February 6, 2015

The MacDonald Case: The Tate/LaBianca/Manson Connection

If you believe Jeffrey MacDonald's account of what happened that night of February 16-17, 1970, the crimes had a direct correlation to the so-called Manson Family murders that happened in Los Angeles in August of 1969.  MacDonald alleges that a band of drug-crazed hippies invaded his home and while on an acid trip, slaughtered his family and left him barely alive.

Let's look at the connections between the two crimes.

Both the Tate-Polanski and LaBianca residences were home invasions, with the killers entering the homes uninvited in the very early morning hours.

Per MacDonald's story, his home was entered by a group of hippies in the wee hours of the morning.

Victim Sharon Tate was pregnant.

Victim Colette MacDonald was pregnant.

The Tate and LaBianca victims were stabbed multiple times.

The MacDonald family victims were stabbed multiple times. 

The word "Pig" was written in Sharon Tate's blood at the crime scene.

The word "Pig" was written in Colette MacDonald's blood at the crime scene.

On the surface it seems there is a lot connecting the two cases.  However, looking at the differences shows there are more of those than similarities.

Both Colette MacDonald and Kimberley MacDonald were bludgeoned with a club.  Other than two victims being hit with the butt of a gun, no Tate-LaBianca victims were bludgeoned.

Three of the Tate victims suffered gunshot wounds. None of the MacDonald victims had gunshot wounds.

Rope was placed around the necks of two, possibly three, of the Tate victims to either restrain them and/or hang them.  No rope was used or found at the MacDonald scene.

The Tate-LaBianca killers brought their murder weapons with them to each crime scene.  The MacDonald killers came empty handed and used weapons found at the residence.

The Tate and LaBianca victims were allowed to fall where they may.  No effort was made to return them to any particular room or "pose" them in any fashion.  Kimberley MacDonald was initially struck in the master bedroom and carried back to her own room, placed into her bed with her favorite blanket, and the covers pulled up to her neck before she was struck again and stabbed.  Colette MacDonald was bludgeoned in Kristen's room and then carried to the master bedroom in a bedsheet, where she was deposited on the floor before being killed by further blows and stabs.

The LaBianca victims were restrained with leather thongs and the cord from a lamp.  The MacDonald victims were not restrained.

At both the Tate and the LaBianca scenes, the male victims were restrained first and attacked first.  Makes sense as the men would be the larger threat to the killers.  At the MacDonald scene, MacDonald reported that his wife and children were attacked first and he was attacked last, despite being a far greater threat than a pregnant woman and two little girls.

No children were present or killed (save the unborn son Sharon Tate carried) at either the Tate or LaBianca crime scene.  Two little girls were found slaughtered at the MacDonald crime scene.

The Tate crime scene was not contained - - victims ran through the house and into the yard to escape their killers.  Two bodies were found on the yard and one body was found in a car.   The MacDonald crime scene appeared more methodical.  Each child was found in her own bedroom and Colette MacDonald was found in the master bedroom.  The bloodshed appeared to have been contained in the three bedrooms.

The Tate property was isolated, with the canyons able to play tricks on hearing.  The location was chosen in part due to its isolation, allowing the killers to murder their victims without threat of discovery.  The LaBianca residence had a fairly long driveway set off the road.  The MacDonalds' upstairs neighbors reported they could hear when the tv or stereo was on, or when MacDonald and his wife had loud discussions.  It seems inconceivable that four drug-impaired hippies could have massacred the family and attacked MacDonald, a Green Beret, without them hearing. 

The phone lines at the Tate residence were cut, isolating the victims.  The phones were not touched at the MacDonald residence.

The Tate killers discarded their bloody clothing and the murder weapons off an embankment en route from the Cielo Drive address back to the Spahn Ranch location.  The MacDonald killers supposedly discarded the murder weapons outside the back door of the MacDonald residence under a bush. 

Upon discovery of the Tate victims the following morning, housekeeper Winifred Chapman ran screaming for help to the closest neighbor.  Upon regaining consciousness from his wounds, MacDonald stated he did not go to the neighbors for help because he "didn't know them that well." 

No victims were left alive at the Tate or LaBianca scene.  In fact, all the victims were horribly overkilled.  Jeffrey MacDonald was left alive at the MacDonald scene and his wounds were entirely inconsistent with those suffered by his family.

A March 1970 issue of Esquire magazine was found at the MacDonald residence after the crimes, with a cover story on the Tate-LaBianca murders.  Many facts reported in the article were incorrect, including the word "Pig" being written on the headboard of Sharon Tate's bed and that acid had something to do with the crimes.  The word "Pig" was written in blood on the headboard above where Colette MacDonald slept and MacDonald reported that the female intruder stated that "Acid is groovy." 

Tate killer Susan Atkins spilled the beans to a cellmate while incarcerated for another crime, implicating herself and the other Manson Family members.  All of her information checked out, leading to the arrests and convictions.  Drug addict and police informant Helena Stoeckley claimed to have possibly been present at the MacDonald scene, recanted that "confession", stated again to have been there and then recanted again.  One of the persons she claims to have participated in the murders was proven to have been in jail that night.  Her story has never checked out.

Hmmmm . . . what do you think, dear reader? 

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