Troy Davis Story: Opponents Reorganize to Abolish Capital Punishment

After the execution of Georgia inmate Troy Davis, capital punishment opponents are regrouping to make the execution a turning point in their fight to abolish capital punishment.

About two dozen death penalty opponents met Thursday night in Atlanta to discuss how they could abolish capital punishment in Georgia, according to The Washington Post.

Aiming to get new like-minded people registered to vote, opponents believe that it is in the political process that this issue can be solved.

“Tell them to get engaged in the political process because that’s where change is going to come,” said Helen Butler, executive director of the Atlanta-based Coalition For The Peoples’ Agenda.

The small group represents thousands of supporters who spoke out against death sentence, including the pope and former president Jimmy Carter.

"If one of our fellow citizens can be executed with so much doubt surrounding his guilt, then the death-penalty system in our country is unjust and outdated," former president Jimmy Carter said in a statement.

Laura Moye of Amnesty International hopes Davis’ execution will be used to hold repeal movements across the country. Over the next few days Moye will meet with activists in Georgia to put efforts together to banish capital punishment there.

“I’m meeting people who didn’t really ever speak about the death penalty and now they are. They’re hungry about the information and now they know,” she said.

Davis’s execution has had a big impact across the world. The European Union also expressed Thursday “deep regret” over his case and called for a universal moratorium on capital punishment.

His death brought a dramatic end to a two-decade case. The convicted cop-killer was executed by way of lethal injection on Wednesday night and died at 11:08 p.m. EST in Butts County, Ga., despite a last-minute plea to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Earlier, Davis’ defense team tried to stop the lethal injection by filing an eleventh-hour plea to the Georgia Supreme Court to halt the scheduled execution, but the plea was denied.

Davis remained resolute to the last as he faced the execution, maintaining that he was innocent: "I was not responsible for what happened that night. I did not have a gun. I was not the one who took the life of your father, son, brother.”

Davis has spent 22 years on death row for the 1989 murder of Mark MacPhail, a Savannah, Ga., police officer who was shot dead when he attempted to help a homeless man who was being attacked.

The 42-yearold African-American was the 35th person to be executed this year in the United States.