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Fighting spirit: a message from Herman Wallace

September 12, 2013

 

Please take action: Demand humane release for Herman by clicking HERE.

by Herman Wallace

On Saturday, Aug. 31, I was transferred to LSU Hospital for evaluation. I was informed that the chemo treatments had failed and were making matters worse and so all treatment came to an end. The oncologists advised that nothing can be done for me medically within the standard care that they are authorized to provide. They recommended that I be admitted to hospice care to make my remaining days as comfortable as possible. I have been given two months to live.

Herman Wallace 0713, web
A recent photo of Herman Wallace – without shackles!
I want the world to know that I am an innocent man and that Albert Woodfox is innocent as well. We are just two of thousands of wrongfully convicted prisoners held captive in the American Gulag. We mourn for the family of Brent Miller and the many other victims of murder who will never be able to find closure for the loss of their loved ones due to the unjust criminal justice system in this country. We mourn for the loss of the families of those unjustly accused who suffer the loss of their loved ones as well.

Only a handful of prisoners globally have withstood the duration of years of harsh and solitary confinement that Albert and myself have. The state may have stolen my life, but my spirit will continue to struggle along with Albert and the many comrades that have joined us along the way here in the belly of the beast.

In 1970 I took an oath to dedicate my life as a servant of the people, and although I’m down on my back, I remain at your service. I want to thank all of you, my devoted supporters, for being with me to the end.

Keep in touch with Herman and Albert

  • Albert Woodfox, 72148, David Wade Correctional Center, N1 A3, 670 Bell Hill Road, Homer, LA 71040
  • Herman Wallace 76759, Elayn Hunt Correctional Center, CCR D2, P.O. Box 174, St. Gabriel, LA 70776

End the nightmare! Free Herman Wallace!

Sign the Amnesty International petition HERE.

Herman Wallace and fellow prisoner Albert Woodfox were placed in isolation in 1972. Since then they have been confined to 6.5 by 9-foot cells for 23 hours a day and allowed out only to exercise alone in a small outdoor cage, to shower or to walk along the cell unit corridor.

Call on Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal to end the 41-year nightmare and release Herman so that his family can care for him during his last months.

Both men were convicted of the murder of prison guard Brent Miller, yet no physical evidence links them to the crime; potentially exculpatory DNA evidence has been lost, and the testimony of the main eyewitness has been discredited. These serious legal concerns compound the injustice of decades of cruel confinement.

Now 71-year-old Herman Wallace is terminally ill with liver cancer. Call on Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal to end the 41-year nightmare and release Herman so that his family can care for him during his last months.

End 41 years of solitary confinement for Herman and Albert

For 41 years, Albert Woodfox and Herman Wallace have been held in solitary confinement, mostly in the Louisiana State Penitentiary, known as Angola prison, an 18,000-acre former plantation worked before and since emancipation by enslaved Africans.

Herman Wallace's cell, model by Jackie SumellAlbert Woodfox and Herman Wallace, along with Robert King, formed the first prison chapter of the Black Panther Party in 1971, building a movement to desegregate the prison and end widespread rape and violence. They worked as jailhouse lawyers helping prisoners file legal papers and organized multiple strikes and sit-ins for better conditions. A year later they were charged with murdering a guard and thrown in the “hole” and have remained in solitary confinement ever since.

Robert King, the only member of the Angola 3 who has so far won his freedom, was released after 29 years of isolation when his conviction was overturned in 2001. He has worked tirelessly since then to free his brothers, traveling the world speaking out for their release and against the torture of solitary confinement.

Two such charismatic, caring and courageous men must be set free NOW. Forty-one years of solitary torture in punishment for having the audacity to bring hope and dignity into the lives of prisoners is far too long.

Angola Prison Warden Burl Cain has “more than once suggested” that Woodfox and Wallace must be held in solitary because they ascribe to “Black Pantherism.”

According to Solitary Watch, in a 2008 deposition, attorneys for Woodfox asked Cain, “Let’s just for the sake of argument assume, if you can, that he is not guilty of the murder of Brent Miller.” Cain responded, “OK, I would still keep him in CCR [Closed Cell Restrictive, Louisiana’s version of solitary confinement]. …

“I still know that he is still trying to practice Black Pantherism, and I still would not want him walking around my prison because he would organize the young new inmates. I would have me all kind of problems, more than I could stand, and I would have the Blacks chasing after them.”

Two such charismatic, caring and courageous men must be set free NOW. Forty-one years of solitary torture in punishment for having the audacity to bring hope and dignity into the lives of prisoners is far too long.

Robert King, the only one of the Angola 3 who has been released from prison, talks about how he coped with 29 years in solitary confinement. – Amnesty International production published June 6, 2011

 

3 thoughts on “Fighting spirit: a message from Herman Wallace

  1. Rev. George Brooks

    I remember well the Bay View when I lived there in Oakland years back. And glad to see that you all are still on the job of putting the black messages out. Now 75 and retired, after writing there once upon a time for the Oakland Post and the Sun Reporter, as well as my own newspaper, The Sunday News and Chatterbox newsletter, I am still doing newsletters here in Murfreesboro, TN. And will be doing something on Herman Wallace, and will CHARGE ALL OF US BLACK FOLKS IN AMERICA with allowing such unfair and evil justice to take place regarding Brother Wallace, and the others in that Angola Prison. Which all inmates shoud be removed, and the damn place burnt to the ground by the federal government. And we need to be calling for this, as I will do in my upcoming newsletters on this case. And I will also be calling Herman Wallace, and the others there that have also been wrongfully mistreated in that prison, HEROES and HUMAN RIGHTS FIGHTERS. — Rev. George Brooks, who was without the reverend title when I lived in the Bay Area.

    Reply
  2. Fiska Duguay

    This is the most incredible story I have heard. I am apauled at the injustice and abbuse of power. :( Rest in Peace Herman…You are in my heart. NOW and always. I am in tears and cannot imagine this being acceptable anywhere in the world but the US (Canada's big brother) YUKKK i guess i cant say im surprised that President Bush never helped change these conditions and wrongful convictions but I am surprised that Obama hasnt. I want all the prison guards and warden held criminaly responsible for this. what message is given when people get incarcerated for commiting crimes but then thrown where violence and injustice is allowed against them and NO ONE held accountable? Please be at Peace Herman Wallace and I am so sorry for the injustice you have endured. Fiska Duguay

    Reply

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