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Lessons in journalism courtesy of triple child killer Damien Echols #2

‘West Memphis Three’ member joins anti-death penalty rally at UNH:

Damien Echols along with his douche goggles and douche beard with their lovely wife, The Joker.

Damien Echols along with his douche goggles and douche beard with their lovely wife, The Joker.

Ah, those picture captions just keep getting longer don’t they?

Anyway triple convicted child killer Damien Echols had his hype machine out at the University of New Hampshire recently for an anti-death penalty rally. Let’s see how the local media handled it…

Following the small rally, hundreds of students gathered in the Memorial Union Building to hear from Damien Echols, one of the infamous “West Memphis Three” wrongfully convicted of the murder of three 8-year-old boys in Arkansas in 1993.

Not even close. And they continue their dumbfuckery. Yes, I know that’s not a real word.

Echols spent 18 years and 76 days in prison, most of that time on death row, before being released in 2011 under an unusual plea deal that essentially lets him and the other two men convicted maintain their innocence while pleading guilty.

Except they weren’t and it doesn’t. Sigh. Let’s go through this again people.

The Alford Plea that allowed them to walk free states that the defendants admit that sufficient evidence exists with which the prosecution could likely convince a judge or jury to find the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Sounds like a guilty plea to me.

Echols and his wife of about 15 years, Lorri Davis, told the story of his arrest and imprisonment, of the brutal prison conditions, beatings, isolation and frustration at the injustices in the criminal justice system.

Christ, what a pair of drama queens. The so-called brutal prison conditions and beatings have never been proven and apparently he liked the isolation because it gives him an excuse to wear his sunglasses indoors at all times.

They talked of the failures on the parts of police and prosecutors to introduce all of the evidence or to admit when they were wrong.

I’ve been noticing that they’re playing it cool when it comes to mentioning the so-called DNA evidence that they think points to another man. Afraid of a lawsuit are we?

Davis said she felt compelled to help Echols after seeing an HBO documentary about his case made in 1996. Two years later she moved from New York City to Arkansas.

Which is not in the least bit crazy.

They ended up gaining the support of some big names, including actor Johnny Depp, musician Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam and famed filmmakers Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh.

Just because you’re a celebrity doesn’t mean you’re smart.

In the end, Echols had a team of about 14 lawyers on the case, in addition to investigators and forensic science experts and the Arkansas Supreme Court ruled that a new trial should be held, leading to the plea agreement which precludes Echols from ever seeking compensation from the state for his wrongful conviction.

That’s just flat out wrong. A new trial was never ordered. It was a hearing to see if the ‘DNA evidence’ would grant them a new trial. They pleaded guilty before the hearing could take place.

Echols said he completely lost faith in the justice system early on, but he never lost faith in people and shares his story in the hope of empowering others to create change.

Faith in people or suckers?

When I first read this article I was going to give them a pass because I thought it was the UNH student paper. Then I discovered that it’s Manchester’s newspaper. Wow, I guess research is a thing not done at newspapers anymore.

Amateur Professor Trench gives this article a big ol’ F. Class dismissed.

Lessons in journalism courtesy of triple child killer Damien Echols

Damien Echols douche-goggles action figure now comes with kung-fu grip douche-beard.

Damien Echols douche-goggles action figure now comes with kung-fu grip douche-beard.

Falsely Accused Man Recounts 18 Years on Death Row:

Go ahead, read the deadline again then you can let out your exasperated sigh like I did. I guess it’s time for us lowly bloggers to dole out lessons in stuff like facts and the truth.

So convicted child killer Damien Echols, he of the West Memphis 3, gave one his infamous and I imagine oh so scintillating talks at Northwest Missouri State University. I assume Harvard is next on his tour. Anyway it seems that local news journalists will just reprint any press release that a convicted killer would release. I’m not 100% positive on this but some of the things said in the article sound vaguely familiar…

One of the three men convicted in the case was Damien Echols, who was sentenced to death. At the time of the crime, he was an 18-year-old who had been in and out of jail and mental institutions.

