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Mumia Abu-Jamal faces US Supreme Court, as supporters mobilize globally

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On Friday, Dec. 19, 2008, death-row journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal filed his appeal to the US Supreme Court, asking it to consider his case for a new guilt-phase trial. One month before, the Philadelphia DA filed its separate appeal to the court asking to have Abu-Jamal executed without a new sentencing-phase trial. Both are appealing the March 27, 2008 rulings by the US Third Circuit Court.

At this critical stage in Abu-Jamal’s case, supporters organized a week of global solidarity actions that began on December 6, the day of the main protest in Philadelphia.

RELATED: Journalists for Mumia's video report from Dec. 6, plus extended footage of the crime scene presentation (download presentation flyer or view online version) II PVN's video report from Dec. 6 II Reports from the US, Venezuela, England, Austria, Germany (Hamburg and Berlin), and Mexico II From Mumia Abu-Jamal: Free the Atenco 13! II Legal Update II GeoClan.com interview with Hans Bennett II DVD video made for Dec. 6 events: Fighting for Mumia's Freedom: a report from Philadelphia II Media Mouse review of The Framing of Mumia Abu-Jamal II Phil Africa's Message to Mexico City Protest

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Leaving the DA's office
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Jail Bush! Free Mumia!
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Passing City Hall
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City Hall
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National Jericho Movement
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Pam Africa
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Ramona Africa
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The People Will Bring Mumia Home; No Legal Lynching!
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Masked up at City Hall
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City Hall
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Ashanti Altson, Co-Chair of the National Jericho Movement
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At the 13th and Locust crime scene
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Phila PD Civil Affairs Captain William Fisher and others at 13th and Locust.

VIDEO: Journalists for Mumia Abu-Jamal presentation at 13th and Locust crime scene

 

Mumia Abu-Jamal faces US Supreme Court, as supporters mobilize globally

By Hans Bennett

(Abu-Jamal-News.com)

On Friday, December 19, 2008, death-row journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal filed his appeal to the US Supreme Court, asking it to consider his case for a new guilt-phase trial. One month before, the Philadelphia District Attorney filed its separate appeal to the US Supreme Court asking to have Abu-Jamal executed without a new sentencing-phase trial.

At this critical stage in Abu-Jamal’s case, supporters organized a week of global solidarity actions that began on December 6, the day of the large protest in Philadelphia, almost 27 years after Abu-Jamal was arrested for the December 9, 1981 shooting death of white police officer Daniel Faulkner, and later convicted in a 1982 trial that Amnesty International has declared a "violation of minimum international standards that govern fair trial procedures and the use of the death penalty".

There were solidarity actions inside the US and around the world, including Mexico, Venezuela, Germany, France, England, and Switzerland. Several US events screened the new DVD video titled Fighting for Mumia's Freedom: a report from Philadelphia.

In Philadelphia, over 200 protesters gathered outside the District Attorney’s office across the street from City Hall. Journalists for Mumia’s new video report from the demonstration features an interview with persecuted Civil Rights Lawyer Lynne Stewart, and footage of Pam Africa speaking outside the DA’s office about the newly discovered crime scene photos taken by press photographer Pedro Polakoff, and the DA’s role in hiding them from the defense. A member of the MOVE organization and coordinator of the International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal, Pam Africa cited Polakoff’s statements today that he approached the DA’s office with the photos in 1981/82 and 1995, but was completely ignored by them. Subsequently, Polakoff’s photos were never seen by the 1982 jury, or by the defense. Africa presented the evidence to Philadelphia PD Civil Affairs Captain William Fisher to deliver to DA Lynne Abraham.

Protesters marched from the DA’s office to the Federal Court Building where Abu-Jamal had oral arguments on May 17, 2007. The march stopped at the 13th and Locust crime scene where Journalists for Mumia gave a presentation focusing on the photo by Polakoff that shows a blank space where key prosecution witness Robert Chobert testified to being parked in his taxi as he allegedly observed Abu-Jamal shoot Faulkner.  An online video of the presentation is available alongside the special presentation flyer.

That week, Journalists for Mumia was featured by Philadelphia’s independent news website GeoClan.com. I argued in the interview that “those advocating Mumia’s execution show a disturbing lack of concern about the undeniable problems of racism (and all documented police / DA / judicial misconduct) throughout. At the most fundamental level, the ‘Fry Mumia’ campaign’s lack of concern is racist….The FOP is appealing to a racist lynch mob mentality that has long infected the US, so calling this a ‘legal lynching’ is no exaggeration.”

