Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Danny Trejo details meeting "greasy, dirty, scrawny white boy" Charles Manson in jail

In his new memoir, the actor recalls how Manson got him high using hypnosis

Danny Trejo
Danny Trejo
Photo: Frederic J. Brown (Getty Images)

Danny Trejo just released his memoir Trejo: My Life Of Crime, Redemption, And Hollywood. It encompasses his life before fame, with the actor looking back at his teenage years. During that time he was in and out of juvenile camps, until he was ultimately imprisoned for possession of drugs, dealing, and armed robberies. In the memoir, Trejo recalls that at 17 years old, he met Charles Manson while being held at the Los Angeles County Jail in 1961. Manson was serving time for violating his probation on a check-cashing charge. This was eight years before he orchestrated the Tate-LaBianca murders.

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Trejo describes the notorious killer as a “greasy, dirty, scrawny white boy” who was “so poor, he didn’t have a belt, and instead used a piece of string to keep his pants up.” According to Trejo, Manson looked so feeble that he needed protection, so the actor felt sorry for him. Nobody had any idea at the time that this scrawny guy would be leading a murderous cult years later.

Trejo also writes that Manson told him he had hypnotic powers and could get the actor and his buddies high with just hypnosis. It worked. Manson hypnotized them, making them believe they were high on weed, and then heroin. “By the time he described it hitting my bloodstream, I felt the warmth flowing through my body. If that white boy wasn’t a career criminal, he could have been a professional hypnotist,” he writes. “Someone who went to high schools and state fairs and got people to come onstage and act like cats and stuff.” Manson would’ve definitely still been too creepy to be booked anywhere as a hypnotist but wouldn’t it be nice if he’d just become a state fair spectacle instead of sending out his “family” to kill people for him?

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