The hopes of many lifers and death row inmates rest with Emily Maw, but she has found herself fighting against the powerful US lawmakers for the right to enter a courtroom.
But under a rule found in no other state, she cannot act as a lawyer in Louisiana - which has more than 4,000 people serving life without parole and almost 100 on death row - unless she becomes a citizen of the United States.
His co-defendant, Ryan Matthews, was released from death row earlier this year after DNA testing, along with other evidence, proved that he is innocent.
Examine the state of reporting on the death penalty nationwide - especially on the issue of innocent or wrongly convicted Death Row inmates - and it becomes clear that it is not "the media" or a vast number of newspapers that triggered this dramatic re-examination of capital punishment.
Among them were 67 cases in which inmates were sent to Death Row.
Early on, Dennis Williams, lingering on death row
, blames his predicament on "power-tripping racists" Clearly, there was a rush to judgment, and it's doubtful that the death penalty would have been sought if the victims had been black.
The tapes consisted of Abu-Jamal's musings about prison conditions, with particular focus on the character of life on death row. NPR managing editor Bruce Drake, who canceled the series two days before the first segment was to be aired, said he had "serious misgivings about the appropriateness of using as a commentator a convicted murderer seeking a new trial." He said that he "did not find [the commentaries] of such a compelling nature as to overcome these misgivings." NPR denied that the cancellation had anything to do with NPR's funding battles in Congress or the ads taken out by Philadelphia police attacking NPR or attacks on NPR programming by the religious right.
Whatever the reason for NPR's cancellation of the series, readers can get an idea of the quality and character of the pieces for themselves, since they are included in this collection of 40 vignettes about life on death row and how criminal justice matters seem to someone who has lived on the row for twelve years.
The largest death row stands in Texas (324 people: 120 African Americans, 144 whites, 52 Hispanics, four Native Americans, and four Asian Americans); the smallest are in Connecticut (two whites), New Mexico (one Native American, one white), and Wyoming (two whites).
I need but look across the nation, where, as of October 1986, blacks constituted some 40 percent of men on death row, or across Pennsylvania, where, as of August 1988, sixty-one of 113 men--over 50 percent--are black, to see the truth, a truth hidden under black robes and promises of equal rights.
of the unconstitutional delay claim raised by Valle and other death row
after inordinate delays on death row constitute cruel and unusual