In Mexico City, Mexico, supporters organized a week of actions, including a protest rally outside the US Embassy. Linking Mumia’s case to repression and political prisoners in Mexico, speakers at the US Embassy included ex-Atenco prisoners Edith Rosales and César del Valle, as well as a guitar performance by Atenco survivor Jorge Salinas, whose arms were temporarily paralyzed and hands fractured when he was almost killed by police at Atenco. Survivors Mariana, Edith y Norma who courageously told their story of being raped at Atenco. Solidarity statements were read from Mexican political prisoners Gloria Arenas Agis and her husband Jacobo Silva Nogales, and from the Atenco political prisoners in the Molino de Flores prison at Texcoco, México.

Braulio Alvarez, a member of the Venezuelan parliament and leader of the farmers struggle in Venezuela said in his message written for the week, that Venezuelan supporters had decided “to go the American embassy in Caracas to hand to the ambassador a letter to the governor of Pennsylvania, demanding that he immediately liberate Mumia Abu-Jamal.”

Berlin, Germany’s, week of solidarity culminated in a demonstration where hundreds  marched to the US Embassy with slogans like "Freiheit für Mumia Abu-Jamal - Weg mit der Todesstrafe überall" ("Freedom for Mumia Abu-Jamal - Abolish the death penalty everywhere").

Also demonstrating the international interest in this case, the new British documentary film about Abu-Jamal, titled In Prison My Whole Life, premiered December 8 on the Sundance Channel. Previous interviews with William Francome, and Livia Giuggioli Firth, revealed that In Prison features an interview with Abu-Jamal’s brother Billy Cook, and the newly discovered crime scene photos. Officially endorsed by Amnesty International, Amnesty UK Director Kate Allen said: "We hope that the film's viewers will back our call for a fair retrial for Mumia Abu-Jamal--and also support our work opposing the death penalty in the US and around the world."

Appealing to the US Supreme Court

(Illustration by Rainer Hachfeld, Neues Deutschland, Germany)

Both the DA and Abu-Jamal are asking the US Supreme Court to consider their appeals of the March 27, 2008 rulings by the US Third Circuit Court, when the court denied Abu-Jamal a new guilt-phase trial but ruled that there must be a new sentencing- phase trial if the DA still wants the death penalty. Therefore, Abu-Jamal is appealing for a new guilt-phase trial, while the DA is appealing to execute him without a new sentencing-phase trial. On October 6, 2008, the US Supreme Court rejected an unrelated appeal from Abu-Jamal.

On March 27, 2008 the US Third Circuit Court's three-judge panel of Thomas Ambro, Anthony Scirica, and Robert Cowen ruled against three different appeal issues, refusing to grant either a new guilt-phase trial or a preliminary hearing that could have led to a new guilt-phase trial for Abu-Jamal. However, on the issue of racist jury selection, also known as the Batson claim, the three judge panel of split 2-1, with Ambro dissenting.

Abu-Jamal filed his appeal of this ruling with the US Supreme Court today, Dec. 19. Arguably the key issue will be the 1986 Batson v. Kentucky ruling, which established the right to a new trial if jurors were excluded on the basis of race. At the 1982 trial Prosecutor McGill used 10-11 of his 15 peremptory strikes to remove otherwise acceptable black jurors, yet the court ruled that there was not even the appearance of discrimination. In his dissenting opinion, Judge Ambro wrote that the denial of a preliminary Batson hearing "goes against the grain of our prior actions…I see no reason why we should not afford Abu-Jamal the courtesy of our precedents."

Separately, the DA is appealing to execute without a new sentencing-phase trial, having filed their brief on November 14, 2008.  Abu-Jamal’s deadline to respond to this is January 21, 2009.

On March 27, the three-judge panel unanimously affirmed Federal District Court Judge William Yohn's 2001 decision "overturning" the death sentence. Citing the 1988 Mills v. Maryland precedent, Yohn had ruled that sentencing forms used by jurors and Judge Sabo's instructions to the jury were potentially confusing, and jurors could have mistakenly believed that they had to unanimously agree on any mitigating circumstances in order to consider them as weighing against a death sentence.

According to this ruling, if the DA wants to re-instate the death sentence, the DA must call for a new penalty-phase jury trial where new evidence of Mumia's innocence can be presented. However, the jury can only choose between a sentence of life in prison without parole or a death sentence.

The DA is appealing this 2001/2008 ruling to the US Supreme Court, so if the court agrees to consider the DA’s appeal and rules in their favor, Mumia can then be executed without benefit of the new sentencing trial. However, if the court upholds the 2001 and 2008 rulings, then the DA will either request a new sentencing trial or accept life in prison without the chance of parole.

