Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Troy Davis Will Be Executed Oct. 27--unless we stop it!

From Journalists for Mumia Abu-Jamal

Troy Davis' Execution Date Has Been Set For Oct. 27!

Take Action for Troy Davis here:

Troy Davis is scheduled to be executed during the week of October 27 for the murder of Police Officer Mark MacPhail in Georgia. The Supreme Court declined to hear his appeal, despite a credible claim of innocence. 7 out of 9 witnesses have recanted, no murder weapon was found and no physical evidence linked Davis to the crime. The Georgia Board of Pardon and Paroles denied clemency to Davis -- we must urge them to reconsider their decision.

» More about Troy Davis | Write a letter to the editor | Global Day of Action

Justices Clear Way for GA Execution

October 14, 2008

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS * Filed at 10:40 a.m. ET

ATLANTA (AP) -- The Supreme Court has cleared the way for a Georgia man to be put to death for killing a police officer two weeks after it halted his execution to consider his appeal.

Troy Davis asked the high court to intervene in his case and order a new trial because seven of the nine witnesses against him have recanted their testimony. Former President Jimmy Carter and South Africa Archbishop Desmond Tutu are among prominent supporters who have called for a new trial.

The justices granted Davis a reprieve on Sept. 23, less than two hours before his scheduled execution. But they declined Tuesday to give his appeal a full-blown hearing. It was not immediately clear when his execution will be scheduled.

Davis' supporters, who erupted in joy when his execution was halted last month, said they were heartbroken when they received word of the decision.

"Oh, God. I think it's disgusting, terrible. I'm extremely disappointed," said Martina Correia, Davis' sister. "Well, we still have to fight. We can't stop."

Davis was convicted of the murder of 27-year-old officer Mark MacPhail, who was working off-duty as a security guard at a bus station. MacPhail's family said they were relieved.

"I was hoping that would be the decision," said MacPhail's mother, Anneliese MacPhail. "I'm hoping that soon we will have some peace, that this will all be over."

A divided Georgia Supreme Court has twice rejected Davis' request for a new trial, and had rejected his appeal to delay the execution on Monday afternoon. The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles also turned down his bid for clemency.

MacPhail had rushed to help a homeless man who had been pistol-whipped at a nearby parking lot, and was shot twice when he approached Davis and two other men.

Witnesses identified Davis as the shooter, and at the 1991 trial, prosecutors said he wore a "smirk on his face" as he fired the gun.

But Davis' lawyers say new evidence proves their client was a victim of mistaken identity. Besides those who have recanted their testimony, three others who did not testify have said Sylvester "Red" Coles -- who testified against Davis at his trial -- confessed to the killing.

Coles refused to talk about the case when contacted by The Associated Press during a 2007 court appearance and has no listed phone number.

Prosecutors have said the case is closed. They also say some of the witness affidavits simply repeat what a trial jury has already heard, while others are irrelevant because they come from witnesses who never testified.


Amnesty International Decries Supreme Court Decision to Deny Troy Davis Petition

Tuesday, Oct 14, 2008 - 10:21 AM

Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) decried today's U.S. Supreme Court decision to deny a new hearing for Georgia death-row inmate Troy Anthony Davis. The Court had granted Davis a stay of execution just hours before he was scheduled to be put to death while it decided whether to hear the case. In denying Davis' petition for a writ of certiorari, the Court has effectively ended a longstanding battle to have new evidence in Davis' favor heard in a court of law.

"The Supreme Court's decision is truly shocking, given that significant evidence of Davis' innocence will never have a chance to be examined," said Larry Cox, executive director for AIUSA. "Faulty eyewitness identification is the leading cause of wrongful convictions, and the hallmark of Davis' case. This was an opportunity for the Court to clarify the constitutionality of putting the innocent to death – and in Davis' case, his innocence could only be determined with a new hearing or trial."

"It is disgraceful that the highest court in the land could sink so low when doubts surrounding Davis' guilt are so high," Cox added.

The U.S. Supreme Court denied Davis' petition for writ of certiorari that was submitted on constitutional grounds of due process and cruel and unusual punishment violations if an individual is put to death despite significant claims to innocence. Davis' attorneys filed the petition after the Georgia Supreme Court's narrow 4-3 ruling to deny Davis an evidentiary hearing last March; the ruling was based on technicalities rather than basic questions of guilt and innocence.

Davis was convicted in 1991 of killing Savannah police officer Mark Allen MacPhail. Authorities failed to produce a murder weapon or any physical evidence tying Davis to the crime. In addition, seven of the nine original state witnesses have since recanted or changed their initial testimonies in sworn affidavits. One of the remaining witnesses is alleged to be the actual perpetrator.

