tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg April 19, 2017 10:00pm-11:01pm EDT
♪ announcer: from ours studios in new york city, this is "charlie rose." >> good evening and jeff gore phil in and for charlie rose who visited -- oa today. development,ng prime minister theresa may declare to a call in early general election on june 8. the move reflects an effort to give the prime minister marv flexibility -- more -- more flexibility. it is a saturn reversal from her previous position at that the company needed time to ensure stability. the house of commons will vote on wednesday on whether to approve the election.
joining me in new york is editor and chief of bloomberg. from washington, ed from the financial times. welcome to both of you to the latest chapter in the soap opera that is brexit. let me start with you, how surprising is this? is quite surprising. this is the best kept secret in british politics. if it had been david cameron or tony blair planning to call a snap election, it would have been leaked out. they have so many friends. it would've been hard to keep a secret. theresa may is a very different kind of character, does not , has executed a complete surprised almost everybody except for a small group of around her. it is no surprise in another sense, and that she does not have her own mandate, she became
prime minister having been a relative to remain up. she did campaign for remain. head,s in the eu with her but out of it with her heart. for -- she was therefore not seen as the true brexiters. if she now gets her own big mandate, big maturity -- big majority and increases the slim majority, she can then claim her own a authority to pursue brexit negotiations her own way. that gives her independent standings. it is not a surprise, but it was a brilliant knee cap -- brilliantly kept secret. >> there is a strong element of self interest or she will say it is on behalf of the country and the country needs to back some
version of brexit, but she is doing it with us in mind. out,ssue that she points her starting point is that she has a slim majority. the thing that is unclear is whether she ends up with a bigger majority, which is what we think will happen. assuming that does happen, that could be -- that should be good for her because it could give her more stability and be able to get things through parliament more. large groups of people means your chance of keeping them all in order are much moller because you cannot appeal to a travel loyalty. the underlying problem, where the two wars have the same approach -- forest have the same approach, it is all about the internal problems. mps arepeas -- many about being de-elected. jeff: what has happened is not what always happen. people as clever as
ed and me have got this completely wrong. jeff: if we talk about june and youopposite of what mentioned might happen, does happen, what position does that put theresa may in? john: at the moment she is in a position where she doesn't have much. she has a tiny majority. if she keeps on to her tiny majority, it will not let good. she is trying to play with time. what is happening in continental europe, the other side of the big negotiation of brexit. that french election is just not a presidential bit, you have merkel's election. that she hasperiod started the process. the next few months, nothing has been happening. she hopes to replenish her political supplies. jeff: the conservatives do have
a significant amount of supports , as you know in the polls, is there a sense that that has continued to surge? that is not clear. therapist one party in britain, the liberal democrats that once a second referendum to reverse brexit. that is what they will campaign on. tony blair, who is of course a labor prime minister, has indicated that he will probably campaign with the liberal democratic party. as john mentioned, pulls in britain, although they show a 20% -- 20 point conservative got britishhave elections wrong a lot, quite recently. not just brexit were a narrow remain fit three was indicated by the polls, but much more egregiously. the last general election in
britain in two years ago, in which labor were shown in being that connect with the conservatives. absolutely obliterated on the day. it is a very volatile picture. john mentioned france. , the far leftchon french leader who could be compared possibly to jeremy corbyn that the shambolic labour leader, jean-luc melenchon was no where three or four weeks ago. he was in the single digits. now he is in double digits out of the blue. that is in the span of three or four weeks. we have six weeks between now and the british general election , a lot can happen in this kind of volatile environment. i would not bank on the theresa may massively increasing her majority scenario. what she wants is flexibility. she wants people to say, trust me.
