UPDATE: Bedford County deputy responds to new calls for Soering case reexamination

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WDBJ7) -- UPDATE:

Jens Soering in 1990 (WDBJ7)

Major Ricky Gardner of the Bedford County Sheriff's Office is responding to new calls for the pardoning of convicted murderer Jens Soering.

Soering was found guilty in 1990 of killing his girlfriend's parents, Derek and Nancy Haysom, at their Boonsboro home in 1985.

In a statement, Major Gardner, who worked on the original case, said he remains confident that "Mr. Soering and Ms. Haysom are the only two people who benefited from the murders of Mr. and Mrs. Haysom and are the only two people responsible for their deaths."

Major Gardner also said he is cooperating fully with the investigator who is looking into Soering petition with Governor McAuliffe and his parole board.

You can read the full statement below:

No one wants to see an innocent person convicted of a crime they didn’t commit. However, I do not feel that is the case with Jens Soering. As I have said for years, I remain confident that Mr. Soering and Ms. Haysom are the only two people who benefited from the murders of Mr. and Mrs. Haysom and are the only two people responsible for their deaths. In fact, Ms. Haysom still maintains their guilt in her parents’ deaths to this day.

Mr. Soering’s petition is presently in the hands of Governor McAuliffe and his Parole Board. I have spoken to his investigator who will be conducting the investigation. I have assured her that I will cooperate fully with her investigation and look forward to working with her.

ORIGINAL STORY:

New voices are joining the call to get a man, convicted of carrying out a notorious murder in Bedford County, out of prison.

Attorneys for Jens Soering want Governor Terry McAuliffe to grant Soering a pardon.

Soering was found guilty in 1990 of killing his girlfriend's parents, Derek and Nancy Haysom, at their Boonsboro home in 1985.

It was a gruesome murder scene. The Haysom’s were stabbed more than 40 stab wounds and their throats were slashed.

The murders shocked central Virginia.

Now, a growing team of law enforcement experts say the case needs to be reopened and reexamined.

Wednesday, a DNA expert and a retired Charlottesville detective announced their support for Soering's pardon request.

Albemarle County Sheriff J.E. Chip Harding believes Jens Soering is innocent, citing science and evidence.

Harding wrote a 19-page letter to Gov. McAuliffe, supporting Soering's release and deportation back to Germany. "We wanted to get it to him, what we do have, to give him an opportunity to make a decision before he leaves office,” said Harding.

A retired Charlottesville detective backed Harding's claims, saying there is more to the case and that Soering's then girlfriend, Elizabeth Haysom, confessed to the murders. "At least on one occasion she said 'I killed them both, I got off on it,' making reference to killing her parents and they said 'that didn't happen, don't be silly,' I don't know how you disregard that,” said Richard Hudson, a retired Charlottesville detective.

Harding says he spent hundreds of hours reviewing the case and claims Soering would not be convicted if he were on trial today. If anything, Harding says the evidence appears to support his innocence. "Her shoe size is consistent with the evidence which is 5 ½ to 6 1/5. Soering's foot is ... he wears 8 ½ to 9 … not even in the ballpark,” Harding explained.

When asked why he was so passionate about Soering's case, Harding said it's all about justice. "The standard in America is supposed to be convict you beyond a reasonable doubt. There's way beyond a reasonable doubt on this case. This case isn't even close,” Harding said.

He says there is no genetic or scientific evidence that connects Soering to the Haysom crime scene.

A DNA expert agreed. "The evidence shows that there's only one contributor; so we look at the data, I try to give an unbiased scientific opinion … I don't have a dog in this race," said Dr. J. Thomas McClintock, an LU Professor and DNA expert.

WDBJ7 last talked to Gov. McAuliffe about the Soering case in April. That was eight months after Soering's attorneys submitted their original pardon request.

At that time, the Governor said there was nothing to suggest Soering was innocent.