Jump to content
Washington Football Team Logo
Extremeskins

NYT : Deal May Free ‘West Memphis Three’


Unforgiven

Recommended Posts

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/20/us/20arkansas.html

http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/08/19/arkansas.child.killings/index.html?hpt=hp_t1

"The deal being discussed would not technically result in a full exoneration; some of the convictions would stand, though the men would not admit guilt. Should Mr. Echols be freed, it would be the highest profile release of a death row inmate in recent memory. "

It looks like they may be freed today.

I'm shocked, that came out of nowhere. Having followed the case since the Paradise Lost documentary came out nearly 15 years ago, it's amazing to see this finally happen.

Edit : Including CNN link because now the NYT piece is asking for login. (it didn't before)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ive seen both movies, and read the books.

It's a crazy story. And sad that these 3 have been in prison. A complete miscarriage of justice.

And fwiw, it's one of the turning points in my conversion from being pro death penalty to anti death penalty.

A needle is forever. At least in this case, it was caught before they were put to death.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ive seen both movies, and read the books.

It's a crazy story. And sad that these 3 have been in prison. A complete miscarriage of justice.

And fwiw, it's one of the turning points in my conversion from being pro death penalty to anti death penalty.

A needle is forever. At least in this case, it was caught before they were put to death.

Ditto. I don't think I can support a punishment as final as the death penalty anymore until our joke of a legal/justice system is reformed. I won't hold my breath waiting.

What amazes me, even though I don't know why it should, is that in many cases the prosecutors, Governors, etc. will fight DNA testing even though it might be exculpatory. After all, wouldn't they want to know if the person they've thrown in jail to rot or plan to execute is innocent? Naahhhh, what good would that do anybody? :(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not to mention, if they ARE innocent, the bad guy's still free.

One of the kids step dad is the murderer. John Mark Byers. Tons of evidence. He gave a knife to the producers of the documentary as a gift, and they discovered it had blood on it. Matching one of the victims. There were bite marks on one of the victims, and AFTER the murders, Byers had ALL of his teeth pulled. Claiming once for medical reasons, then they were knocked out in a fight, then medicine made them rot.

The guy did it.

I dont know if he will go to trial for it though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember watching the second documentary and thinking the same thing about John Mark Byers, but starting a couple years ago he's been doing interviews saying he believes they are innocent and petitioning for their release.

One of the other stepfathers Terry Hobbs, in recent years has become a focus of a lot of people. There is a lot of circumstantial evidence that makes him look very suspicious, things like wild variations in his statement to police about his whereabouts and where he helped search for the missing kids, neighbors saying they saw him shouting at the kids just before they were last seen (when he claims he hadn't seem them since early in the morning). He has a violent history and his ex-wife (one of the mothers of the children) implied that she thinks he may have done it, she won't say it directly because it's a pretty terrible idea to think you married the person who murdered and mutilated your son.

In all honesty I have no clue who did it, but from everything I've seen it seems almost impossible that the three people sitting in prison were the ones.

Edit: I should also point out there is DNA evidence tying Terry Hobbs to the murder scene. It was a hair that was found in the knot of a shoestring that was used to tie up the kids. Obviously it could have been carried there since he lived with one of the kids, but the fact his DNA was the only one matched and it was found inside the knot is curious.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Justice delayed but finally delivered.

Kilmer and I disagree on almost everything else, but we are on the same page on this one. If anyone followed this story and didn't at least pause to reconsider, for one tiny moment, their support for the death penalty, then they have proved that they are utterly impervious to ever reconsidering their position on anything.

---------- Post added August-19th-2011 at 10:16 AM ----------

Wait. So they have to change their plea to guilty? But then they get released and have to acknowledge that the state has evidence that could convict them? WTF is that all about?

It is called prosecutors being complete dicks. Happens a lot in these cases.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Justice delayed but finally delivered.

Kilmer and I disagree on almost everything else, but we are on the same page on this one. If anyone followed this story and didn't at least pause to reconsider, for one tiny moment, their support for the death penalty, then they have proved that they are utterly impervious to ever reconsidering their position on anything.

---------- Post added August-19th-2011 at 10:16 AM ----------

It is called prosecutors being complete dicks. Happens a lot in these cases.

pinko commie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"the West Memphis Three, agreed to a legal maneuver that lets them maintain their innocence while acknowledging prosecutors have enough evidence against them."

The way I look at this, the prosecution was very unsure about retrying them again and those 3 were unsure about being exonerated despite there being no single piece of evidence to put them there.

In the end they get to walk free and the prosecutors don't have to admit wrong-doing, so they both win in a sense.

---------- Post added August-19th-2011 at 01:23 PM ----------

If the prosecutors honestly had the evidence and believed them guilty, why would you let someone go who mutilated (and the bodies were very mutilated) and murdered 3 little children?

I don't blame the three either for not wanting to risk a trial again when they could walk out of jail today and be done with it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can certainly understand some trepidation on the part of the 3 regarding going through another trial and wanting to just be done with it and go free after 18 years (especially considering that another trial would have them sitting in prison for a long time while it went through the whole process). However, it seems obvious that the prosecution and the state realize they would very very likely lose another trial. It just irks me that after all of the prosecutor and judge BS, the police ****ups and outright manipulation or coercion, that these three guys will be getting out of prison after 18 years with a "here is the door, hope you enjoyed your stay. later" and will have no recourse against the state. Ugh.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If anyone watched the press conference, apparently Jason Baldwin had no intent of taking the plea deal and planned on fighting till the end. The thing is he realized that if something went wrong his friend (Damien Echols) would go back to death row, and he felt like he didn't want to have the option to save his friend and pass it by for his own benefit. They were very adamant in their press conference that this deal in no way was any admission of guilt. In fact they intend to still pursue the case and plan to eventually have it overturned, just with taking the deal today they can do it from outside of prison.

---------- Post added August-19th-2011 at 04:34 PM ----------

Here is the press conference from today.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...