I know you all have been hearing about the case against Troy Davis. If you haven’t check out the article.
The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that more than a dozen Georgia state police in riot gear have moved into the area outside of the prison. “They were met by choruses of ‘Shame on you’ from the protesters,” reports the AJC.
Death row inmate Troy Davis in an undated photo released by the Georgia Department of Corrections.
Larry Cox, the executive director of Amnesty International, which has led protests in support of Davis, told Democracy Now! they don’t know much about what’s going on. He said they’ve met with protesters to try to prepare them for bad news, he said, so they could react properly and within the peaceful spirit of the campaign.
“All we can do is wait and pray,” said Cox.
Update at 8:54 p.m. ET. Process Is ‘Unusual Punishment’:
Rev. Raphael Warnock, the paster at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, said in an interview with Democracy Now! that this is the fourth time Davis goes through this process.
In the past, his executions have been stayed hours before he was scheduled to die.
“We’re glad he’s still here,” said Warnock. “But this whole process is unusual punishment.”
Update at 8:42 p.m. ET. ‘All The Chances In World’:
In an interview with the AP, Anneliese MacPhail, the victim’s mother, said she was “a nervous wreck” as she awaited a decision from the U.S. Supreme Court. She said that Davis had “all the chances in the world” to clear his name.
Also a note: Atlanta’s channel 11 has live video of the scene outside the jail.
Update at 8:08 p.m. ET. Everything That’s Wrong With Death Penalty:
As the sun sets in Georgia, Anthony Davis’ has not yet been executed. Democracy Now!, which is broadcasting live from outside the state prison in Jackson, showed images of Davis supporters been singing and praying as they await word.
Ed Dubose, the president of the Georgia chapter of the NAACP, said in an interview that Davis’ case represents “everything that is wrong with the death penalty.”
He said that the fact Davis has lived this long means there’s “something special about this moment.”
“Even if this moment does come to pass, he has given us a reason to continue to fight,” said Dubose.
The Atlanta Journal Constitution has a reporter at the side of the victim’s mother, Anneliese MacPhail. She “was leafing through photos of her son, and in her words “smoking like a steam engine” as she awaited word on whether the execution would proceed tonight,” the paper reports.
Update at 7:36 p.m. ET. A Temporary Delay:
The prison has temporarily delayed the execution, awaiting a decision from the Supreme Court. The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports:
Sara Totonchi of the Southern Center for Human Rights confirms the prison has temporarily delayed the execution while awaiting word from the U.S. Supreme Court on whether they can proceed with the execution tonight.
Our Original Post Continues:
At 7 p.m. ET today, Troy Davis is scheduled to be executed in the state of Georgia. Davis’ case has garnered international attention and he’s been at this point three times before. As The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports, on one occasion, the state stayed his execution two-hours before it was set to take place.
If you’re not familiar, Davis was convicted of the 1989 murder of an off-duty police officer. But his conviction was based on eye witness accounts and no physical evidence. Through the years, some of the witnesses have walked back their testimony and doubts have emerged about the case.
So much so that the Supreme Court gave Davis a chance to prove his innocence. The AP reports that was the “first time it had done so for a death row inmate in at least 50 years, but he couldn’t convince a judge to grant him a new trial.”
High profile Americans have also taken up Davis’ cause. Former President Jimmy Carter wrote a letter on Davis’ behalf. And former Rep. Bob Barr, a pro-death-penalty Republican, has called for a stay. “Even for death penalty supporters such as myself, the level of doubt inherent in this case is troubling,” he told the AP.
The family of the victim, Mark MacPhail, is convinced Davis is the killer.
Legal experts believe the case has reached the end of the road. Today, reports USA Today, the Georgia pardons board rejected an appeal and a Georgia judge refused to halt the execution. Here is how a University of Georgia law professor Donald E. Wilkes Jr. laid it out to the Wall Street Journal:
“In my judgment, there are no judicial options left to Davis and there are no executive options,” he said. ” At 7 p.m., you can be sure he’ll be strapped to the gurney, and I’d expect that by 7:15 pm, Troy Davis will be dead.”
That said, Wilkes believes the state should commute Davis’s sentence to life without parole. “I think this is a clear case where Troy Davis’s guilt is not certain,” he said. “It may be probable or even very probable, but it’s not certain and I believe no one should be put to death unless evidence of their guilt is certain.”
The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that with satellite trucks and a mass of protesters, the scene outside the prison in Jackson, Georgia, where Davis is scheduled to be executed, is “unlike any previous executions in past years.”
The paper reports on another protest in Savannah:
In Savannah this morning, about 18 supporters gathered outside Chatham County District Attorney Larry Chisolm’s office to present 240,000 signatures of people asking for clemency. Organizer Sister Jackie Griffith said the group hopes Chisolm can use any influence he may have to urge Chatham Superior Court Judge Penny Freesemann to halt the execution.
“We believe anyone who has power should use it for justice,” said Griffith, a Catholic nun who has worked to stop Davis’ execution since 1998. She said she was drawn to the case because she believes all life is sacred, “whether it’s a guilty life or an innocent life.”
“We’re very prayerful and dogged in our efforts…we’re always hopeful, but hope comes with reality,” she added.
Holding a sign that read “Justice for Troy Davis, Too Much Doubt,” supporters Denise Chaney and Valdara Wall chatted about the case, referencing the man who was with Davis around the time of the shooting, Sylvester “Redd” Coles, who is rumored to have admitted in recent years to have murdered Officer Mark Allen MacPhail.
“When Redd finally comes forth and admits it, how are they going to bring Troy back?” Wall asked.
Update at 6:22 p.m. ET. One Final Appeal:
Having exhausted all the appeals in the state, Davis’ lawyers filed a final motion asking the United States Supreme Court to halt the execution. The AP reports:
The last-ditch effort came after state officials refused to grant Davis a reprieve in the face of calls for clemency from former President Jimmy Carter, Pope Benedict XVI and others.
Now i feel they should have been done this. The problem is they don’t like to be wrong. I wonder if this was a white man and a black cop would the results still be the same? They are always letting the guilty go based on lack of evidence(Casey Anthony) But willing to kill an innocent man and they have lack of evidence.Lets continue to pray for Troy Davis and his family.
The Supreme Court denied Troy Davis stay. He will be executed at 11pm est tonight. Lets pray for his family guys.
Troy Davis was executed at 11:08pm est. R.I.P