However, in 2011, after 18 years in prison, Echols was released. DNA evidence pointed to another suspect.

Except it doesn’t.

Not only did Echols hype machine pull the wool over the eyes of local media but the ‘university’ as well.

“This is a story about adversity and it’s about ways to persevere,” said Aaron Johnson, a Geology professor at Northwest who is also chair of the university’s lecture series. “We want our students to recognize that there are very few mistakes you can make from which you can’t recover.”

Actually the only lesson you’re teaching your students by bringing Echols to the school is that crime actually does pay. You see, in case you didn’t know Damien Echols is still a convicted murderer. He was released on an Alford plea which means the records still show that he is guilty. There’s been no exoneration nor will there ever be.

Echols was not wrongly accused. He was arrested, tried, convicted and had the convictions upheld. Anyone who believes otherwise is just a tin foil hat wearing conspiracy nut.

I always feel like someone (from Salem) is watching me

Click for larger

Click for larger

The picture above is some of the traffic stats for my website. By taking a look at it you can see that someone from Salem, Massachusetts was very interested in my posts about the West Memphis 3. What a coincidence since triple convicted child killer Damien Echols lives in Salem.

While possible it’s probably unlikely that this was Echols checking my site out. It would be more likely that it would be one of his flunkies. I really hope it’s neither though. I hope it’s just a normal citizen of Salem researching on what kind of fraud and monster Echols really is.

Echols responds to animal abuse testimony

Damien Echols . (I love animals. Especially their bloody entrails.)

Damien Echols . (I love animals. Especially their bloody entrails.)

There’s a Twitter account that goes by the name of @DamienEchols93. It’s not run by the infamous child killer from West Memphis, Arkansas but by an anonymous ‘non’ who tries to get the real truth about the West Memphis 3 out by engaging their followers. Some of the chalupas think that I run that Twitter account but I don’t. Personally I don’t care what they think, but I digress.

Recently DamienEchols93 took to their account and confronted Echols himself about witness testimony that says he stomped a dog to death. Please allow me to refresh your memories.

On 10-27-92 I was at Lakeshore Trailer Park with Damien Echols when he killed a Black Great Dane. The dog was already sick and he hit the dog in the back of the head. He pulled the intestines out of the dog and started stomping the dog until blood came out of his mouth. He was going to come back later with battery acid so that he could burn the hair and skin off of the dog’s head. He had two cat skulls, a dog skull and a rat skull that I already knew about. He kept these skulls in his bedroom at Jack Echols house in Lakeshore. He was trying to make the eyeballs of the dog he killed pop out when he was stomping. Damien had a camoflouge survival knife to cut the guts out of the dog with. This statement was written by Det. Ridge at my request.

As I’m sure most of you know it’s a strongly believed theory that animal killings can be a very big precursor to serial killings or in this case thrill kills.

You can read the entire exchange over at the West Memphis Three Facts Facebook page. Spoiler alert, he denies it of course.

What I find interesting is that Mikey replied from the Twitter account of his holistic oogie-boogie magick shop and not the one he uses to dispense fortune cookie sayings. Is that even considered a real job under the terms of his parole?

Anyway apparently all the witness testimony against Echols are complete lies according to him and his cult of followers. That would mean that all the witnesses were part of an elaborate conspiracy to put him on the hook for the murders which is statistically impossible. Yet the chalupas remain faithful to their outcast profit in the face of all logic and reason. I wonder what the cross-section between chalupas and 9/11 truthers are because they’re both mentally flawed to the point of absurdity.

Terry Hobbs speaks out on the West Memphis 3

Terry Hobbs

Terry Hobbs

Terry Hobbs Breaks His Silence:

As most of you know Terry Hobbs was the step-father of Stevie Branch. Stevie was one of the three little boys who were murdered 20 years ago by the so-called West Memphis 3. For a number of years now Terry Hobbs has been the virtual bogeyman of the West Memphis 3 supporters, ever since the supposed DNA evidence has been made public.

