[Ppnews] Troy Davis Denied Clemency

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Tue Sep 20 10:38:48 EDT 2011

 From Campaign to End the Death Penalty


Troy Anthony Davis has been denied clemency by the Georgia Board of 
Pardons and Parole. This means that Troy could be executed tomorrow 
at 7 p.m. if the board does not reverse its decision, and if no court 

Members of the Campaign to End the Death Penalty will not idly sit by 
while a murder is carried out in the name of the state of Georgia. We 
will be holding speakouts and rallies to demand that this execution 
be stopped and to urge the pardons board to reverse its decision. We 
encourage everyone to come out if they can and continue to phone, fax 
and e-mail messages to the board.

Over 1 million people have signed petitions in support of clemency 
for Troy. More than 3,000 people marched and rallied for Troy just 
five days ago in Atlanta--the largest demonstration of support for 
any death row prisoner since the protests to stop the execution of 
Stan Tookie Williams in California in 2005. Global actions of 
solidarity were held all over the world, including Germany, Hong 
Kong, Belgium and Nigeria, and more than 300 actions that took place 
across the U.S.

Troy is supported by numerous civil rights leaders, including NAACP 
president Ben Jealous, Jesse Jackson of Rainbow Push, and Al Sharpton 
of the National Action Network. Other prominent supporters include 
President Jimmy Carter, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, former FBI Director 
William Sessions, and former federal prosecutor and death penalty 
supporter Bob Barr.

The question that has to be asked is: Why can't the members of the 
Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles see what over a million people have?

No physical evidence connects Troy to the murder for which he was 
condemned to death, and seven of the nine witnesses against him at 
his original trial have recanted their original testimony against 
Troy. Brenda Davis, one of the jurors in that trial, told CNN in 
2009, "If I knew then what I know now, Troy Davis would not be on 
death row. The verdict would be 'not guilty.'"

Why isn't this good enough to win clemency for Troy? For that matter, 
why isn't it good enough to win him a new trial where the evidence of 
his innocence could be heard by a jury?

The answer is simple: It is good enough. People have won reversals in 
their cases for far less than what Troy has put forward.

So why are so many politicians and state officials in Georgia 
determined to kill Troy?

This case is not merely a matter of guilt or innocence. Race and 
class have everything to do with why Troy was arrested in the first 
place, and why he has had such a hard time getting a hearing in the 
courts ever since. Troy was a Black man accused of killing a white 
police officer in a city of the Deep South, and he was too poor to 
afford good legal representation at his first trial.

Now that he does have lawyers who have been able to unravel the case 
against him, Troy is required under the law to prove his innocence in 
a court system that wants to accept the evidence as it was presented 
against him nearly 20 years ago. Without incontrovertible proof of 
innocence--like DNA testing that excludes him--it is very difficult 
to prove innocence in the eyes of the law.

It all comes down to this terrible truth, as Troy himself put it in 
an interview in the New Abolitionist: "Georgia feels it's better to 
kill me than admit I'm innocent."

If Georgia goes forward and executes Troy Davis, it will be very 
definition of a modern-day lynching.

When Blacks were lynched in this country, it was often based on a 
lie--that they were guilty of some crime and deserved their fate. And 
there was no recourse for them in the court system or wider power 
structure. The perpetrators of lynchings were almost never 
punished--only 1 percent of such cases ever went trial, and far fewer 
were ever convicted.

Troy Davis has been convicted and sentenced to death based on a 
series of lies--and he, too, has found no recourse. Because "Georgia 
feels it's better to kill me than admit I'm innocent."


For more information on Troy's case and to keep posted on what you 
can do today and tomorrow, visit the CEDP website at 
<http://nodeathpenalty.org./>http://nodeathpenalty.org. Send your 
messages urging reversal to the Georgia Board of Pardons and 
Parole--Call 404-656-5651, e-mail webmaster at pap.state.ga.us 
<mailto:webmaster at pap.state.ga.us> and fax 404-651-8502.

Freedom Archives
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

415 863-9977

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