Michelle Byrom signed greeting card

Michelle Byrom signed greeting card


Michelle Byrom — who came close to being the first woman executed in Mississippi since World War II — emerged free for the first time in 16 years.

Byrom, who maintains her innocence, pleaded no contest to a charge she conspired to kill her husband, Edward Sr., in 1999, and the judge sentenced her to 20 years with four years suspended.

In the same courthouse where she was previously sent to death row, she left a free woman. She had spent 14 of her 16 years of imprisonment on death row.

"It's been a long arduous journey. The outcome is appropriate, given the history of the case," her attorney, John R. White of Iuka, said

Byrom also has been represented by Alison Steiner, capital defense counsel with the state Public Defender's Office.

She had exhausted her state and federal appeals when The Clarion-Ledger and others pointed out in March 2014 that the jury never saw the letters her son, Edward Jr., wrote, confessing to the murder. The jury also never heard from a psychologist who said Junior gave details of how he killed his father.

Before the month ended, the state Supreme Court tossed out her conviction and ordered a new trial.

Friday's sentencing ends a long road for Byrom, who came out of the courthouse in a wheelchair. The 58-year-old woman has been battling lupus and other health issues.

The card is signed, Michelle Byrom.

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