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The Supreme Court has tossed out a previous ruling that had nullfied the death sentence for Mumia Abu-Jamal, reports CNN.
Abu-Jamal was convicted of gunning down a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania police officer over 28 years ago. His sentencing has been a subject of much controversy due to Abu-Jamal’s claims of procedural errors, in addition to too few blacks on the jury.
Pennsylvania officials appealed the 2008 ruling that went in Abu-Jamal’s favor. The justices announced their decision on Monday (Jan. 18), granting a new sentencing hearing.
The appeals court has the option of reimposing the death sentences or ordering a new federal trial.
Witnesses say Abu-Jamal shot Officer Daniel Faulkner, 25, in the back and in the head when Faulkner pulled his brother over at a late-night traffic stop. Abu-Jamal was wounded in the encounter, and subsequently confessed to the killing.
During his time in prison, Abu-Jamal became an outspoken critic of the criminal justice system, and published several books.
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