Scoop: DATELINE on NBC - Friday, August 4, 2017

In a rare, in-depth interview featured in a new "Dateline NBC" special this Friday, Charles Manson's former parole officer Roger Smith tells Dateline NBC's Keith Morrison that Manson's failed music career drove him to find new ways to control his followers. Smith explained, "Charlie was in serious danger of losing 'The Family.' He did something that, you know, politicians are masterful at, and that is he creates this horrible thing out there. That there's going to be a race war." He added, "I think it was basically used to keep them focused and maybe even divert attention from the fact that he was not doing well in terms of realizing his dream." To watch the preview, click here. The interview is part of a new, one-hour Dateline, "The Summer of Manson," which airs Friday, August 4 at 10 p.m. ET/PT, 9 p.m. CT.

Friday's special also includes an interview with Eric Carlson, a "Manson Family" confidant, who opens up for the first time on national television. According to Carlson, Manson and "his family" wanted to spring one of their friends from jail, and got the idea to kill actress Sharon Tate from watching an old movie on TV. Carlson told Morrison, " [The Manson Family] were watching some old, James Cagney movie where he's in jail for these murders and they do these COPYCAT murders to prove that he's not the one." To watch the exchange, click here. The transcripts of the interview excerpts are included below.

Morrison also spoke with key players in the case, including: Gregg Jakobson, former music producer ; Barbara Hoyt, former Manson family member; Debra Tate, victim Sharon Tate's sister, Anthony DiMaria, victim Jay Sebring's nephew; Virginia Graham, key witness for the prosecution; and Manson expert and author Jeff Guinn.

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