Notably, at the DA's request, during the post-2001 appeals, Mumia has never left his death row cell or been given general population "privileges" such as contact visits with family.

Reacting to the DA’s Appeal

Following news that the DA was appealing to execute without a new sentencing trial, I spoke with Dave Lindorff,  J. Patrick O'Connor,  and William Francome.

Dave Lindorff is the author of Killing Time: An investigation into the death row case of Mumia Abu-Jamal. He says that “the obsession of a string of Philadelphia district attorneys, beginning with current Governor Ed Rendell and ending with current DA Lynn Abraham with killing Mumia Abu-Jamal, despite his now having spent 26 years in the living hell of Pennsylvania's death row, is truly repulsive and inhuman. It has ruined the live of Daniel Faulkner's widow whose life has become a pathetic campaign of vengeance. It has cost the taxpayers of Philadelphia and of the state of Pennsylvania untold millions of dollars. And meanwhile, there is every reason to believe that Abu-Jamal was wrongly convicted of first degree murder and should never have been sentenced to death in the first place. The obsession to kill him, which began from the moment police first arrived on the scene in December, 1981, has led to a decades long travesty of and insult to the principles of justice, which is continuing to this day.”

William Francome, from the British film In Prison My Whole Life says that this “shows again the political nature of this case. It is my opinion that their office would not like to have to go through with another sentencing phase of the trial, with the attention that it would receive. They wish that this case would just disappear and that Mumia would be quiet, yet they do not want to face the Fraternal Order of Police who would be outraged if the DA wasn't pushing for a death sentence…The sad thing is that amongst the political battles, a man’s life is at stake and I find the attempt at reinstating the death sentence (which is a completely irreversible and inhumane practice), to be abhorrent.”

J. Patrick O’Connor is the author of “The Framing of Mumia Abu-Jamal.”  Despite several book tours and an important NY Times article when Framing was released in May 2008, it has been virtually ignored by the mainstream media. O’Connor argues that the DA’s appeal is “without merit and represents pure gamesmanship by outgoing D.A. Lynne Abraham…The last thing the Philadelphia DA's Office wants to conduct is a new sentencing hearing, an event it continues to put off by filing this latest appeal. That's really what this latest appeal is all about.”

The Power of the People

At the December 6 protest, Pam Africa stressed that the DA is trying to execute Abu-Jamal despite the strong evidence of both an unfair trial and innocence. Not having any faith in the court system, she argued that justice will only come from popular pressure, and made an urgent plea for supporters to do all they can at this critical hour. In his message recorded for the international week of solidarity, Abu-Jamal thanked his supporters and decried the recent denial of a new guilt-phase trial:

“My brothers and sisters, onaMOVE! I want you to know that the battle continues. It goes on because it must and it’s the right thing to do. As you’ve seen, the law is but politics by other means, and the judges but politicians in judges’ robes. It doesn’t matter what the cases say. It doesn’t matter what the so-called rules say. They’ve never followed them from Day One. What matters is what you say. What matters is what you do. So I thank you all for being there, for fighting for what’s right, for fighting for life, for fighting for liberty. I thank you all and I love you all. OnaMOVE! Long live John Africa! From death row, this is Mumia Abu-Jamal.”

 

-----------------------------

Below are several graphics of the crime scene, based on the flyer made for the 13th and Locust crime scene presentation.

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THE MISSING TAXI: On Dec. 8, 2007, Journalists for Mumia gave a slide show presentation of the newly discovered crime scene photos, that were taken by press photographer Pedro Polakoff. This photo being presented, at the far right, shows the very back of Police Officer Daniel Faulkner’s police car. The large, empty space directly behind it, is where alleged “eye-witness” Robert Chobert testified he was parked, as he “witnessed” the shooting of Officer Faulkner.

Is this Chobert's Taxi?

 


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IS THIS CHOBERT’S TAXI? This crime scene photo appeared on a recent anti-Mumia You Tube video. The photo is apparently taken from 13th St., north of Locust, and facing south towards Locust St. This is exactly where investigator George Michael Newman states that Chobert told him he was actually parked. So, is the car on the left Chobert’s taxi?

 

 

The Crime Scene


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(4) Mumia’s car (5) Scanlan’s car (Short Arrow at 1234 Locust) The trajectory of the bullet inside the vestibule (Long Arrow From 4) Mumia’s direction approaching the scene. Note that Mumia’s direction is in contradiction to the bullet trajectory and the fragments found in the wall. Officer Faulkner was more likely shot in the back by someone standing on the curb next to Billy Cook’s car (2), with the bullet traveling North, away from 1234 Locust, after exiting Officer Faulkner’s body.

