Bruce Davis, a former member of the notorious Manson Family cult and a two-time convicted killer, was recommended for parole on Thursday, coming one step closer to being free after 40 years in prison.
The parole board’s decision is still subject to a mandatory review, but if it isn’t reversed, Davis, 69, will soon taste freedom, reports The Chicago Tribune.
Davis has been serving a life sentence after he was convicted for murdering music teacher Gary Hinman and stuntman Donald “Shorty” Shea. He was granted parole in 2012, but it was reversed by former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The Manson Family cult, led by Charles Manson, was responsible for seven murders in the summer of 1969. They were a collection of runaways and outcasts who were brought together by Manson, an ex-convict.
Manson became one of the 20th century’s most infamous criminals after he directed his “family” to murder the seven people in what prosecutors believed was a plan to incite a race war between whites and blacks.
Their victims included actress Sharon Tate, the pregnant wife of filmmaker Roman Polanski, who was stabbed 16 times by members of the cult, but Davis was not present.
Manson is also in jail, serving a life sentence for the seven murders, as well as the murder of Hinman. The Washington Post notes that there have been few Manson followers that have been released from prison.
Steve Grogan was released in 1985 after he led investigators to Shea’s body. Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme was also released in 2009 after serving time for the attempted assassination of President Gerald Ford.
Charles Manson, along with two followers Leslie Van Houten and Patricia Krenwinkel, will remain in prison for life in the Tate murder. Charles “Tex” Wilson also remains in prison for Sharon Tate’s murder.
Bruce Davis is not guaranteed parole, as the decision will be reviewed by the parole board first. Ultimately, it will be up to Governor Jerry Brown to say if Davis will be released or not.