i am the person that will oversee the brexit thing. at this precise moment, she wants to say as little as possible other than trust me. if she starts saying things like, we will guarantee the following things with her exit, and they do not appear, then she is setting up a massive headache for herself. the opposition is so useless that she can get that mandate through now. if she gets pushed gradually intergroup -- revealing more, she will have a very hard-core pro-brexit group. saying we should not be money to the european union and we should not do these things. some point, it is likely that she will come back from brussels with what is a bad deal for britain. she will probably have to say that is the best i can get. that will not be an easy sell. part,this is the hard when we talk about the soft. it is worth mentioning, as we
stand now, we are two months away, or less from the snap election. we are now 10 months removed from brexit? john: yes, and the ramifications are still going on. those wholesome days, tourism was very secure, the referendum was likely to push forward. it has become incredibly volatile. mentioned, ed, the polls are volatile as well. if you are forecasting timewise now 10 months removed. if there is an expectation of whether this will be hard or soft exit, how long is britain looking at? ed: i think it will be two years to negotiate the actual divorce agreement. that is the article 50 she triggered in march. in terms of negotiating a substantial trade deal, with europe that includes all
aggression's about freedom of movement of peoples, whether the european court of justice has a many that could take years, beyond even the next election. in terms of john's point, that she wants to give away as little as possible in this campaign, she is refusing to debate jeremy corbyn. there will not be any tv debates. she might be forced to change that position, but she does not want to open her mouth. reallycorbyn is held in low regard and she is held in reasonably high regard and the best thing to do is avoid him. jeff: do you think that could happen? she might i think well get away from debates. imagine she gets dragged into a debate, she has to guarantee things to her back rent is about she would not say. there is a narrative and british policy, particularly among the
that says,press basically, no deal in brexit is better than a bad deal. that sounds very convincing, but when you stop picking up that that means britain would jump back to operating with wto rules. the island of islands is divided into your it if we end up with a barrier between one happen the other, which is also the frontier between brain and the european union, that will be very difficult if there is no free trading deal to cover how people get back. there is complication upon complication in this. stronger anyback better position to be able to do these things. with everything else, it is a risk. jeff: i appreciate both of your times. thank you. ♪
♪ we turn now to a battle being waged in arkansas over the death penalty. rejectedsupreme court a request by the arkansas attorney general to carry out the first of eight planned executions by the end of the month. the decision comes after a week of last-minute appeals, state and federal appeals over lethal injection drugs and continued since about the ethics of capital punishment. hundreds of anti-debt multi advocates converged on little
rock on friday to call on the governor to hold the plan executions. he scheduled the back-to-back executions before the states the lethal election -- lethal injection drug expires. goals, aamien at member of the so-called west memphis three. he spent 18 years in prison on death row after being wrongly convicted of murder. he was released in 2011. lori davis, she began a correspondence with him while he was in prison and david boyce. firmnding partner of a law and has been a lot of time on this issue, i am pleased to welcome all of them to this table. start withant to you. you mentioned 18 years on death row. the men all of currently scheduled for execution right now. when this all came up, you went to little rock last week. when this all cropped back up
again, what were your thoughts? >> i was horrified. we got a call from the woman that runs the arkansas coalition, she told laurie they were having a doubt during to protest the executions. the asked if i would come there and my first thought was, no. it was a nightmare for me. i think it was probably -- i was thinking it would probably be the second most romantic thing to happen in my life to have to return back there to where people try to kill me. second after actually being sent to death row. the more i thought about it, i could not sleep at night because i was thinking, i cannot just sit here and not raising hand and not try to do it anything while they are killing these guys. after i made the decision i would go back and forth. i would say, i have got to do this, i will regret it if i do not do this. when i would go to bed that night, i would wake up having panic attacks and feel like i
was having a heart attack and being unable to breathe. i would tell lori i could not do it. i would go back-and-forth all the way up until the last minute. i knew this was something i had to do. it was still trying and horrific. jeff: because this was the real -- first real, substantial visit were you had to talk to folks and maybe see some of the folks that you had not seen in so long? the thing that kept going through my mind was, these people try to murder me for something i did not do. these people knew i did not do this. after dna testing came out, i still sat on death row for two years because they wanted to not have to admit the mistake. place,ng back into this where these people were more than willing to murder me, and not lose a night's sleep over it. i kept thinking over and over, what if they do something else? what if they tried to send me back? that is what i was wrestling
with, in an intent to return to the state. jeff: i want to talk about your back story and what happened to you starting in the early 90's -- 1990's. i want to talk about what is happening right now and what you were taught -- there to talk about on friday. don davis is the one who scheduled the subject of discussion right now. you knew don davis very well, tell me about him. damien: i knew don for the entire time that i was in prison, he got there before i did. i knew him for 18 years. in prison you do not really develop friendships the way you do and outside world. the best thing you can hope for is to establish an understanding with someone that no matter what happens, i will watch your back and you will watch mind. we will look out for each other. don davis was that person for me. there were times in there that i did not think i was going to survive in prison.
