Mumia Abu-Jamal is a prisoner in America who has been on death row for 30 years. I had no idea who he was, and these people kindly stopped to let me take a photo. ~Chris McGeehan/Flikr 11-9-2011
Dear Friends of Mumia Abu Jamal,
Dec 29, 2018 –Judge Leon Tucker today, December 28, ruled in Philadelphia in favor of Mumia Abu-Jamal, a major victory that opens the door to further litigation and a renewed fight for Mumia’s life and freedom. Incarcerated in 1981 in a racist frame-up murder trial and on death row for most of the past 37 years, Mumia was a prize-winning journalist and today the author of 10 books on various aspects of the freedom struggle.
Tucker’s 27-page ruling was in two parts. He held in Part Two that with regard to all of Mumia’s numerous Post Conviction Relief Act (PCRA) appeals between 1995 and 2012 Supreme Court Judge Ronald Castille, who had previously been involved in the prosecution of Mumia’s case, had demonstrated a “lack of impartiality” and the “appearance of bias.” Castille, had participated in PA Supreme Court decisions which denied all of Mumia’s appeals, including a request from Mumia’s attorneys that he recuse himself from deciding the case he had helped to prosecute and another decision where the same Castille court refused to consider the evidence submitted that Mumia’s trial judge Albert “the hanging judge” Sabo had stated in his antechambers before entering the courtroom to adjudicate Mumia’s case, “Yeah, I’m going to help ‘em fry the nigger.”
Judge Tucker’s ruling opens the door for Mumia to appeal all of Castille’s decisions over a 17-years period and thus opens the door to a new trial and Mumia’s freedom.
Tucker denied Part One of Mumia’s appeal that pertained to whether or not Castille had been significantly or personally involved in Mumia’s prosecution in order to qualify under the provisions of the 2016 Supreme Court William’s case. Mumia’s attorneys may appeal this decision in order to fight on both legal fronts.
While the present Philadelphia District Attorney, Larry Krasner may well appeal Tucker’s amazing and unexpected decision, the door is nevertheless wide open to a lengthy legal battle along with renewed national and international campaigns to win massive and united support in the streets to demand Mumia’s freedom.
In solidarity, Jeff Mackler, Director, Mobilization to Free Mumia Abu-Jamal, Northern California
Dec 27, 2018 Judge Tucker granted Mumia new appeal rights. This is a decision that Mumia can file a new appeal to the PA Superior Court on all the issues that were denied by the PA Supreme Court while Castille was a PA Supreme Court Justice. All Mumia appeal denials from 1998-2014.
It was denied on the Williams argument, but granted on the general issue that Castille should have recused himself on the grounds that it created an “appearance of bias” for him to be a Justice in Mumia’s case. I haven’t seen the decision yet to give you a run-down of Tucker’s exact reasoning.
But this is a win — opens the door to Mumia getting a new trial–or dismissal of charges–after an appeal to the PA courts. Based on Krasner’s court filings and recent statements on WHYY, Krasner/Phila DA will appeal this decision by Judge Tucker. We need to be clear that Krasner stands with the FOP to keep Mumia locked in prison for the rest of his life.
We will be ALL OUT against Krasner appealing this decision and ALL OUT for Mumia’s freedom. — On Dec 27, 2018, at 6:43 PM, Rachel Wolkenstein
Order Granting PCRA Petition in Part; Denied in Part AND NOW, this 27th day of December, 2018, it is hereby ORDERED and DECREED, that Petitioner Wesley Cook’s, also known as Mumia Abu-Jamal, ” Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus and for Collateral Relief from Criminal Conviction Pursuant to the Post Conviction Relief Act , 42 Pa. C.S. ?9541, et seq.,” is DENIED IN PART and GRANTED IN PART. Petitioner’s Post- Conviction Appellate rights regarding personal significant involvement by a justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court are DENIED. Petitioner’s Post conviction Relief Act appellate rights are hereby GRANTED and reinstated nunc pro tunc. Petitioner is advised that he has thirty (30) days from the date of this docketed order to file a notice of appeal to the Pennsylvania Superior Court, on the grounds of the appearance of bias and impropriety.12/27/2018
Memorandum Opinion Filed: