IMG_9284August 9th, 2016 CADBI Members told Seth Williams, he is not living up to his word. 

 August 19th, 2016 Federal Court Agrees!

Child lifers in Philadelphia are being manipulated into taking a plea-bargain that, in reality, still equals a LIFE sentence; and is not in the spirit of the Supreme Court’s Miller v. Alabama ruling that expressed the unconstitutionality of mandatory life sentencing for child offenders and the cruelty of not considering the many mitigated factors that causes a child to commit or participate in horrible crimes. 

During the ‘Seth Williams Have a Heart’ rally (Sponsored by the Coalition to Abolish Death By Incarceration), on August 9th, members of CADBI brought public awareness to the fact that District Attorney Seth Williams was not, actually, living up to his word that he would no longer seek Life Without Parole for Child lifers.  


CADBI members were resilient in their protest of Seth Williams and Patricia Vickers (CADBI and Human Rights Coalition member) said that it is a manipulating move to offer a sentence of 35-to-Life as a plea-bargain; because 35-to-Life is still a LIFE sentence; also going in front of the Parole Board, well, it isn’t legal because by law, in Pennsylvania, a person who has a LIFE sentence cannot be paroled; in addition the mitigating circumstances haven’t been considered. The system labeled these children as “the worse of the worse” and “beyond redemption” and to date it continues to force that label on them even against the U.S. Supreme Court’s instruction.

So guess what? The FEDERAL COURT is in direct agreement with CADBI’s view. Ten days later, AuIMG_9206gust 19th, a judge of the Federal Court ruled (in the case of Kempis “Ghani” Songster) that the way Seth Williams is handling the Juvenile Life With Out Parole (JLWOP) re-sentencing hearings is unconstitutional and does not follow the US Supreme Court’s ruling. 

“A sentencing practice that results in every juvenile’s sentence with a maximum term of life, regardless of the minimum term, does not reflect individualized sentencing,” Timothy J. Savage, District Court judge for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, wrote in both opinions. He added: “Passing off the ultimate decision to the Parole Board in every case represents an abdication of judicial responsibility and ignores the [Supreme Court’s] mandate.”  

Click here to read the original article.

Stand strong folks, cause we are another step closer in building a humane and redemptive society.


Success!  Mother’s Day Rally Got The Message Out – Compassion for youth sentenced to Death By Incarceration 

Sponsored by: Coalition to Abolish Death By Incarceration (CADBI) 

Photos (below) By: Sandra Hill

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This Friday in the down pour of rain that didn’t let up the entire day, in honor of Mother’s Day, the Coalition to Abolish Death By Incarceration (CADBI) held a powerful rally and press conference calling on the state of Pennsylvania to make compassion, redemption, and healing in our communities possible by recognizing the US Supreme Court mandate to provide fair and meaningful re-sentencing to the more than 500 children sentenced to die in prison here in PA. 

The rally shed light on this inhumane policy, and demanded immediate steps be taken to reunify our families and heal our communities. As CADBI member Patricia Vickers, whose son is serving a life sentence he received when he was 17, observed: “Pennsylvania sentences more young people to die in prison than any other state in the country,” said  “We are holding this action the Friday before Mother’s Day to highlight how these sentences tear families apart. No mother should have to endure their child living an entire life behind bars.”

Now, on Mother’s Day, we hope that you will take a moment to watch this short video of the event and to share it with others. In the words of Kempis “Ghani” Songster, who was sentenced to life in prison for a crime he committed when he was 15: “Only when all of us, our whole community ­­ families and friends of victims, families and friends of the condemned, and those who are themselves condemned ­­ take responsibility for solving our community’s problems will the healing begin.”

You can also see photos of the rally here, and check out news coverage in the Metro, Newsworks, and Billy Penn.

Huge thanks to everyone who helped make this rally happen. And to all the incarcerated mothers who have raised children from behind bars, to all the mothers who have stood by their children serving death by incarceration sentences, to all mothers and all people on both sides of the prison walls who have never given up the fight for freedom, justice and compassion, HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!


Don’t Just Sit There, Do Something! 

Mother’s Day Rally

To Restore Families and Communities and Bring our Loved Ones Home

Friday, May 6, 12-2 p.m.

City Hall (Broad & JFK), Philadelphia, Pa



Jury Hung on Verdict for ‘Dallas 6’


Luzerne county jury refusing to convict is definitely a victory!


Left: Duane Peters gives a thumbs up after a mistrial was declared Wednesday in the trial of three members of the ‘Dallas 6.’ 
Aimee Dilger | Times Leader





“A win is a win,” said Carrington Keys, adding that the men plan to continue fighting their charges “all the way.”


April 13th, 2016 at the Luzerne County Courthouse the jury could not come to a unanimous decision concerning the riot charges against Duane Peters, Andre Gay, and Carrington Keys.