The bullet(s)?


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(1) Ford parked in front of VW (2) Billy Cook’s VW (3) Faulkner’s police squad car The “X”-Marks, From Left to Right: X entry location of bullet fragment found inside the vestibule of 1234 Locust X copper bullet jacket on sidewalk X whole bullet found in frame of entrance door X 7 very small lead fragments found in lower wall

Michael Scanlan's account at Billy Cook's trial


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The straight arrow shows where Police Officer Daniel Faulkner was allegedly standing and the direction he was facing when shot. The curved line shows Mumia’s approach before allegedly shooting Faulkner. Accordingly, while Faulkner was standing in front of Billy Cook’s VW and facing west up Locust St., Mumia passed by Faulkner’s right side and looped around before shooting him in the back.

Cynthia White's account at Billy Cook's trial


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The straight arrow shows where Police Officer Daniel Faulkner was allegedly standing and the direction he was facing when shot. The curved line shows Mumia’s approach before allegedly shooting Faulkner. Accordingly, while Faulkner was standing in front of his police car and facing east down Locust St., Mumia came in front of Faulkner and looped around before shooting him in the back.


The Missing Divots


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Complementing the newly discovered crime scene photos taken by press photographer Pedro Polakoff, this official police crime scene photo (not taken by Polakoff) shows that on the sidewalk, where Officer Faulkner was found, there are no large bullet divots, or destroyed chunks of cement, which should be visible in the pavement if the prosecution scenario was accurate, according to which Abu-Jamal shot down at Faulkner at close range – and allegedly missed several times – while Faulkner was on his back. German author Michael Schiffmann writes: “It is thus no question any more whether the scenario presented by the prosecution at Abu-Jamal’s trial is true. It is clearly not, because it is physically and ballistically impossible.”

 

Comments

Photos

The photos are not factual. Mumia's cab #4 was parked in the parking lot not on 13th st. Faulkner had Billy cook over the driver side hood of the VW when he, Cook turned and fought the Officer. Mumia then ran from the parking lot and, from less than 2 feet , shot Officer Faulkner in the back.( wadda guy) As Officer Faulkner turned and was falling, he faced Jamal ,who hunched over, and the Officer fired one shot striking his assailant Mumia. He then fell and as Mumia fired his remaining shots, Officer Faulkner tried to deflect same by moving side to side, Mumia then fired his last shot DIRECTLY into Officer Faulkner's face/brain killing him instantly. As to Mumia "allegedly" killing Officer...it is a proven and affirmed fact

jon pisano
"The power of truth is final"

Got a news flash for ya

That diagram that shows Mumia's car in the parking lot is flat wrong: http://danielfaulkner.com/index.html#map

Certainly not the only misstatement on that site. For example it has Faulkner between the VW and Faulkner's police car, when actually he was at the front of Cook's car, on the sidewalk.

A very sloppy diagram, and it seriously challenges the factual credibility of the site.

Honestly, I think these are probably just careless errors, but much of their factual summaries are extremely misleading, and is clearly done to skew the facts to make the case against Mumia seem stronger.

That said, I have used danielfaulkner.com's article archive of the mainstream news articles from the early 80s--some of which works against the claims of the website. Also, the trial transcripts are a good resource, but the transcripts on our site are more extensive, featuring more in jury selection and pre-trial:

http://againstthecrimeofsilence.de/english/copy_of_mumia/legalarchive/

It's the Trial Transcripts, Stupid!

In just a few sentences, Jon Pisano (or Johnny Peppers, or whoever he is) manages to get as much wrong as is possible in such a small space.

First of all, the photos by press photographer Pedro Polakoff ARE factual: Chobert's taxi is NOT where Chobert claimed it was, the police "redecorated" Faulkner's police hat from the top of Billy Cook's VW to the sidewalk near the bloodstain from Faulkner's deadly head wound, Officer Forbes, in charge of securing the weapons of both Abu-Jamal and Faulkner is seen mishandling them. That the photos clearly show mishandling of evidence was confirmed to me by a long-time ballistics specialist in the Medical Examiner's office of the University of Tubingen, Germany. Ask any other specialist - they will tell you the same thing since it is obvious even to the layperson.

"Pisano"'s remarks after his first sentence reveal that he doesn't have a clue about what is in the trial transcript that the "Fry Mumia" crowd always champion.

