[Ppnews] U.S. Supreme Court won't hear Troy Davis Case, families react

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Tue Oct 14 19:13:24 EDT 2008

U.S. Supreme Court won't hear Troy Davis Case, families react

(this web page has a video link to a great piece with Martina 
Correia, Troy Davis' sister)

Tuesday, Oct 14, 2008 - 05:32 PM

By JoAnn Merrigan

The U.S.Supreme Court indicated Tuesday that it will not intervene in 
the case of Troy Anthony Davis.  Davis, who is now 40 years old, has 
been on death row for 19 years in connection with the killing of 
Savannah police officer Mark MacPhail in 1989.  MacPhail's was 27 
years old at the time of his murder.

Davis was less than two hours away from execution last month when he 
was granted a stay. The High Court's decision on Tuesday morning now 
clears the way for another execution date to be set for Davis.

"I am totally and utterly in shock and disgusted," says Martina 
Correia, Troy Davis' sister.

Correia has been fighting to save her brother's life for almost 2 
decades and hoped the High Court would be an answer. "I got a call 
about the decision and within two minutes, I got a phone call from 
Troy," Correia tells me. "And he had no idea he was just calling us 
after his morning prayer and he asked me what was wrong and I told 
him the Supreme Court rejected him."

Correia says despite the blow from Tuesday's decision, the family 
still won't give up.  "All I know is that we have to take the 
decision and we have to keep fighting," she tells me.  "I'm not 
easily discouraged and I know the Supreme Court has ruled against 
other people and the parole boards have ruled and then a couple days 
or even hours before, something has popped up and it's prevented the 
person from being executed."

Correria shows me pictures taken recently of her and Troy when she 
visited him in prison.  He is smiling.  "He always does when we see 
him," she says. "but today, after this news, this will the third time 
he's facing execution and of course as faithful as you are, it has to 
be wearing on his mind."

In the pile of pictures, there's also one of Troy and his mother, 
Virginia Davis.  She tells me that her son turned 40 on October 
9th.  "Another birthday spent behind bars," she says. "I just have to 
believe that his next birthday will be spent at home."

"We've got to live for Troy we got to fight for Troy, you know can't 
fight for himself, so we've got to be here on the outside fighting 
along with his lawyers for him," says Mrs. Davis.

Correia shows me some T-shirts she says people from across the 
country and overseas are ordering. The shirts list what Correia says 
are the problems with the case - a lack of physical evidence and 
seven out of nine witnesses recanting. "So this case actually speaks 
for itself," she tells me.  "And it also speaks volumes about what 
some people are will to do to hide the truth."

Across the country in Texas, Joan MacPhail, the widow of the slain 
police officer, is waiting for our call.  She has agreed to talk 
about the case one more time.  It seems to an onlooker that she has 
been waiting for closure most of her life. "I have no doubt in my 
mind that we have the right person," MacPhail tells me.

Joan MacPhail says she understands that the Davis family has pain and 
that they're relying on their faith for an answer.  "Of course we all 
want our prayers to be answered," she says.  "I have been relying on 
my faith for a long time, too."

"Like I've always said it is a process that we have to go through, 
unfortunately," she tells me.  "My take is I still have faith in the 
criminal justice system and our court system, faith that they will 
take care of what is right and what is wrong."

MacPhail says she continues to believe that justice is going to be 
served. "If we have to be patient with it, we will be patient with 
it, my faith has taken us through this thus far. And so there is no 
doubt in my mind and I just have to stand by that, and that every 
court they try to appeal to will see the truth."

MacPhail says her husband was so young when he was killed, a young 
man who lost the opportunity to live his life and spend it with his 
wife and two children.

Two families that still can't agree on the facts of this case, two 
families that now appear to be moving closer to an end.

Yet for Martina Correia, it isn't over yet.  "I'm just praying for 
intervention and we're just going to have to keep fighting," she 
tells me. "The lawyers are going to keep doing their legal stuff and 
we're going to keep doing our grass roots activism."

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