Back in 1957, a guy named Edgar Smith was convicted of murdering a 15-year-old girl. It only took a jury under three hours to declare him guilty, and he was sentenced to death. Somehow, he wound up in correspondence with conservative commentator William F. Buckley (the founder of the National Review).
Buckley worked for years to get Smith released until, in 1971, he was.
After his release, Smith appeared on Buckley’s talk show and collected $1,000 speaking fees touring college campuses around the nation. All was well until five years later, when he abducted seamstress Leftiriya Ozbun while she was going home from work. The girl survived, but Smith is back in prison, serving a life sentence.