Troy Davis will be killed at 7:00 PM EDT tomorrow, Wednesday, September 21st, 2011. The state of Georgia has sentenced him to death for a crime for which “no forensic or DNA evidence linking Davis to the shooting has ever been found, and nor has the murder weapon.” He has been on death row for nearly as long as I have been alive.
Amnesty International urges people to demand that “Chatham County (Savannah) District Attorney Larry Chisolm seek a withdrawal of the death warrant and support clemency himself” (Chatham County’s District Attorney’s office’s contact information: Telephone: 912-652-7308 Fax: 912-652-7328). Their petition to the Georgia Pardons Board and District Attorney Chisolm is still available here. Call Judge Penny Freesemann at Telephone: 912-652-7252 who has to accept the DA’s withdrawal.
The UK’s The Guardian reports the following:
The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles, which alone has power within the state to commute Davis’s death sentence, denied to grant him clemency having heard three hours of testimony on Monday casting deep doubts on his conviction.
Davis, 42, was put on death row 20 years ago for the 1989 murder of a police officer, Mark MacPhail, in Savannah following a fight with a homeless man over a bottle of beer. Since then seven out of the nine key witnesses who implicated him have recanted their evidence, several saying they were cajoled by police into giving false eye-witness statements.
Another 10 have come forward to point the finger at a separate man present at the scene of the murder, Sylvester Coles.
The Guardian reports that Madison MacPhail, the victim’s daughter, said, “A future was taken from me. The death penalty is the correct form of justice.”
Killing Troy Davis is not about justice; it is not about safety: killing Troy Davis is about revenge. A police officer was killed, and for that, someone must pay with their life. Her father was killed, and so someone else must die.
Amnesty International reports that “Georgia’s State Board of Pardons and Paroles has rejected Troy Davis’ clemency petition . . . [and] renders meaningless the Board’s 2007 vow to not permit an execution unless there is “no doubt” about guilt.” I don’t know what can be done to keep Troy Davis from being killed. No matter how many people call the District Attorney’s office, no matter how many people sign the petitions, it may not be enough.
Still, we can’t just sit back and do nothing. Kris Hummer from Amnesty International reports,
Throughout the last week, approximately 300 rallies, vigils and events have occurred across the United States and the globe, including New York City, Washington D.C., San Diego, Boulder, Peru, Berlin, Parisand Oslo, among others. In addition, close to a million signatures have been collected in support of Troy Davis.
Bill Rankin and Rhonda Cook from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution write, “Calls for Davis to be spared execution have been made by numerous dignitaries, including former President Jimmy Carter, Pope Benedict XVI, former FBI Director William Sessions, former Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Norman Fletcher and Larry Thompson, the former deputy U.S. attorney general.”
Add your name to that list. Speak out in support of Troy Davis. Remember that he is a person, just as you are, not merely a statistic — the death penalty is not just some abstract concept: it is the difference between whether Troy Davis will be alive at this time tomorrow or whether he will have been killed by the state of Georgia. Read the story Troy Davis’ sister, Martina Davis-Correia, wrote about her beloved brother. Watch following video about Troy Davis and his case.
Read the message from Troy Davis himself, a message of astounding faith, strength, and belief that justice will one day prevail. Despite all that he is experiencing — a living nightmare courtesy of the state of Georgia — he sees himself as simply part of a larger struggle to end the death penalty. He writes,
There are so many more Troy Davis’. This fight to end the death penalty is not won or lost through me but through our strength to move forward and save every innocent person in captivity around the globe. We need to dismantle this Unjust system city by city, state by state and country by country.
Troy Davis. He is a real person, and he deserves to live. Call the District Attorney Larry Chisolm at 912-652-7308. Troy Davis is sentenced to die at 7:00 PM EDT on Wednesday, September 21st, 2011. This is not justice. This is murder.