Member of "Angola Three" speaks at protest
BATON ROUGE - Protesters from Amnesty International and a member of the "Angola Three" called Monday for the last of the men convicted of killing a prison guard at the state penitentiary to be released.
The group delivered a petition with more than 25,000 signatures on it asking Gov. Bobby Jindal to release Albert Woodfox, the last of the three men who were convicted of killing an Angola guard in 1972.
Robert King was released in 2001 after his conviction was overturned, and Herman Wallace died right after his release earlier this year. His death prompted renewed interest in the case.
"Herman's death and the overturn of his conviction has given us clarity of purpose to call for his release," said Jasmine Heiss with Amnesty International.
King was at Monday's protest and spoke out on Woodfox's behalf.
"I always have believed and Mr. Woodfox has stated that he's innocent," King said. "All (the) evidence shows he was convicted falsely. The case was thrown out three times. Twice by federal judge and once by a state judge."
The group's petition was received by someone in the governor's office because Jindal was out of town.
After their conviction the case of the Angola Three experienced several legal twists. Woodfox's case was overturned for a third time by the federal district court in New Orleans, but he remains in solitary confinement while the state appeals.
The state attorney general's office wouldn't comment on the protest since the case is still pending.