Expiring marriage license leaves Charles Manson at the altar

He has been engaged to marry since last autumn, but it appears for now that mass murderer Charles Manson will remain one of the most notorious bachelors in the California prison system.

Reuters| Last Updated: Feb 03, 2015, 10:50 AM IST

Sacramento: He has been engaged to marry since last autumn, but it appears for now that mass murderer Charles Manson will remain one of the most notorious bachelors in the California prison system.

Manson, 80, technically has until Thursday to tie the knot under a 90-day marriage license he was granted in November with bride-to-be Afton Elaine Burton, a woman more than five decades his junior.

But the two have yet to exchange vows and their deadline for doing so will pass before the next weekend visitation rolls around this Saturday and Sunday at California State Prison at Corcoran, where Manson is serving a life sentence.

State corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton said prison officials had no idea why Manson had failed to act on the marriage license. The couple would have to obtain a new marriage license to extend their engagement.

Burton, an Illinois native who is now 27, is widely reported to have moved to central California during the past decade to be closer to the convicted killer. She indicated on the marriage license that she had intended to change her name to Afton Elaine Manson once married.

California state law allows inmates to marry in prison ceremonies that are usually held in the visiting room of the institution where they are housed. But Manson would not be eligible for conjugal visits because he has been denied parole.

The charismatic one-time drifter and cult leader was convicted of conspiracy to commit the August 1969 murders of seven people, including actress Sharon Tate, who were slain at his behest by his "family" of mostly young, female followers over the course of two nights in Los Angeles.

He was also convicted in connection with two separate Manson Family murders.

Manson has been denied parole a dozen times since 1978, most recently in 2012. He has not attended a parole hearing since 1997, and his next hearing is not scheduled until 2027, Thornton said.