TMZ reports Charles Manson near death: ‘It’s just a matter of time’

BAKERSFIELD, California — Charles Manson, the charismatic cult leader whose followers committed heinous murders that shocked the nation almost a half century ago, has been hospitalized, the Los Angeles Times and TMZ reported Wednesday.

Citing medical privacy rules, Luis Patino at California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation told CNN his office “cannot confirm or deny this information” when asked about Manson’s hospitalization.

Kern County Sheriff’s Lt. Bill Smallwood told CNN that the Los Angeles Times misconstrued his comments about Manson being hospitalized. He would not confirm whether Manson was at a medical facility.

Manson is 83.

The Times reported Manson’s condition is unclear. TMZ’s more dire report said Manson was taken to a hospital in Bakersfield, California, three days ago. According to TMZ, a source told them, “It’s not going to get any better for him” and “It’s just a matter of time.”

Manson is serving nine life terms for ordering a wave of killings in the summer of 1969.