March 31, 2023: Mumia Abu-Jamal Denied an Evidentiary Hearing
"Mumia is the community, Mumia is the world movement, Mumia is the heartbeat when we talk about revolutionary thinkers, and you know, Mumia represents all that are in prison. Mumia's story as a political prisoner is the story of your family members and your friends who are being held behind bars by a racist system. So we're not stopping, we're not stopping at all."
—Jamal Jr. on Black Power Media
Today at 4:08 pm, March 31, 2023, Common Pleas court Judge Lucretia Clemons denied Mumia Abu-Jamal ’s request an evidentiary hearing, which would lead to a new trial.
This is simply devastating news.
After 41 years in prison, Mumia Abu-Jamal has exhausted nearly all of his avenues for relief.
Make no mistake: Justice required that Mumia Abu-Jamal be given a new trial.
The enemy now is time. At 68 years old Mumia is suffering from cardiac disease, has had a double bypass, and nearly died from lack of treatment for acute Hepatitis C.
If you put thick blinders on that block out all reality and rely on procedural minutiae for cover, honestly, it is still impossible to avoid the scorchingly blatant racism of trial Judge Albert Sabo, Assistant District Attorney Joseph McGill, Mayor and former police chief Frank Rizzo, District Attorney during Mumia’s trial Ed Rendell, and Ron Castille, DA and former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice.
Striking Blacks from the Jury
Judge Clemons stated that she was dismissing the claim of striking Black jurors on procedural grounds, dismissing Mumia's claim about the prosecutor excluding Black people from the jury, without addressing the merits of the claim. One only has to look at the McMahon training tapes that were made by the Philadelphia DA’s office which instructed prosecutors how to strike Black jurors. The tapes were made after Mumia’s trial, but they document the practice which was the norm in the office.
Suborning Perjury: Paying Witnesses
Additionally, there's the note from supposed “eye witness” Robert Chobert that asked prosecutor McGill after the trial “where is the money that is owed to me?” This note was scrubbed from any filings and buried by the prosecution for 40 years. This dramatic “Brady evidence,” previously unavailable to the defense, was dismissed by the Judge in her written opinion as not “being material.” Meaning it would not have affected the jury’s verdict! Underlying this is the wholesale adoption of the credibility determinations of the original trial court Judge Albert “I am going to help them fry the n---word” Sabo. It allows his racist tainted rulings to stand.
Judge Clemons also dismissed records from prosecutor McGill that extensively track and monitor another key witness, Cynthia White, who’s pending criminal cases were ALL were dropped by the prosecution following her testimony.
by Noelle Hanrahan
"It’s heartbreaking... Mumia is a scholar, he is a good dude who is being framed up by Philadelphia for a murder he didn't commit … the Judge knows this, the prosecution knows this, and it really saddens me that they won’t give my grandfather the freedom that he deserves"—Jamal Jr.
You can read the decision here (and the procedural minutiae is blatant)!