The following is copied directly from the trial transcripts for June 29, 1982:

"Page 89.
Cross-Detective Thomas
Q. Now, Detective Thomas, in terms of reference to the cab that you spoke about with the material in it with the Defendant's name on it, was that parked south or north on 13th Street, or near 13th and Locust?
A. It was parked north of Locust Street on the west side of the street. I think it is just past the door of Whispers. This is Locust Street. The cab was parked I believe right here, about in here, on this side of the street over here.
Q. You are indicating above where the twenty-six feet is?
A. Somewhere right in this vicinity."

This confirms exactly what Hans Bennett shows in his as usually extraordinarily well researched article, which uses a crime scene map from my the German edition of book "Race Against Death."

For lack of better technical means, this latter map had to be quite crude, but it shows the basic facts instead of fantacizing as the "Fry Mumia" folks do.

Moreover, the trial transcripts of both Billy Cook's and Mumia Abu-Jamal's trial CLEARLY show that no one ever said that Faulkner ever, at any time, "had Billy Cook over the driver side hood of the VW," as claimed above by "Pisano."

Rather, at the Billy Cook trial, prosecution witness Mark Scanlan claimed that Faulkner beat Billy Cook up IN FRONT of Billy's VW, and at the Abu-Jamal trial he changed this claim in order to now say that he did so IN FRONT of his own police car.

Neither version explains how Abu-Jamal could have shot him in the back, as is clearly demonstrated in the graphics Hans Bennett uses in his article above.

I will not go through all the numerous absurd and mutually contradictory claims by the main prosecution witness Cynthia White, but even they are ALL in flat contradiction to Pisanos statement that Faulkner "Faulkner had Billy Cook over the driver side hood of the VW" at any time.

But alas, Pisano all but MUST make that claim, since otherwise the claim that an assailant coming from the direction where Abu-Jamal was parked or, ironically, the direction of the parking lot, was even able to approach Faulkner unnoticed and shoot him in the back simply doesn't make any sense.

The graphics expertly used by Hans in his article speak a very clear language with regard to this.

Conclusion: Pisano doesn't even know the prosecution witnesses' testimony. He has no clue at all what is in the trial transcripts. Actually reading them is a little harder than regurgitating false claims one was fed by one's friends and then continuing to spew hatred.

In the rest of his contribution, Pisano simply gets irrational, first saying that Faulkner was already falling when he shot Abu-Jamal and in the next sentence saying that he only fell AFTER he shot Abu-Jamal.

So in the first sentence, we have the hero Faulkner who gets off a shot as he is already falling, but in the seciond one, he faces Abu-Jamal and is still standing.

Which one of the two, Mr. Pisano? When Faulkner was already falling, as the prosecution witnesses clearly indicated at the trial, how could he have shot Abu-Jamal, whose shotwound in the chest had a DOWNWARD direction?

But factual coherence counts for little when it comes to painting Abu-Jamal as a fiendish coward and Faulkner as a heroic police officer soldiering on against all odds.

The final sentences:

"He then fell and as Mumia fired his remaining shots, Officer Faulkner tried to deflect same by moving side to side, Mumia then fired his last shot DIRECTLY into Officer Faulkner's face/brain killing him instantly. As to Mumia "allegedly" killing Officer...it is a proven and affirmed fact"

are just the usual mantra of the anti-Mumia guys.

Whatever the factual evidence, the will for always reject to ackowledge it. Even if the absence of any evidence of Abu-Jamal's alleged "remaining shots" apart from the one that hit Faulkner stares them in the face, they will always say "It is a proven and affirmed fact."

Generally, I'm sorry to have to say I'm under no illusion that what I just wrote will influence Joe Pisano and his buddies in any way.

Facts are totally unimportant when it comes to whipping oneself up into a frenzy of hatred, demanding the blood of a person that has already suffered beyond belief.

No, for people like Joe Pisano 27 years in jail is not enough. No, a quarter century in solitary is not enough. Having had to live with the fear of being executed for a whole generation is not enough.

They want the man's blood, for a fleeting moment of sadistic satisfaction, after which they will move on to the next target.

When a negative and destructive desire is so strong, it is small wonders that scanning the sources promoted by oneself at every opportunity, concern for the facts in general, and elementary logical coherence must go overboard.

But for us who live in a different world of sympathy, compassion and the authentic attemp to understand, the conclusion from the many facts and links Hans once again has collected for in his brilliant article abo´ve can only be what Abu-Jamal's wonderful literary agent Frances Goldin once wrote about why we can't let go of the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal:

"A maligned, innocent man must be freed."

Dr. Michael Schiffmann
Linguistics & Cultural Studies
English Department of the
University of Heidelberg
Germany
Co-founder (with Hans Bennett) of Journalists 4 Mumia
Author of the (German) book "Race Against Death. Mumia Abu-Jamal: a Black Revolutionary in White Amerika." English text available from the author.

