Parole board keeps Diane Downs locked up

Parole board keeps Diane Downs locked up »Play Video
A jury convicted Diane Downs of pulling her car to the side of a rural road in Springfield, Ore., in May 1983 and shooting her three children. Cheryl, age 7, died; 8-year-old Christie survived. The youngest child, Danny, 3, was paralyzed.

SALEM, Ore. - The Oregon Parole Board rejected a plea from convicted child killer Diane Downs for parole.

Downs will not be eligible for parole for another 10 years under a new Oregon law, although she could ask the board to reconsider in two years, according to the parole board's executive director.

In testimony via video from a California prison, Downs maintained that a man flagged her down on a rural road outside Springfield in 1983 and started shooting her kids, a story a jury rejected more than a quarter century ago in finding her guilty of the crime.

Up for parole for the second time in two years, Downs took part in the hearing after threatening not to show up.

"I don't know what could have changed in the last two years," Downs told the Oregon Parole Board via video conference from the California prison where she is incarcerated. "I still maintain my innocence."


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