WITCHCRAFT OR WITCH HUNT?
"We were the obvious choice because we stood out from everybody else" -Damien Echols
A horrific triple child murder leads to an indictment and trial of three nonconformist boys based on questionable evidence.
This has been a case I've been fascinated with for years. Between the controversial trials that went on surrounding the case and the murders of the three young boys its been a case that has kept me awake at night. I've watched pretty much all the films and documentaries that tell the tale of this insanely gruesome and disturbing case, read through countless articles.. and it still breaks my heart every time this case comes up, not only for the boys that were mutilated and murdered, but also for the West Memphis Three who were convicted as teenagers in 1994 (Damien Echols was sentenced to death, Jessie Misskelley, Jr. to life imprisonment plus two 20-year sentences, and Jason Baldwin to life imprisonment) and later all three exonerated. (If you have the time, look into this case. Read Damien Echols work, he is a great author.. also go ahead down the rabbit hole because there is SO much stuff online regarding this).
The trial that took place exhibits exactly how flawed the American justice system is. Between tampered evidence, corruption, false testimonies, and mass hysteria involving media spiraling out of control labeling the murders as "satanic" and labeling the west Memphis Three as Satantic murderers despite the lack of physical evidence against them, basing the medias perception on the three based only on what was being shared to the public while leaving out key evidence that was vital to the case. This has been a case that is very near and dear to my heart. It is a case that I have become very passionate about through the years as I have a son that is the same age as the boys murdered and it kills me knowing there was no justice served, only an ongoing blame game just to prove the legal systems "competency" and "solve" the case. The West Memphis Three spent close to two decades in prison for crimes, in my opinion, they did not commit, and justice has still not been served all these years later.
This documentary was difficult to watch, and I do think its worth it to mention that out of all the docs and films ive seen about this.. this one was the most gut wrenching, as it shows actual footage, including the bodies of the boys within the first five minutes so viewer discretion is absolutely advised. It also had a lot of footage and audio from the WM3, and also the parents of the boys who were murdered as well. Although heartbreaking, this was a great documentary.
Movies/Books I suggest you watch/read if this case intrigued you:
-West Of Memphis
-Life After Death
Remember their names: Steve Branch, Michael Moore and Christopher Byers