Petition Closed

 

President Obama, Right a wrong, free Leonard Peltier while there is still time.

Leonard Peltier , Ojibwa-Sioux from Turtle Mountain, North Dakota, is the longest held Native American political prisoner in the U.S.   He was wrongfully convicted in the 1975 killing of two F.B.I. agents on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.  

A participant in the American Indian Movement, Peltier went to assist the Oglala Lakota people on the Pine Ridge Reservation in the mid-70s where a tragic shoot-out occurred on June 26, 1975 resulting in the deaths of two FBI agents and one Native American whose death has never been investigated.

 

Two others were tried for the murder of the agents and found not guilty by reason of self-defense. Mr. Peltier was tried after a change of venue to North Dakota. In his trial Mr. Peltier wasn't allowed to put up a self-defense argument. Several of the witnesses later recanted their testimony claiming they perjured themselves because of threats from the FBI.

 
Key witnesses were banned from testifying about FBI misconduct. The U.S. Prosecutor failed to produce a single witness who could identify Peltier as the shooter.

 

The government now admits they have no idea who killed the agents and

the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that Peltier's trial and previous appeals had been riddled with FBI misconduct and judicial impropriety including: coercion of witnesses, perjury, fabrication of evidence, and the suppression of exculpatory evidence which could have proved his innocence. The Court called the FBI's misconduct "a clear abuse of the investigative process". Yet they ruled against a new trial for Leonard Peltier because they were "reluctant to impute further improprieties to them (FBI)."

 

While incarcerated Mr. Peltier has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and in spite of being behind bars has an incredibly impressive list of human rights achievements as well as having made his mark as an artist. This is a remarkable man who has made remarkable contributions to the world. Free Leonard Peltier now!

 

Letter to
President Of The United States President Barack Obama
President Obama,
I have just signed the following petition addressed to: President Barack Obama asking that Leonard Peltier be released from prison where he has been unjustly held for 37 years. He was given two life sentences for the murder of two F.B.I. agents although there is no evidence that he did so nor are there any witnesses.
The government now admits they have no idea who killed the agents and
the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that Peltier's trial and previous appeals had been riddled with FBI misconduct and judicial impropriety including: coercion of witnesses, perjury, fabrication of evidence, and the suppression of exculpatory evidence which could have proved his innocence. The Court called the FBI's misconduct "a clear abuse of the investigative process". Yet they ruled against a new trial for Leonard Peltier because they were "reluctant to impute further improprieties to them (FBI)."

During a parole hearing in December 1995, US prosecutor Lynn Crooks admitted again that no evidence exists against Peltier. He further stated that the government never really accused him of murder and that if Peltier were retried, the government could not reconvict. The Parole Board, however, decided not to grant parole because Peltier continues to maintain his innocence (they stated that Peltier had not given a "factual and specific account of (his) actions...consistent with the jury's verdict of guilt") and because he was the only one convicted. As ridiculous as this reasoning sounds, it has thus far held up.

Mr. Peltier has an impressive record of human rights achievements over the last 37 years of incarceration as well as having been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize numerous times.

Mr. President, it is past time to right this criminal wrong. Please release Leonard Peltier now so that he can spend whatever time is left to him among his people.