Daniel Faulkner: Murdered By Mumia
By Bob Weir
Twenty-six years ago, a police officer was brutally murdered on the cold, dark streets of Philadelphia. Patrolman Daniel Faulkner, making a routine traffic stop at about three o'clock on the morning of December 9, 1981, was knocked to the ground and shot several times in his upper body and face.
Four eyewitnesses to the cold-blooded homicide have identified the murderer as, Wesley Cook (AKA Mumia Abu Jamal). Mr. Cook was convicted of first degree murder the following year, and sentenced to death in the Electric Chair.
Well, here we are, 25 years later, and instead of an execution, we have something akin to a coronation. Mr. Cook has received money for the sales of books written while in prison, and he has been allowed to write a column in which he regularly rants about 'racial injustice in America.' In addition, his fight against the death penalty, for which he has had the support of several Hollywood celebrities, has proved fruitful because, a few years ago, a judge reduced his penalty to life in prison.
Now, his international fan club, which has succeeded in getting him named an honorary citizen of 25 cities around the world, including Montreal, Paris, and Palermo, and even naming a street after him in the Paris suburb of St. Denis, is trying to get him released.
Maureen Faulkner, widow of the slain officer, recently co-authored the book Murdered by Mumia: A Life Sentence of Loss, Pain and Injustice. She should know; a part of her was murdered that fateful day.