Troy Davis Speaks from Death Row

On November 13, the Georgia Supreme Court will hear arguments in the case of death row inmate Troy Davis (background here.)

How many of you have ever heard the voice of a death row inmate? Now you can. Amnesty International asks you to sign a petition for Troy and listen to what he has to say.

Troy Davis was convicted without any physical evidence. 7 of the 9 witnesses against him have recanted or changed their testimony. Amnesty's 35 page report on his case is here (pdf).

Following next week's hearing, the court could order a new trial for Davis or order a hearing on the new evidence in the case. The hearing will be webcast live.


From Amnesty at the above link:

Troy Davis was sentenced to death for the murder of Police Officer Mark Allen McPhail at a Burger King in Savannah, Georgia; a murder he maintains he did not commit. There was no physical evidence against him and the weapon used in the crime was never found. The case against him consisted entirely of witness testimony which contained inconsistencies even at the time of the trial. Since then, all but two of the state's non-police witnesses from the trial have recanted or contradicted their testimony. Many of these witnesses have stated in sworn affidavits that they were pressured or coerced by police into testifying or signing statements against Troy Davis.

One of the two witnesses who has not recanted his testimony is Sylvester "Red" Coles – the principle alternative suspect, according to the defense, against whom there is new evidence implicating him as the gunman. Nine individuals have signed affidavits implicating Sylvester Coles.

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  • Display: Sort:
    Georgia? good luck (none / 0) (#1)
    by lilybart on Thu Nov 08, 2007 at 06:55:00 AM EST
    Clearly, this man should not be on death row with so little evidence in the first place, so that doesn't give one much hope for a new trial.

    statute of limitations (none / 0) (#2)
    by diogenes on Thu Nov 08, 2007 at 03:50:18 PM EST
    Is there a statute of limitations on perjury, or can the seven recanting witnesses be indicted on perjury charges?  
    This guy had a bad street rep-one must wonder whether he committed other murders, whether he would kill again if released, and whether any intimidation led to recantations.  

    The question is (none / 0) (#3)
    by katmandu on Mon Jan 14, 2008 at 01:28:47 AM EST
    Why have these wittnesses recanted?
    Did they suddenly, as a group, realize they
    were wrong?  Or did someone pay them and/or
    threaten them?  And turn on a fellow witness?
    They perjured themselves for..what?  What did
    they gain?  Why would they now admit to perjury?
    Since you specified "non-police" witnesses,
    then there must be police witnesses.
    Wouldn't they be reliable--after all why would
    they wish to protect this Red guy?
    I believe Amnesty is swallowing a story...
    hook line and sinker.