Troy Davis-Georgia Death Penalty caseby Ronald Pecorry Editor Satire and Comment
(ACPA-Atlanta) A high profile death penalty case has been unfolding for some years on my doorstep here in Georgia and also making headlines worldwide. Troy Davis was sentenced to death in 1992 for the murder of police officer Mark Mac Phail. At the time it seemed a simple case, today it has become yet another death penalty case where there was an apparent rush to justice that has now completely unraveled.
With no murder weapon or physical evidence, the case against Davis was built on witness statements. 7 of 9 witnesses have since recanted or changed their testimony under oath, many saying they were coerced by the police into giving statements against Davis, another admitting he signed a police statement even though he can't read. One of the two who has not recanted his statement is widely believed to be the actual killer of Officer Mac Phail.
The case has exhausted all court appeals, relief never having been granted for the usual procedural reasons (new information discovered to late to be heard in a court). The case is currently under review by the Georgia Bard of Pardons and Paroles.
Based on my knowledge of this case I am calling on the Board to grant clemency to Troy Davis. I am also calling on the prosecuting authorities in Georgia to start a fresh investigation with a view to a new trial for Davis, or anyone else believed to be responsible for this crime. It is not acceptable that a case involving the death of a police officer, or the potential execution of an innocent man, can be allowed to end with such controversy.
The Death Penalty is a difficult subject and there are no winners in these cases, but the people of Georgia cannot put a man to death based on current information . We owe it to Mac Phail to ensure he is getting justice and we owe it to all Georgians to not execute a potentially innocent citizen of our State.