Entries tagged with “Toforest Johnson

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Prosecutorial Accountability

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Apr 19, 2023

Alabama Death Row Prisoner Appeals to U.S. Supreme Court, With Support from the District Attorney and Trial Prosecutor

On April 17, 2023, lawyers for Toforest Johnson (pic­tured, cen­ter), who has spent 25 years on Alabama’s death row, filed a peti­tion for a writ of cer­tio­rari to the U.S. Supreme Court request­ing a new tri­al. The peti­tion was but­tressed by sup­port from the present District Attorney and from the orig­i­nal tri­al pros­e­cu­tor in Johnson’s case.

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Prosecutorial Accountability

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Mar 23, 2020

Alabama Judge Denies New Trial for Toforest Johnson

A Birmingham judge has denied a new tri­al to Alabama death-row pris­on­er Toforest Johnson (pic­tured, cen­ter), say­ing he had not proven his claim that his con­vic­tion and death sen­tence for the killing of a sheriff’s deputy in 1995 were the prod­uct of pros­e­cu­to­r­i­al misconduct.

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Apr 25, 2024

Articles of Interest: Juror Who Sentenced Toforest Johnson to Death Now Believes He Is Innocent

Monique Hicks, one of the twelve peo­ple who served on the Alabama jury that con­vict­ed Toforest Johnson and sen­tenced him to death, said in an op-ed pub­lished on April 22, 2024 that she now believes Mr. Johnson deserves a new tri­al. Ms. Hicks recounts the new evi­dence that has come to light in the case and writes, My role in the wrong­ful con­vic­tion of an inno­cent man keeps me awake at night.” 

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Jun 15, 2020

Birmingham D.A. Files Brief Supporting New Trial for Death-Row Prisoner Toforest Johnson

Jefferson County District Attorney Danny Carr has filed an ami­cus brief sup­port­ing the grant of a new tri­al to Toforest Johnson (pic­tured, cen­ter, with fam­i­ly mem­bers), sen­tenced to death for the mur­der of an Alabama sheriff’s deputy. In a plead­ing filed in the Jefferson County Circuit Court, Carr wrote that, A prosecutor’s duty is not mere­ly to secure con­vic­tions, but to seek jus­tice,” and that duty, he said, requires inter­ven­tion in this case” on Johnson’s behalf.

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Prosecutorial Accountability

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Aug 02, 2022

Commentary: Despite Strong Evidence of Innocence, Courts and Officials Pass the Buck’ Keeping Toforest Johnson on Alabama’s Death Row

The inno­cence case of Alabama death-row pris­on­er Toforest Johnson (pic­tured, cen­ter) has drawn sub­stan­tial sup­port from for­mer judges, jurors, pros­e­cu­tors, and state bar pres­i­dents, but dis­in­ter­est by cur­rent Alabama offi­cials has left Johnson lan­guish­ing on death row. So argues jour­nal­ist Radley Balko in his Washington Post col­umn on July 282022.

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Prosecutorial Accountability

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Mar 17, 2021

Former Alabama Attorney General, Appeals Court Judges Call for New Trial for Death-Row Prisoner Toforest Johnson

More than a dozen for­mer Alabama pros­e­cu­tors, judges, and state bar pres­i­dents have filed briefs in a Birmingham court call­ing for a new tri­al for Alabama death-row pris­on­er Toforest Johnson (pic­tured, cen­ter, with fam­i­ly mem­bers). The extra­or­di­nary fil­ings join Jefferson County District Attorney Danny Carr in sup­port­ing efforts by lawyers from the Southern Center for Human Rights, the University of California-Berkeley Law School Death Penalty Clinic, and the Innocence Project to free Johnson from what they regard as a wrong­ful cap­i­tal con­vic­tion and death sentence.

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Prosecutorial Accountability

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Aug 30, 2021

Jurors who Voted to Convict Toforest Johnson Now Support New Trial

Three mem­bers of the jury who vot­ed to con­vict and sen­tence Toforest Johnson (pic­tured, cen­ter) to death in his cap­i­tal tri­al in Birmingham in 1998 are now urg­ing Alabamas courts to grant him a new tri­al. Having learned of sig­nif­i­cant pros­e­cu­to­r­i­al mis­con­duct dur­ing Johnson’s tri­al for the mur­der of a sheriff’s deputy, includ­ing the rev­e­la­tion that a key wit­ness lied to col­lect reward mon­ey, Jay Crane, Matthew Young, and Monique Hicks all say that Johnson’s con­vic­tion should be overturned.

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Prosecutorial Accountability

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United States Supreme Court

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Oct 02, 2023

Supreme Court Denies Certiorari to Two Death-Sentenced Men with Credible Innocence Claims

On October 2, the first day of its new term, the Supreme Court denied review in two high-pro­file death penal­ty cas­es: Toforest Johnson and Robert Roberson. Both men have long main­tained their inno­cence and have gar­nered broad bipar­ti­san sup­port for their inno­cence claims.

Policy Issues

Innocence

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Prosecutorial Accountability

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Dec 20, 2019

With Newly Discovered Evidence of Prosecutorial Misconduct, Alabama Death-Row Prisoner Hopeful to Win New Trial

Alabama sen­tenced Toforest Johnson to death, his lawyers and nation­al experts say, because of pros­e­cu­to­r­i­al mis­con­duct, false eye­wit­ness tes­ti­mo­ny, and inad­e­quate rep­re­sen­ta­tion. In an ami­cus brief filed in a Birmingham tri­al court on December 12, 2019, the Innocence Project says, If ever a case bore the hall­marks of a wrong­ful con­vic­tion, Toforest Johnson’s is it.”