Update: Final appeal for the life of Troy Davis is denied

By Stephen C. Webster
Wednesday, September 21, 2011 9:08 EDT
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Update 10:20 a.m. EST (below): Appeal denied

There may be one last glimmer of hope for Georgia death-row inmate Troy Davis. Attorneys said early Wednesday that they would file one more appeal, arguing that the ballistics testing in his case was flawed.

The appeal is set to be filed with the Butts County Superior Court as soon as it opens.

Davis, 42, was convicted of murdering Georgia police officer Mark MacPhail in 1989. Since his conviction, seven of the nine people who testified against him have recanted or changed their testimonies.

No murder weapon was ever found, no DNA evidence or fingerprints tie Davis to the crime, and some witnesses have since said the murder was committed by another man — a witness who testified against Davis.

What was thought to be his final appeal, a request for clemency, was denied Tuesday morning. Davis has seen his execution scheduled and delayed three times prior.

Before he’s executed, Davis has demanded to take a polygraph test to show that he is not lying about his innocence. Attorneys suggested that while a polygraph is not a reliable measure of innocence, it could help to introduce even more doubt as to his guilt.

Short of the appeal, the only other thing that could save Davis is a strike by the prison staff, which two leading Georgia Democrats heavily encouraged in interviews with Raw Story.

“For those employees, doctors, nurses who have been given or have taken on the job of killing Troy Davis, we’re asking them to say, ‘Not in our name,’” State Senator Vincent Fort (D) explained. ”We’re asking them to say, ‘No, this is immoral, this is wrong, and we won’t partake in it.’ We’re asking them to take a stand for what is right and good.”

Davis is scheduled to be executed at 7 p.m. Protests in Jackson, Atlanta, Washington, D.C. and other cities around the world are planned to coincide with the killing.

Update 9:45 a.m. EST: Request to polygraph Troy Davis is denied

Georgia prison officials denied a request to administer a polygraph test to Troy Davis before his death sentence is carried out, according to the Associated Press.

Update 10:20 a.m. EST: Appeal denied

The Georgia pardons board has rejected the final appeal by attorneys for Troy Davis, according to the Associated Press. No further appeals are expected.

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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