The Manson trial began on 15 June 1970. Lasting for nine and a half months, it was the longest ever American murder trial, with a transcript running to over eight million words. The jury of seven men and five women were sequestered - that is kept in a hotel supervised by bailiffs, for the entire trial - 225 days longer than any other jury before.
There were vast amounts of evidence and information to collect, and a mass of witnesses to find. It also took an age to build a defense team, as Manson wanted to represent himself (his request was refused) and rejected many of the attorneys appointed for him.