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USA: Execution scheduled amidst allegations of state misconduct

Jamie Mills is set for execution in Alabama on May 30, 2024. He was sentenced to death in 2007 for a 2004 murder of an elderly couple. The jury recommended the death penalty with an 11-1 vote. New evidence suggests misconduct in his trial. The key witness against him, who faced similar charges, reportedly received a plea deal for her testimony. This deal was not disclosed during the trial. We call on the Governor to use executive clemency to prevent this potential miscarriage of justice by commuting Mills’ sentence.

Here’s what you can do:

Write to the Governor of Alabama urging her to grant Jamie Mills executive clemency.

Write to:

The Office of Governor Kay Ivey

State Capitol, 600 Dexter Avenue

Montgomery, AL 36130, USA  

Fax: +1 334 353 0004

Salutation: Dear Governor,

Overview of the Crime and Trial

In Guin, Alabama, an 87-year-old man and his 72-year-old wife were murdered in their home on June 24, 2004. Jamie Mills and his common-law wife, JoAnn Mills, were linked to the crime after police found stolen medication and blood-stained items in their car. At trial, JoAnn testified against Jamie, stating they committed the murders after a drug binge. Despite Jamie’s defense that another suspect could have framed them, he was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to death in 2007.

Questionable Witness Credibility and Allegations of a Plea Deal

Significant concerns have arisen about the credibility of JoAnn Mills’ testimony. Initially, she claimed a third party, “BH”, might have planted evidence. Later, she changed her statement to implicate Jamie. During the trial, the prosecution denied that JoAnn was offered a deal for her testimony. However, she was quickly offered a plea deal for a reduced charge of murder with the possibility of parole, just days after Jamie’s sentencing.

Emergence of New Evidence

On February 26, 2024, an affidavit from JoAnn Mills’ lawyer claimed that prior to her 2007 testimony, the prosecutor had promised to drop the death penalty in exchange for her cooperation against Jamie Mills. This affidavit contradicts the prosecutor’s trial statements, where he denied any deals were made with JoAnn.

Implications for Justice

These revelations raise serious questions about the integrity of the trial and the validity of Jamie Mills’ conviction and death sentence. The new evidence suggests that the prosecution might have misled the court and jury regarding its key witness. Lawsuits have been filed in state and federal courts seeking to address these potential injustices.

International Perspective on Capital Punishment

Under international law, particularly the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which the USA ratified in 1992, capital punishment must be reserved for cases where guilt is established without reasonable doubt. Given the new evidence, Jamie Mills’ case may fail to meet this standard. Amnesty International, opposing the death penalty in all cases, underscores the importance of due process and the right to a fair trial.

Please take action as soon as possible until May 30, 2024! The UA will be duly updated should there be the need for further action.