Damien Echols' family speaks 18 years after conviction


(WMC-TV) - Damien Echols' mother and sister haven't said much publicly since he was arrested, but now they are putting their support behind a movie with some big name actors and they want to talk.

"'I love you' is the first thing I'm gonna say - that I've always been here and always will," said Pamela Metcalf, Damien's mother.

That's what Echols' mother said the day last year he, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley were released.

Echols' family has been silent for the most part while he was on death row for 18 years, but not anymore.

Echols' sister and mother are telling their story through a movie about the West Memphis Three called "The Devil's Knot" which is based on a book.

Colin Firth and Reese Witherspoon have been cast to star in the movie which is scheduled to begin filming this summer.

"I was only 16-years-old at the time Damien was arrested," said Michelle Echols, Damien's sister. "At that time I had no choice but to quit school. I've had to move away from my home. My children have, until now, been unable to attend public school."

Michelle Echols said it was hard for the families while Damien was on death row.

"It is something I would not wish upon my worst enemy," she said.

Michelle Echols said she has always believed in her brother's innocence as well as that of Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley.

Michelle Echols said she does not believe justice has prevailed because the West Memphis Three had to plead guilty in a deal with prosecutors to get out of prison.

She said the real killer is still out there.

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