If you’re part of the Twitterverse, chances are you followed closely the events of Troy Davis’ last hours. The 42-year-old Georgia man was convicted in 1991 of the 1989 murder of Savannah police officer Mark MacPhail and sentenced to the death penalty. Even as he was strapped to a gurney for several hours Wednesday night, waiting to see if the Supreme Court would stay his execution, Davis maintained his innocence. The Huffington Post reports, “Davis stated that he had not carried a gun the night of the murder and did not shoot the officer.” Minutes before his lethal injection, Davis told the officer’s brother and son (who witnessed the execution), “All I can ask is that you look deep into this case so you can really find the truth.”
Many prominent officials believed Davis to be an innocent man, including former President Jimmy Carter, Pope Benedict XVI, a former FBI director, the head of the NAACP, several conservative figures and many celebrities, including hip-hop star Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, according to the AP. The Twitter hashtag #toomuchdoubt has been used in discussions about the case because, as Davis’ sister told The Huffington Post in an exclusive interview, “There’s no physical evidence; seven out of nine witnesses have recanted or changed their testimony; there’s evidence that suggests there may be another shooter.”
Martina Davis-Correia’s description of the years her brother Troy Davis spent in prison and the way it impacted her family is moving, most especially when she recounts their mother’s death. Davis-Correia told HuffPo:
On March 28, 2011, the Supreme Court denied Troy’s final appeal, clearing the way for the state of Georgia to set a fourth execution date. Two weeks later, our mother passed away from “natural causes.” She had just received a clean bill of health from her doctor the day before her death. I don’t think she could take another execution date. I believe she died of a broken heart.
On September 21, 2011, Troy Davis died from lethal injection at 11:08 pm, perhaps an innocent man.