Roughly near the 20th anniversary of the killings Hobbs spoke to WREG in Memphis to give his side of the story. I implore you to watch the video or read the article at the attached link, I could never do it enough justice. However Mr. Hobbs rightly sums up what the West Memphis 3 movement has always been about….

But Hobbs says Hicks, as well Byers, are wrapped-up in a story that’s turned into an industry, “To me, they`ve all tried to capitalize and they have turned our tragedy into a money making business .”

He says that business, and Hollywood hype, has set the real killers free, “Jason Baldwin, Damien Echols and Jessie Misskelley. I believe that with everything inside of me.”

Hobbs says he hopes the three eventually tell the truth one day and apologize, but until then Hobbs says he has to live with the story that many people believe.

A story that is false but one that the West Memphis 3 supporters cling on to in the name of their outcast profit….I mean prophet.

Thanks to Jim for the tip.

Returned From the Land of the Liars: Damien Echols the TV critic

Damien Echols . (Even in my HuffPo profile pic I'm wearing the douche goggles.)

Damien Echols . (Even in my HuffPo profile pic I’m wearing the douche goggles.)

Returned From the Land of the Dead:

Apparently they’ll let any con man or bullshit artist write for the Huffington Post. For example take our favorite outcast messiah and thrice convicted child murderer Damien Echols. Apparently someone at the HuffPo gave him the assignment of reviewing a TV show about a man who was wrongly convicted and spent 19 years on death row. Starting to sound familiar? Let’s join the review already in progress…

First, I should probably say that I’m not a big fan of prison shows. Or cop shows. Or lawyer shows. Or courtroom drama shows of any sort. I guess that’s one of the side effects of being sentenced to death for a crime I didn’t commit.

Your multiple upheld convictions by the Arkansas Supreme Court and Alford plea say otherwise.

One thing I learned is that almost everything you see on television shows is complete and absolute fiction.

Yet we’re supposed to believe that all the movies about him are 100% accurate. Hey, isn’t 48 Hours a TV show? Hmmmm.

Rectify is the story of a man who was sentenced to death for a crime he didn’t commit, and spent 19 years on death row before getting out. Much like in my own real life case, the local politicians refuse to admit he’s innocent even after DNA testing points towards someone else.

According to Google Maps it’s 130 miles from West Memphis to Little Rock. I mention that since obviously Echols considers the State Supreme Court to be ‘local politicians’. Also I guess I have to point out once again that the supposed DNA evidence does not point to ‘someone else’. I guess his handlers told them to cool it on the Terry Hobbs accusations.

The writer of the show, Ray McKinnon, was somewhat familiar with my case. His late wife, Lisa Blount was a friend of mine. She and I exchanged letters while I was on death row in Arkansas, and she even sang at a concert in Arkansas, along with Eddie Vedder, Patti Smith, and Johnny Depp, to help raise awareness about my plight.

That speaks volumes. I’m surprised Mikey isn’t a creative consultant on the show. Of course Echols has to name drop all his celebrity friends again to give himself some kind of validation.

It was odd, thinking back on how I’d been beaten, starved, and treated as something sub-human by prison guards for years.

None of which has ever been proven.

Law enforcement and politicians in the show say that despite what DNA testing shows, the lead character would not have confessed if he weren’t guilty. That greatly mirrors the sentiments I’ve heard in the outside world. The reality is that anyone can be so worn down that they’ll eventually confess to anything, no matter how strong they believe themselves to be. And it happens all the time — from people who are killed after confessing to practicing witchcraft, to people sentenced to lethal injection even though the crime scene bears no resemblance to the confession tortured out of them.

Of course had to throw a reference to the Salem Witch Trials in there because he lives in Salem in case you didn’t know. Apparently Echols like to wield symbolism like a blunt object. I wonder if his statement about confessions was a jab at Jessie Misskelley for his multiple confessions that led to their convictions. Kind of like a “you better keep your mouth shut if you know what’s good for you” kind of jab.

