Maybe he did it; maybe he didn’t, but that isn’t the point here, as Anthony Gregory notes:
Last June at the evidentiary hearing, former witnesses for the state took back their testimony and claimed the police had coerced them. The tribunal ultimately denied Davis the right to a second trial, on the grounds that the new evidence had only shed “minimal doubt on his conviction.”
Some will argue that the inertia driving the execution of a man convicted of killing a cop is so powerful that the board may have been intimidated into rubberstamping the process rather than questioning it. But I would argue that even by the state’s own terms, “minimal doubt” is still a “reasonable” enough amount of doubt to overturn a death sentence. The moral implication of keeping a man in prison who might be guilty and trying him again after most witnesses against him have admitted to misrepresenting the truth is simply that the legal system is determined never to make someone pay the ultimate price for the state’s own error. The moral implication of executing an innocent man is infinitely worse: To kill an innocent man, not by accident but deliberately, knowing there is at least some chance he may be innocent, and when there is no impending threat to anyone’s life or liberty, is itself an act of murder. A state that executes a single innocent man should be condemned universally.
May the man have reconciled with God before he went…