Charles Manson, 82, has been taken from Corcoran State Prison and hospitalized in Bakersfield. My first thought: If the infamous mass murder has become chronically ill, he might be transferred to The California Health Care Facility, Stockton.
If Manson came here, he wouldn’t be the first member of his notorious “clan” to visit. Squeaky Fromme and other Manson women came here in 1972. All hell broke loose. I’ll drop that story below.
In other news, the December National Enquirer reported that Phil Spector, 76, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame producer hospitalized in the Stockton facility, has shrivelled to a “skeletal 115 pounds” and has only weeks to live.
Just because the Enquirer says it, though, doesn’t mean it’s true. A prison spokesperson says Spector has not applied for compassionate release, a Get-Out-of-Jail-Free deal sometimes granted to dying convicts.
Here’s the sensational story about the Manson women in Stockton.
The Record Sunday, February 17, 2002 B1
Section: News / Local
Haunting house makes for unhappy medium
By Michael Fitzgerald
A Bay Area woman called to ask if the rumor she heard about her new Stockton home was true.
“I’m buying a house on Flora Street,” explained Pam Climer, a court clerk from Martinez. “And my neighbor said somebody was killed there years ago.”
She gave me the address.
“Bingo,” I said. “That’s the house where Squeaky Fromme and other Manson Family women holed up with armed robbers from the Aryan Brotherhood.”
“Oh, dear!” Climer said.
“They killed a woman in your house.”
“And buried her in your basement.”
“Oh gosh,” Climer said.
Realtors sometimes leave out these wee details.
Then it was Climer’s turn to surprise me.
“Um … it’s kind of weird: I’m spiritual in nature,” she volunteered. “I can feel spirits and stuff.”
So when inspecting her basement, Climer confided, “I just had this feeling. Something happened down here. Something weird.”
We swapped stories. I led off with the house’s freaky past.
When Charles Manson was imprisoned for the infamous Tate-LaBianca murders of 1969, he made an astute deal with Aryan Brotherhood inmates: If they’d protect him inside, the Brothers outside could have the Manson women.
So Squeaky and his other deranged sex witches dutifully shacked up with Aryan stickup men in Los Angeles. This bunch went up to Guerneville in 1972. There they killed a man.
The victim’s wife, Lauren “Reni” Willett, 19, left Guerneville with her new buddies — don’t ask me, man — and came to Stockton. They rented the Flora Street home. Days later, the men offed Willett there. And buried her with a Gemco shovel.
Hot on the gang’s trail, cops busted them right there in the house and unearthed the body. Stocktonians tweaked: The Manson family!
The Aryan boys went to prison. Squeaky went free, free enough to try to assassinate President Ford in Sacramento in 1975, earning herself a life sentence.
The end. Curious, I asked Climer about her “spiritual” side.
“Oh, I died when I was 19 and came back to life,” Climer replied. “Since then, I have very special powers.”
Climer, 45, a mother of two, said she had a near-death experience once when medication gave her blood clots.
“My grandfather, who had recently died, met me out there in the blackness,” Climer said. “And said, mental-telepathywise — there’s no speaking up there — no, I couldn’t go. (So) my spirit came back.”
Her spirit slipped back through her skull. “It was like warm oil had been poured into the top of my head.” And ever since, “I just have this extrasensory ability” to read people, to foresee disasters and to sense spirits, Climer said.
When her neighbor divulged the death, “Immediately I knew it was a girl. I knew that she was buried in the basement. That she was kind of like, an innocent person.”
Climer feels drawn to the house. “I believe I’m here for some answer. There’s something that’s not finished in that house yet.” Something to do perhaps with Reni Willett.
“She probably will visit me,” my intriguing caller said.
Why? “I don’t know,” Climer confessed. “That’s something she would have to tell me.”
Write Fitzgerald at P.O. Box 900, Stockton, CA 95201; phone 546-8270; fax 547-8186; firstname.lastname@example.org