The SF Chronicle thinks Echols was exonerated


SF lawyer unlocked door for condemned man:

Definition of EXONERATE

1: to relieve of a responsibility, obligation, or hardship
2: to clear from accusation or blame

In one of my most recent posts about the West Memphis 3 hype machine I noted how at least one journalist has fallen for the line of crap spewed forth by the WM3 defenders. It’s not just that journalist either. Many other journalists have fallen in lock and step with the supporters never questioning the WM3 party line.

The article I linked to is an interview with attorney Dennis Riordan. He’s basically the head honcho of the Damien Echols legal team, hired by Echols’ wife Lorri Davis. One of his other clients is Barry Bonds, so that should tell you something In his interview, Riordan spews the same old crap about how the ‘DNA evidence’ implicates Terry Hobbs. It doesn’t. This is stuff we’ve all heard before, so I was going to pass on posting about this article until I read this sentence from the interview’s author.

Riordan represented Damien Echols, who spent 18 years on death row in Arkansas before he was exonerated and freed in August 2011.

I’m not certain if this is biased journalism or just lazy journalism. The West Memphis 3 were released after accepting an Alford Plea. That isn’t even close to exoneration.

Per Wikipedia

An Alford plea (also called a Kennedy plea in the state of West Virginia, an Alford guilty plea, an “I’m guilty but I didn’t do it” plea and the Alford doctrine) in United States law is a guilty plea in criminal court, where the defendant does not admit the act and asserts innocence. Under the Alford plea, the defendant admits that sufficient evidence exists with which the prosecution could likely convince a judge or jury to find the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Emphasis mine.

Like it or not chalupas, they pleaded guilty and are for the record convicted killers, especially your outcast messiah Echols.

For The Chronicle not to research this well established fact shows that most news media isn’t about the truth but what will get the most eyeballs on their stories.

13 thoughts on “The SF Chronicle thinks Echols was exonerated”

  1. LOL. Someone needs a dictionary apparently. That was also one of the dumbest articles I have ever read. My 5 year old autistic son could write better. “Where did you grow up?, If you weren’t a lawyer what would you be?”. Really?? Not quite in-depth reading. Just a bunch of nonsense words on a slow news day.


  2. I have never visited this blogsite before and never will again unless, like today, I run across it purely by accidental means. First of all, if you want to be a creditable source of information, do not quote Wikipedia. Wikipedia, by it’s own definition, states that some artilcles “contain unverified and inconsistent information.” In simpler terms, my dog could edit a wiki if he had opposable thumbs. If you insist on searching the internet for accurate information, there are numerous, reputable sites you can access. For example, the Cornell University Law School website is an excellent source of legal information. Secondly, I will not debate with you or anyone else the guilt or innocence of anyone in this case. I will say, however, that I have read all the court transcripts, news articles, statements, and every document I could access to try and discover the truth for myself. The only sure thing is know is this. Guilty or innocent, the defendents in this case did not recieve a fair trial. I would have liked to see a retrial of this case instead of the plea bargain. My third, and final, point is twofold. If I were on death row, and offered a chance to live, I would gladly concede to any plea option given to me. On the other side of the coin, if I was a prosecutor and KNEW the prisoner was guilty beyond all reasonable doubt and that procedures were followed, there is no way I would offer him or her the chance to go free.


    1. So are you saying that the Wikipedia definition is wrong?

      They weren’t “offered” anything. The defense approached the prosecution w/ the deal.

      So long, Chris. We’ll miss you.


      1. PS…people have been released from DR before. Its not like this is the 1st time its ever happened. Google Kenneth McDuff. Just one example.


      2. Thank you Angel you took the words right out of my mouth.

        I would also add that the prosecutor could have used this as an opportunity to further his political career. He’s now a Senator I believe.


      3. Regardless of who came up with the plea. The prosecutor went along with it. Now why would they do that if they knew for sure everything was done by the book and these men were guilty? That’s right, they wouldn’t.


  3. Wow, that was beyond dumb. While something of a non-sequitur, this type of news “coverage” apparently has prompted what the brilliant Shaun Wheeler captured with this photographic contrast. The picture on the left is how Damien Echols sees himself, and the photograph on the right is how he actually is (taken from his recent ballyhooed return to Memphis and not photoshopped):


    1. While I can appreciate some of the unflatering comments some of you have about Damien, let me say that I have resided in West Memphis for some 38 years and this was the most devastating event to happen here. The police department conducted a flawed investigation and this citizens of this small, southern ,conservative town wanted someone charged. They lost evidence ,failed to question the man who has now become a “person of interest” because of his lies. Having conducted such a flawed investigation the WMPD had to come up with a reason for these murders. In a southern small town that just had 3 8year old murdered brutally , what would get the prosecutors their convictions? SATAN! These guys wore black, listened to heavy metal and were on the “fringes ” of society if you will. Not a person with one eye and half sense can believe the state of Arkansas would have agreed to the Alford Plea if they thought they were really guilty! Another aspect of this plea is that if the true killer is found the WM3 can never sue the state for wrongful conviction. If that had happened it would cost the state some 60 million bucks! LEARN THE FACTS!!!!


  4. Did that kool aid taste good chris?I have seen many detracters of the WM3 but you certainly win an award.In the first place the WM3 have not been exonarated but if they could have waited until they got to court they would have been.Another thing that DNA of THe perps could have proven him guilty,the trials in 1993 and forward sent the WM3 to jail on less evidence,the icing on the cake was the jury foreman.The real reason Hobbs is being blamed was he was not questioned until 17 years after the fact,the first rule of a murder investigation is to investigate and clear the parents first.In my opinion Hoobs did it and got away with it because him and Gitchell were haveing sex with each other or Hobbs was supplying him with drugs because they were all meth heads back then.


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