Feb. 17 2000
Seattle Labor Council
RESOLUTION OF SUPPORT FOR MUMIA
ABU-JAMAL

WHEREAS, Mumia Abu-Jamal is currently on death row in Pennsylvania in a Case which has brought international attention to the serious possibility that the State of Pennsylvania may be killing a man who is innocent of the changes against him; and

WHEREAS, the judge in his case, Albert Sabo, had sentenced more people To death than any other sitting judge in the United States; and

WHEREAS, six former Philadelphia prosecutors have sworn in court Documents that no accused could receive a fair trial in the court of Judge Albert Sabo; and

WHEREAS, the jury was empanelled only after eleven qualified African-American were removed by peremptory challenges from the prosecution, a practice that was recently revealed as having been taught to prosecutors in a special training video tape; and

WHEREAS, the defense attorney testified that he didnít interview a Single witness in preparation for the 1982 trial and he informed the court in advance that he was not prepared; and

WHEREAS, Jamal was denied the constitutional right to act as his own attorney; and

WHEREAS, the defense investigator quit the case before the trial began because the meager court allocated funds were exhausted; and

WHEREAS, neither a ballistics expert nor a pathologist were hired by the defense because of insufficient funds; and

WHEREAS, the prosecutor used the fact that 12 years earlier Jamal had been a member of the Black Panther Party as an argument for imposing the death penalty, a practice later condemned as unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in another case; and

WHEREAS, the racial bias of Philadelphiaís courts now has 120 people on death row, and all but 13 of them are non-white (Mumia Abu-Jamal is Black);and

WHEREAS, the jury was never allowed to hear evidence which contradicted The prosecutionís claim that Jamal had confessed, because when the police officer who had reported that "the Negro male made no comments," was called as a defense witness, the prosecution contended he was on vacation and unavailable, and the judge refused a continuance so that the officer could be brought in, while, in fact, the officer was at home and available;and

WHEREAS, no police officer claimed to have heard this alleged confession until two months after it allegedly occurred, and only after Jamal filed police brutality charges; and

WHEREAS, the attending physician at the hospital where Jamal was initially kept denies that Jamal said anything; and

WHEREAS, the jury never heard the written findings of the medical examiner which contradicted other prosecution testimony by stating "shot with .44 cal." (while Jamalís gun was .38 caliber), and this was because Jamalís court-appointed attorney wasnít familiar with the medical examinerís report; and

WHEREAS, the police never tested Jamalís gun to see if it had been recently fired, never tested Jamalís hands to see if he had fired a gun, have never shown Jamalís gun to be the fatal weapon, and have lost a bullet fragment removed by the medical examiner; and

WHEREAS, the jury never heard from a key eye-witness, William Singletary, who saw the whole incident and has testified that Jamal was not the shooter, and who claims to have been intimidated by police when he initially reported this, subsequently fleeing the city; and

WHEREAS, key witnesses Veronica Jones, Cynthia White, and Robert Chobert testified for the prosecution, but the latter two were given special exemptions from criminal prosecutions for other charges, and Jones, who has since recanted her original testimony, was immediately arrested in the courtroom on other charges as soon as her testimony in support of Jamal had been articulated; and

WHEREAS, the taking of a personís life by the state is something that should be done only, if ever, with solid, incontrovertible, and certain evidence that demonstrates beyond any reasonable doubt that a capital crime has been committed; and

WHEREAS, the above-mentioned conditions have hardly been met in the situation concerning Mumia Abu-Jamal; and

WHEREAS, the city and county of San Francisco, as well as the city of Santa Cruz have passed resolutions in support of Mumia Abu-Jamalís effort for justice; and

WHEREAS, the Executive Board of the King County Labor Council has passed this resolution; and

WHEREAS, labor organizations from around the world have adopted positions of support for Mumia Abu-Jamalís call for a new trial; and

WHEREAS, a key element of the labor movement, historically, has been to stand in solidarity with those upon whom injustice is visited;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by Delegates of the King County Labor Council that the KCLC does hereby formally request of the government of the State of Pennsylvania that Mumia Abu-Jamal be given a stay of execution, and a new, fair trial.

 

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