Attorney [DECEASED] (August 18, 1934 - June 6, 2015)
Vincent T. Bugliosi in 1971, at the court in Los Angeles where Charles Manson was convicted. Credit: Associated Press.
Vincent Bugliosi, born August 18, 1934 in Hibbing, Minnesota, was an attorney, author, and political candidate. The son of Ida and Vincent Bugliosi Senior, his father ran a small grocery store and was later employed as a train conductor.
Bugliosi earned money as a youngster by mowing lawns, delivering newspapers and other small jobs. He excelled at tennis, winning a state championship in Minnesota when he was 16. His family later moved to Los Angeles, and Bugliosi graduated from Hollywood High School.
He attended the University of Miami on a tennis scholarship, earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He later received a law degree from UCLA, where he was president of his 1964 graduating class. He met his wife Gail Talluto in college and had a daughter, Wendy and a son, Vincent.
Linda Kasabian, the state's principal witness against Charles Manson and three women followers in the Tate-LaBiance murder case, walks to court February 24, 1971, with chief prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Wally Fong)
As a Los Angeles County assistant district attorney, he successfully prosecuted Charles Manson and several other members of his "family" for the murders of Sharon Tate and six others. He later wrote a book about the Manson trial called "Helter Skelter: The True Story of The Manson Murders" (1974), which sold more than seven million copies; more than any other true-crime book in history.
After leaving the District Attorney’s office in 1972, Bugliosi went into private practice where he represented several high profile clients while working in support of the defense and winning acquittals on behalf of his clients. However, Bugliosi was known to turn down famous client opportunities for anyone whom he believed where actually guilty of the crimes charged against them.
Bugliosi shows evidence including the ropes used at Ceilo Drive to tie Jay Sebring and Sharon Tate during murders.
Bugliosi's political career was short-lived loosing to both opponents in his 1972 and 1976 bids for Los Angeles County District Attorney. However, he was one of the most successful criminal prosecutors ever with an outstanding record of 105 convictions out of 106 felony jury trials and 21 convictions in 21 murder trials.
Bugliosi returned to the spotlight yet again releasing controversial best selling books such as "Outrage: The Five Reasons Why O.J. Simpson Got Away with Murder" (1996), "Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy (2007)" and "The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder" (2008) among others.
Mr. Bugliosi won three Edgar Allan Poe awards, the top honor for crime writers. For the remainder of his life, Bugliosi became an outspoken critic of the media and criticized lawyers and judges in major trials using his books to point out what he believed were glaring mistakes.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Ernest E. Debs (left) and District Attorney Joseph Busch Jr. (right) present Bugliosi with a plaque for his prosecution in the Manson case.
On July 25, 2008, Vincent Bugliosi went as far in his intent to highlight misconduct against the Bush Administration that he testified, before the Judiciary Committee, that he believed he had found enough evidence through the discovery of then unclassified documents which proved beyond all reasonable doubt, that George W. Bush and his Administration should be tried for Murder for sending the nation to war against Saddam Hussein on false pretenses with regard to his "non-existent" Weapons of Mass Destruction and "non-existent" imminent threat to the United States.
Bugliosi vehemently accused the Bush Administration of guilt for the murder over 4,000 American soldiers and over 100,000 incident Iraqi men, women and babies.
Vincent Bugliosi's highly convincing testimony during the House Judiciary Committee hearings on the constitutional limits of executive power.
Bugliosi passionately argued that Bush intentionally misled Congress and the American people about the evidence he claimed mandated going into Iraq and overthrowing Saddam Hussein after what he detailed were "16 top level officials" reported to the Bush Administration six days prior to deployment that there was no immanent thread and that these details were removed and redacted from a white paper delivered to congress and the American people. Bugliosi later claimed a complete 'white-out' in the news media about this stunning revelation and that Roger Clement's steroid trial received more attention that outright lies leading the country to war.
Bugliosi died from complications with cancer on June 6, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. He was 80 years old.