Criminal Justice

A Year of Freedom for Tyler Edmonds


A local Mississippi newspaper describes the post-prison life of Tyler Edmonds, who was acquitted last year of killing his sister's husband. Edmonds was 13 at the time of the murder, 15 when he was tried and convicted the first time. He was sentenced to life without parole. In 2007, his conviction was tossed out by the Mississippi Supreme Court, in part due to unscientific testimony from controversial medical examiner Steven Hayne.

Edmonds was tried again last year without Hayne's objectionable testimony, and was acquitted.

One year after he heard a jury say, "Not guilty," Edmonds has made a new life for himself.

He's traveled.

He's working and training to become an emergency medical tech.

And he's moved with his dog, Bud, to his own place in Columbus.

Now, his biggest worry isn't life without parole, it's his Dec. 11 final exams at East Mississippi Community College and passing the national EMT certification…

This date last year, jury selection got under way in Oktibbeha County as Edmonds sat accused of helping his half-sister, Kristi, kill her husband.

Five days later, he heard the words that set him free.

It was almost surreal, he recalled, truly being out from under the total control of someone else.

"I really just didn't know what to do," he remembered. "Now, I have my life back.

"Now, I have direction and something to be proud of."

As the weeks and months passed, Edmonds said he began to consider his future and knew more education was important.

Now that he's completing his EMT training, he said he thinks he may undertake two years more to become a paramedic.

Via the NMissCommentor.

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  1. Good for him. Finally an uplifting Balko post!!

  2. Balko: “Yo, Fuck happy endings… Focus on prison ass raping god-dammit”

  3. Great!

    I tried posting just the above but I kept getting an error that says “your comment does not appear to be written in an English script. Please comment in English.”

    1. Reason = Racist

    2. They got their forum software from the Dallas PD.

  4. Balko with a post that doesn’t make me want to jump off a cliff?

    Early April Fools?

  5. “Now that he’s completing his EMT training, he said he thinks he may undertake two years more to become a paramedic.”

    The kid learned NOTHING from this ordeal. A few LESS years of school and he could be a highly paid medical examiner.

  6. “Dr. Hayne, who opined that he could tell from a bullet entry wound that the gun that shot the victim had two sets of hands on it.”

    No further comment.

  7. Two things here:

    1) Zog bless that man for having been screwed as only a wrongly imprisoned man can be, and wanting only to better himself and help other people when he gets out.

    2) Steven Hayne did not merit the “controversial” modifier until Balko started looking into him. Good on ya, Radley.

  8. Balko’s just setting up for a particularly egregious posting…
    “A year of freedom for Tyler Edmonds”… then

    “Swat Team Kills Baby, Steals Candy”

    1. At least they left the dog alone this time.

      1. dog killing is presumptive… can’t get at the “drugs” in the stroller until you shoot the dachsund

  9. True, Hugh, although I am eagerly awaiting the day that Steven Hayne merits the “recently deceased” modifier.

    1. I’m sure Mississippi will look for a replacement as good for them as Hayne was.

      Hayne is simple a tool for the corrput judical system of MS. Getting rid of Hayne will not solve that problem. But it’s a start.

  10. Awesome, a Balko article I actually wanted to read. This is an example of one man making a huge difference in the world towards more freedom (very specifically in this case). Mr. Balko deserves a medal. I would suggest the Nobel but it is worthless.

    I’m feeling a little verklempt

  11. Holy shit. A Balko post and my nuts don’t hurt? I could get used to this.

    Excellent news Radley. Hoping for more!

  12. I don’t know. Part of me is pissed Edmonds didn’t go on a killing spree that was directed at the prosecutors, and other actors like Hayne that led to his wrongful incarceration. But, that’s his decision, not mine, so good for him for being happy. I guess.

  13. Wouldn’t it be a kick if the a**hole prosecutor that tried Edmonds had a heart attack and the paramedic on the ambulance taking him to the hospital was none other than Tyler Edmonds himself?

  14. JW, you might wanna give BOXERS a chance.

    Bob Weber, AMEN! Wouldn’t that be a Kodak moment?

    Tyler, you go babe…from one paramedic to another!

  15. Terrific outcome for Edmonds. I would hope to be as resilient — and as apparently void of bitterness and resentment. Now, does Cheye Calvo have new dogs?

  16. I am so happy to see how many people remember what happened to Tyler one year ago. It was a momentous day filled with so many emotions. I remember talking to Tyler by phone shortly after he heard the words “Not Guilty.” We cried, we screamed and at one point, I actually had to pinch myself just to make sure this just wasn’t a dream.

    Justice for Juveniles has been by Tyler’s side since the day that boy walked into that police station. I attended the fiasco of a first trial and can honestly say, Tyler is like a son to me.

    Radley you also are a hero to me because without you and your determination, Allgood, Hayne and West would still be auctioning off children to the highest bidders. Although that practice may have slowed for now, many are still waiting when formal charges will be pressed ….if ever. I can’t help but worry how many other innocent people fell prey to their practices and how many of those will survive long enough to see the light of day.

    Tyler is doing great, he has alot of support and he has set goals for himself. He is not only the poster boy of a system gone wrong, but also the poster boy of a child who can turn his life around if given the chance.

    Thanks Radley. I hope one day to shake your hand. Please keep up the great work.

    Cari Barichello

  17. Thanks for all the congrats guys, but the party is far from over. Mr. Balko, thank you for your persistance in covering Dr. Hayne and my case. Sad thing is that apparently, Mississippi has yet to replace Dr. Hayne and further, it seems that they actually have no intentions of doing so. Last I heard, he was back to performing autopsies here. One day things here will change. I learned A LOT from my ordeal, and one of them was a pretty fluent education in “good ole boy” politics. While there are TONS of honest prosecutors and police officers out there, it only takes one to spoil the bunch. I wish that everyone could see “behind the scences” as I did in as far as how some of them act when no one is looking. Sometimes hearing them flat out lie and/or direct another person to lie INFRONT OF MY FACE (not in regards to my personal case) was more disheartening than anything. The level of audacity they possess never ceases to amaze me.
    I was once told that the best revenge is to not seek revenge at all; rather bettering YOURSELF and proving them wrong is a much, much sweeter victory than revenge or resentment could ever be. I find this to be true.

    Tyler Edmonds

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