Louise’s Father and the “Manson Girl”

LOUISE: I’m having [Thanksgiving] dinner with my dad.

MADELINE: Isn’t he still in jail?

LOUISE: Yes, but his company donated some treadmills for the inmates so he swung a special trailer for dinner that they’re gonna set up for us in the parking lot. We have it for about two hours and then one of the Manson girls gets us.

In the episode “Back in the Saddle”, Louise mentioned that her father was due in court, on mysterious charges (she didn’t bother finding out what he had been arrested for). Now it’s seven months later, and Louise’s father is undertaking his sentence – for whatever it was. Madeline refers to it as “jail”, rather than “prison”, possibly suggesting a shorter, lighter sentence (although sometimes people use the word jail for both jail and prison, so that’s not certain at all).

It does sound as if Louise’s father is in a low or medium security facility, since he is permitted to spend his Thanksgiving dinner in a trailer in the parking lot with his daughter (and possibly other family members, it seems unlikely only Louise would go and see him). These trailers are a reward for good behaviour given to model prisoners, so Louise’s father is clearly well-behaved – even the donation of treadmills to the prison would not be enough on its own. Connecticut is one of only four states that allow extended visits like this (the others are California, New York, and Washington).

Louise says the trailer then goes to “one of the Manson girls”, referring to the female members of the Manson family who were convicted for their crimes. In real life, they were incarcerated in California, and in high security prisons, so this could not have really happened. (Squeaky Fromme was in a high security mental treatment facility in Texas).

Interestingly, there is a state prison in Cheshire, Connecticut called the Manson Youth Institution, for men under the age of 21. Louise can’t be referring to that either, as they are young men, not women, and they are not permitted visits such as she describes.

It is just possible that Louise’s father is being held at the federal correctional facility in Danbury, Connecticut [pictured], a medium and low security prison and satellite prison camp which has facilities for both male and female inmates – so if Louise’s dad’s trailer wasn’t going to a “Manson girl”, it could feasibly be going to a female prisoner, at least. The facility in Danbury has often featured in pop culture, including Orange is the New Black.

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