Troy Davis, the condemned inmate who convinced hundreds of thousands of people but not the justice system of his innocence, filed an eleventh-hour plea Wednesday asking the U.S. Supreme Court to stop Georgia authorities from executing him for the murder of an off-duty police officer.
His execution had been set to begin at 7 p.m., but Georgia prison officials were still waiting for the high court’s decision nearly two hours later.
Mr. Davis’s supporters staged vigils in the U.S. and Europe, declaring “I am Troy Davis” on signs, T-shirts and the Internet. Some tried increasingly frenzied measures, urging prison workers to stay home and even posting a judge’s phone number online, hoping people will press him to put a stop to the lethal injection. President Barack Obama deflected calls for him to get involved.
“They say death row; we say hell no!” protesters shouted outside the Jackson prison where Mr. Davis was to be executed. In Washington, a crowd outside the Supreme Court yelled the same chant.
The crowd outside the prison swelled to more than 500 as night fell and a few dozen riot police stood watch.