i would not sit here now if it were not for him looking out for me. people, for people who are pro-death penalty, these are stories they read in the newspapers. for me, these are flesh and blood people i've lived with from is 20 years. mention that don davis admits his guilt. he says it was a terrible thing he did, i think he said even if they would have executed him the day after, he would've felt like it was a just executed in. he told the woman in the process of a home invasion. is family of the victim upset right now. they want this to happen. --y are frustrated i further they are frustrated by further delays. iff: i would say i -- damien: would say i understand your pain. i want to downplay any trauma you are going through. i understand that desire for vengeance. keep in mind i had people try to murder me. i would like to see the people
who did that to me held accountable. i would like to see them be held responsible for what they did to me. at the same time, i do not believe that death is ever the answer to anything. i think you also have to keep in mind that, the system is run by human beings. human beings make mistakes. when you cast a net this wide and start executing this many people for the conveyor belt of death, you will catch innocent people in that. innocent people will die with the guilty ones. i don't think executing bit innocence will ever ease anyone's pain. i want to talk to about the death penalty. a number of executions have been down. to do this now or wants to do this now because the stock of the drug that the use is going to run out. first of all, why is that running out? why is the governor doing it at this time? david: i think one of the
reasons the drug is running out is that fewer companies want to be participating in the death process. there are two important problems with the death to ot. one is whether this state, the people or society ought to be putting anybody to death. as this clearly illustrates, the death penalty is applied to a lot of innocent people. there is nothing that you can donk of, that society can that is more troubling in consciously putting to death somebody and having that person be innocent. that fallibility of our criminal justice system, and the discrimination that poor people and people of color,
disadvantage people face in our criminal justice system is something that ought to give everybody pause about the death penalty. the: can i ask you about drug in question that we are talking about that the governor says they will run out of. david mentions these drug companies do not want to be in this business. what is it intended for? itself is to calm people down so that they are in a relaxed state. prohibit an extremely painful situation when someone has the needle put into their arm. in many cases, it has caused a great deal of pain on these botched executions when men are lying on the table gasping for breath. this death ist one of the most painful deaths because they feel like they are
burning up from the inside. literally burning and this drug is -- does not prohibit that pain. a big problem also because, in arkansas's case, they have cloaked their procedure. the general public has no knowledge of how this drug is being administered. ofcan be just the department correction employee who is doing it. in many cases it is not even a , because medical doctors, the same as the drug companies are not interested in killing people. it is a big problem because people do not know how to administer it. it is not doing what people think it is supposed to do, prohibiting the pain. it is a problem. these drugs were never meant to be used to kill people. these are not what these drugs were designed for her there were designed to help people with ailments.
the state tries to convey the things to the general public and it is -- that is like putting an animal to sleep. there are cases where they have had to give men they were executing up to 15 doses of this medicine to knock them out and it still took them over two hours today. they laid on the table gasping, coughing and twitching for two hours after receiving 15 doses. this talk about more where case stands and where other death penalty cases stand around the country. each case is a little bit different. some of the cases in arkansas are a little different. some people are claiming innocence. some people are claiming mental awareness that makes it inappropriate to put them to death. opposedthem are simply
to the death penalty under any circumstances. each case is different. oft you see is a series legal channels to the death penalty. some of them proceed on the argument that any imposition of the death penalty, is cruel and filing of ofhment, the constitution. some of them proceed on the basis that from a legislative , legislators should not make the decision to put people to death. on the other hand, there are a number of people who can oppose the death penalty right now who have a that, if you perfect system, there are crimes that deserve the debt and multi. the problem is, we do not have a perfect system. what we do is convict innocent people. we do not have an all seeing judge who can understand what the truth is. we have imperfect judges and him
perfect juries and him perfect lawyers. laudable -- the vulnerable, the disadvantage, the poor, the discriminated against, they get the worst lawyers, they have the greatest suspicions, statistics show they are the most like he people to get put to death. problem independent of what your views are about capital punishment, in theory. companies andrug the medical professionals do not want to be involved in this, regardless of the moral debate companies andrug the medical professionals do not want to be involved in this, it makes the states job increasingly more difficult, which leads you to wonder why they are continuing to pursue it
and how often it is being pursued right now. david: it is not being pursued nearly as much now as it has been in the past. in part for those reason and in parts about the reasons i was saying before. about doubts and the morality and the fairness of the death penalty. there are a number of people on death row right now. as a society, keeping them dare -- keeping them there, in this kind of limbo is not the right thing to do. we have to make decisions as a society as to what kind of society we will be. part of that is facing up to the reality. if the theoretical desire of death penalty would be a perfect system, we would have, we probably cannot have. under those circumstances i think people would have to re-examine how many innocent people are we prepared to put to death in order to get vengeance
