The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 27 Apr 2011 00:31:01
From: Portside Moderator <moderator@PORTSIDE.ORG>
Subject: Mumia Abu-Jamal's Death Sentence KO'd

Mumia Abu-Jamal's Death Sentence KO'd

Minority News
April 26, 2011


The jury that sentenced black activist Mumia Abu-Jamal to
death for the murder of a white Philadelphia police officer
was wrongly instructed, a U.S. appeals court said.

The court ordered the state of Pennsylvania to hold a new
sentencing hearing within 180 days or to sentence Abu-Jamal
to life imprisonment. The three-judge panel upheld the
findings of a district court judge and an appellate decision
in 2008.

Abu-Jamal, 57, has been on death row since 1982 when he was
convicted of shooting Police Officer Daniel Faulkner. During
his years in prison, he has written several books and become
one of the best-known death- sentenced inmates in the world.

Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams said he is
considering whether to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, The
Philadelphia Inquirer reported. The high court has already
ordered the appeals court to reconsider its earlier finding
that the sentence was invalid, resulting in Tuesday's

The court found the judge gave confusing instructions to the
jury. As a result, the panel found, jurors might have
believed wrongly that they needed to be unanimous on
mitigating factors.

Abu-Jamal, a former Black Panther, worked for several public
and commercial radio stations in Philadelphia during the
1970s. At the time of his arrest, he was driving a cab.


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