Charles Manson—notorious cult leader whose followers became killers, former Beach Boys hanger-on, and soon-to-be subject of two different motion pictures—died last November at 83. But the Daily Beast reported on Thursday that his body has been the center of a contentious legal battle ever since—one that is finally nearing its conclusion.
The site reveals that while the legal fight plays out, Manson's body is sitting in a morgue in California under a fake name. Only two people, both coroner's office employees, know where it is. One of the people fighting for the right to give last rites is Jason Freeman, who claims to be Manson's grandson by the notorious criminal's first wife. Freeman made a Facebook Live video recently where he and his son, well, seemed pretty into the whole Manson thing.
"[They] displayed a creepy Manson puppet with a swastika tattoo painted on its forehead and a toy guitar in its hands," reports the Beast. "They laughed about stuffing the doll with Manson’s ashes. 'We’re going to do things as a family with grandpa,' Freeman told his viewers. 'There’s nothing wrong with that. And if anybody says there is, no. Just lively entertainment. And finally I get to take him fishing. Finally.'"
The other two contenders are Michael Brunner, Manson's son by Mary Brunner, a former member of the Manson Family; and Michael Channels, who was Manson's friend and pen pal of three decades. Channels claims that his notorious friend wanted his ashes scattered in the desert. Channels was also, understandably, creeped out by Freeman's video.
"They have a puppet that looks like Charlie that they’re going to put his ashes in. What is it, do they want to make Chucky Part 4 and sell him off?" Channels asked the Daily Beast. "That’s what [Manson] didn’t want. That’s the only thing I’m trying to stop."
Attorneys for all three men made their cases in court on Wednesday, and a decision is expected soon.