The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday night refused to temporarily halt the execution of death row inmate Troy Davis, giving Georgia officials clearance to carry out his death sentence.
The court had no comment on the order, which it made about four hours after Davis’ attorneys had filed the motion. His sentence was carried out at 11 p.m., and he was dead eight minutes later.
Davis had asked the U.S. Supreme Court to stop Georgia authorities from executing him in an eleventh-hour plea after the Georgia’s Supreme Court upheld his execution.
“The application for a certificate of probable cause to appeal is denied. The motion for stay of execution is denied,” read a unanimous ruling from Georgia’s Supreme Court, upholding a lower court’s earlier decision.
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.
With his death in Georgia on Wednesday night, the sad, savage story of Troy Davis appears destined to become one of the leading cases cited by the movement to abolish capital punishment in the United States and abroad.
This video was published to YouTube on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2011.
With additional reporting by Eric W. Dolan and AFP.