January 8, 2002
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mumia Abu-Jamal's attorney's appeal to Pennsylvania Supreme Court;
state judge's refusal to hear confession of real killer!
Attorneys for death row journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal will file on Wednesday, January 9, 2002, an appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court asking it to order Common Pleas Court Judge Pamela Dembe to hear the testimony of ex-mob hit man, Arnold Beverly, about how he killed Police Officer Daniel Faulkner in 1981, on behalf of corrupt elements in the Philadelphia Police Department and organized crime, because the officer was an obstacle to the "protection racket" corrupt officers were running in center city Philadelphia.
According to Beverly's written and videotaped confession, recently featured on NBC's "Today Show," Mumia Abu-Jamal had nothing to do with the shooting and did not arrive on the scene until after the officer was shot. Dembe refused to let Arnold Beverly testify, claiming that she lacked "jurisdiction" to stop the execution of an innocent man because of a previous Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling in the case of Otis Peterkin which set strict time deadlines for presenting new evidence. Mumia's attorneys will ask the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to overturn the Peterkin decision in the wake of the major scandal which surfaced when a Federal Judge recently reversed Peterkin's conviction and death sentence because, not only did he not have a fair trial, there was not enough evidence to convict him in the first place.
Mumia's attorneys will argue to the Supreme Court, as they did in legal documents filed before Judge Dembe, that the delay in presenting Arnold Beverly's June 8, 1999, signed confession to the court was due solely to conflicts of interest by his previous attorneys, Leonard Weinglass and Daniel R. Williams, who suppressed the confession - and the lie detector test results which prove Beverly is telling the truth - because of death threats they received to deter them from going forward with any evidence or legal claims that might uncover the identities of the real killers.
Mumia's appeal is also based on Court Reporter Terri Maurer-Carter's testimony that she overheard Judge Sabo say, at the time of Mumia's trial, that he was "going to help 'em fry the n----r."
"Since Judge Dembe ruled that Judge Sabo's racism was irrelevant to whether Mumia got a fair trial, I suppose that means a Jewish defendant could get a fair trial before a judge wearing a swastika and a 'Hitler was Right' button on his robes," commented Mumia's Los Angeles attorney, Eliot Lee Grossman.
"Although Mumia's death sentence was recently overturned by a federal judge, and there is a mountain of evidence which proves that Arnold Beverly is telling the truth and Mumia is innocent, the 'powers that be' in Philadelphia still want Mumia "Dead or Alive," according to Mumia's Chicago attorney, Marlene Kamish. "It's outrageous that the D.A. is appealing Judge Yohn's overturning of the death sentence and is continuing to demand the blood of an innocent man, while nothing is being done to uncover the identity of those who planned and organized the murder of Officer Faulkner," attorney Kamish noted. "Just as bad is the Philadelphia Inquirer's scurrilous editorial demanding that Mumia be locked up for life for a crime he didn't commit," added attorney Grossman.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
CONTACT J.MICHAEL FARRELL, ESQ. (215) 925-1105
OR ELIOT LEE GROSSMAN, ESQ., (626) 943-1945.
International Action Center
39 West 14th Street, Room 206
New York, NY 10011
fax: 212 633-2889
phone: 212 633-6646