Mr. Schiffmann, it's clear

Mr. Schiffmann, it's clear you've latched your career onto Mr. Abu Jamal in the fashion Truman Capote once did when he was composing _In Cold Blood_. Your careerism disguised as activism is embarrassing, almost a parody of cynical academic advancement.

That said, your claimed expert is suspect. I have not, and do not intend to read your book, but I'd be curious whether your ballistic expert (and his assertions that run against modern ballistic evidence handling) is someone we could look up through a public directory. Or whether he's somehow anonymous, or as tenuously related to the office you associate him with as you are associated with the University of Hedelberg.

Cop Killer has lived too long!

This animal was convicted and sentenced to death long ago. If there was compelling evidence for a re-trial, it would have been brought up long ago. His sentence is long overdue!

"animal," huh? The FRY MUMIA lynch mob exposes itelf again

All you guys have is hate and racism. And even without the racial element to it, this is the dehumanization of Mumia, which is necesary for the railroad.

The denials of a new trial have been a total outrage. The latest was the Third Circuit creating a new precedent with the new denial of his Batson claim, or so says dissenting Judge Ambro.

Like Michael Schiffmann notes above, the facts aren't going to change your mind, or other fanatics that want him dead, and openly use offensive language in their attacks.

Free Mumia...

and all political prisoners! The truth will prevail.

Michael Schiffmann is not a ballistics evidence expert

The "divots" argument is about as laughable as the "how come no one's put a pencil through the trigger guards or barrels at the crime scene like they do on TV" Hans himself poses on one of his YouTube testimonials. On the latter, Hans, real ballistics investigation is not TV drama. Putting a pencil or rod through the trigger guard is just dangerous period, and putting something down the barrel. Moreover, inserting something into the barrel corrupts important ballistic evidence from the barrel itself. Standard procedure at a shooting is _not_ to leave the gun undisturbed where it was found. Because guns can kill people, one of the first orders of business when securing a crime scene is to secure any firearms at the scene, and you _mark_ where they were found.

Regarding divots, have you Hans, even fired a gun outside of a video game. The only time pistol caliber, even high caliber, firearms consistently produce "divots" in concrete and the like, especially concrete as part of a ground service, is in the physics algorithms of video games. Bullets "sink" into the ground all the time without chunks of concrete, etc., cratering upon impact. Hell, in Yorktown, VA there are cannon balls from the 18th century just "stuck" in brick walls with no catastrophic cratering in the bricks.

The problem with your tangent is that it's evident you have no real knowledge of actual firearms ballistics or ballistic forensics. You site Michael Schiffman as an authority, but Professor Schiffmann is a professor of _American Studies_ not criminology or ballistic forensics. American Studies as a discipline, particularly in Germany, is fascinated with the study of American racist narratives, and tends to simply fit all phenomena in American society into rather simple cookie-cutter templates.

This is not to say that Mr. Abu Jamal does or does not deserve a more fair hearing. But if the focus of the appeal is derived from such "armchair forensics", it's simply doomed. To really make a difference in this world, Mr. Bennet, it'd behoove you to make a serious study of the craft of journalism rather than believing you're somehow doing good as an independent.

Ballistics

It is an UNDENIABLE fact that police are trained to do everything they can to preserve every piece of dust that they can, when weapons are recovered. Seen in the context of other proven police misconduct, as well as the dubious claim that they did not conduct the "wipe" test for gunshot residue on Mumia's hand, this is very suspicious...and leads me to speculate that the cops knew it wasn't the murder weapson, and they handled it accordingly.

The "missing divots" claim is powerful. So, by your scenario, where are those bullets that got stuck in the pavement? Wouldn't they be as noticable as "divots"?

Have you ever seen a bullet?

No the police don't look for "dust". They look for powder residue on a potential shooter's hands. If this "wipe test" is so common, how come top google results of a search for "ballistics" and "wipe test" is material actually created by your "organization" and not an objective source talking about forensics ballistics outside of the context of the Mumia case? The answer: you're clearly disconnected from any mainstream ballistics understanding.

Re: bullet holes vs. divots, we're talking less of quarter inch diameter, more like an eighth. One of the heaviest rounds used in military small arms is 7.62 MILIMETERS wide. We're talking marks on your "evidence" that will be the size of pixels.

Seriously, your ignorance belies the credibility of Mr. Abu Jamal's appeals. You may help Mr. Schiffmann get the equivalent of tenure for academic assertions he is not qualified to make, but your ignorance of plain facts makes "the movement" laughable.

I'll stick to just one point here...

