Jens Soering

Killing for Love

It appears Governor Terry McAuliffe will not pardon Jens Soering, a German citizen convicted of a double murder in Virginia 27 years ago.  A growing body of evidence suggests Soering is not guilty, and a documentary about his case will open Friday in New York and Los Angeles.  

AP File Photo

There’s new hope for a German man who’s spent three decades in Virginia prisons for a crime he says he did not commit.

Jens Soering was convicted in the bloody murders of his girlfriend’s parents when he was 18.  Now, the Director at the Institute for Actual Innocence at the University of Richmond’s law school, Mary Kelly Tate, says Soering could not be convicted if he were tried today.

AP Photo/Steve Helber

It’s been more than a year since Jens Soering asked Governor Terry McAuliffe for a pardon.  The former UVA honors student was convicted of killing his girlfriend’s parents at their Bedford County home in 1985 but a new analysis of DNA showed type-O blood found at the home of Nancy and Derek Haysom did not come from Soering as argued by the local prosecutor.  Now, Sandy Hausman reports that a new investigator is adding his name to the plea for pardon.

A man who’s spent more than 30 years behind bars for a double murder he says he did not commit has a powerful new ally today.  Albemarle County Sheriff Chip Harding says he’s spent more than 200 hours studying the case, and he believes Soering is innocent.  He’s explained his thinking in a 19-page letter to Governor Terry McAuliffe who, to date, has refused to pardon Soering. 

Sandy Hausman / WVTF / RADIO IQ

Virginia’s parole board held hearing number twelve yesterday for Jens Soering, a former UVA honors student from Germany who was convicted of killing his girlfriend’s parents in 1985.  Soering’s conviction was based in part on a finding of type O blood at the crime scene, but DNA testing now shows the type O blood came from another man, and Soering’s lawyer shared the new genetic evidence with the parole board.