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LA VALLEY TIMES, Dec 4-1969

Col. Tate Mum, Was Spy On Hippies


Army Intelligence Lt. Col. Paul Tate, father of slain actress Sharon Tate, was unreachable today and police reported he is not interested in talking to the press about the arrests of suspects in the case. Witnesses said the 23-year veteran of undercover assignment for the Army throughout the world was at The Factory nightclub last night. The Factory is one of the more fashionable in spots for the party and play set of the entertainment industry. Tate has been observed infiltrating the hippie movement. He grew a beard and mustache and frequented hangouts and coffee houses in search of information. He visited the offices of the Robbery-Homicide Division almost daily. Said Capt. Hugh Brown, division commander; He comes in to help almost every day. He was greatly concerned. The colonel refused to tell newsmen just how valuable the information he may have obtained was to homicide investigators in bringing the names of the suspects to the court and the Los Angeles County Grand Jury. It is believed that his following of the hippie movement for some weeks indicated he was on the right track during his individual investigation or was being briefed by LAPD detectives. His comments upon hearing of the apprehension of Charles Tex Watson and two women on five counts of murder was: This is a great load off my mind. Friends of Col. Paul Tate said that he and LAPD homicide detectives were miffed by a Los Angeles newspapers publication of the name of a female informant in the case. Police had hoped to keep both the name of Susan Denise Atkins, 19, and male informant out of the news until they testified. Meanwhile, prosecution officials are considering asking the court to impose a gag rule a series of court orders which would restrict the press in pre-trial comment in much the same way the Sirhan B. Sirhan trial publicity was controlled.