Friday, August 19, 2011

"West Memphis Three" are FREE

After 18 years, three men from Arkansas convicted of murdering three young boys on what is widely regarded as flimsy-to-nonexistant evidence have been released from prison via a plea deal following new DNA evidence that found no trace of the accused at the crime scene. The actual deal is a legal manuever that allows the men to go free and mantain their innocence while conceding that the state did have enough evidence to convict them; which kind of sucks but at least must be preferable to Death Row.

The case had been the subject of two HBO documentaries called "Paradise Lost" that brought national attention, and especially galvanized fans and musicians of the metal genre into activism (the doc was the first time Metallica had allowed their songs to be used in any movie) via the implication that the state had targeted them based on their affinity for heavy-metal music and clothing (this was 1993, during one of the "metal is secretly satanic" panics.) A third installment of the series was planned to debut at Toronto this year, and presumably now needs a new ending.

While the case had long earned the attention of famous activists, it was learned today that a great deal of the money and coordination of efforts that led to the new evidence and the new case was quietly being set up and spearheaded by "Lord of The Rings" helmer Peter Jackson and his partner Fran Walsh.


David (The Pants) said...

Nice. Although, imagine the cojones to be had if they'd not admit that the state had the evidence to convict them for the sake of pointing out a crack in the broken court system. Although I'd probably cut that deal too.

Mads said...

That's a shitty deal for the rest of the world, but it's good that they're out.

It's shitty because now noone has to revise the process whereby people are put on death row; really, the justice system almost killed someone innocent. That's not good enough.

Kyle said...

How wrong is it of me to assume that the real murderer liked country music? I mean purely a numbers game, statistically. Someone in Memphis in '93 has a high probably of being a country music fan, that's all I'm saying.

Adam said...
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James said...

This is wonderful. I know those three men can never get their lives back, but I hope the state of Arkansas is made to pay through the nose in settlements.

biomechanical923 said...


How wrong is it of me to assume that no murderer in the history of murder has ever liked Jazz?

It's just too cool. Nobody could ever want to harm even a fly whilst listening to jazz.

Fett101 said...


1. West Memphis, not Memphis. They are very different beasts.

2. Memphis is far more urban then you give credit for.

The Grey Man said...

Yeah, West Memphis is not the same as Memphis. West Memphis is in Arkansas, so... probably MORE likely to like country music than if it were in Just Plain Memphis.