I’ll give Echols credit for one thing. He seems to be a pretty decent cult leader. I think he’s brainwashed himself into believing his own lies.

Echols’ B.S. in the Boston Globe

Damien Echols (See, I live in Salem because I was part of a witch hunt, get it? I'm so deep and introspective.)

Damien Echols (See, I live in Salem because I was part of a witch hunt, get it? I’m so deep and introspective.)

West Memphis 3 figure seeks solace in Salem:

This is an interview that the Boston Globe did with triple convicted child murderer Damien Echols. In it he talks about how he’s found solace living in he teenage goth girl inspired fantasy camp of Salem, Massachusetts. That’s no knock on Salem but you know that’s the real reason he’s there.

Anyway, this interview was conducted around the time that Echols’ so-called documentary West of Memphis was being screened in Salem. The article is so rife with Echols’ bullshit I just couldn’t let it slide. I’m going to be taking some select quotes from the article but please feel free to read the whole article yourself at the link above.

“It isn’t fun for me to talk over and over about the worst thing in my life,” says Echols, 38, who moved to Salem with his wife, Lorri Davis, last September, barely a year after his release from Arkansas’ Varner Supermax prison. “You don’t even get a chance to heal because you are constantly ripping wounds back open. I look forward to not talking about it.”

Nice turn of phrase there Mikey. I’m sure that your continued public speakings are not ripping the wounds open of the families of the victims. Except they’re still mourning the brutal loss of their loved ones while you play the persecution card in Salem.

“The only two places I’d want to live were Salem and New York City,” he says. “Due to its history, Salem’s like a mecca for people in any form of alternative spirituality.”

You mean Salem is a Mecca for people with the mindset of a 12-year-old goth girl. Essex County, where Salem sits is 78% Catholic and 11% Protestant. I wouldn’t exactly call that a Mecca. If things don’t work out in Salem I’m sure he’ll play the Christian persecution card again instead of the fact that he’s a child killer.

Echols, who sports tattooed arms, long dark hair, and a soft-spoken intensity, says he hopes to open a meditation center in Salem and maybe a tattoo parlor. His dark eyes are often hidden behind sunglasses he wears due to damage from light deprivation after 10 years in solitary confinement.

Meditation center and tattoo parlor, so you can train your cultists and then mark them at $200 a pop with an ‘X’? You may even out-Koresh Koresh. And your light deprivation excuse is bullshit. You want to avoid eye contact with the people who know you’re guilty and you want to try to look like a rock star while doing it. If the light deprivation thing was true we’d be able to identify all ex-cons by the fact that they wear sunglasses indoors. In reality that’s how we identify lying douchebags.

“For the first two or three years when I was in prison, I was pissed off all the time about everything. From the moment my eyes opened in the morning it was like, ‘I should not be here. These people have no right to do this to me.’ ”

Except for the fact that you were rightly convicted and those convictions were upheld by the Arkansas Supreme Court. They actually have the right.

Echols and his supporters already understood the power of a documentary. HBO’s “Paradise Lost” trilogy first focused public attention on the case. But that was not an investigative documentary. “West of Memphis” attempts to discredit much of the expert testimony in the trial and presents new witnesses and information that casts suspicion on Terry Hobbs, the stepfather of one of the murdered boys.

Except it doesn’t. It’s all based on hearsay of criminals and the supposed DNA evidence which doesn’t implicate Terry Hobbs at all. The DNA evidence could match Terry Hobbs along with 4.5 million other people who fit that particular DNA profile.

As part of their nationwide promotion of the film, Echols and Davis participated in discussions following two sold-out screenings of “West of Memphis” at the recent Salem Film Fest. The crowd was supportive, treating the couple like neighbors and friends (“You two are adorable!” said one man during their Q&A).

Notice no mention of Mike Blatty’s tribute to victim Michael Moore mentioned.

But a message posted on the festival website by a man claiming to be Todd Moore, father of victim Michael Moore, is a reminder of the past, even as admirers ask to take his picture with their cellphones. “How shameful for anyone to support this monster that brutally murdered my son and his friends,” the message says.

