By Poverty Scholar Momii Palapaz
Marvin Pete Walker, also known as Shaka, was tried in 1979 under violation of constitutional rights. He was shackled and presented to the court in this manner. In addition, the DA at the time dismissed two Black jurors. He was tried and convicted of murder, and sent to San Quentin’s death row, where he lived until January 2023. In 2012, attorneys for Shaka brought up the use of shackles as a violation of his rights. Kamala Harris, then State of California Attorney General, admitted the restraining of Shaka was “a mistake” but that it didn’t interfere with the jury’s verdict of convicting him of murder.
In 2020, attorneys presented the lack of justification and illegality for dismissing the two Black jurors. Jeff Rosen, the present DA, overturned his conviction and the sentence Death Row. Nevertheless, Shaka still remained on death row. The flattened wheels of justice are deliberately slow and consistently in a state of stagnation. After 43 years on death row, he is now at the Santa Clara County jail awaiting freedom.
Friends of Shaka gather together after hearing on freedom. FREE SHAKA
So, where is the incarceration maze of torture leading? How do you retry a conviction that happened over 43 years ago? How do the violations of Shaka’s constitutional rights fit into the conviction? If the previous DA wanted to prove him guilty why did he need to defy the law?
The DA Jeff Rosen has offered parole eligibility if Shaka pleads guilty. Shaka has refused. He has chosen to fight the conviction and his new attorney Renee Hessling has been given 4 weeks to look at his case. Pleading guilty and accepting the deal would not guarantee Shaka’s freedom. Parole boards do not readily give immediate releases. Second, pleading guilty to a charge of murder that he didn’t do will not bring freedom from the judicial system.
“The dynamics are shifting, but the chain is unbroken,” said Brokin Cloud, fellow poverty scholar, formerly houseless, and now residing at HOMEFULNESS #1. “The unjust and corrupted system is part of AmeriKlan. The system truly failed the colored man. It’s time for the judge to come to terms with retrial or exoneration. He is deserving of the money for 43 years on death row.”
“As you can see the AmeriKlan is twisted and turned through all this country’s system. It is unjust and corrupt. It’s good we went on this day, April 20. He served his time under the death penalty which doesn’t give him the right to having any kind of probation or a parole board hearing and they changed his sentence without a trial. He is completely isolated from any opportunities to find a trail or get on track to get out. That is why the chain is unbroken. It’s a perfect opportunity for the judge to step forward. Finally they have no place for him in a system that contains him.”
Despite serving time on death row, without prison programs, he has created his own self help programs. Now at Santa Clara County jail, Shaka, along with all the inmates, are not entitled to benefit from rehabilitation programs. Nevertheless, Shaka has gained much respect from inmates and he is a leader amongst his brothers, some who have awaited trial for years.