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Fate of Bruce Davis, ex-Manson follower, to be decided by California governor Jery Brown

This photo provided Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013, by the California Department of Corrections shows Bruce Davis. Los Angeles district attorney Jackie Lacey says she is opposing the impending release of Davis, a former Charles Manson follower who has spent more than 40 years in prison. The 70-year-old Davis was convicted with Manson and another man in the killings of a musician and a stuntman. He was not involved in the infamous Sharon Tate murders. AP Photo/California Department Of Corrections

Bruce Davis
AP Photo/California Department Of Corrections

(CBS/AP) LOS ANGELES - California's governor has been asked to make the final decision on whether former Charles Manson follower Bruce Davis will be released on a parole after serving more than 40 years in prison.

The state's Board of Parole Hearings submitted to Gov. Jerry Brown its recommendation that Davis is suitable for parole. The documents were submitted Friday, one day ahead of the deadline, according to California Department of Corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton.

The board's attorneys were required to review the findings of a two-member panel which ruled he was suitable for parole. They confirmed there were no errors of fact or law in the submission.

The governor has up to 30 days to make a decision. His options are to affirm, decline, modify or decline to review, which would allow the parole to take effect, Thornton said.

Davis, now 70, was convicted with cult leader Manson and another man in the killings of a musician and a stuntman. He was not involved in the infamous Sharon Tate murders.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger rejected a previous parole recommendation for Davis.

Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey sent a letter to the board last week opposing Davis' release.

Davis was 30 when he was sentenced to life in prison in 1972, in a case that was postscript to Manson's notorious reign as leader of the murderous communal cult known as the Manson family.

Davis long maintained that he was a bystander in the killings of the two men, but in recent years, he has acknowledged his shared responsibility.

Davis became a born-again Christian in prison and ministered to other inmates, married a woman he met through the prison ministry, and has a grown daughter. The couple recently divorced.

Davis also earned a master's degree and a doctorate in philosophy of religion.

Manson and three of his followers, Leslie Van Houten, Patricia Krenwinkel and Charles "Tex" Watson, remain in prison for life in the Tate killings. Their co-defendant, Susan Atkins, died of cancer behind bars in 2009.

Complete coverage of the Mason Family cult on Crimesider

  • Crimesider Staff

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