It wasn’t someone claiming to be Todd Moore, it was Todd Moore. He also had his letter published in the Salem News.

Echols dismisses it.

“I spent nearly two decades in a building with murderers and rapists. I’m not concerned with what someone says on the Internet,” he says.

Yeah, that’s not true at all.

Echols says he knows that exoneration for Baldwin, for Misskelley, or for himself, is unlikely.

“I’m not naïve to think it’s going to happen just because of this movie,” he says. “It’s going to be a long, hard, bitter fight.”

Echols knows he’s not going to be exonerated because he knows that he did it and he can’t play the outcast messiah if he’s not the martyr.

The exorcism of Damien Echols in Salem

Not an actual exorcism but you’ll get the joke in a minute.

Damien Echols (Why can't I fool all the people all the time?)

Damien Echols (Why can’t I fool all the people all the time?)

As you should know by now triple convicted child killer Damien Echols lives in Salem, Massachusetts because he’s a 13-year-old goth girl. A few weeks ago a screening of Echols’ ‘documentary’ West of Memphis was held and the following day Echols participated in a forum called “Truth in Documentaries”. I know, sometimes the jokes write themselves.

Before the film was screened in Salem Todd Moore, father of West Memphis 3 victim Michael Moore, wrote a letter to the Salem News voicing his displeasure with the Salem Film Fest glorifying Echols and rightly so. Mr. Moore still lives in Arkansas so I imagine attending the film or discussion would be very difficult. Enter Mike Blatty.

Mr. Blatty is a resident of Salem, Mass. and just happens to be the son of author William Peter Blatty who penned, The Exorcist. I know, a long way for that reference but stay with me. In the interest of transparency Mr. Blatty and myself have briefly exchanged e-mails in the past about our mutual opinions of Echols. Mr. Blatty attended the forum where Echols appeared and I just had to share his story

Interesting experience a short while ago at a “Truth in Documentaries” discussion at Salem Visitor Center at which Mr. Echols was one of the speakers. Also on hand was a film critic and two REAL filmmakers, so the creepy factor was about 50/50. Mr. Echols, who apparently recognized me at the back of the auditorium, took a good long look at me before the event started from his seat at the front of the theater. When I draped over the seat directly in front of me a yellow boy scout scarf in honor of little Michael Moore whom he has pleaded guilty to murdering, it was like the effect of garlic or wolfbane on a werewolf as he studiously avoided making eye contact with me for the entire conference, even when I was directing a question to him.

Things got off to an ironic start when one of the panelists (a very nice lady whose name I don’t recall) invited everyone to come up to the front rows as there were only about 30 of us in an auditorium that accommodates hundreds. I chose to stay at the rear for safety’s sake. This nice lady then said, “Don’t worry, you can come closer – none of us bites!” And then looked briefly in the direction of Echols to her left and said, “At least I don’t think so. Anyway, I don’t!” Made me wonder if she is even aware of his well-documented history of having sucked the blood of a schoolmate who had cut himself which led, in part, to his being hospitalized some time prior to his murders.

Echols, when he spoke, recited his usual memorized, robotic speech about how his jury thought he was satanic and the justice system tries to kill you and you can’t trust what you read in the press and blah blah blah. It was so clear to me that this was a canned speech he has given probably a thousand times in the last few months.

The good news is that, judging by so meager a turnout at which Echols was present as a panelist, it would appear that his 15 minutes of fame in Salem at least are nearly over.

Silly me for imagining that documentaries are supposed to be about conveying the truth about the topic under consideration!

First Mr. Blatty let me say bravo in your tribute to Michael Moore. I only wish I could have joined you as I would have loved to have seen the look on his face when it happened. It was almost like an exorcism. What I really take away from Mr. Blatty’s story is the attendance. Thirty in room that seats hundreds. Much like his appearance in Memphis Echols’ ‘celebrity’ is waning.

