Four weeks from today, June 23, Troy Davis will get a day in court. Not a perfunctory hearing where lawyers and judges parse the written affidavits of all the witnesses who have recanted their trial testimony, but a real hearing, where those witnesses themselves will testify, in person and under oath, about what they really saw that summer night in Savannah, Georgia, more than 20 years ago.
The hearing may be filled with high drama, as the witnesses are likely to face vigorous cross-examination. And the outcome is far from certain. Because this is an evidentiary hearing, and not a new trial, Troy Davis is presumed guilty and must prove his innocence. And the directive to the judge from the Supreme Court – that he “make findings of fact” as to whether Troy Davis can “clearly establish” his innocence – does not exactly specify what the judge can do once those facts are found.
Which is why those of us who have worked so hard for justice in this case must not hold back now. June 22, the day before the hearing begins, will be a Day of Solidarity. A time to reflect on how far we have come in highlighting the fundamental unfairness in this case, and a time to show that we remain hopeful, but vigilant, and that we recognize the great challenge Troy Davis faces in the requirement to prove his innocence.
Solidarity events can be large (rallies, vigils, film screenings, speakers), or small (information tables, house parties or discussions). What’s important is that we all take action together. More information about the hearing and an Organizing Kit for taking action are available online, and you can register your event here. Please take action at this critical time!