Via Workers World News Service
Reprinted from the June 29, 2000
issue of Workers World newspaper
FACTS EMERGE TO BACK UP
AL-AMIN'S CHARGE OF FRAME-UP
By S. Tomlinson
Prosecutors in the case against Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin,
formerly H. Rap Brown, have apparently made up
their minds as to his guilt--and nothing, not even evidence
suggesting another suspect altogether, can change their
Not only do the authorities know of other evidence and
yet continue to pursue Al-Amin, who they accuse of the
shooting death of one sheriff's deputy and the wounding of
another. They are actually continuing this pursuit to the
maximum extent allowed by the law: the death penalty.
On May 31, a Superior Court judge held Fulton County
Sheriff Jackie Barrett in contempt of court for
violating a court order prohibiting the release of evidence in
the case. Barrett made public tapes of Sheriff's
Department radio traffic from the night Deputy Ricky Kinchen
and his partner Aldranon English were shot. The judge
assigned no penalty to Barrett, however, saying that the
sheriff did not willfully intend to violate the court order.
Barrett maintained she only released the tapes in
order to comply with open records laws. Whatever her
intention, Barrett's actions made available new details in a
case filled with questionable evidence and media
distortions. The newly released tapes only strengthen the
argument that authorities are trying to frame Al-Amin.
On the night of the shooting, the two deputies
were in the West End neighborhood of Atlanta to serve
Al-Amin a warrant for failure to appear--a relatively minor
and non-violent offense. Al-Amin is respected in the
neighborhood for his efforts to rid the area of drug dealers.
He was also the Imam, or prayer leader, of the community
The picture of what happened on the night of March
16 is still blurry. But it is becoming clearer with each
passing week. At the time of the shooting, Deputy English
radioed that shots had been fired and Kinchen was down.
That night English stated that he had shot and wounded the
suspect. In the days after the shooting, there was
much media attention to this detail, and to the
appearance of a fresh blood trail a few blocks from the scene.
Once Al-Amin was in custody and it became apparent
that he was uninjured, the blood trail was dismissed as
unrelated to the case. If authorities admitted that the blood trail
were relevant, that admission would tear at the very
fabric of their case against Al-Amin as the shooter.
The release of the tapes from the night of the
shootings has brought new information to light. Minutes
after English's first radio call, a man was seen five
blocks from the scene. According to police records,
someone called 911 and reported an injured man near the
scene of the shootings.The dispatcher's log reads, "Caller
advises perp in a vacant building on Westview bleeding
begging for a ride."
Atlanta police have not commented on this new detail. Nor
have they provided any further information about
the bleeding man or the 911 caller. Authorities had released
tapes of 911 reports from callers about the wounded officers.
But the call about the bleeding man was not released.
Al-Amin's defense lawyers will certainly question the
identity and whereabouts of this bleeding person.
Al-Amin's only statement to the media thus far came shortly
after being placed in custody in Alabama before being
sent back to Atlanta. He called the case a "government
conspiracy" against him.
The knowledge that authorities have charged Al-Amin with
murder and intend to seek the death penalty even though
they have evidence of another suspect makes his assertion
all the more powerful.
- END -
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