Sunday, November 04, 2007

Victim's father wants West Memphis 3 set free
Updated: Nov 2, 2007 05:16 PM CDT

MEMPHIS,TN-"I believe I would be the last person on the face of the earth that people would expect or dream to see say free the West Memphis 3," said Mark Byers.

Of all the parents close to the West Memphis 3 case, John Mark Byers has been the most outspoken about the convictions. Now, he and his new wife, Jacki, proudly wear their Free West Memphis 3 t-shirts. He is convinced after meeting privately with defense attorneys that Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley are innocent of the 1993 murders of his stepson, Christopher and the other two 8 year old boys, Michael Moore and Stevie Branch.

"From looking at the evidence and the facts that were presented to me, I have no doubt the West Memphis 3 are innocent," said Byers.

Byers remarried after Christopher's mother, Melissa died in 1996. That was just three years after he son was killed. Byers was never arrested but he was questioned about his possible involvement in the killings. Now, learning DNA tests done by defense lawyers could place another step-father, Terry Hobbs, at the crime scene, Byers wonders why West Memphis police never questioned Hobbs in their investigation. Hobbs has denied any involvement in the crime.

"I feel very strongly that the dark cloud that has been over my head for years is going away and the sun is shining. I have known of my innocence. Never a question mark," said Byers.

Byers is writing a book about the murders, called "Untying The Knot". He says it's a real account of what happened. Also, his life is set to be spot lighted in a movie about the murders. Due out in 2008, Brad Pitt is among those being considered to portray Byers. Byers says producers told him it will be based on facts. That is one reason why he believes this is a movie with an ending that is still being written.

"I believe it will be the story of the 21st century when this crime is totally uncovered. When you know what I know," said Byers.

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