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Troy Davis to be Executed


The Georgia State Board of Pardons and Paroles has denied clemency to Troy Davis, making his execution inevitable. Davis is not unquestionably innocent, and not quite a case like Cameron Todd Willingham where it is impossible to prove innocence to absolute certainty but we know that the state has no evidence that a crime was committed, let alone that Willingham committed it. But it is still utterly outrageous that he will be executed based on the evidence that the state of Georgia has presented. There is no physical evidence against Davis. The case relies entirely on eyewitness testimony, a highly unreliable form of evidence that is far more likely than any other source of evidence to lead to wrongful convictions. Moreover, 7 of the 9 eyewitnesses against him have recanted their testimony and claimed that their identifications were produced under the kind of high-pressure conditions that are especially likely to lead to erroneous identifications.

We cannot be completely certain that Troy Davis is innocent, but we can be certain that if states can execute people based solely on inherently unreliable evidence innocent people will be executed. The state of Georgia is about to be responsible for an outrageous violation of human rights.

UPDATE: I have a more extensive analysis here.   R.I.P.

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