If there were bullets embedded into the cement there, don't you think that would have been in the police report? Kinda like all those bullet fragments shown near the 1234 doorway? It certainly would have helped to support the DA's scenario presented in court.

Come on! You are making an absurd argument here.

To the J4M crowd

I can't stop laughing at your so called "logic" Hans, as to your "wipe test" it was not possible due to the FACT it would have been corrupted because Mumia was on the GROUND and holding his BLEEDING wound and also a struggle ensued. As to mumia's cab...he was IN THE PARKING LOT across from 1234 Locust from which he ran across and shot Faulkner in the back. Faulkner, as he was falling, turned, drawing his gun and fired one shot at his assailant Mumia who apparently was hunched over as if to duck from an expected punch. Hence the downward angle. Hows that for logic. As to the cab...it WAS parked directly behind Faulkners Police Vehicle. The photos show an empty space due to the FACT the Cab and driver were on their way to Police Hdqts. Explain the arrest of Jamal SECONDS...got that SECONDS after the murder by two very experienced SWAT Officers who just happened to be my co-workers. Also, the weapons were handled in the PROPER manner...no TV here. IF, as one poster stated, there were any irregularities, don't you think the reviewing Courts, over the last 27 years, would have found something wrong? The Courts, both State and Federal have affirmed Mumia's guilt...period. As to Justice and the DA appealing, It's just a matter of course to ask the Courts to uphold the sentence determined by an impartial Jury assembled by BOTH the DEFENCE and prosecution.

You can spin all you want J4M, Tell a lie big enough, long enough and Often enough and you will have followers. Y'all should be familiar with that.

jon, not "Joe" Pisano

"crowd?"

From what I can tell "Journalists4Mumia" is really one person, Hans. It should really be the Michael Schiffmann fanclub, but clearly they misunderstand their own relevance to the case.

Obviously you're not interested in facts, but...

Jon, how do you refute the police trial testimony that Sciffmann cited regarding the location of Mumia's taxi? You know, those trial transcrips?

Sciffmann/Cab/location

Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas. As to the comment regarding Mumia's Taxi, the statement is correct in that the taxi was on 13th street with the owner ON THE 10th...sooo what's your point?

jon pisano

"on the 10th?" the point is....

...that you had your facts wrong, and you were typically fanatical in your pronouncements of such (although you do seem to be admitting your error now, after apparently arguing that the transcripts Schiffmann quoted were fake?). This is symbolic of the larger picture of the fanatical anti-Mumia crowd's mentality, who is known for making extremely strong, hateful, and emotional statements as to Mumia's "guilt" and "fair trial", without anyone truly knowing the facts of the case.

Your comments have demonstrated this phenomenon well, as anyone following this recent dialogue can see for themselves.

Mumia

Now who is fanatical. No error on my part. The M.S. drawing shows the Cab on the MORNING of the 10th. There was also the Cabs owner and a police Officer along with Det. Thomas at the location .You and your followers are trying to imply the MS. drawing is fact and where Mumia's cab was parked on the 9th when he "ran to his brother's screams" (his words) FACT: when Mumia ran from his cab and shot Officer Faulkner in the back, he, Mumia, was parked in the parking lot as shown in the drawing posted on Daniel Faulkner.com . Try again Hans...you make us look good. BTW, I believe Tony Allen posted a very good response to all your misguided "facts"

jon pisano

so the excerpt cited from the trial transcript...

...about the location of the taxi on 13th street is a fraud?

cab

Listen carefuly Hans. The Cab indicated on the drawing posted by M.S was the location of the cab on the 10th and NOT the 9th when Mumia shot Officer Faulkner. The drawing of the 10th IMPLYS falsely, that Mumia ran from the Cab parked on 13th street to " his brothers screams" ( his words) That IS NOT FACTUAL nor was it evidence as related to the night of the murder of Officer Faulkner. If you have an ounce of credibility you would read the transcripts and the FACTUAL evidence submitted

jon pisano

So are these transcripts fraudulent?

The following is copied directly from the trial transcripts for June 29, 1982:

"Page 89.
Cross-Detective Thomas
Q. Now, Detective Thomas, in terms of reference to the cab that you spoke about with the material in it with the Defendant's name on it, was that parked south or north on 13th Street, or near 13th and Locust?
A. It was parked north of Locust Street on the west side of the street. I think it is just past the door of Whispers. This is Locust Street. The cab was parked I believe right here, about in here, on this side of the street over here.
Q. You are indicating above where the twenty-six feet is?
A. Somewhere right in this vicinity."

