Jefferson Co. D.A.'s Office says no charges in Artis Echoles' death
JEFFERSON COUNTY (WITI) -- The Jefferson County District Attorney has again ruled no charges will be filed in the death of Artis Echoles.
Echoles died in 1988 at a Jefferson County campground. His death was ruled an accidental drowning.
In February, a judge ordered the case be reopened after Echoles' biological mother, Carmen White, found the original police report -- indicating witnesses saw a man throw her son into a pond.
The District Attorney reviewed evidence, but in April, said there wasn't enough evidence to charge anyone with first degree homicide.
Then, a judge wrote a letter to the District Attorney's Office, asking that the office consider a charge of second degree murder in the case.
However, the District Attorney's Office has again ruled against charging anyone in connection with Echoles' death, citing insufficient evidence to conclude any crime occurred.
A letter from the District Attorney's Office says:
"There are no facts that were made available to me from the original investigation from which I can conclude, beyond a reasonable doubt or even the lesser probable cause standard that any criminal conduct occurred. Nor were there any credible new facts that were developed, or that could reasonably be expected to be developed by additional investigation, that provided or would provide any additional insight into the drowning or a basis for any criminal charges. This would include any homicide, as well as any lesser criminal charges, regardless of whether or not such prosecution would be barred by the statute of limitations.
Therefore, my original conclusion that there is no basis to pursue any additional investigation or issue any criminal charges remains unchanged."