The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Jeff Cohen,

Petitioners Ask DA Krasner to Reverse Action on Mumia Abu-Jamal


A petition with more than 6,400 signers was delivered to DA Krasner's office this morning. The full text of the petition reads:

Dear District Attorney Krasner:

As you know, respected human rights groups like Amnesty International have criticized the 1982 trial that convicted Mumia Abu-Jamal - as well as the corrupted appeals process that followed. Amnesty pointed to racial bias at the trial and "possible political influences that may have prevented him from receiving an impartial and fair hearing." Since that tainted trial, Mr. Abu-Jamal has spent roughly 37 years in prison, much of it on death row in solitary confinement.

After Judge Leon Tucker recently granted Mr. Abu-Jamal the right of appeal based on the appearance of bias in the appeals process, we were dismayed to hear you have decided to challenge Judge Tucker's decision, apparently over concern that it might open the way for appeals by other less prominent convicted prisoners.

We urge you to drop your appeal of Judge Tucker's ruling - and we ask you: Given the racial, judicial and political biases that have tarnished Mr. Abu-Jamal's case from day one, isn't nearly four decades behind bars more than enough?

The petition was created by and launched on Monday.

"People across the country were thrilled to learn that a lawyer with Larry Krasner's social-justice history and commitment to reform had been elected Philadelphia's DA -- and that's why there was disappointment over his decision regarding Judge Tucker's ruling," commented cofounder Jeff Cohen. "This petition, signed by more than 5,000 people in the first 48 hours, respectfully urges DA Krasner to bring the tainted case of Abu-Jamal to a close after nearly four decades."

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