The execution of Troy Davis was delayed temporarily by the US supreme court on Wednesday night, in a dramatic intervention just as he was due to be put to death by lethal injection.
As the first news came in at the Jackson prison that houses death row, a huge cheer erupted from a crowd of more than 500 protesters that had amassed on the other side of the road.
Davis's supporters kissed each other and threw placards which read "Not in my name" into the air.
But the jubilation was short-lived. Talk of a reprieve from the US supreme court quickly gave way to rumours of a stay, and finally the realisation that the court had only ordered a temporary delay as it considered the matter. The mood then grew more sombre as the waiting game that has now been going on for years with Davis resumed.