The U.S. Supreme Court has turned down a request from the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office to re-impose a death sentence on Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was convicted of killing Police Officer Daniel Faulkner 30 years ago.
The justices refused to get involved the volatile case, which has drawn protests from both sides. A federal appeals court ordered a new sentencing hearing for Abu-Jamal after concluding that the death-penalty instructions given to the jury during the 1982 trial were misleading.
The federal appeals court in Philadelphia said prosecutors could agree to a life sentence or seek to have the Supreme Court re-impose the death sentence. District Attorney Seth Williams’ office said they would not comment on today’s ruling until they decide on a course of action.
Despite claims from white and black supporters that the Black Panther was wrongly convicted, the courts have upheld Abu-Jamal’s conviction.