In December 1981, Mumia Abu-Jamal shot dead Daniel Faulkner in Philadelphia. The crime was witnessed by several people who were deemed to be credible witnesses, in addition to this there was forensic evidence, and a verbal outburst by Abu-Jamal shortly after the shooting in which he expressed a desire to see his victim dead (similar to the one Ram made). Most damning of all though was the fact that Abu-Jamal was found at the scene of the crime with a bullet from Officer Faulknerís gun lodged in his chest. Abu-Jamal shot Faulkner in the back; in turn, Faulkner managed to fire back one shot before Abu-Jamal emptied his gun into him.
Incredibly, in spite of all this evidence, Abu-Jamalís campaigners claim that he is innocent. Not in the technical sense that Ramís campaigners claim their hero is innocent, but literally that Abu-Jamal did not pull the trigger, although just as incredibly Abu-Jamal has never made this claim, ie he has never stated directly that he did not shoot Daniel Faulker.
Like Ram, Abu-Jamal did not give evidence at his trial, or take the stand as our American cousins say. Unlike Ram though he does not have the luxury of blaming his legal team for his predicament, because he handled most of the case himself and sabotaged the proceedings repeatedly.
In response to the outrageous lies spread by Abu-Jamalís campaigners, a group of concerned individuals set up a website which sets out the true facts of the case. This website: http://www.danielfaulkner.com, was the direct inspiration for the website: satpalramisguilty.
In a development that is as remarkable as it is bizarre, shortly after this site opened, Mumia Abu-Jamalís lawyers released a 1999 affidavit attributed to a man who claims that he rather than Abu-Jamal shot Faulkner. Abu-Jamal has also gone on record, for the first time - nearly 20 years after the murder - claiming that he himself didnít shoot Faulkner. Incredibly there are some otherwise intelligent people who believe this rubbish, including the editor of the Journalist, Tim Gopsil.
In December 2001, District Judge Yohn quashed Abu-Jamalís death sentence on a technicality and ordered a new death penalty hearing within six months in lieu of which a sentence of life imprisonment would be substituted. At the same hearing the judge reaffirmed Abu-Jamalís conviction for first degree murder.
[The above paragraph was added May 16, 2004].
On December 7, 2011, Seth Williams, District Attorney for Philadelphia announced his office would no longer seek the death penalty for Mumia Abu-Jamal, and that he would spend the rest of his life in gaol without possibility of parole. This decision was obviously a disappointment to Maureen Faulkner, who had spent the past three decades rebutting the lies of the Abu-Jamal circus and keeping alive her husbandís memory. On its announcement, she issued a lengthy statement which concluded:
ď...I believe the lowest dimension of hell has been reserved for child molesters and unrepentant murderers like Mumia Abu-Jamal. After 30 years of waiting, the time remaining before Abu-Jamal stands before his ultimate judge doesnít seem quite so far off as it once did when I was younger. I look forward to that day, so I can finally close the book on this chapter of my life and live with the gratification and assurance that Mumia Abu-Jamal has finally received the punishment he deserves for all eternity.Ē
For an alternative view, see Should Mumia be paroled?
[The above paragraph was added March 24, 2012].