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‘Helter Skelter’ author Vincent Bugliosi: 1934-2015

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Vincent Bugliosi

Famed former Los Angeles Prosecutor and true crime author Vincent T. Bugliosi, who rose to prominence after successfully prosecuting Charles Manson and his crew of lunatics, has died after battling cancer at the age of 80.

Born in Minnesota in 1934, Bugliosi made his bones as a deputy district attorney in the city of angels before becoming the head prosecutor in what was, at the time, the trial of the century (more on OJ later). He was able to link the two seemingly unrelated but brutal murders, and convict the 5’2” sociopath and his cronies to life in prison. His account of the trial, “Helter Skelter,” continues to be the best-selling true crime novel of all time, even beating out Truman Capote’s, “In Cold Blood.”

By the way, Manson, aka Prisoner #B33920, gets to be in a room with the family of his victims every three years or so. Why we are keeping this man alive is simply beyond me.

Bugliosi got out of the prosecution game and turned to defense for a time, even turning down a few cases, as he vowed never to defend someone he thought to be guilty. Sadly, he didn’t come out of prosecution retirement when a certain sociopathic former running back slaughtered two people; his account of watching the OJ trial on the sidelines, “Outrage: The Five Reasons Why O. J. Simpson Got Away with Murder” will curdle your blood and piss you off. In the book’s introduction, he states:

“Anyone who says this case is a mystery and Simpson might actually be innocent is either being disingenuous – a euphemistic way of saying he or she is lying – or is suffering from a severe hernia, or is just not aware of the evidence. I know of no fourth option.”

Short version; Lance Ito was a fame-seeking moron, the prosecutors were incompetent and out of their depth, the defense attorneys were unethical, the jury never got the proper evidence, and the case was moved downtown. Read it along side, “If I Did It,” and suddenly it makes a lot of sense why the dude thought he could rob someone in Vegas and get away with it. Nevada got it right.

Mr. Bugliosi was not a man of weak opinions. He was not known to wonder; he knew, or at least he had unshakable confidence that he knew, and he was never afraid to say it loud and proud. He was not a fan of our 43rd President. He wrote not one but two books about Dubya; the first detailed how the Supreme Court failed to make a proper decision back in 2000, while the second put George W. Bush on trial for the murder of over 4,000 American soldiers killed in Iraq.

His final work (he called it his magnum opus) was over 1,500 pages covering the mock trial he did in 1986 for Lee Harvey Oswald (he acted alone, get over it, conspiracy wackos).

He is survived by his wife, Gail, and two children, Wendy and Vince Jr.

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