In previous blog posts, I have discussed the case of Troy Anthony Davis, a Savannah man convicted of murdering a police officer in 1989. Mr. Davis current sits on Georgia’s death row, while attorneys pursue all available remedies.
Davis’ current (and possibly final) appeal rests in the United States Supreme Court. On June 29, 2009, however, the Supreme Court concluded its 2008-2009 session without making any decision on Mr. Davis’ petition for habeas corpus. A petition for habeas corpus is a demand for extraordinary relief and is used in a criminal matter when a defendant contends that he has been denied due process by lower courts.
At this point, Mr. Davis is asking the Supreme Court to set into motion a process whereby he would end up with a new trial on the evidence. He contends, among other issues, that since the original trial the eyewitnesses to testified against him in the original trial have recanted, and that other witnesses, previously unknown, were now available to testify.
In addition the Georgia Resource Center, which provided legal help for Mr. Davis (as well as for other indigent defendants) found its budget and staff cut, thereby reducing its effectiveness in presenting Mr. Davis’ case.
Davis’ plight has also garnered the attention of activists and celebrities throughout the world who are voicing support for a new trial. [Read more...]