Published February 23, 2010
Johnny Depp may have fallen through a rabbit hole. To promote his movie version of "Alice in Wonderland," he's advocating the release of three men convicted of murdering three boys in a suspected satanic ritual.
Depp will appear on CBS's "48 Hours Mystery" on Sunday to call for reopening the case of the West Memphis Three -- convicted as teenagers of beating three 8-year-olds to death in 1994 -- because he believes they never got a fair trial.
Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley were sentenced to life in prison, and Damien Echols, who is on death row, have all spent 16 years behind bars. But Depp joins such supporters as Eddie Vedder, Metallica, Winona Ryder and the Dixie Chicks in arguing they were convicted because they were devotees of heavy-metal music, Stephen King novels and the occult.
Famously private Depp's agreement to appear on the "mystery" news documentary show even shocked CBS workers, with one staffer telling us last night: "Johnny Depp on '48 Hours' -- are you joking?"
But Depp, who'll also be on "The CBS Early Show" Thursday to promote "Alice," his new Disney movie produced by Tim Burton, says Echols is running out of time.
He says on "48 Hours," "I firmly believe Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley are totally innocent. It was a need for swift justice to placate the community. Damien Echols is on death row to be killed by lethal injection."