on certain guilty ones? tof: damien, take me back west memphis, arkansas in 1993. there was a grisly murder of three young boys, eight years old, best of friends. what happened, how did the authorities come to turn their attention to you and what happened next? in 1993, which was the year that i was arrested, i lived in this very small town called westminster is, arkansas. it was extremely conservative, fundamentalist, hard-core christian. i really did not fit in in this neighborhood. they considered me suspicious because of the way i look. that was a lot of what they used against me at the time of the trial. i listen to heavy metal music and i had books by steven kean and i dressed in black, therefore these beings in my
mind proved i was a satanist. in their mind approved it would've taken a satanist to commit these crimes. i went to death row for years. in 1993 they could not do the same sort of dna testing. technology has come a long way. when they finally could do the dna testing, a fine that not only did it not match me or the other two men they convicted, it matched one of the big as family members. we had three eyewitnesses come forth that said they saw this same person with all three of the victims at the time they were murdered. these people were never even talked to by the police at the time of the murders, even though they lived in close proximity to the victims. no one asked them if they saw anything. essence, what happened was, the police picked up a mentally handle cap -- handicapped child. he was 17 years old, but he operated on the intellectual
level of an 8-10 your old. over a time of 14 hours a tortured a confession out of him. they could not get details of the crime scene right because he was not there. that did not matter. the only thing that mattered was that fact they got him to say yes and he implicated the other two men. lightfter the dna came to and the new eyewitnesses came forth, people in society had this idea that because of all the shows they watch on tv, you had dna so it is over, the person will go home. that is not necessarily true. that is only 50% of the battle. you can have all the evidence in the world and they will still kill you and sweep it under the rug unless the outside world was paying attention. the other 50% of the battle is getting people to notice what is going on. you believe they basically thought of you as the art kid in listen, andaid,
were looking for something for a reason to do something like this to you? damien: damien: one of the police, as soon as they found the body, it was in a very wooded area submerged in water. one of the police later said that he said as soon as they found the bodies, it looks like damien echols finally did it. jeff: because you listened to metallica, did not act like everybody else in town. damien: i read stephen king novels. ever since i was really young, i really loved western issa terraces him, ceremonial magic. anything that is not fundamentally christian is automatically satanic to them. it put a bull's-eye on my back. jeff: they said these were called -- cult killings. damien: it was during the time in the late 1980's and early 1990's where you have this thing
going on that is now called satanic panic. you had people all over this country sitting in prison because you had huge shows like geraldo rivera and oprah winfrey that were doing shows on this topic, which we now know did not even exist. they were saying as many as hundreds of thousands of human sacrifices were taking place across the country every year. they had no evidence to support this. no bodies were ever found to support this, but it was still accepted as gospel. not only in arkansas at that time but throughout the country. jeff: tell me more about your time in prison. i know it damaged your eyesight badly which is why you are wearing the shades. where did you spend your time? you began writing a book at some point. this affected you in different ways. talk about that a little bit. damien: it affects you on a bunch of levels. i was in prison for almost 20 years. the last eight years was in solitary confinement 14 hours a
day. i did not see sunlight for almost a decade which is what started destroying my vision. i had a list of health problems when i got out because there's almost no medical care, no dental care. they will not spend time and money and energy taking care of someone they plan on killing. whenever i got out i had a long , road just trying to get my health back to normal. the thing that i think helped me survive, that kept me from losing my sanity, you have to build a life for yourself. as hard as that is, inside those walls, you have to find something to focus on other than the prison. or you will go insane. does things were meditation, energy work, and lorri. i had a zen master that would come back and forth from japan to the prison. i received ordination in the tradition of japanese buddhism. that's the same tradition they
used to train the samurai in ancient japan. by the time i got out, i was doing eight hours of meditation a day. as crazy as it sounds, i wouldn't even think about the walls around me. i was thinking about the books we were reading together or the conversations we were having when we were allowed to see each other once a week. or the 15 minute phone call we had that morning. it created a world i was able to live in that gave me enough of a buffer zone from the prison. it did not completely and absolutely break me inside the way it would have others. and it came close, many times, to absolutely destroying me. even when i got out, people think that you going to be happy and excited you are out of risen. you are on a certain level. but you are also completely crippled. when i walked out of prison after almost 20 years, the last time i had seen a computer was 1986. and it was a glorified typewriter for rich people. it wasn't connected to the internet. that sort of thing.
