September 12, 2011
Troy Davis, a Georgia man convicted of the 1989 murder of a police officer, is scheduled to be executed nine days from today. His conviction rests entirely on the testimony of nine witnesses, seven of whom have since recanted, claiming they were coerced by the police. Of the two holdout witnesses, one, Sylvester “Redd” Coles, was originally a suspect in the case. Troy Davis maintains that he is innocent and a victim of false identification.
Numerous high-profile organizations and celebrities believe that Davis should not be executed, including Amnesty International, Pope Benedict XVI, the ACLU, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. The Georgia State Board of Pardons and Paroles will hold a clemency hearing for Davis on September 19th. Amnesty International has organized a rally in Atlanta on September 16th and has declared the days between now and the hearing “Days of Solidarity with Troy.” The ACLU is urging people to contact the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles and tell them to stay the execution. Troy’s family has also drafted a petition to stay the execution which will be presented at the hearing. If enough people sign the petition, Davis’ death sentence will hopefully be commuted to life in prison without parole.
To sign the petition in support of staying Davis’ execution, please click here.