The jury informed Luzerne County Judge Lesa S. Gelb that they could not come to a unanimous verdict after about 3½ hours of deliberations.

“We’re deadlocked,” the jury forewoman said.

dallas-6-posterFor the past six years the men have been fighting felony charges of rioting after they each covered their cell window on April 29, 2010, in the restricted housing unit (solitary confinement) at SCI- Dallas. Guards in riot gear forcibly extracted the men from their cells after they were given orders to remove the coverings from their cell doors and they did not comply.

The Assistant District Attorney James McMonagle said in his closing statement, “The rule is you can’t cover your cell door.”

In defense of the men attorney Michael Wiseman argued that covering cell doors may be a violation of prison rules, but it was not a riot.

“It is absolutely obvious what their intent was,” Wiseman told jurors. “Their intent was to draw attention to their plight.”

Andre Jacobs, who represented himself during the trial, testified that the guards were extremely abusive after a report was published by the Human Rights Coalition on abuse at SCI-Dallas.  Andre said in his closing argument the situation at SCI Dallas was “toxic,” which forced him to file multiple grievances and complaints against guards.

Andre said that he had covered his cell door at least five times in the past and had never received a cell extraction.  “Considering it didn’t happen in those prior instances, you can conclude that wasn’t their policy and in this incident, that was what they wanted to do.”

Andre argued that he may have violated prison rules, but he didn’t commit a crime.

“I took an action on that day for my own safety,” he said.

McMonagle said he informed District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis of the result and will sit down with the DA in the near future to determine whether prosecutors will retry the case.

Click Here for article from Times Leader








Court Report from Wednesday April 6 – Day 3 of the Dallas 6 Trial in Wilkes-Barre, PA

 Graphic by Molly CrabappleGraphic by Molly Crabapple

The Dallas 6 are six African American prisoner whistleblowers in solitary confinement at SCI Dallas Pennsylvania charged with rioting for peacefully protesting on April 29, 2010 against widespread abuse, violence & torture by prison guards of Black, Latino and white prisoners which they had documented. The remaining three facing charges – Andre Jacobs, Carrington Keys, and Duane Peters – finally have a jury trial after almost six years. For info or to support: Donations: 


Highlights Day 3


Painful videos of the cell extractions were shown. (Some of the video Carrington’s cell extraction can be seen here). Andre Jacobs is heard saying “they are going to kill me” before they carry him out as he is unable to walk.  Duane Peters was placed in the restraint chair. Carrington Keys was thrown naked on a cold concrete floor to be body-searched, and his wrists were injured. 

Andre questioned Lt Mozier whether he recalls that he had complied and removed the covering on his cell, and why the use of pepper spray.

Carrington questioned the absence of evidence of and testing for feces.  Wiseman, attorney for Peters asked why the men fingered in the HRC report are the ones chosen to remove the men from the cells.

Police investigator Corporal Wilson was grilled on why he took three months to file riot charges, and why he never in that time spoke to the men who were charged, why he took the DOC’s word that the men did not want to talk with him.  He said, “There are two sides of the story and the truth is somewhere in between.”  In a powerful moment, Andre asked if the April 28 incident (what we know is the 15 hours restraint of prisoner Isaac Sanchez) that prompted the April 29 incident was part of his investigation and he said they were not related.

Graphic 2 by Molly Crabapple.jpg
graphic by Molly Crabapple

The videos of the actual cell extractions, as opposed to the lead up to the extractions, were finally shown.  Pepper spray is sprayed into the tiny cells before extraction and you can hear the men coughing.  The guards rush into the cells of the men who are not resisting in any way, and Carrington Keys is heard saying “I am not resisting.”  Two of the men have covered their faces and head to prevent the guards from pulling their hair and to protect themselves from the pepper spray. 

Lt Mozier was questioned about his awareness of the reports of abuse and asked if it was a staged incident in retaliation.  Andre also said the video showed he had complied with the order to remove the covering so it was not true that “at no time did he comply” and why was that not in the official report.  Also missing from the report was his telling them that he feared for his life.   Attorney Wiseman called the judge’s attention to the vigorous head shaking that an officer of the DOC was doing in the gallery which she said had to stop.  Another witness was removed from the court who should not have been there. 

Carrington Keys asked why, if there was feces thrown, did it take two hours to go to medical when the rule is to report contact with bodily fluid immediately, and nothing was mentioned in the videotape of the debriefing, no injuries reported, and no evidence of the clothing that was allegedly contaminated was preserved?

Attorney Wiseman’s questioning focused on the brutal aspects of the force used, from electric shocks to pepper spray to restraint chairs. He also cleared up that there were no hostages, which was implied by the psychologist who was called in from the hostage negotiating team.  

