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Attorneys: Convicted Murderer MacDonald Has Slim Chance For Parole

Posted January 27, 2005

— A lot of things have changed in the world since former Army doctor

Jeffrey MacDonald

went to prison in 1979 for killing his pregnant wife and two young girls, but one thing has not changed -- Macdonald refuses to say he is guilty.

"He told the jury that he didn't do it. I think he lied then and he's lying now," said Jim Blackburn, the U.S. attorney who prosecuted MacDonald and put him in prison for life. "There is absolutely no question that he committed these crimes, these murders. The evidence is not close. It's really overwhelming."

MacDonald was tried and convicted at the federal courthouse in Raleigh nine years after the murders took place. He appealed his case to the U.S. Supreme Court numerous times with no success. Now, he is asking for parole.

Blackburn still remembers details like the Valentine's Day Card in the apartment from MacDonald's oldest daughter.

"[It] said 'To the greatest daddy in the world.'" It was signed, 'Love, Kimmy,' his daughter, Kimberly," he said.

MacDonald received the card three days before the murders.

"He was given the right to take anything with him from that apartment that he wished anything. He left the Valentine card from his daughter there. That's all you have to know about Jeffrey MacDonald," Blackburn said.

Attorney Wade Smith knows a very different MacDonald. However, he admits the chances of his client being paroled at this time are slim.

"It's appropriate for this case to be examined to see if it's right for parole. It makes sense. It may be it isn't, but I don't blame him for hoping that it is at all," Smith said.

MacDonald's parole hearing is set for February. He is serving three life sentences at a federal prison in Cumberland, Md.


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