Last month we shared a two-part update on the Joey Watkins case. Part I detailed Joey’s innocence and how previous decision-makers have turned a blind eye to that fact. Part II explained the background behind Joey’s recent unsuccessful attempt to appeal a 2018 decision dismissing his habeas corpus petition. Though the State is entitled to an automatic appeal when it loses a habeas corpus petition, Joey Watkins had to seek permission to appeal and the Georgia Supreme Court had denied that permission. In Part II, we wrote that, “unless the [Georgia Supreme] Court changes its mind, Joey Watkins will not be allowed to appeal the habeas court’s order.”
Following last month’s heart-breaking, end-of-the-road news, pro-bono counsel Ben Goldberg and GIP filed a Motion for Reconsideration to the Georgia Supreme Court.
This month, we are delighted to report that the Georgia Supreme Court did indeed give Joey’s case a second look. In an almost-unheard-of turn of events, the Court granted our Motion for Reconsideration, giving Joey the permission to appeal the habeas court’s decision. The Georgia Supreme Court changed its mind!
We will begin briefing soon. There is still a long road ahead — but we’re thrilled to share that at least we’re no longer facing a dead end, and there is still an opportunity to obtain justice for Joey.