Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Troy Davis' Unprecedented Hearing This Week

Supreme Court Took Extraordinary Step In Ordering Hearing

This week, all eyes will be on Savannah, Georgia, to see whether death row inmate Troy Davis will be granted a new trial.

Last August, for the first time in nearly half a century, and the first time ever in a death-penalty case, the U.S. Supreme Court took a case filed directly to its docket. It accepted Troy Davis' last-ditch plea because Davis had exhausted all his appeals.

The high court ordered a federal judge to convene a hearing and take evidence to determine whether Davis' new claims "clearly establish" his innocence -- a high legal threshold to overcome.

According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, U.S. District Judge William T. Moore Jr., who will hear the case, is not expected to make an immediate ruling. He has instructed parties that he wants them to file legal briefs after the hearing is over. He also told the lawyers that because he has already read the trial record and the legal pleadings in the case, he expects them to come to his courtroom and "immediately" enter into the presentation of evidence.

Davis was convicted and sentenced to death almost two decades ago for killing an off-duty police officer during a late-night melee in a Burger King parking lot in Savannah.

To read full article: http://www.ajc.com/news/atlanta/new-troy-davis-hearing-553951.html

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