Facebook Adding "Dislike" Button
Unusual Stuff

The West Memphis 3 Are Free

Posted 8/20/2011 10:38 am by

It took nearly two decades, but the West Memphis 3 are finally free.

Three teenagers – outsiders in their own community – were convicted of a heinous crime, the brutalization and  murder of a trio of 8-year-old boys in West Memphis, Arkansas in 1993. Damien Echols, Jessie Misskelley and Jason Baldwin spent 18 years in prison with Echols on death row. On Friday, the three men, no longer teenagers, were freed after pleading guilty in an Alford plea.

The Memphis Commercial Appeal describes the Alford Plea in this way, “Each entered an Alford Plea, a legal maneuver that allows a defendant to plead guilty — even if he maintains his innocence — because it is in his best interest to do so. Although an Alford Plea allows a defendant to profess innocence, and each did in brief statements to the court, the plea carries the same legal weight as a regular guilty plea.”

For their first night out of captivity, Echols and Baldwin celebrated together with friends and family in Memphis, while Misskelly went to his father’s home. For Echols and Baldwin, after spending half of their life behind bars, it was a look at a whole different world. Echols’ lawyer Steven Braga described the scene as “kids at their first Christmas.”

Imagine the changes in technology since they were incarcerated. They handled their first iPhones and marveled at the ability to take pictures with a phone.

And documentary directors Joe Berlinger and his collaborator Bruce Sinofsky suddenly had a different ending to the third film in their Paradise Lost trilogy. Upon hearing the news a few days ago that they might be released, the film makers rushed to Arkansas to capture the moment. The duo were putting the final touches on the latest installment to prepare it for the film festival circuit. The work of Berlinger and Sinofsky, along with the activism of celebrities Eddie Vedder, Natalie Maines and Johnny Depp, have kept the case in the public eye for the past 18 years.

As someone who has kept up with this case throughout the years, it’s been an emotion-filled saga for all involved. Hopefully, the men who actually committed the crimes will one day be brought to justice.

Image

Share this post, or Subscribe:

More Stuff Worth Checking Out »

Unusual Stuff

Johnny Cash, The Tarantula In Black

Posted 2/04/2016 8:59 pm by

Let’s not kid ourselves.  Spiders are creepy.  Even cool-looking spiders are still enough to make normal people feel all squicky inside.  It takes a special kind of person to devote time to studying, classifying, and discovering new species of spiders.  However, people do it, and people find new species of spiders all the time.  See, […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Eagles Versus Drones

Posted 2/02/2016 9:21 am by

The more drones reach out to the skies, the more problems people are having with them.  Drones are straying into airports, traveling onto people’s property, and can be a huge nuisance in the wrong hands.  That’s why Dutch police are searching into ways to control drones.  There are ideas to remotely hack them, shoot them […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

“Groundhog Day” On Groundhog Day

Posted 2/01/2016 5:36 pm by

In the classic movie Groundhog Day, Bill Murray stars as a weatherman forced to relive the same day over and over and over again.  He wakes up to Sonny and Cher, gets dressed, and goes out to watch weather-predicting rodent Punxsutawney Phil determine whether or not there’s going to be six more weeks of winter.  Every […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Facebook Launching Ride Sharing Platform

Posted 1/29/2016 8:41 pm by

Ridesharing platforms are big.  Uber is the thing to do if you’re going out on the town and don’t want to have to worry about finding parking, and Lyft is right there behind them, separated by only a few stray pink mustache hairs.  Now it looks like a bigger company is going to get out […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Charlotte Rampling Calls Diversity Complaints Reverse Racism

Posted 1/22/2016 1:01 pm by

For the second year in the row, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences rolled out an Oscar list that was pretty pale in color.  No blacks were nominated for any of the major award, and of course, that means black celebrities have been complaining non-stop.  Of course, when some people speak out, others […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Mos Def Arrested In South Africa

Posted 1/20/2016 1:36 pm by

Mos Def has had a lot of careers.  He was a child actor, a rapper, transitioned into adult acting, and is known around the world for his prowess in the entertainment world. However, he’s not known for his political and personal beliefs, which are… well, unusual.  Mos Def has been arrested in South Africa for […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Goodbye St. Louis! Rams Moving Back to Los Angeles

Posted 1/13/2016 5:24 pm by

Stan Kroenke is a man with a dream, and that dream is to be the king of West Coast football.  Thanks to a clause in his contract with the Edward Jones Dome, the city of Saint Louis either had to replace the stadium, upgrade the existing stadium, or the team would be free to move. […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

David Bowie Dead At 69

Posted 1/11/2016 6:51 pm by

The Thin White Duke, Ziggy Stardust, the Space Oddity, the guy in the tight pants from Labyrinth, David Bowie has had a lot of identities over his career, morphing from rock to soul to electronica to movie star to music superstar to androgynous chameleon.  He was even the first artist to be covered in a […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Mein Kampf To Be Published In Germany

Posted 1/08/2016 10:14 am by

It’s been 70 years since the death of Adolph Hitler, and that means the copyright to a very famous book is finally expiring.  Since the death of Hitler, Bavaria’s government has used their control over Hitler’s copyright to keep Mein Kampf out of German publishing houses.  The book’s been available all along, but not from […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Hotel Burns Near The Burj Khalifa

Posted 12/31/2015 8:14 pm by

Dubai has been on a really impressive building building streak in the last few years.  It seems that every week Dubai is doing something else impressive, like building the world’s largest building.  Still, fast growth means there are some problems every so often.  It seems that every cool project has some kind of problem to […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Breaks All The Records

Posted 12/21/2015 7:45 pm by

On Thursday night last week, I and a whole lot of other people was at a movie theater to watch Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.  The last time I was this excited for a movie was when Episode I: The Phantom Menace, and despite that, I was still really excited for The Force […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Mayor And Council Brawl At Birmingham Meeting

Posted 12/15/2015 8:45 pm by

You would be surprised by just how much power local mayors have.  You’d think that an official in a town would be fairly limited, but you’d be wrong.  Mayors can be very powerful, and like all politicians, they are prone to their vices.  After all, they’re only human.  And humans can have disagreements.  The mayor […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

LeBron James Signs Lifetime Nike Deal

Posted 12/07/2015 6:22 pm by

There’s just something about LeBron James that seems to be able to capture the imagination of the public.  Maybe it’s part of the circus that surrounds him:  free agency signing specials, moving from his hometown team to a big media market, moving back to Cleveland, and so on.  Everyone seems to want to pay attention […]

Read »
Unusual Stuff

Target Crashes Into Cyber Monday

Posted 11/30/2015 4:47 pm by

Target’s gotten so popular that they have difficult staying online.  Target’s website tends to crash under high loads, if only because Target is offering such cool things at such good prices.  Even when Target is prepared to handle a big crowd, they’re not really prepared to handle the kind of crowd they draw.  Target’s website […]

Read »