Major Tillery – An Innocent Man Imprisoned Through Gross State Misconduct!
Major Tillery’s case exposes police and prosecutorial misconduct used to obtain false convictions. Tillery is actually innocent and he’s been imprisoned for 33 years, 20 of them in solidarity confinement. Police detectives, with the assistance of prosecutors, used the stick and the carrot to get jailhouse informants to lie and inculpate Tillery.
These prosecution witnesses were threatened with false murder charges, promised plea deals and no state prison time, and were provided with private time in the Roundhouse homicide interview rooms for sexual relations with their girlfriends as inducement to lying against Major Tillery.
Major Tillery was convicted of homicide, assault, weapons and conspiracy charges in May 1985 for poolroom shootings that left one man dead and another wounded on October 22, 1976, purportedly over disputes between drug dealers.
Without the testimony of these jailhouse informants, there was absolutely no case against Major Tillery. There was no physical evidence. The surviving victim of the shooting named two other men as the shooters. No charges were brought against Tillery and his co-defendant for four years, and then only after police coercion combined with favors to a career informant.
UPDATE: Major Tillery – Still Rumbling
October 22— Major Tillery’s challenge to his 1985 conviction for a 1976 murder and assault goes to a Pennsylvania Superior Court appeals panel on October 31. Tillery’s case is about actual innocence. It highlights Philadelphia’s infamous culture of police and prosecutorial misconduct. The only so-called evidence against him was from lying jailhouse informants who were threatened with false murder prosecutions, and plea and bail deals on pending cases. A favorite inducement for jailhouse informants in the early 1980’s was “sex for lies.” Homicide detectives brought the informants and their girlfriends to police headquarters for private time in interview rooms for sex.
This is Major Tillery’s 34th year in prison on a sentence of life without parole. Over twenty of those years were spent in solitary confinement in some of the harshest federal and state “control units.”
“Major Tillery, for many years known as the jailhouse lawyer who led the 1990 Tillery v. Owens prisoners’ rights civil case, spawned from unconstitutional conditions at the state prison in Pittsburg, is still rumbling these days, this time for his life as well as his freedom.” - Mumia Abu-Jamal, Major: Battling On 2 Fronts, 9/17/17