More on the West Memphis 3 case!
This is a follow-up in a conversation I was having on Tumblr about the case with supersoygrrrl where she asked about the man covered in blood who was seen the night of the killings in the area where it all happened. The man was dubbed Mr. Bojangles after the restaurant he was seen in. Here are a couple of mentions of him from the case chronology:
8:50pm: Officer Regenia Meek arrives at Bojangles Restaurant to investigate a report of a bleeding black man who has made a mess in the ladies restroom.
Police Documents, 5/5/93 WMPD Station Logs, 3-11 shift, p. 5
Now the man could have easily been a victim of an attack himself, hence the bleeding and disorientation, but the police failed to tie up this loose end:
9:00pm: Dets. Allen and Ridge, still wearing the same clothes in which they handled bodies at the site where they were found, visit the nearby Bojangles restaurant. Ridge allegedly takes “blood scrapings,” which are later lost.
Police Documents, Bojangles Restaurant, 5/6/93 Report regarding incident
Now I am not saying that the police should have jumped to any conclusions, but waiting over 24hrs to return and get samples which were lost before they could be tested, and in clothes from the murder scene where they could have tracked ‘evidence’ into Bojangles was irresponsible in my opinion. Granted at the time of the initial Bojangles report, the bodies of the three boys had yet to be discovered, but I still feel like was a major ball dropped in the investigation because the police had their minds made up upon discovery of the bodies that this was occult related.
With that in mind, Damien Echols (someone whom the WMPD had been seemingly trying to pin something on for some time due to his supposed ties to satanism) became the focus of their investigation. Even without sufficient evidence to link Echols to the crimes.
supersoygrrrl mentioned the stepfather as a possible suspect, Hobbs (whose now ex-wife, mother of one of the slain boys) has also indicated could be involved. Now this is where more of my leanings go these days due to a recent 4 part article in the Jonesboro Sun dealing with the case. The most damning evidence I have seen to date, indicates that Hobbs and his friend Jacoby both were linked to the murder scene via hair samples. Samples that were dismissed by the WMPD as being transferred to the scene accidentally. I call bullshit. Here is an excerpt from the article:
In 2007 the state did DNA tests of dozens of pieces of evidence collected from the scene where the bodies were discovered. Several DNA profiles were found, but none of them matched Echols, Baldwin or Misskelley.
“Test everything,” Echols said. “Test. Test. Test. I want them to test every damn thing.”
The Arkansas Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments Sept. 30 about the new DNA evidence and allegations that Echols-Baldwin juror foreman Kent Arnold introduced inadmissible evidence into the jury room, according to court documents.
DNA collected did not match the convicted, but a hair pulled from the ligature binding Michael was a mitochondrial match for Stevie’s stepfather, Terry Hobbs, court documents state. Another hair found on a tree stump near the crime scene was a possible mitochondrial match for Hobbs’ friend, David Jacoby — the man Hobbs said he was with when the boys disappeared.
Hobbs vehemently denies killing his stepson and the boy’s friends. Attorneys, forensic experts and private investigators hired by supporters and Echols’ wife, Lorri Davis, have cast a false light on him, Hobbs said.
“These people should be ashamed of themselves,” Hobbs said. “I can’t believe what they’re willing to say and what they’re willing to do.”
Stevie’s mother, Pam Hobbs, divorced from Hobbs, has said her ex-husband could have been involved in the murders.
Pam Hobbs said she thinks her son and the other boys were murdered somewhere else and dumped into the ditch. At a 2009 court hearing Pam Hobbs approached Jason Baldwin and told him, “I hope God grants you a new trial.”
She also corresponds with Echols.
Christopher’s stepfather, John Mark Byers, said Hobbs was involved in the murders, according to sworn affidavits filed in federal court.
Hobbs said he still remains in contact with his former wife. Intense media coverage and bombardment from West Memphis Three supporters prompted his ex-wife’s most recent accusations, Hobbs said.
The two have a daughter, Amanda, and grandchildren, he said. Amanda has been talking with filmmakers and investigators working to free Echols and has been put under hypnosis, Hobbs said.
“It’s as low-down as it can be,” Hobbs said. “That Lorri Davis is behind this.”
Pressed further, Hobbs said he fears hypnosis might lead his daughter to conjure a false memory that places her and him at the crime scene with the dead boys.
“It’s kind of keeping me on the edge,” he said.
I think the fact that he is worried about the hypnosis bringing up a ‘false’ memory of his daughter and him at the scene with the three dead bodies, just doesn’t sit right with me. Unless that memory is there, I do not see how hypnosis could bring it to the surface.
All in all, the case against the WM3 is weak, and these findings just further support the need for a retrial. If I am not mistaken, Damien has been granted a new trial in Sept. for the DNA evidence. Not sure why it has taken so many years for this to happen, but lets hope that they finally start to view the facts of the case reasonably and objectively.