Georgia Parole Board Denies Clemency for Troy Davis

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Seven recanting witnesses, a Pope, a former FBI Director, and an ex-US president couldn’t persuade the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles that enough doubt had accumulated about Troy Davis’ culpability in the 1989 murder of Georgia police officer Mark MacPhail to call off his execution. For the fourth time in the past four years, Davis has been given an execution date—Wednesday at 7 p.m., according to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution.

The Davis case has been one of several recent death penalty cases in which exculpatory evidence that has emerged post-conviction has highlighted significant flaws in the criminal justice system, particularly when it comes to eyewitness testimony, which according to the Innocence Project, “has played a role in 75 percent of convictions overturned by DNA testing.”

Doubts about Davis’ guilt however, aren’t exactly unanimous. They are not, for example, shared by the family of the slain police officer whom Davis was convicted of killing.

“He’s guilty,” MacPhail’s widow, Joan MacPhail-Harris, said. “We need to go ahead and execute him.”

For all the questions raised about the evidence and lack thereof that led to Davis’ original conviction, the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles agreed.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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