NAACP's Spearman: I genuinely believe in Daniel's innocence
The president of the North Carolina NAACP is throwing his organization's support behind the effort to get a new trial for the man imprisoned for the murder of Michael Jordan's father in 1993.
what specifically about this Daniel green case caught your attention and more so prompted the NaacP to get involved. Well, a call a few months ago, actually from a mistake from the president of the unified Robison branch, uh that's uh President Tyrone Watson down there, He sent me some, he sent me a link to the documentary that was done, uh moments of truth, um And there were, he sent one, one of these segments to that and asked me to look at it, which I did and it it perked my interest. So that was probably the beginning of the, of my interaction or closer interaction to this case. You don't step into something with the NaACP name, unless you feel that there, his reason for a case is that right? Can you just kind of walk us through when the NaACP would get involved in what would prompt you to get involved? Most definitely. Yes. Um there is a, I mean, the scrutiny that we, that I personally apply to situations such as these is very deep and wide and it's been learned over a lifetime of experience. Um, I personally have been involved in prison Ministry for quite some time and as such have become aware of a number of cases that, that folk have wanted us to get involved in, which we don't readily do. Um, the issues at hand that after seeing that, the first documentary, the first segment of the documentary, um, I began to do some other enquiring of persons who I'm very well aware of attorneys and, and such like, and uh, began doing the kind of uh monitoring of the case to determine whether or not we may want to get involved in it. And after after taking a look at that and getting involved with uh, taking a look at having some conversations with some folks. It became keenly, I became keenly aware that we probably want to at least take a position on this case, The Daniel Green case, which I did. Um I wish I could, I wish I could share with you the some of the uh inclinations that I have as an individual with regard to these cases. I think I have developed a, a keen sense. I'm very perspective, you assess when it comes to situations such as these because of my involvement with prison ministry. If I may go on jeremy, I would like to note that um, in, in, in in that prison ministry, I became, I became very friendly with an individual named Lamont. Armstrong. Lamont is now deceased. But when I became uh, when I became um uh, a person that gained some insights about Lamont. Lamont was a inmate at the Piedmont correctional institute and has been accused of killing a teacher in Greensboro north Carolina. Um He said that he was innocent when I first came in contact with him. And it took me a long time before I was able to assess the situation deeply enough to determine that I wanted to get involved and believed him to be uh, be telling the truth. And indeed he was determined innocent by the Duke innocence project and was released. Uh, he was released and uh received a pardon of innocence from Governor McCrory and I was responsible for producing a letter for him for that. And uh, that was the, that's the kind of clincher for me because uh, I I have a, I have developed a keen sense, keen eye and a keen ear as it relates to those who maybe just professing that they're innocent and and are not actually innocent and those who are actually innocent and Daniel's case is standing out to me at this particular time, much like Ronnie Longs, because I was also responsible. I also had a, some responsibility in seeing it through for Ronnie Longs release from prison and as well as Dante sharp. So uh, I I consider myself to be a person who has a gift if you will for knowing whether or not these incidents are actually truthful and have and can be authenticated reverend chairman. Have you had the chance to speak with Daniel at all? Yes. As a matter of fact, Daniel and I have been speaking quite frequently here of late and uh actually I was drawn in even further a few weeks ago when Daniel um after we had started talking to one another on a regular basis, Daniel was, I learned that uh there were a few days that went by that Daniel didn't call me and I was wondering what was going on and I I learned that Daniel had been placed in solitary confinement. Uh and when I, when I learned of the reasons why I made some context and to have them take a look into the situation and indeed he was removed from solitary confinement because they could not prove. And and it seems as if there was a package that was planted in his uh in his uh sell by a by one of the correctional officers who was not supposed to be going even near Daniel or into his self because of some previous things that had occurred. But when I got word that he was locked up in solitary confinement, uh it disturbed me because of what I had learned about Daniel and I did not believe what the allegation was to be true. I called Todd issue and I asked him to look into it and he looked into it in a few days later, he called me back and and and told me that Daniel was have been removed out of solitary and put back in population. Uh and come to find out the package that was planted on him was coffee creamer that they were alleging with some kind of uh controlled substance, which it was not. So it's becoming aware of some of the cruelties that have been levied on this young man as well. Uh huh. Because of the nature, not, not necessarily the nature of the crime, but also because of the family that's implicated in, you know, in this case uh is horrendous. Um and I genuinely believe in Daniel's innocence, wow, we hadn't heard that um about him being in solitary confinement, at least I had not. Um you, I think kind of went this direction a moment ago, have you? Or high profile family we're talking about here, North Carolina and Michael Jordan. Have, have you or anyone with the organization had any contact with Michael Jordan or is he from europe lens involved or invested in this case? And that is what I can say about that jeremy, is that I have, I have been very prayerful and hopeful that I could have some kind of interaction with the Jordan family. I have made an effort to reach out to the family through some mutual acquaintances. And what I mean by that is that I happen to be a fraternity brother of, uh, Michael Jordan's a member of the omega sci fi fraternity incorporated and I have spoken to or at least uh, make contacts and reached out to some of my fraternity brothers that have that know him and have had some uh, you know, uh, interactions with him. I have not seen the fraternity brother, but we've not had any interaction. And I was hopeful that I would be able to have a, a time where I'd be able to share with him from the perspective of not only being his fraternity brother, but also of being a pastor, uh, pastor with a keen sense of gifts and graces and talents and things of that nature, as well as a, as the president of the north Carolina naacp. Um, because I do, I do believe that a injustice is being raised on this young man who I, I do not believe was there at the time and is telling the truth about all of that. Uh, and that they probably need to, if there is anything that is being, uh, that the family is not aware of or standing aside because of, I would hope that the truth would be there guiding light to be able to deal with an innocent person and say, okay, well, you know, let's, let's, let's put an end, at least to this. Um, I, I understand that it's very, it's very tender probably for Michael, you know, in that this was his father. And, uh, and so, you know, I, I just, I just know also that Daniel has had a time of cruel cruelty being levied on him through the years that he's been incarcerated and deserves a day in court to really have things heard to the depth that they need to be heard, reverend spearmint. Is there anything else that you've think folks ought to know? I'm, well, I, I want to say, I'm, I'm grateful that the president of the unified Robinson branch start enough to, uh, to, to share the link with me that he shared. Um, and uh, which enabled me to begin doing the kind of, uh, assessing and, uh, investigating that I needed to do because we, with the north Carolina Naacp are becoming very, very aware, more cautiously aware of some of the things that are going on in the criminal justice system that really, really need to be dealt with and we need to focus on to a deeper extent. So I'm hopeful that this is going to be an opportunity for yet another african american male to be proven to, for it to be proven that the system is broken and it's not doing any justice for the african american male.