Saturday, December 17, 2011

Thousands Rally in Phila. to Demand Mumia's Release

Mon, 12 Dec 2011

The Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition of New York wishes to thank and congratulate the thousand people who turned out Friday night in Philadelphia to give substance to the demand that Mumia be freed.  This pathbreaking event was held at the National Constitution Center, located directly across the mall from Independence Hall.

For more coverage, please go to our website,  Below is an article on the rally by Philadelphia journalist Dave Lindorff.

No Execution for Mumia: 30 Years After a Police Shooting, Abu-Jamal Backers Vow to Free Him from Life in Prison

By Dave Lindorff

The mood was both celebratory and angry among a 1000-plus overflow audience packed into the balcony space of the Constitution Center in Philadelphia on the evening of Dec. 9.

The crowd of supporters of Philadelphia journalist and black political activist Mumia Abu-Jamal had come to denounce the over 29 years that he has spent locked in solitary confinement on Pennsylvania's grim death row since his conviction for the shooting of a white police officer, Daniel Faulkner. But they were also there to celebrate the surprise decision, announced two days earlier by Philadelphia DA Seth Williams, not to seek to reinstate Abu-Jamal's death sentence, which had been permanently vacated by a recent decision of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Technically, the Supreme Court, last Oct. 11, had decided not to review a decision by a Third Circuit Court panel that had upheld a 2001 Federal Judge's ruling declaring his 1982 death sentence to have been unconstitutional. The Federal Court and Appeals Court decisions had been appealed by the district attorney's office for years, all the way to the Supreme Court.

The event at the Constitution Center had initially been planned to mark the 30th anniversary of the shooting incident that had led to Abu-Jamal's arrest and to his trial and conviction. But only two days before, Williams, who had 180 days from the Supreme Court's ruling to decide whether to request a new jury trial to attempt to win a new death sentence, had held a press conference to announce that he would not take that step, and would instead allow Abu-Jamal's penalty to revert automatically to life in prison without parole.

Read the full article at NationofChange

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