Crime scene Dec 10th

What I'm saying slick is YOU and YOUR group are trying to say the Cab indicated in the above referenced testimony was in that location on the 9th when Mumia shot and killed Officer Faulkner. The questioning of Det Thomas was regarding when he went to the cab on the 10th and met the cab owner and a police Officer at the location in the drawing. Maybe you should move back to California or to Germany and learn something about life and facts...but I would not rely on M.S. for factual rebuttal info unless your writing a book and see $$$ signs regarding the cold blooded murder of Officer Faulkner by Mumia Abu jamal...affirmed

The transcripts refer to the location on 12/10 not 12/9

The photo on this page shows that no vehicle was park on the west side of 13th by Whispers on that morning. The transcripts also point out the the cab was not in complete control of the police prior the the warrent being served on the 10th.

Cab/ etc

Hans...READ my post 2 above entitled CAB. If you were a friend I would ask if you had a bowl of STUPID for breakfast. Happy New Year

Can you please cite the part in the transcripts...

...where they say the cab was moved from the parking lot over to 13th street?

cab

Hans...you must be confused. As to Det. Thomas statement regarding the Cab , it was on the TENTH he met the OWNER of the Cab with the Cab, who told him WHO had the CAB the previous night on the 9th. Now...WHAT are you talking about as to the cab moving from the parking lot on the ninth to 13 st. on the tenth? What is posted in the transcripts is FACTUAL evidence and was reviewed yada yada yada. WHAT don't you understand. Gotta go...have a great New Year and Justice for Daniel Faulkner

It's Gods Job to forgive Mumia...it's the job of justice to arrange their meeting..one way or another...maybe in 2009

jon pisano

Mumia rally in NY with an interview from Jeanette

Here is another Rally in NY with an interview from Jeanette about Mumia's needed freedom:

On youtube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eX_YSuH0Pno&feature=channel_page

and on the NEILTV site:

http://www.neiltv.net/CHANNELS/Programs/ChannelProgram/tabid/192/Default.aspx?cid=68&pid=129

Mumia

It's SOOOO obvious this young lady has no clue as to the affirmed proven guilt of Mumia Abu Jamal. She should read the true facts at DanielFaulkner.com

jon pisano

I think it is obvious to anyone reading this...

...that you have no clue, Jon, and you are completely unwilling to look at the facts.

Facts

Hans, in response to your post...I KNOW THE FACTS...the PROVEN and affirmed facts. As I posted to you before I attended most of the trial when I was not at trial myself. Where were YOU? In Calfornia? Were you even born then? You rely of misinformation in a quest to promote your "journalistic future" as well as supporting those who are selling$$$ books distorting the FACTUAL evidence. Do you sleep well at night knowing you are supporting a convicted and affirmed murderer of another human being? Factual "journalist" you are not...in my opinion as if you give a sh*t. So PLEASE tell me...what are the FACTS?...no what if's...but the facts that can/were proven

jon pisano

post response

Notice posters and those of interest, there has been NO RESPONSE fron the "journalist" Hans Bennett regarding my response to his post.

Question for you Jon

There is an official crime scene photo in Daniel Wiiliam's book and also Christian Peheim's website that show's the scene from well back in the parking lot. Two vehicles are visible on the right side. I am interested in the car closest to th camera in which only the right rear quarter and part of the rear roof pillar is shown. Do you know if that is a city own RPC? Is not is it perhaps red and cream?

I've include a link to Christian's website below as i don't know how to embed an image here.

http://www.geocities.com/peheim/bilder/Abb-01_Locust-Fassade.html

TIA,
JK

photo

Hard to tell what color. I have lent Dan Williams book out but I promise I will look at it and let you know. BTW, what does that photo mean to you? If you look at the admitted drawing on Daniel Faulkner.com you will see where the cab (MJA) was parked . Now the J4M site shows a drawing submitted by a German "journalists" selling books$$$ who uses a drawing from the 10 the next, day and falsely suggest that was where the cab was on the 9th

jon pisano

Photo

Given the lack of police markings on that vehicle it looks an awful lot like a United Cab. The only other car visible in that parking lot is not a cab. Since Dan Williams admits Mumia's cab was found in the parking lot I was wondering if that was said cab. The photo in Williams book is also balck and white, I was just wondering if you knew from other sources. I was just using the photo as a reference so you you know what I was asking about.

Thanks
JK

photo

also, If you look at the photo left of the people you will see a shop. That is Johnny's Pizza, closed at the time of the killing but Arnold Beverly stated in his original statement it was a Bar and Faulkner was checking it. When I posted it was as I stated , they changed their story in the BS video. Ya gotta love all the false information and those "journalists" and book writers supporting the killer, making money on the murder of another human being

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