By Rachel Wolkenstein, December 28, 2018
Click here to read Judge Tucker’s Opinion
Click here for a PDF of Rachel Wolkenstein’s Update
On December 27, 2018, Court of Common Pleas Judge Leon Tucker granted Mumia’s petition for new appeal rights, over the opposition of “progressive DA” Larry Krasner.
This is the first Pennsylvania state court decision in Mumia’s favor since he was arrested on December 9, 1981.
In his decision Judge Tucker ruled former PA Supreme Court Justice Ronald Castille, who was the District Attorney during Mumia’s first appeal of his frame-up conviction and death sentence, “created the appearance of bias and impropriety” in the appeal process when he didn’t recuse himself from participating in Mumia’s appeals. Judge Tucker relied heavily on Ronald Castille’s public statements bragging that he would be a “law and order” judge, that he was responsible for 45 men on death row, that he had the political and financial support of the Fraternal Order of Police, and new evidence of Castille’s campaign for death warrants for convicted “police killers.” The appearance of bias and lack of “judicial neutrality” exhibited by Castille warranted his recusal.
Dear Comrades and Friends Across the Globe:
On December 27, 2018, in a historic action, Court of Common Pleas Judge Leon Tucker granted Mumia’s petition for new appeal rights, over the opposition of “progressive DA” Larry Krasner.
This is the first Pennsylvania state court decision in Mumia’s favor since he was arrested on December 9, 1981. The new appeals ordered by Judge Tucker open the door to Mumia Abu-Jamal’s freedom. The legal claims and supporting evidence, previously denied in the PA Supreme Court with Justice Ronald Castille’s participation, warrant a dismissal of the frame-up charges that have kept Mumia imprisoned for 37 years, or, at the very least warrant a new trial.
It is critical that Mumia can go forward immediately with these appeals. However, DA Larry Krasner has the authority to appeal Judge Tucker’s decision. Krasner’s position, to the surprise of many who had described him as the “new kind” of district attorney, more bent toward justice than mere conviction, with a history of defending dissident activists, has been adamant in his opposition to Mumia’ petition. His legal filings, court arguments, and his statements on public radio have all argued that there is no evidence of Justice Castille’s bias or the appearance of impropriety when he refused to recuse himself in Mumia’s PA Supreme Court appeals from 1998-2012 (!).
The following letter was distributed at the December 9, 2018 tribute at International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Local 10 for longtime Labor Action Committee member Howard Keylor.
Click here for a PDF of the letter
The Labor Action Committee to Free Mumia (LAC) sends its revolutionary greetings to you, our comrade of many years and many struggles.
As you remember, in 1998 you participated in the picket of the Neptune Jade in the Bay Area in defense of 500 locked-out Liverpool Dockers. Mumia Abu-Jamal headed the list of endorsers of that successful expression of international labor solidarity. The Neptune Jade picket sparked off the blockade of the ship in three countries. It was the inspiration for creating the LAC, and you were there when it happened.
Click here for PDF of this document
Because Eliot’s remarks about Howard pertain directly to Howard’s work on behalf of Mumia, we reproduce them here separately from the rest of the tributes to Howard.
Tribute to Howard Keylor by Eliot Lee Grossman, Attorney-at-Law, Academic
Member of the Permanent Seminar for Chicano and Border Studies, National
Institute of Anthropology and History, Mexico City.
I first met Howard Keylor in the San Francisco Bay Area around 1978, after I graduated from law school, was admitted to the California Bar, and started working with the Partisan Defense Committee, a class-struggle legal defense organization politically supported by the Spartacist League (SL) just as the Militant Caucus in Local 10, of which Howard was a founder, was politically supported by the SL. Howard was an inspiring role model for a young “revolutionary” radicalized by the anti-Vietnam War movement and Civil Rights movement of the 1960’s. I deeply respected, and continue to respect, Howard as a truly proletarianized intellectual with many years of political experience in the trade-union movement as a principled oppositionist raising unapologetically the Trotskyist “Transitional Program” from the demand of 30 hours work for 40 hours pay, to ousting the class-collaborationist trade-union “misleaders,” to the call for a Workers Party to fight for a Workers Government.
PLEASE JOIN ILWU LOCAL 10 IN HONORING HOWARD KEYLOR, LONGTIME FIGHTER FOR MUMIA ABU-JAMAL, ON HIS 93RD BIRTHDAY:
Sunday, December 9th 2018, 2 – 4pm
ILWU Local 10, Henry Schmidt Room
400 North Point St, San Francisco (near Fisherman’s Wharf)
Click here for a PDF Announcement (Shortened Biography)
Local 10 Bulletin: Honoring Howard Keylor’s Contributions to ILWU and the Labor Movement
Letter from the MUA (Maritime Union of Australia)
Letter from the IDC (International Dockworkers Council)
Remarks by Henry Johnson, December 9, 2018
Letter from the Holt Labor Library
Letter from Labor Historian, Peter Cole
Letter from the Transport Workers Solidarity Committee
ILWU Local 10 Pays Tribute to Howard Keylor
Longshore Veteran of Bay Area Labor Struggles
Local 10 of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union in San Francisco is holding a public event to honor Howard Keylor. A veteran of the Battle of Okinawa, Howard opposed the atomic bombing of Japan, an experience that led him to become anti-militarist, anti-racist and anti-imperialist. He quit college to support Filipino farm workers in the 1948 asparagus strike and became a labor activist during the McCarthy period, joining the longshore union in Stockton in 1953.