06-03-2020  2:21 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Portland, Oregon, Remains Largely Peaceful, Curfew Lifted

Portland will not impose a curfew on Tuesday night for the first time in four days

Inslee Orders Statewide Guard Activation Following Unrest

Inslee had previously authorized 400 troops for Seattle and 200 troops for Bellevue.

Mayor Ted Wheeler Asks Governor to Call Up National Guard

Portland police chief said, “It has been a long, difficult and emotional several days in Portland and across the country and we understand why.”

Governor Brown Announces $30 Million Investment to Protect Agricultural Workers

The funds are intended to secure Oregon's food supply chain and support agricultural workers during the COVID-19 health crisis

NEWS BRIEFS

Oregon Health Authority Investigating COVID-19 Increase at Unnamed Business

Oregon reports 71 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases today, no new deaths ...

Some Columbia River Gorge Trails, Parks Reopen Today

Crowded sites including most waterfall viewing areas, campgrounds, and visitor’s centers will stay closed because of the coronavirus...

Over 60 Percent of U.S. Households Have Responded to 2020 Census

Washington is one of the 6 states with the highest self-response rates and both Seattle and Portland are one of the top 8 cities with...

Federal Court Rules Florida Law That Undermined Voting Rights Restoration Is Unconstitutional

The law required people with past convictions to pay all outstanding legal fees, costs, fines, and restitution before regaining their...

Portland, Oregon, remains largely peaceful, curfew lifted

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Protests in Portland, Oregon, were largely peaceful on Tuesday night as thousands of people held a massive rally downtown, but several hundred people broke away at the end of the event, prompting police to use flash-bang grenades and tear gas to break up the...

Seattle mayor, police chief vow to review protest tactics

SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle's mayor and police chief promised a large crowd of protesters Tuesday to review the department's use of pepper spray and flash-bang grenades to break up a crowd of peaceful protesters the night before, encouraging them to keep marching as long as they do not do...

Kansas, Missouri renew Border War with 4-game football set

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas and Missouri are resuming their bitter Border War in football after the former Big 12 rivals agreed to a four-game series in which each school will play two home games beginning in September 2025.The fourth-longest rivalry in college football dates to 1891, but...

OPINION

Mayor Ted Wheeler: Portland and the Path Forward

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler invites Portlanders, as public servants, to join him "in insisting that we never return to business as usual." ...

Local Business Leaders Share Messages of Hope

President, CEO of SAIF says each of us must move forward in "our understanding of the problem, in holding ourselves accountable for our own attitudes and biases, and in coming together, not apart." ...

Time to Stop Messing Around and Strike at the Root of Police Violence

Thomas Knapp says the root of police violence is the creation of "police forces" as state institutions separate from the populace and dedicated to suppressing that populace on command ...

A Letter to George Floyd: (Posthumous)

As Black mothers, so often we say, our Black boys across this nation belong to all of us. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Nation's streets calmest in days, protests largely peaceful

WASHINGTON (AP) — Protests were largely peaceful and the nation's streets were calmer than they have been in days since the killing of George Floyd set off demonstrations that at times brought violence and destruction along with pleas to stop police brutality and injustice against African...

Democratic Baltimore mayoral race too close to call

BALTIMORE (AP) — The race for the Democratic nomination for Baltimore mayor was too close to call Tuesday.After polls closed, the city’s Board of Elections released mail-in votes received through late last week. But the slim margin of votes between the leading candidates made the race...

Broncos stop football to talk about race relations, Floyd

Instead of X's and O's, the Denver Broncos spent Tuesday talking about racial injustice, police brutality and healing a nation rocked by demonstrations over George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis on top of the coronavirus outbreak and its economic devastation.Team president Joe Ellis addressed...

ENTERTAINMENT

Trump as thug or hero? Depends on what network you watch

NEW YORK (AP) — It was a split screen for the ages on MSNBC Monday: on the left side, President Donald Trump talking about restoring law and order. On the right, a tear-gassed young woman vomiting in a Washington street.For a nation rubbed raw following a traumatic weekend, cable television...

Books on race and criminal justice top bestseller lists

NEW YORK (AP) — As nationwide protests against racism and police violence continue, readers are seeking out books old and new on race and criminal justice. Robin Diangelo's “White Fragility," Michelle Alexander's "The New Jim Crow" and Bryan Stevenson's “Just Mercy” were...

'Just Mercy,' drama of racial injustice, to be free in June

NEW YORK (AP) — The 2019 film “Just Mercy,” which chronicles courtroom struggles against racial injustice and mass incarceration, will be made free on digital platforms throughout June in the wake of George Floyd's death, Warner Bros. said Tuesday. In the film, Michael B....

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

False claims of antifa protesters plague small U.S. cities

CHICAGO (AP) — In the days since President Donald Trump blamed antifa activists for an eruption of violence...

Cyclone lashes India's business capital, 100,000 evacuated

MUMBAI, India (AP) — A cyclone made landfall Wednesday south of India's financial capital of Mumbai, with...

A year later, Sudanese raped in crackdown wait for justice

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) — Two or three times a week, Mayada goes to visit her baby daughter at the foster...

Asia Today: S Korea reopening schools despite spike in cases

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea on Wednesday reported 49 new cases of COVID-19, continuing a...

Burkina Faso's food woes deepen as extremists expand reach

TOUGAN, Burkina Faso (AP) — Islamic extremists chased Adama Drabo and his family from their land in western...

Virus has been 'very devastating' for many African airlines

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — A “new baby” was born with the revival of Uganda Airlines, the...

