I do not believe in capital punishment. I believe the state should not kill. But, if the state does, then the state has an awesome responsibility. That includes being as certain as possible that no available evidence should go unexamined and untested.
In that spirit, I have asked Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant to stay Willie Manning’s execution and order DNA testing of crime scene evidence. You can too.
The Innocence Project writes about the case:
Willie Manning is on death row in Mississippi, awaiting execution for the abduction and murder of two college students in 1992. He was convicted on circumstantial evidence, including the testimony of a jailhouse informant who had previously given a statement implicating another person. No physical evidence has ever linked Willie to the crime, and he has always maintained his innocence. He has been seeking DNA testing of crime scene evidence for years.
Incredibly, the Mississippi Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision that there is “overwhelming evidence of guilt,” so no DNA testing is needed. His execution has been set for May 7th. Eighteen men have been exonerated by DNA testing after being sentenced to death, including Kennedy Brewer of Mississippi. We are asking the Governor to stay the execution and order the DNA testing that will definitively prove Willie Manning’s guilt or innocence. Join us in calling on Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant to stay Willie’s execution and order DNA testing!
My letter has gone. Will you send one?
See you along the Trail.