News 09.20.11

Clemency Denied for Troy Davis — Take Action Now to Stop the Execution

We were disappointed to learn this morning that the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles denied Troy Davis’ request for clemency. Davis is scheduled to be executed tomorrow, September 21, at 7 p.m. ET for a crime evidence suggests he did not commit. We have repeatedly urged Georgia officials to stop this execution, and we have continued this call for justice today. The 273 wrongful convictions overturned through DNA testing have shown that our system gets it wrong, and Georgia can’t afford to make a mistake it can’t reverse.

One of Davis’ last hopes lies with Larry Chisolm, the District Attorney of Chatham County, where Davis was convicted. Chisolm has the power to seek a withdrawal of the death warrant against Davis.

Please join us in calling on him to do the right thing by signing our petition to Chisolm now

.

The Innocence Project and Innocence Network

sent a letter to Chisolm today

, arguing that  not only do the facts in Davis’ case urge him to take such an unusual step, but “justice requires it.”

We also sent a letter to the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles, urging board members to reopen their clemency hearing because they failed to hear key evidence regarding the unreliability of eyewitness testimony. Dr. Jennifer Dysart, an expert on eyewitness identification evidence, was prepared to testify at yesterday’s board hearing, but was not called due to time constraints. For the board to fulfill its duty as a “failsafe,” we wrote, it must reopen the hearing so all evidence in Davis’ case can be heard.

Read our full letter to the board here

. Troy Davis himself also

sent a message to supporters today

, urging us all to keep fighting for justice in his case – and others. “The struggle for justice doesn’t end with me,” he said. “ This struggle is for all the Troy Davises who came before me and all the ones who will come after me. I’m in good spirits and I’m prayerful and at peace. But I will not stop fighting until I’ve taken my last breath.”

Innocence Project Co-Director Barry Scheck discussed Davis’ case and the unreliability of eyewitness testimony last night on MSNBC’s Politics Nation with Rev. Al Sharpton. Watch a video of their conversation below.

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