Echols thinks he’s a big fish because he has tons of supporters through the films and the internet and us ‘nons’ as they refer to us are just a vocal minority. That’s true. However in the grand scheme of things people outside of Echols’ ever shrinking sphere of influence have never even heard of him and if they heard or read the stories they would think he was guilty too. Echols may have the support of such celebrities like Johnny Depp and Eddie Vedder but I bet it eats at him that no matter how hard he tries he’ll never be them. Then his house of cards built on the blood of three innocent children will come crashing down around him.

You know I remember another guy with a following who wanted to have rock star type status. He even wore douchey sunglasses.

David Koresh

David Koresh

It didn’t turn out well for him either.

Thanks to Joe for the tip.

Is the Echols media facade starting to crack?

Damien Echols (How much is that child killer in the window?)

Damien Echols (How much is that child killer in the window?)

South of Heaven:

The article I linked to is a review of the movie West of Memphis by the Santa Fe (NM) Reporter. Now the Reporter is the kind of newspaper they call an alt-weekly or alternative weekly. Much in the same vein as the Village Voice. These alt-weeklies have long been a source of Damien Echols support but in this review we can see a glimmer of hope that light bulbs are starting to flicker in the minds of some reporters.

The critic, David Riedel, says in his review that it’s hard to see the other side of the argument, meaning the viewpoint that Echols is actually guilty. However he does see fault in the WM3 hype machine’s latest so-called suspect…

All the famous people who supported the three pop up, including Eddie Vedder, Natalie Maines and Peter Jackson. And though the filmmakers try to pin the killings on another person, it doesn’t quite work.

Emphasis mine.

Now if a movie critic can see this why can’t so-called investigative journalists?

Also please check out an even brighter glimmer of hope yet still falling short over at wm3truth.com.

The Echols start-up conference kerfuffle

Damien Echols . (I wonder if his start-up is marketing those blue douche goggles.)

Damien Echols . (I wonder if his start-up is marketing those blue douche goggles.)

FedEx pulls sponsorship of Memphis startup conference where Damien Echols will speak:

I’m glad I wait until these events are over before posting about them. One reason is I don’t want to give this convicted child killer any advance appearance publicity and it really turned out to be a non-story. The only reason I’m posting about it is because it’s so damn funny.

Anyway Damien Echols of the West Memphis 3 infamy was invited to a start-up conference that was held in Memphis. He was there to talk about how the world has changed since him imprisonment. Well there are three child killers walking loose now but that’s beside the point. Also why would anyone invite this clown to a start up conference? Has he developed an app that will kill children for you. Actually he did, they’re called Baldwin and Misskelley but I digress.

In the wake of the announcement of Echols’ appearance at the conference shipping giant FedEx pulled out of the conference.

A FedEx spokeswoman said the conference agenda moved “pretty significantly” away from the startup business and entrepreneurial agenda that fits the FedEx brand.

“It’s my understanding he’s going to talk about how technology changed, but that didn’t match with our understanding of it being an entrepreneurial, startup event,” said FedEx’s Shea Leordeanu.

“I think any corporation, when you’re going to be involved in an event, you want to make sure it matches your brand.”

Who wants to be known as the shipping sponsor of child killers?

So in response Echols released the following

“I am blessed to have the support of hundreds of thousands of people from around the globe, from New Zealand to Norway, many whom worked tirelessly to free me, Jason and Jesse. After close to 20 years imprisoned on death row, I have endured greater hardships than FEDEX making a rash decision without knowing very much about my case. It is more a measure FEDEX’s lack of corporate integrity and decency than it is about my struggle to clear my name. “

Ignoring all the obvious bullcrap in this statement just how many of those hundreds of thousands of people attended Echols’ talk? About this many…

You can actually hear the crickets.

You can actually hear the crickets.

I don’t know what Echols speaking fee is but it looks like pretty soon you’ll be able to book him for a plate of Waffle House hash browns.

But again whatever he’s making he’s making off the blood of the three children that were brutally murdered and mutilated at his hands.

Thanks to Shaun Wheeler for the photo.