i went from almost a decade of solitary confinement to the streets of manhattan literally overnight. i walked out into a world where everyone uses computers, everyone uses atm machines and debit card readers. things that i had no idea how to use. for me, it was almost like being an alien dropped off in a completely new world and expected to find my way without any instruction, any help, anything. it devastated me to the point that i needed someone with me 24 hours a day, seven days a week. almost like i was an invalid. i can barely remember my first year out of prison because i was so psychologically devastated. it destroyed something in me. in prison, i was a voracious reader. i would read five books a week. i could no longer read. i would try to read the same page over and over and could not retain what i was reading when i got to the bottom of the page. i could not watch movies or television. i would introduce myself to the
same person two or three times because i could not remember having met them before even if i had dinner with them the night previously. it destroyed me. i am only starting to become even remotely normal. remotely feeling like myself again in the last year. jeff: it can be easy for you to -- it cannot be easy for you to hear him say things like that. lorri: it's not. i mean, it was devastating. when he got out, i did not know what i was doing. there is no handbook on how to help someone who has severe ptsd. i really didn't know what i was doing and i fell like i failed him so many times. we were traveling for the first two years constantly because he had a book. we had a documentary we felt compelled to get the story out. that is one of the things i have
come to realize. there are so many people in this world dealing with extreme trauma. those of us that don't know how to deal with it, it's just -- it is extraordinarily difficult. it is sad to see someone suffering. someone you love. you can't reach them. we started going to therapy. it has helped immensely. he would have never been able to go down to arkansas any sooner than this. the timing of the situation, if you can call it good timing. damien finally got to the point that he had the strength to do this. jeff: it is one thing talking about this issue on a macro level and dealing with some of the bigger stories. but there is also the personal part of this.
damien: in the issue is that every single person on death row is an individual. every single person on death row has a story. a human story. some of them, we know, are innocent. we don't know which ones. we cannot prove usually which ones. dna is helping. great. works, it's all dna really does is show us how many mistakes we have made in the past. and everybody there has some story to tell. one of the problems is we too often look at the death penalty in an abstract way. we don't look at it as something that applies to an individual. we think about vengeance. we think about justice. we think about a life for a life. sometimes we make ourselves not think about it. if what we are doing is doing it to an individual. we are doing it to a person.
with parents, children, a spouse. a life, hopes and dreams. just like us. some of them are just like us because they are innocent just like us. jeff: the state's argument and governor hutchinson's argument is that we have an obligation to the family. in particular, the most immediate case. he acknowledged his guilt. he was convicted. the family wants their vengeance. so we have to do it for them. david: i think governor hutchinson is in a very difficult place. he is the governor. he has the laws to enforce. he has somebody that is an admitted murderer that under the law, is to be sentenced to death. the problem is not what governor hutchinson is doing. the problem is the law.
those choices are particularly complicated when you deal with someone you know is guilty. on the other hand, there are extenuating circumstances. the difference between the person that committed the crime and the person that exist right now. the person in that position is in a complicated and difficult decision. i don't criticize him. i sympathize with what he's going through. jeff: you said the state of arkansas is salivating. in your words. to carry out the executions. did you get the sense when you went back there that the government was surprised at the reaction that this god?
