Review of Who Killed These Girls? by Beverly Lowry Rating ***** How is it that so many supposed professionals can look at a confession that has every indication of being coerced continue with a prosecution? It’s unbelievable to me that so many detectives, prosecutors, district attorneys, judges, and jurors can be so incompetent that they […]
I am not a fan of Nancy Grace. So when I heard that she was devoting an entire show to the Steven Avery case with the teaser that she was going to show the evidence the documentary left out, I thought I would watch with an open mind. Maybe there is important evidence that might help […]
Review of Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson Rating ***** At the center of this story is the wrongful conviction of Walter McMillian and the author’s attempts to free him. Interspersed between that story are other stories of wrongful convictions and sad accounts of a broken justice system. Along the way the author touches on a number […]
This is a story unlike any other that I’ve come across. If you type in the search phrase “wrongful convictions” in the search box on this site, you will see the numerous cases of wrongful convictions that I have covered. Some of the wrongfully convicted are freed. Some are still in prison (see the story […]
Review of Getting Life by Michael Morton Rating ***** I am a huge fan of shows like 60 Minutes, 48 Hours, 20/20, and Dateline. I never pass up an opportunity to watch one of these shows when they’re on. Such was the case when I happened upon the story of Michael Morton. Michael Morton was […]
For the first time ever I’ve had a chance to view all five best documentary films before the Oscars. Netflix has four of the five. The one film they didn’t have — Twenty Feet From Stardom — is available on Amazon Prime as a rental. First a quick look at the five nominated films: The […]
West of Memphis directed by Amy Berg written by Amy Berg and Billy McMillin Rating ***** This documentary covers the same ground covered by the three Paradise Lost films concerning the wrongful convictions of Jason Baldwin, Damien Wayne Echols, and Jessie Misskelley. As good as those other films were, this film stands on its own […]
I first wrote about Ryan Ferguson in the post Injustice in plain sight. When a local judge in Columbia decided to not vacate Ryan’s sentence after the two eyewitnesses who put him there recanted their testimony, I got personally involved and called the Attorney General’s office. Ryan’s story is a perfect example of how wrongful […]
Review of The Central Park Five written by Ken Burns, Sarah Burns, and David McMahon Rating ***** This film should be required viewing for anyone who works in the justice system. This story is a textbook example of how wrongful convictions occur. There are common elements with every wrongful conviction. They most often involve males […]
Review of Frontline: The Confessions written & directed by Ofra Bikel Rating ***** This is one of those films that tell a story that would be hard to believe if it wasn’t true. If you have any doubts that our justice system isn’t flawed – watch this film! If you have any doubt that the […]
A review of The Conspirator written by James D. Solomon and directed by Robert Redford Rating **** 1/2 I’m not sure how well this film did at the box office. My recollection is that it got mixed reviews and probably didn’t make a whole lot of money, at least not in theatres. My guess, though, […]
I don’t think anyone watching the Dateline episode The Mystery on Halloween Night could conclude other than an innocent person was convicted of a crime he did not commit. If the judge currently deliberating on Ryan Ferguson’s fate doesn’t overturn his conviction, it will be a miscarriage of justice of monumental proportions. The only thing I […]
There are so many wrongful conviction stories to tell, how do you decide which one to bring to the big screen? They’re all compelling. There are so many of them since DNA testing began that it’s almost becoming routine. Someone is freed from prison after serving decades. Today it’s almost like hearing about another shooting on the local news.
I recently went to Blockbuster and walked out with two movies. The first was Hot Tub Time Machine. The second was a movie I just happened to see on the shelf titled The Wronged Man. Now I can’t defend my choice of Hot Tub Time Machine. It looked like it might be funny. It had John Cusack. It had a picture of a scantily clad woman on the DVD cover. So how bad could it be? Okay, it was bad. It was beyond bad. It was a one line joke that wouldn’t have made it as a SNL skit.
Paul’s conviction was based almost exclusively on two bits of circumstantial evidence: Phone records that indicate that he was in the area around the time of the murder. (Paul lived in worked in the neighborhood.) And testimony from an individual that claimed to have seen Paul immediately after the murder wearing boots that matched footprints found at the scene. Problem is, 48 hours interviewed this same witness before the trial and he claimed that he had no idea what he was wearing. Think about it. If you’re having lunch with a friend, could you testify months later what type of shoes he was wearing fourteen months earlier?