Since the launch of its February 2007 report, Where Is the Justice for Me? The Case of Troy Davis, Facing Execution in Georgia, Amnesty International has campaigned intensively for a new evidentiary hearing or trial and clemency for Davis, collecting well over 200,000 clemency petition signatures and letters from across the United States and around the world. To date, internationally known figures such as Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and former U.S. President Jimmy Carter have all joined the call for clemency, as well as lawmakers from within and outside of Georgia.

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 2.2 million supporters, activists and volunteers who campaign for universal human rights from more than 150 countries. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

For more information about the Troy Davis case, please visit:

New Afrikan PP Ojore Lutalo Release Date

Long time New Afrikan Anarchist Political Prisoner, Ojore N. Lutalo is set to max out after 26 years of imprisonment at New Jersey State Prison. While his exact release date is still not finalized, it will most likely be late November or early December. The NJ DOC website has his max out date as December 25th. Ojore, with the help of a lawyer, is in the process of working to get his good time/work credits restored, a result of his victory in the NJ Superior Court in 2007, which overturned a charge the prison convicted him of in 2005. This charge/conviction took away around a year of good time/work credits. This process is still ongoing and we will update people with any changes to his max out date

In the meantime, the Anarchist Black Cross Federation (ABCF) is initiating a fundraising drive to support Ojore, once he is released, in order for him to transition back to the streets. Money is needed to help Ojore secure housing, food and clothing. This financial assistance will allow Ojore to make the transition more smoothly, knowing that money and housing isn't an immediate pressing matter, giving him the needed time to readjust to the streets ,that he hasn't seen or experienced since 1982.

As many former prisoners and their supporters know, coming back home after a doing a long stretch in prison is difficult and without a support base it will be even more difficult. The ABCF, anarchists and many PP/POW activists who have maintained contact and supported Ojore over the years, have benefited immensely from the example that he's set as what it means to be a revolutionary. His untiring advice/criticism to us has helped many of us and our organizations grow politically and deepen, not only our commitment to the struggle to free political prisoners and prisoners of war, but to that of building a revolutionary movement

It's our revolutionary duty ensure Ojore has all the support he needs when hits the streets!

We encourage all activists to organize fundraisers or donate whatever they can towards Ojore's release fund.

All funds, by check or money order, payable to TIM FASNACHT, can be sent to:

Philadelphia ABCF
P.O Box 42129
Philadelphia, Pa 19101

Thank you for your support of our comrade Ojore!

Solidarity and Struggle!
Philly ABCF

please circulate this appeal as far and wide as possible.....................

Bio of Ojore........

Ojore Lutalo is locked down in Trenton, New Jersey, for actions carried out in the fight for Black Liberation. In Ojore's own words, he is "serving a parole violation sentence (we received 14 to 17 years) stemming from a 1977 conviction for expropriating monies from a capitalist state bank (in order to finance our activities) and engaging the political police in a gun battle in December 1975 in order to effect our departure from the bank, and to ensure success of the military operation..." "After my parole violation term terminated in December 1987, I started serving a forty year sentence with a twenty year parole ineligibility (I was paroled in 1980, and I have been back in captivity since April 20, 1982) that I have received in 1982 for having a gun-fight with a drug dealer. The overall strategy of assaulting a drug dealer is to secure monies to finance one's activities, and to rid the oppressed communities of drug dealers." Ojore was originally arrested with New Afrikan P.O.W. Kojo Bomani Sababu, and was struggling with comrade Andaliwa Clark up until the point that Andaliwa was killed in action within the confines of New Jersey's infamous Trenton State Prison after he shot two prison's security guards in the repressive Management Control Unit (M.C.U.) on January 19th, 1976 when they tried to stop him from escaping from captivity. Ojore was a comrade of the late Kuwasi Balagoon, a New Afrikan anarchist P.O.W. "I've been involved in the struggle, the war against the fascist state since 1970. I've been an anarchist since 1975 without any regrets. Prior to my involvement in the struggle, I was just another apolitical lumpen (bandit) here in Amerika." "I was... influenced and highly motivated by the Black Liberation Army (B.L.A.) here in Amerika. These sisters and brothers were New Afrikans just like me from the streets of the ghettos who took the initiative militarily, to start assassinating members of the state's security forces who were murdering black people in our communities. From the inception of all revolutions, I feel that the people need armed combat units to check state sponsored acts of terrorism by the government's security forces. In addition, I feel that these armed combat units are necessary to show the people that fascist acts of state-sponsored terrorism... will be responded to militarily. In 1975 I became disillusioned with Marxism and became an anarchist (thanks to Kuwasi Balagoon) due to the inactiveness and ineffectiveness of Marxism in our communities along with repressive bureaucracy that comes with Marxism. People aren't going to commit themselves to a life and death struggle just because of grand ideas someone might have floating around in their heads. I feel people will commit themselves to a struggle if they can see progress being made similar to the progress of anarchist collectives in Spain during the era of the fascist Bahamonde..."