not just around the country but around the world? damien: they are mildly surprised. i think it made them even more determined, it seems like. i barely got any sleep last night because i was up until midnight watching the back-and-forth battle of whether they were going to execute don davis are not. they may be surprised and a little uncomfortable with the scrutiny they are getting. but it hasn't lessened their bloodlust. they are pushing as hard as they can to see people killed. keep in mind that we are talking about -- this is a story that has a lot of nuance to it. talking about an individual as opposed to an abstract concept. he has been in prison for 25 years. this is not the same man who was sentenced for these crimes. he wrote a letter where he said the state can't kill the person that committed those crimes because i executed the person that committed those crimes myself.
we were talking together and this man breaks down crying. it was like watching somebody's soul crack open. he had been telling me every single day that it had eaten him alive. it's all he can think about. this was a man that new remorse to his soul. not remorse because he felt bad about what was happening to him. but he felt sincere, soul eating remorse for what he had done and could never take back. once again, it is not an abstract concept. these are real people they are putting to death. ♪
jeff: you came to know a number of celebrities to the course of your case who were instrumental in keeping your case in the spotlight. you stay in touch with them. johnny depp, eddie vedder, people that might be familiar with a lot of them. i wonder, as you try to keep this in the spotlight, i wonder what you have learned as you spent time with them. peter jackson as well. you made the movie with the filmmaker. what you learned from them and what lessons you learned trying to navigate keeping the case in the public eye?
i damien: i guess what i've learned, as abstract as the sound, how to be a better person. people that had nothing to gain by supporting me. talking about people who already, by most standards, are wealthy. people that were famous and stretching their neck out for me with nothing to gain. it made me see the value in doing that for other people. if it wasn't for johnny depp, i honestly do not think i would've been able to go back to arkansas. i was too terrified and horrified. they are getting ready to kill these guys in arkansas, guys that i've known for 20 years. some are innocent. others are mentally ill. would you please go down there with me? he wrote back immediately and
said, absolutely. you throw the ball and i will catch it. he went out there and he spoke. he asked the government of arkansas, please don't kill these people. that was my stance, too. what i went down to say to the government is that we completely lost faith in you for everything. we don't even expect basic necessities like health care. the only thing i'm asking you is please stop killing people. johnny was willing to stand with me while i did that. i don't think i could have done it otherwise. also, keep in mind that a lot of people do to television shows and movies, things of that nature, they think dna testing is a given. if there is dna, it will be tested. that is not true. in my case, we had to pay every single penny to get this dna testing done. we had to pay over $200,000 because the state would cover
none of it. they were going to kill me and never even test this dna. we didn't have that kind of money. i was poor white trash from a trailer park. if it wasn't for people like johnny, eddie, peter jackson, natalie maines, henry rollins, we would not have been able to get this kind of testing money. most people do not have that kind of money. they may very well die even though there is dna testing. jeff: and they also likely don't understand the law. was there a moment where you were going to be executed because your lawyers didn't realize they had to file a stay? damien: my original execution date was may 5 of 1994. i got closer to that because i had really an effective public -- really ineffective public defenders who didn't realize they had to file a motion and ask for a stay of my execution.
they thought it happened automatically. i got closer than i should have because i had completely ineffective attorneys. david: what you need is anyone of 50,000 lawyers that somebody with money -- it's not just the lawyers. it's having the money to do the testing. do the investigation. find the witnesses. if someone is means is in that position, if they have the money. and they have the money to hire a good lawyer. but somebody who's poor, a group that is discriminated against. not only are they the usual suspects, but they don't have
the resources to defend themselves. that is one of the problems with capital punishment. it is applied in such a discriminatory way. if you are poor, african-american, you are much more likely to be put to death then if you are a rich white person. even if you do exactly the same thing. and that is something that ought to trouble even people who theoretically favor the death penalty. it means what we are doing is putting innocent people to death. based on wealth and status and race, that determines who gets the death penalty. jeff: damien, you took something called the alford plea. can you tell me exactly what this means? it would sound pretty confusing to the layman. damien: i had never even heard of it.
what the alford plea means, i still haven't been exonerated. in the state of arkansas, no one on death row has ever been exonerated in the entire history of the state. they still maintain that they are infallible and have up perfect record and would never kill an innocent person. that is part of the deal. an alford plea means that i am able to maintain my innocence while at the same time accepting a guilty plea. it makes no sense whatsoever. it boggles the mind that such a thing exist. the reason is so the state can't be held accountable for what they've done. but now you have a lot of airplay and recognition. we have heard more and more stories across the country where more and more states are using this to keep from having to pay out huge sums of money. in the documentary, the main concern is that they have guys that spend 20 years in prison each.
