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On August 19, 2011 Damien Echols, Jessie Misskelley Jr. and Jason Baldwin took a plea deal and were released from prison.

The plea was called an Alford Plea, in which the three men had to enter a guilty plea while being allowed to maintain their innocence. The original convictions for capital murder were vacated so they could immediately plead guilty to the lesser charges of 1st degree murder and were sentenced to 18 years and 78 days time served, with one sentence of 21 years suspended for the term of 120 months (10 years).

The three men say they will contiune to fight to clear their names in the crimes.

The State considers the case closed and do not have any plans to continue to look for suspects.

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