The Actual Case for Troy Davis (with must-watch video link)

Troy Davis, convicted of the 1989 homicides of two police officers is scheduled to be executed on Wednesday unless the Georgia Board of Pardons & Paroles steps in and changes the situation.  You may have heard something about the case (or possibly another case in Texas, that of Duane Buck whose execution was commuted by the U.S. Supreme Court last week due to overwhelming racial bias in the sentencing phase). Troy's case has garnered attention locally and internationally.  Recently there was a Vigil for Troy held in Palatine and the calls for his execution to be commuted have become a worldwide movement.

Take a look at this segment from a Georgia channel 11 news broadcast with a representative of the Georgia Fraternal Order of Police and an Amnesty International Death Penalty Abolitionist debating Troy Davis' case.

Now compare that debate to actual information - the sworn affidavits of the witnesses.  And if you believe as many do that there is simply too much doubt to carry out this execution sign the petition for Troy and send this on to someone you know.  You can try to get a message to the GA Board of Pardons and Paroles:

2 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, SE
Suite 458, Balcony Level, East Tower
Atlanta, Georgia 30334-4909

(404) 656-5651
(404) 651-8502

Affidavits Recanting Testimony or Statements Given in the Troy Davis Case
(From: Amnesty International, ‘Where is the justice for me?’: The case of Troy Davis, facing execution in Georgia , Feb. 1, 2007)

Kevin McQueen
“The truth is that Troy never confessed to me or talked to me about the shooting of the police officer. I made
up the confession from information I had heard on T.V. and from other inmates about the crimes. Troy did
not tell me any of this… I have now realized what I did to Troy so I have decided to tell the truth… I need to
set the record straight.”

Monty Holmes
“I told them I didn’t know anything about who shot the officer, but they kept questioning me. I was real young
at that time and here they were questioning me about the murder of a police officer like I was in trouble or
something. I was scared… [I]t seemed like they wouldn’t stop questioning me until I told them what they
wanted to hear. So I did. I signed a statement saying that Troy told me that he shot the cop.”

Jeffrey Sapp
“I got tired of them harassing me, and they made it clear that the only way they would leave me alone is if I
told them what they wanted to hear. I told them that Troy told me he did it, but it wasn’t true. Troy never said
that or anything like it. When it came time for Troy’s trial, the police made it clear to me that I needed to stick
to my original statement; that is, what they wanted me to say. I didn’t want to have any more problems with
the cops, so I testified against Troy.”

Dorothy Ferrell
“From the way the officer was talking, he gave me the impression that I should say that Troy Davis was the
one who shot the officer like the other witness [sic] had… I felt like I was just following the rest of the
witnesses. I also felt like I had to cooperate with the officer because of my being on parole…I told the
detective that Troy Davis was the shooter, even though the truth was that I didn’t see who shot the officer.”

Darrell "D.D." Collins
“After a couple of hours of the detectives yelling at me and threatening me, I finally broke down and told
them what they wanted to hear. They would tell me things that they said had happened and I would repeat
whatever they said. … It is time that I told the truth about what happened that night, and what is written here
is the truth. I am not proud for lying at Troy’s trial, but the police had me so messed up that I felt that’s all I
could do or else I would go to jail.”

Larry Young
“I couldn’t honestly remember what anyone looked like or what different people were wearing. Plus, I had
been drinking that day, so I just couldn’t tell who did what. The cops didn’t want to hear that and kept
pressing me to give them answers. They made it clear that we weren’t leaving until I told them what they
wanted to hear. They suggested answers and I would give them what they wanted. They put typed papers in
my face and told me to sign them. I did sign them without reading them.”

Antoine Williams
“They asked me to describe the shooter and what he looked like and what he was wearing. I kept telling
them that I didn’t know. It was dark, my windows were tinted, and I was scared. It all happened so fast. Even
today, I know that I could not honestly identify with any certainty who shot the officer that night. I couldn’t
then either. After the officers talked to me, they gave me a statement and told me to sign it. I signed it. I did
not read it because I cannot read.”

Robert Grizzard
“I have reviewed the transcript of my testimony from the trial of Troy Davis… During my testimony I said that
the person who shot the officer was wearing a light colored shirt. The truth is that I don’t recall now and I
didn’t recall then what the shooter was wearing, as I said in my initial statement …”

Michael Cooper
“I have had a chance to review a statement which I supposedly gave to police officers on June 25, 1991. I
remember that they asked a lot of questions and typed up a statement which they told me to sign. I did not
read the statement before I signed. In fact, I have not seen it before today. … What is written in that
statement is a lie.”

Benjamin Gordon
“I just kept telling them that I didn’t do anything, but they weren’t hearing that. After four or five hours, they
told me to sign some papers. I just wanted to get the hell out of there. I didn’t read what they told me to sign
and they didn’t ask me to.”

Joseph Washington
“I saw Sylvester Coles – I know him by the name Red – shoot the police officer. I am positive that it was Red
who shot the police officer…”

Tonya Johnson
Red then took both guns next door to an empty house and put them inside the screen door and shut the
door … he threatened me after this happened. He told me that he wanted to make sure that I did not tell the
police about the guns he hid in the screen door that morning. This is why I did not testify about the guns at
Troy’s trial because I was afraid of what Red would do to me if I did. I have not told anyone about this until
now because I was still scared… But I have decided that I must tell the truth."

Anthony Hargrove
“I know a guy named Red, from Savannah. His real name is Sylvester Coles. I’ve known Red for years and
we used to hang out together. Red once told me that he shot a police officer and that a guy named Davis
took the fall for it. He told me this about a year or so after the officer was killed…”

Gary Hargrove
“I am sure that Red was facing in the officer’s direction when I heard the shooting. … I was never talked to
by the police or any attorneys or investigators representing Troy Davis before his trial. I didn’t go up to talk to
the police that night because I was on parole at the time and was out past my curfew so I didn’t want my
parole officer to find out about that.”

Shirley Riley
“People on the streets were talking about Sylvester Coles being involved with killing the police officer so one
day I asked him if he was involved… Sylvester told me he did shoot the officer …”

Darold Taylor
“I remember reading in the paper once about how a guy named Troy Davis got sentenced to the electric
chair… One day when I was in the parking lot of Yamacraw drinking beers with Red. I told him about how I’d
heard that he was the one who killed the officer. Red told me to stay out of his business. I asked him again if
he killed the officer and Red admitted to me that he was the one who killed the officer, but then Red told me
again to stay out of his business.”

April Hester Hutchinson
“Red turned to me and asked me if I would walk with him up to the Burger King so ‘they won’t think that I had
nothing to do with it’. That’s exactly what he said… I told [the police] that I saw Red talking to my cousin
Tonya and that Red was real nervous. I did not tell them about what Red had said to me because I was
scared he would hurt me. I was thinking that if he did that to a police officer, what would he do to me? I didn’t
want to die like that officer, so I kept my mouth shut.”

Anita Saddler
“When I saw Red and Terry, they were jumpy and couldn’t stand still. Their eyes were shifting around and
they were looking everywhere. They walked up to us and Red asked us to go up to Burger King and see
what happened. Like I said, they were real nervous and fidgety. Red had a gun which was stuck into his
shorts. I saw the outline of his gun through his white shirt. I had seen him with a gun many times before.”

Peggie Grant (mother of April Hester Hutchinson)
“A few hours later, April called me on the phone. She told me that she had had a conversation with Red
where he asked her to walk up with him to where the officer was shot so that the police would think that he
was with her and not think he did anything.”


It's now the Board's decision to make.  No matter where you stand on the death penalty, pray they decide wisely.

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