the financial restitution would be $20 million each. $60 million to pay out. it was his way of not having to pay that. i can't sue the state. they can maintain they haven't put an innocent person on death row. life goes on. jeff: is the case technically still open? damien: the minute they arrested me, the case was closed. they told me when we took this plea, the prosecutor swore to us that he would be willing to look at it. he would have an open mind and open the case. so far it has proved absolutely , false. everything we have given to him, he has completely refused to look at. says he has no time to look at it. as far as he's concerned, the case is closed. jeff: the initial investigation and the arrest itself, how that was all handled, how different
are cases handled today? david: unfortunately, there are still people like damien who are suspected for reasons independent of what they've actually done. they don't have the resources to hire a good attorney. they don't have the resources to find witnesses and get dna testing. there are people going through what damien went through. that will be the case as long as we have a justice system that depends as much as it does on the adversary system. you've got to have a good lawyer. and that lawyer has to have the resources to do an investigation. these are factual, intensive cases. public defenders, dedicated, though they are -- many of them are very good lawyers but they
, don't have the resources to give the kind of defense people are entitled to. jeff: you exhausted bank accounts. you took out personal loans. lorri: it was a nightmare and i found myself in a position that i did not know what i was doing. i'm a landscape architect by training. i'm not a lawyer. i ended up with the help of the people we've been talking about. johnny. i have to say fran walsh, peter jackson's partner came on board in 2005. that woman would make a great defense attorney. she would make a great investigator. i can't even believe she was in the middle of making king kong, the film. she is researching for an sick -- forensic scientists, lawyers, and investigators. she sent me to go through trash. i was going through trash to find hair, picking up trash in memphis and driving to courthouses all over that region
to just track down who possible suspects were. i had no idea how much. we probably raised $6 million to $7 million to get damien, jason baldwin, and -- kelly out of prison. i depended on people around me to give me the information i needed and we probably went through 10 lawyers. jeff: immediately and legally, the spotlight is obviously on what happens next. david: yes. and several things are happening. for example, the arkansas supreme court gave a stay of execution to one individual case. and there will be scrutiny with respect to individual cases. in addition, you have the overall issue. does arkansas have a way of
putting people to death? actually killing people that is constitutionally acceptable? what is the consequence of using these particular drugs? are there other drugs that will be available? those kinds of questions will have to be decided at the legislative level and at the judicial level. jeff: talk about how difficult it is for you to go back. if it comes to that, would you go back again? damien: i don't feel like i have a choice. i feel like i have to. if i just sat by and did nothing while the state of arkansas put these people to death, then i would regret it for the rest of my life. it is something i would never be able to forget. not only because these are people that i knew. i know these are intellectually challenged people. i know these are mentally handicapped people. some are probably innocent. after what was done to me, i am not comfortable being governed by a government that has awarded
itself the right to kill its own citizens. something about that is just wrong. trying to kill people to show that killing is wrong makes as much sense makes is much sense as raping someone to show that raping his long. it is illogical. the reasons people put forth are completely erroneous. there is no truth to them whatsoever. that it costs more to keep someone in prison for life. or that it is a deterrent. there are no statistics at all to show that the death penalty is a deterrent. as a matter of fact, you have crime spikes after an execution occurs. there is no reason to carry out the death penalty whatsoever other than pure vengeance. jeff: damien echols, lorri davis, david boies, thank you all for being here. ♪
alisa: i'm alisa parenti, and you are watching "bloomberg technology." president trump may meet with the turkish president next month. a white house official says the administration is discussing the possibility of a face-to-face meeting between them ahead of a nato summit. mr. trump called erdogan on monday to congratulate him on his victory in the referendum on expanding presidential powers in turkey. the chicago cubs owner has withdrawn his nomination to be president trump's deputy commerce secretary. that is according to a person familiar with the matter. he has reportedly had a tough time unwinding his ownership of the baseball team to meet ethics rules. he was among trump's first batch of nominees.