Wed., June 23, 2010 10:00pm (EDT)

Davis Hearing Highlights Uphill Fight
By Orlando Montoya
Updated: 4 years ago

SAVANNAH, Ga.  —  
Supporters of Troy Davis gather outside the federal courthouse in Savannah.  (photo Orlando Montoya)
Supporters of Troy Davis gather outside the federal courthouse in Savannah. (photo Orlando Montoya)
Georgia death row inmate Troy Davis, the focus of national death penalty foes, got a long-awaited day in court yesterday.

But, it might not produce the results he and his supporters are counting on.

Seven witnesses went before Savannah U.S. District Court judge William T. Moore and swore that their previously sworn testimony about Davis wasn't true.

Davis, they said, wasn't the man who shot Savannah police officer Mark MacPhail in 1989.

Two of the witnesses said, another man confessed to them.

So, why did they lie the first time?

Time and again, the answer they gave was fear: fear of the police, fear of their own criminality catching up to them, fear they'd face retribution.

But much of the evidence wasn't new and it's only new evidence that can clearly show Davis' innocence that can help Davis.

Prosecutor's attorneys also sought to discredit witnesses by highlighting their "can't recall" memories and criminal records.

The continues Thursday morning.