From: Johanna Fernandez
For Immediate Release: November 8, 2010
Press Conference Announcement & Statement from the Committee to Save Mumia Abu-Jamal on the Oral Argument in Mumia Abu-Jamal v. Beard
Contact: Professor Johanna Fernandez, 917-930-0804
New York. The Committee to Save Mumia Abu-Jamal looks forward to Professor Judith Ritter's argument before the Third Circuit Court of Appeals on November 9 in the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal v. Beard. Professor Ritter has been Abu-Jamal's counsel for seven years and successfully argued the Mills v. Maryland claim before the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals in 2007.
On November 3, 2010, Mr. Abu-Jamal regretfully asked for the resignation of Robert Bryan, his lead attorney. Mr. Abu-Jamal did so only after Mr. Bryan refused to honor his numerous written and oral requests, spanning a year, that co-counsel Professor Ritter conduct the oral argument on the Mills/Spisak issue.
In his November 5, 2010 motion, Mr. Bryan claimed that Abu-Jamal supporters left a voicemail threatening him with public attacks and embarrassment, implicitly forcing him to resign. In fact, it was Mr. Bryan's refusal to honor his client's wishes that led Mr. Abu-Jamal to ask that Mr. Bryan tender his resignation.
As a long standing supporter of the appellee, the Committee to Save Mumia Abu-Jamal, which was formed in the 1980s to raise funds for his legal support, felt it important to ensure that Mr. Abu-Jamal's wishes and best interests were carried out.
The Committee urges all concerned to focus on the salient issue at hand, namely how the jury was mis-instructed by the court during the sentencing hearing in 1982, a claim granted by Judge William Yohn of the Federal District Court in 2001 and by the Third Circuit panel in 2007.
Place : Front Entrance, National Constitution Center
Independence Mall, 525 Arch Street @ 6th & Arch St.
Date: Monday, November 8, 2010
Pam Africa, International Concerned Family & Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal
Prof. Johanna Fernandez, Committee to Save Mumia Abu-Jamal & Educators for Mumia Abu-Jamal
Heidi Bogosian, Executive Director, National Lawyers Guild & Committee to Save Mumia Abu-Jamal
Frances Goldin, Mumia Abu-Jamal's Literary Agent, Committee to Save Mumia Abu-Jamal
Suzanne Ross, Free Mumia Abu Jamal Coalition (NYC)
Martha Conley, Free Mumia Committee of Pittsburgh
Prof. Mark Taylor, Educators for Mumia Abu-Jamal
Prof. Michael M. Schiffmann, Germany, Author of Race Against Death
International Supporters of Mumia Abu-Jamal
The French Collective