No pardons without more evidence in Arkansas murders

The man with the power to grant pardons in Arkansas says he doesn

The West Memphis 3: From left, Jason Baldwin, Damien Echols and Jessie Misskelley Jr.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- The man with the power to grant pardons in Arkansas says he doesn't plan to issue them in the "West Memphis Three" case unless evidence shows someone else was to blame for the murders of three Cub Scouts.

Gov. Mike Beebe also told reporters Tuesday that he doesn't consider pardons until all sentences are completed. Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley have 10 years of what amounts to unsupervised probation following their release from custody on Friday. Beebe's term will expire long before then.

The three men were convicted in the 1993 murders of three 8-year-old boys. Echols was sentenced to death. Baldwin and Misskelley were sentenced to life in prison.

They were freed Friday following an unexpected plea deal that allowed them to maintain their claims of innocence.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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