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Emergency actions to save Troy Davis’ life

Published Oct 21, 2008 7:57 PM

Troy Davis

Thousands of people are mobilizing in a last minute effort to stop the execution of Troy Anthony Davis on Monday, Oct. 27 in Georgia.

Emergency protests are scheduled in many cities on Oct. 23, with a major rally on the steps of the Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m.

Amnesty International, the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia and Georgians for an Alternative to the Death Penalty, which has worked tirelessly over the years to bring justice in the Davis case, report new letter writing campaigns by professors in Georgia colleges and clergy members, as well as students rallying on campuses.

The International Action Center has launched an online petition addressed to dozens of elected officials including presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain, major news outlets, U.N. bodies and the Georgia Pardons and Parole Board, which has the authority to stop the execution. Please go to www.iacenter.org and add your name to the hundreds of thousands who are saying “Innocence Matters! Justice Matters!”

Davis, who has always maintained his innocence, was convicted of the 1989 murder of a Savannah policeman who was working off-duty. The state’s case rested on eyewitness testimony. There was no forensic evidence, no fingerprints, no weapon ever produced at the trial connecting Troy Davis to the shooting.

Seven of the nine trial witnesses have since recanted their testimony, several charging police intimidation and coercion for their false identification of Davis. Still other witnesses who were never called to testify in court have signed affidavits implicating another man.

State and federal appeals courts have turned Davis’ case down on technicalities, essentially saying the recantations are either not sufficient “new” evidence or have come too late. On Oct. 14, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to take up the issue. The state of Georgia immediately issued an execution date for Oct. 27.

—Dianne Mathiowetz