symbionese Liberation Army who kidnapped her in 1974), I received a comment from JacksDaName who responded to my comment within the article:
What may have happened to this missing young man
I’m a big fan of the podcast “And Then They Were Gone.” Now in its second season, hosts Kona and Ethan highlight the stories of people who suddenly went missing and were never found. As they say, “There’s a special kind of pain in the not knowing” and each of these tales are heartbreaking — children who may have been sexually trafficked, women who likely met with foul play, stranger abductions, and other mysteries perhaps yet to be solved.
I’ve been listening to this podcast since it launched in 2020. I…
Paul: thank you for the clarification on Ramer's name (it's spelled multiple ways and I had trouble finding his biographical info). The language of "Charlie began to understand that he was 'an immortal spiritual being'" is taken directly from my book, is my own language but culled from Scientology's stated beliefs - not a literal quote from Manson himself. An imagined 'awakening' on Charlie's behalf and a bit of literary assumption on my part;)
I will have to check out Ramer's 1972 article. Appreciate the comments!
Walking away from your life in today’s technology
I’m currently catching up on Season 2 of the podcast And Then They Were Gone. This podcast explores the stories of people who went missing, and have never been found. Shoutout to Kona and Ethan of ATTWG, who do a great job of sharing these stories of people who suddenly disappeared, leaving loved ones to wonder (sometimes for decades) what became of them.
I’m only a few episodes into Season 2, but already they’ve explored the stories of a couple of people who may have simply walked away from their lives. …