Today in Philadelphia, prosecutors announced they were ending the 30-year fight to put former journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal to death. The questions surrounding Abu-Jamal's guilt have fueled racial tensions and drawn support from activists in both Europe and the United States.
This decision comes nearly 30 years to the day of the incident that forever changed many lives. Abu Jamal was accused of shooting Officer Danny Faulkner to death on December 9, 1981, and was sentenced to death after his conviction the following year. While sitting on death row in a western Pennsylvania prison, Abu-Jamal has always maintained his innocence, insistitng that he was another victim of a racist justice system.
With Faulkner's widow by his side, Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams asserted his belief in Abu-Jamal's guilt while delivering the decision. Williams was quick to add that Abu-Jamal "will remain behind bars for the rest of his life, and that is where he belongs."
?uestlove retweeted additional information from NBC Philadelphia, where Maureen Faulkner called the four judges who presided over the case "cowards." She insisted that she would dedicate her life to making sure Abu-Jamal receives no special treatment since he won't be facing the death penalty any longer. Her suffering is understood, but decades stranded on death row is hardly being "coddled", as she put it.
This turn of events will certainly get a boost from the hip-hop community, which has always been behind the Free Mumia movement.