Less than two hours before Georgia death row inmate Troy Davis was to be put to death last night, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed the execution until the justices can consider Davis’ petition on Monday.
Davis, who was convicted of killing a police officer in 1989, has asked the court to review his case, saying that the majority of witnesses who testified against him have since recanted their stories, and citing the absence of physical evidence in his conviction. Davis maintains his innocence. Among the people who have urged clemency for Davis are former President Jimmy Carter and Pope Benedict XVI.
The stay will remain in effect if the Court agrees to consider his case. If his petition is dismissed, the stay will be lifted.