Angola 10-2ers argue for retroactive application of new constitutional amendment requiring unanimous juries

Rev. Errol Victor Sr.

by Get All the Way Right, an organization of African American 10-2ers

The correct argument in regards to representing the 10-2 jury scheme victims who are still incarcerated on direct appeal, pending trial and whose convictions are not yet final have never been made in any Louisiana court by any Louisiana defense attorney to date. Well, this argument will be made in the case of Rev. Errol Victor Sr. v. State of Louisiana in a Louisiana court within the next 60 days.

What is this argument that all Louisiana defense attorneys have either collectively failed to make or are deliberately refusing to make known?

A) There is a new amended Constitution effective Jan. 1, 2019, that requires a unanimous jury in order to convict any person of a felony, thereby outlawing non-unanimous jury convictions. Note: The Ramos case pending in the U.S. Supreme Court addresses the constitutionality of the old law.

B) The United States Supreme Court has already ruled in the matter of procedural application of a new rule of law regarding criminal prosecution and has already held in the case of Griffin v. Kentucky: “Any new rule for the conduct of criminal prosecution is to be applied retroactively to all cases, state and federal, pending trial, on direct appeal, or cases not yet final.” Griffin vs. Kentucky, 107 S.Ct. 708, 479 U.S. 314 [U.S. Ky. 1987].

C) The United States Supreme Court rulings and Constitution enjoy legal superiority over any conflicting provision of a state constitution or law. This is pursuant to the Supremacy Clause, Article 6 of the U.S. Constitution and the Pre-emptive Principle, which states that “federal rule and/or law supersedes any inconsistent state law or regulation.”

Consequently, it does not matter how the pre-Civil War racially minded historically known obstructors of justice calling themselves the Louisiana Legislature may deceptively word their legislative acts of war against Africans in the state of Louisiana. Louisiana legislators have no authority to write laws that supersede federal law and the Constitution. Any such law or interpretation in conflict with the Supreme Court interpretation is a nullity as if it does not exist and has no authority or recognizable rights.

Three questions that Rev. Victor puts before the United States Supreme Court in his direct appeal writ of certiorari, dated March 17, 2019, and requires answering are:

1) Can the practices of the state of Louisiana which defy federal constitutional protections be usurped by local practice and/or wanton disregard for prior decisions of the highest court in the land, the United States Supreme Court?

2) Has Louisiana established a pattern of adherence or defiance towards prior decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court?

3) Are defendants denied on direct review the 14th Amendment right to vacate a non-unanimous jury verdict retroactively, when the new constitutional amendment becomes effective requiring unanimous jury verdicts for felony convictions?

Referred to during the election campaign as “the shame of our state,” the non-unanimous jury scheme will no longer be used in Louisiana courts, but it was not applied retroactively. So the approximately 2,000 people serving 10-2 sentences will die in prison unless the law can “get all the way right,” as these writers advocate. The state is not cooperating and is sealing all jury polling records to hide the truth of the Black lives unjustly taken and still incarcerated by the non-unanimous jury scheme.

Louisiana officers of the court as well as local media have avoided reporting the legal arguments in the court presented by Rev. Victor on this 10-2 issue and as petitioner on appeal. They have ignored reporting that Rev. Victor is joined by over 1,000 African Americans as indispensable parties filing for a removal petition on appeal in the United States Eastern District Court. They are questioning officials under color of law and violating their civil rights, openly attempting to circumvent U.S. Supreme Court rulings and constitutional immunities.

An example is the language of the new amended law stating “offenses committed on or after the effective date” and the pre-emptive sealing of the polling of the jury on past cases. This wayward behavior by Louisiana legislators creates state laws in ignorance of Supreme Court rulings.

Louisiana cannot supersede established federal law and Supreme Court rulings by creating unattainable procedural processes designed to prohibit the rights Africans in Louisiana are entitled to by way of legal fiction, vexation litigation and unlawful legal procedural misapplication and manifest errors of law.

No matter how Louisiana’s new law is written or the date of the alleged offense, the law is already settled on the procedure by which the entitlement is to be made applicable. Louisiana must be made to release the African Americans who have been irreparably harmed and dehumanized by officials who took oaths to protect them.

What does this mean? All those still being held who were on direct appeal, pending trial or whose case was not yet final, their verdicts are not valid pursuant to procedural application of the new amended Constitution (see, Griffin vs. Kentucky, supra) declaring non-unanimous juries invalid. Subsequently, any sentence based upon an invalid verdict is not valid (La. Cr. C.P. Art. 872) regardless of the date of the alleged offence, pursuant to State v. Draughter, 130 So.3d 855 (La. 2013).

Any state court, officers of the court or state legislators who maneuver to create laws purposely in conflict with the rulings of the highest court in the land is committing “pre-emptive injustice” and the kidnapping and human trafficking of those Africans and other indispensable parties entitled to those rights in violation of the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery and the 14th Amendment requiring equal protection, procedural due process and due process guarantees. Deliberate actions of this nature amount to criminal acts in violation of the official’s oath of office.

Attention: If you are a defense attorney with integrity who has the courage to be a leader, understands and agrees entirely with us, and believe yourself to be called to make this prophetically historic legal argument for those incarcerated victims of the non-unanimous jury scheme in the courts of Louisiana, please contact the Get All the Way Right organization immediately. Expeditious consideration warranted! Call 225-620-3572 or and ask for Ms. Tisha Thomas or email her at tishathomas@icloud.com.

Rev. Victor writes: “Thank you and may Yah (God) continue to bless you exceedingly for all that you have done and are doing for our emancipation. I am very grateful. God’s Servant, Pastor Victor.”