March 2, 2012
The Honorable Governor Robert Bentley
State Capitol N 104
11 S. Union St. # 600
Montgomery, AL 36130-2751
Dear Governor Bentley,
As I am sure you know the State of Alabama is set to execute Mr. Tommy Arthur on March 29, 2012. I am writing to ask that you grant Mr. Arthur clemency. You have it within your power as the Governor of the State of Alabama to do so. It would be a legal, fair and reasonable use of the power given to you. I hope that you will use it.
There are many problems with Mr. Arthur’s case that make a decision of clemency a reasonable course of action. I’m sure you know that Mr. Arthur’s scheduled execution in 2008 was stayed by court order because another person (Bobby Ray Gilbert) confessed to the crime that Mr. Arthur was convicted of. When this occurred the Jefferson County Circuit Court ordered DNA testing of physical evidence that could link Gilbert to the offense. However, state officials testified that the DNA sample was destroyed in 1982 based on the advice of prosecutors.
Questions abound in this case. Another man confesses only to discover that evidence that could prove or disprove his claim was destroyed because of advice from prosecutors? Is this any way to determine guilt or innocence? I think not. At the very least it proves that there is reasonable doubt that Mr. Arthur committed the crime he is accused of and set to die for. Surely we can do better.
I ask you. Can Alabama afford to run the risk of executing an innocent man? I don’t think that we can.
You have not only the right but the responsibility as the Governor of the State of Alabama to stop Mr. Arthur’s execution. There are just too many questions that have no answers for this execution to proceed. I hope that you will do the right and responsible thing and stop the execution of Mr. Tommy Arthur.
Reverend Tom Duley