Notorious cult leader Charles Manson doesn't appear to have relatives on file with prison officials, meaning his body is likely to be left in state custody
Advertisement

Mass-murdering cult leader Charles Manson doesn’t appear to have relatives on file with prison officials, meaning his body is likely to be left in state custody following his death on Sunday night.

According Vicky Waters, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Manson died at a Kern County, California, hospital of natural causes, having spent more than half his life behind bars.

He was most recently serving nine life sentences at California’s Corcoran State Prison.

Waters says there will be no autopsy on Manson’s body. The 83-year-old murderer was reportedly hospitalized multiple times this year before his death.

Despite annual requests by corrections officials (and long-circulating reports that he fathered at least one child), Manson did not list a next of kin, according to a corrections official who asked not to be identified by name.

Still, relatives have 10 days to come forward and claim his body, the official says. After that, “the state will assume responsibility.” The official was unsure whether Manson would be buried or cremated.

• Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.

Charles Manson
Charles Manson in 1986
| Credit: AP
Sharon Tate - 1967
Sharon Tate in 1967
| Credit: MGM/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock

“I know we are going to follow the law and comply with the law,” the official tells PEOPLE. “I don’t know if anyone will come forth, but I know there is that 10-day period.”

Manson became infamous in the late ’60s after ordering the deaths of nine people over two months at the hands of his followers, known as the “Manson family,” partially in a mad bid to incite a race war. (He did not commit the murders himself, but was found legally responsible for them anyway.)

Among the victims were Leno and Rosemary LaBianca and actress Sharon Tate, who was then eight-months pregnant with a child by director Roman Polanski.

After Manson’s death was announced, Tate’s sister Debra told PEOPLE she “said a prayer for his soul.”