Parole board questions Paragould murder conviction - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

Parole board questions Paragould murder conviction

Posted: Updated:
Denver Mitchell (Source: Arkansas Dept. of Correction) Denver Mitchell (Source: Arkansas Dept. of Correction)
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Worker dies after falling off I-40 bridge

    Worker dies after falling off I-40 bridge

    Saturday, August 23 2014 9:39 AM EDT2014-08-23 13:39:13 GMT
    (WMC) - Arkansas State Police say it appears a construction or repair worker has fallen off the I-40 bridge near West Memphis. The worker may be alive, and crews are working to get him or her out of the
    Arkansas State Police say a construction or repair worker fell off the Hernando DeSoto bridge on Interstate 40 near West Memphis on Friday.
  • BREAKING

    Jonesboro police chief suspended without pay

    Jonesboro police chief suspended without pay

    Friday, August 22 2014 7:39 PM EDT2014-08-22 23:39:06 GMT
    Jonesboro Police Chief Mike Yates was suspended without pay for a month by Mayor Harold Perrin for comments made about a Jonesboro news reporter.
    Jonesboro Police Chief Mike Yates was suspended without pay for a month by Mayor Harold Perrin for comments made about a Jonesboro news reporter.
  • Arkansas man catches 3 bears on game camera

    Arkansas man catches 3 bears on game camera

    Saturday, August 23 2014 12:08 AM EDT2014-08-23 04:08:20 GMT
    One man getting ready for deer and turkey season in Arkansas stumbled upon something much larger.
    One man getting ready for deer and turkey season in Arkansas stumbled upon something much larger.

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) – The Arkansas Parole Board says a man convicted of a 23-year-old murder in Paragould has "served long enough" for a crime he "possibly did not commit." Now they're asking the case be "fully investigated."

In December 1992, Denver Mitchell was convicted of first degree murder in the beating death of 74-year-old Willard Williamson.

He was sentenced to life in prison.

On Monday, April 7, the parole board unanimously recommended to Governor Mike Beebe that Mitchell be granted parole eligibility.

On their recommendation the board stated Mitchell "has served long enough for a crime he possibly did not commit."

The board went on to state "this case needs to be fully investigated, may be the wrong person is incarcerated due to evidence in the file."

According to the commutation application submitted by his attorney, Caran Curry of Little Rock, Edward Rogers confessed to the crime and Lee Ward was an eyewitness to Rogers beating Williamson.

In the document Mitchell admitted he beat Williamson "after he made a pass at me" at a camping site near the railroad trestle in Paragould. Mitchell stated he stole Williamson's truck and "drove home to Illinois."

He claims the following day Rogers and Ward, who were then teenagers, were in the area and met up with Williamson.

Mitchell stated that after Williamson made a pass at Rogers the boy beat him up.

According to the documents submitted to the parole board, Rogers, who was the son of a former police chief, "confessed to the murder."

Mitchell claims he did not kill Williamson.

The document also stated that Curry "located a recorded statement of Lee Ward witnessing Ed Rogers beating the victim."

Submitted with his application was an affidavit from the victim's daughter, Rhonda Beasley, asking that Mitchell be released from prison.

Copyright 2014 KAIT. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow

472 Craighead Co. 766
Jonesboro, AR 72401
(870) 931-8888

FCC Public File
publicfile@kait8.com
(870) 336-1816
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and KAIT. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.