McMenamins
Greg Bluestein the Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) -- With less than half a day left to live, Troy Davis' supporters in the U.S. and Europe were trying just about anything Wednesday to win his clemency for killing a Georgia policeman, a crime he and others have insisted for years that he did not commit.

Supporters planned vigils around the world. They'll be outside Georgia's death row prison in Jackson and at U.S. embassies in Europe.

The 42-year-old's most realistic, though slim, chance for reprieve is through the courts, and his lawyers are trying. His backers also have resorted to far-fetched measures: offering for Davis to take a polygraph test, urging prison workers to strike or call in sick, posting a judge's phone number online, urging people to call and ask him to put a stop to the 7 p.m. execution. They've even considered a desperate appeal for White House intervention.

Supporters include former President Jimmy Carter, Pope Benedict XVI and a former FBI director, the NAACP, as well as conservative figures. The U.S. Supreme Court even gave him an unusual opportunity to prove his innocence last year.

Still, prosecutors have backed the guilty verdict and state and federal courts have repeatedly upheld his conviction for killing Savannah officer Mark MacPhail in 1989. Several judges have listened to recanted testimony from witnesses and to jurors who say they would change their verdicts, knowing the facts revealed later.

MacPhail was off-duty working security at a bus station on Aug. 19, 1989, and rushed to the aid of Larry Young, a homeless man that prosecutors say Davis was bashing with a handgun after asking him for a beer. When MacPhail got there, they say Davis had a smirk on his face as he shot the officer to death in a Burger King parking lot. Others have claimed the man with him that night has said he actually shot the 27-year-old officer.

As time ticked toward the execution, an upbeat and prayerful Davis turned down a last meal and planned to spend his final hours meeting with friends, family and supporters. Meanwhile, two attempts to prove his innocence were rejected: a polygraph test and another hearing before the pardons board.

His attorney Stephen Marsh said Davis would only submit to a polygraph test if pardons officials would consider it.

"He doesn't want to spend three hours away from his family on what could be the last day of his life if it won't make any difference," Marsh said.

His lawyers, meanwhile, are trying the legal avenues left to them, filing a motion in a county court challenging the ballistics evidence and eyewitness testimony. A judge could at least delay the execution, which has happened three times before. Most believe arguments on the merits of the case have been exhausted, however.

President Barack Obama also could ask the Justice Department to look at the case, but the NAACP has yet to make that request and legal experts have said it's unlikely he'd step in.

In Savannah, 16 Davis supporters gathered at the Chatham County courthouse to press District Attorney Larry Chisolm to help stop Davis' execution. They said 240,000 people had signed petitions urging the state to spare Davis' life, and delivered them in three large boxes to Chisolm's courthouse office where they were received by a member of the prosecutor's staff. Chisolm has said he's powerless to intervene, but activists say they believe he has enough influence as district attorney to sway the outcome.

As for the new and changed accounts by some witnesses, a federal judge dismissed them, saying that while the "new evidence casts some additional, minimal doubt on his conviction, it is largely smoke and mirrors" after a hearing Davis was granted last year to argue for a new trial to the U.S. Supreme Court, the first time justices had considered it for a death row inmate in at least 50 years. It failed.

Prosecutors have no doubt they charged the right person, and MacPhail's family lobbied the pardons board Monday to reject Davis' clemency appeal. The board refused to stop the execution a day later.

"He has had ample time to prove his innocence," said MacPhail's widow, Joan MacPhail-Harris. "And he is not innocent."

In Europe, where the planned execution has drawn widespread criticism, politicians and activists were making a last-minute appeal to the state of Georgia to refrain from executing Davis. Amnesty International and other groups planned a protest outside the U.S. Embassy in Paris later Wednesday and Amnesty also called a vigil outside the U.S. Embassy in London.

Parliamentarians and government ministers from the Council of Europe, the continent's human rights watchdog, called for Davis' sentence to be commuted. Renate Wohlwend of the Council's Parliamentary Assembly said that "to carry out this irrevocable act now would be a terrible mistake which could lead to a tragic injustice."

The U.S. Supreme Court gave him an unusual opportunity to prove his innocence last year, but his attorneys failed to convince a judge he didn't do it. State and federal courts have repeatedly upheld his conviction.

Spencer Lawton, the district attorney who secured Davis' conviction in 1991, said he was embarrassed for the judicial system that the execution has taken so long.

"What we have had is a manufactured appearance of doubt which has taken on the quality of legitimate doubt itself. And all of it is exquisitely unfair," said Lawton, who retired as Chatham County's head prosecutor in 2008. "The good news is we live in a civilized society where questions like this are decided based on fact in open and transparent courts of law, and not on street corners."

The motion filed in Butts County Court disputes testimony from a ballistics examiner who claimed that the bullets fired in a previous shooting that Davis was convicted of may have come from the same gun that fired at MacPhail. And it challenged eyewitness testimony from Harriet Murray, a witness who claimed at the trial to have identified Davis as the shooter.

It asks the court to vacate Davis' execution, or at least delay it by 90 days, on grounds that it was "based on false, misleading and materially inaccurate evidence."

Witnesses placed Davis at the crime scene and identified him as the shooter. Shell casings were linked to an earlier shooting that Davis was convicted of. There was no other physical evidence. No blood or DNA tied Davis to the crime and the weapon was never found.

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Follow Bluestein at http://www.twitter.com/bluestein .
© 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

OTHER TROY DAVIS ARTICLES
Is Troy Davis Another Horrific Example of Innocent Execution?
Carter: Execution Exposes Flaws in Death Penalty
The Troy Davis Execution: Latest News, Video, Action Center and Links


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