Andre Jacobs questioned Corporal Wilson who filed the riot charges.  He asked why he never interviewed him to ascertain if there was legitimate purpose for their action.  He also asked the Corporal if he had a financial interest in this case as he is mentioned in a lawsuit, but the objection by the DA to that question was sustained. Finally, why was the April 28 incident that provoked the April 29 action not included in his investigation?  Carrington Keys asked how he could identify him when he didn’t even meet him. Attorney Wiseman hammered on why he did not interview the men for his investigation, how one-sided the investigation was, why he didn’t go to the prison and ask to meet the men, and how could he possibly know their intent was to bring the violence of cell extraction down on themselves.

The day ended with the testimony and questioning of two of the guards who had been part of the cell extraction team.  The first said that a liquid substance was thrown but it hit the shield and splattered on him on the sleeve and gloves.  But Carrington Keys questioned how that could have happened when he was the last man in, and why the medical report said he was hit with a cup of urine and feces on his head, and why when the extraction was at 10:15 the medical report was not until 12noon.  Further, why when he wrote an incident report was the throwing of urine and feces not mentioned.  The guard replied that he only reported what he did, not what was done to him.  Andre asked if he had met with the DA and on how many occasions. 


Trial is continuing today, Thursday April 7, and then will resume on Monday April 11.


 Daily coverage of the trial by NBC 28 Scranton (Note: exact link may have changed, you may have to search video on website)

 Times-Leader (Luzerne County):

Jury seated for trial of 3 inmates accused of instigating prison riot

Prosecutors: ‘Straightforward’ charges against members of ‘Dallas 6’




Trial is expected to last five days.  Cars will be coming from Philly daily but you need to COMPLETE THE ONLINE CHECK-IN if you need a ride or can provide a ride from Philly or Pittsburgh, and/or would like to stay overnight –


MAKE A DONATION! Online at or send check/money order payable to Abolitionist Law Center, P.O. Box 8654 Pittsburgh PA  15221  Memo line: Dallas 6

For those who can’t make it to the trial but want to show support, please take part in a CALL-IN/FAX-IN to the DA demanding she drop charges. Details and talking points at –

Dallas 6 online:

Blog –

Facebook –

Twitter – Follow @madinah7 for trial updates

 Twitter Hashtags – #Dallas6 #Justice4Dallas6  

Video – March for freedom – March 18, 2016 –

Truthout article by Shandre Delaney:
“Dallas 6” Prisoners Face Trial for Protesting Abuse in Solitary Confinement

Letter to Luzerne County District Attorney to dismiss the charges against the Dallas 6, endorsed by the PA Council of Churches and signed by over 75 representatives of faith-based organizations.


Contact: Shandre Delaney, mother of one of the Dallas 6; Human Rights Coalition 412-403-6101
Phoebe Jones, Justice for the Dallas 6 Support Campaign; Global Women’s Strike  610-505-4944


Justice for the Dallas 6 Support Campaign: Abolitionist Law Center; Every Mother is a Working Mother Network; Fight for Lifers West; Germantown Friends Meeting Mass Incarceration Working Group; Global Women’s Strike & Women of Color@GWS – US; Human Rights Coalition – Fed Up; Human Rights Coalition – Philadelphia; Marcellus Shale Earth First; Mishkan Shalom New Jim Crow Study-Action Group; Payday men’s network; Peacehome Campaigns; Shalefield Organizing Committee.  Endorsements: Art for Justice; Brandywine Peace Community; California Families Against Solitary Confinement (CFASC); The Center for Returning Citizens (TCRC); Decarcerate PA; Defending Dissent Foundation; Global Women’s Strike & Women of Color@GWS – UK; Green Party of Philadelphia (GPOP); Human Rights Defense Center – Lake Worth, Florida; Jewish Voice For Peace – Philadelphia; People’s Opposition to War Imperialism and Racism (POWIR) – Hollywood, Florida; Philadelphia Coalition for REAL Justice; San Francisco Bay View newspaper; Sin Barras – Without (Prison) Bars – Santa Cruz; T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights; WHAT’S UP?! Pittsburgh; Welfare Warriors; Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) – Philadelphia. Individual Endorsements: Pam Africa, International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal; Patrice Armstead, Building People’s Power and Coalition Demanding Reinstatement of Dr. Monteiro; Malik Aziz, Founder, Men United for a Better Philadelphia and Chairman, National Exhoodus Council; Pastor Antoinette Johnson, King Solomon Baptist Church; Dr. Anthony Monteiro; Rev. Bob Moore, Executive Director, Coalition for Peace Action (for id purposes only); Margaret Prescod, host of “Sojourner Truth” on Pacifica Radio; Dr. Heather Ann Thompson, Professor of African American Studies & History, Temple University; Dr. Cornel West, Princeton University; Dr. Carla Willard, Africana Studies Program, Franklin & Marshall College.  Partnering with: AFSC Prison Watch.


March for Freedom for the Dallas 6 at the Luzerne County Courthouse, March 18, 2016