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This is a startling and disturbing statistic. The reality is: These 130 people were originally found guilty based on eyewitness testimony. Once physical DNA evidence surfaced, it turned out that the eyewitnesses, who testified against them, were wrong. [1]

There is no DNA evidence in the case of Troy Anthony Davis. There is no physical evidence at all. There is only eyewitness testimony, which is clearly an unreliable source of evidence. Not only is his case solely based on the testimony of eyewitnesses, seven of the nine eyewitnesses in his case have either recanted their statements or changed their stories. Also, there is evidence now implicating one of those two remaining witnesses as the shooter!

For details about the case, including the lack of evidence, click here: http://www.naacp.org/pages/troy-davis-a-case-for-clemency

Troy Davis isn’t alone in facing this type of injustice. Study after study shows that race plays a disturbingly prominent role in whether or not someone receives the death penalty.

In 1990, the non-partisan U.S. General Accounting Office found "a pattern of evidence indicating racial disparities in the charging, sentencing, and imposition of the death penalty." The study concluded that a defendant was several times more likely to be sentenced to death if the murder victim was white. [2]

Further, the American Bar Association issued a report in 2007 concluding that one-third of African-American death row inmates in Philadelphia would have received sentences of life imprisonment if they had not been African-American. In 2003, the University of Maryland concluded that race and geography are major factors in death penalty decisions. [3]

Finally, a 2007 study of death sentences in Connecticut conducted by Yale University School of Law revealed that African-American defendants receive the death penalty at three times the rate of white defendants in cases where the victims are white. [4]

This Congressman put it best,

"We simply cannot say we live in a country that offers equal justice to all Americans when racial disparities plague the system by which our society imposes the ultimate punishment."

--Senator Russ Feingold on Civil Rights as a Priority for the 108th Congress, Senate, January 2003. [5]

The racial disparities within the criminal justice system are enormous. People everywhere are realizing this and are taking a stand for justice, and for Troy Davis. Over a million people have written letters, made phone calls, and sent emails to everyone from the Supreme Court, to the Georgia Board of Pardons and Parole, to the Savannah District Attorney asking that, in light of new evidence, this case be given another day in court.

Last week, MomsRising ran an amazing blog from Troy’s sister, Martina Davis. She is the mother of Troy’s young nephew, who yesterday made a passionate plea to the Georgia Board of Pardons and Parole to spare his uncle’s life.

http://www.momsrising.org/blog/the-execution-of-troy-davis-a-mother%E2%80%99s-story/

Unfortunately, the Supreme Court and the Georgia Board of Pardons and Parole did not hear the call. They chose to allow Troy’s execution proceed tomorrow, Wednesday, September 21st at 7PM. Now, we must urge District Attorney Larry Chisholm to rescind Troy Davis’ death warrant.

Here's how to take action to help save Troy's life:

Today, the NAACP and Amnesty International are coordinating a petition to the office of Larry Chisholm. Please join them, for Troy and for us all by clicking the below links.

- NAACP: http://action.naacp.org/page/s/petition-larry-chisolm?utm_medium=email&utm_source=NAACP&utm_campaign=20110919ChilsomPetition&subsource=20110919ChilsomPetition

- Amnesty International: http://takeaction.amnestyusa.org/siteapps/advocacy/ActionItem.aspx?c=6oJCLQPAJiJUG&b=6645049&aid=516533&msource=W1109EADP04D&tr=y&auid=9522348

[1] - http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/issues/death-penalty/us-death-penalty-facts/death-penalty-and-innocence

[2] - http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/issues/death-penalty/us-death-penalty-facts/death-penalty-and-race

[3] - http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/issues/death-penalty/us-death-penalty-facts/death-penalty-and-race

[4] - http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/issues/death-penalty/us-death-penalty-facts/death-penalty-and-race

[5] - http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/issues/death-penalty/us-death-penalty-facts/death-penalty-and-race

 

 


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