Prison Radio
Mumia Abu-Jamal

On Death Row he’s known as “Roddy,” short for Roderick—Roderick Johnson, in fact.

For the last 23 years, “Roddy” has been on Pennsylvania’s Death Row, a co-defendant charged with 2 homicides: a drug deal gone wrong.

But now, after two trials, two convictions, and two death sentences each for two co-defendants, a trial judge in Berks County Court of Common Pleas, Judge Eleni Dimitriou Geishauser ordered the charges dismissed, and citing double jeopardy, ruled Roddy could not be retried.

Roddy was originally tried in 1997.

In her October 29, 2020 opinion, Judge Geishauser found that the former DA hid evidence that a witness was in fact a “quasi-informant” who was allowed to deal drugs because of his value in this case.

This meant the jury had no real way to judge the witness’s truthfulness.

Judge Geishaser condemned Roddy’s earlier trials, calling them products of prosecutorial misconduct that she described as “egregious.”

Roddy is being held at the county jail in Reading, PA.

These commentaries are recorded by Noelle Hanrahan of Prison Radio.