The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit yesterday granted a two-week extension for lawyers for death-row inmate Mumia Abu-Jamal to file a petition for a rehearing on his effort to get a new trial.
Abu-Jamal was convicted in 1982 of the murder of Philadelphia Police Officer Daniel Faulkner and was sentenced to death. In late March, a three-judge panel of the Third Circuit affirmed Abu-Jamal's conviction but vacated the death sentence. The court said Abu-Jamal should be sentenced to life in prison or get a chance to persuade a new Philadelphia jury that he deserves a life sentence rather than death.
Defense lawyer Robert R. Bryan of San Francisco intends to seek a rehearing before the court on his contention that Abu-Jamal deserves a new trial, or at least a hearing on his argument that some blacks were intentionally excluded from his jury. The court said the new filing deadline is June 10. - Emilie Lounsberry