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Reports: Possible plea deal in works in West Memphis murder case

by Arkansas Online | August 18, 2011 at 5:04 p.m.
Jason Baldwin, Jessie Misskelley and Damien Echols

A possible plea agreement is in the works that will likely lead to the release of the men convicted in the murders of three boys in West Memphis in 1993, according to multiple reports.

The Commercial Appeal in Memphis as well as a TV station there reported Thursday afternoon that prosecutors and defense attorneys are negotiating a deal for Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley.

Attorneys for the men in Jonesboro declined comment, citing a gag order issued in the case.

Already, the three men have been transferred from prison to Craighead County, where they are to appear in a Jonesboro courtroom Friday morning before Judge David Laser, who was to preside over an evidentiary hearing in the case later this year.

Echols, Baldwin and Misskelley were convicted of the May 1993 murders of three 8-year-old boys. Stevie Branch, Michael Moore, and Christopher Byers were found dead and hog-tied in a ditch off Interstate 40. Echols was sentenced to death while Baldwin and Misskelley were sentenced to life in prison.

Read tomorrow's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

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