The Central Park Five Debuts on PBS Tonight | FrontRowCenter

The back story of this case of racial profiling and a failed criminal
justice system, fueled at the time by what could only be called
arrogance on the part of the media and detectives assigned to the
case, follows Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Raymond Santana,
Korey Wise, and Yusef Salaam from their arrests through their muddied
confessions via relentless interrogation by seasoned homicide
detectives. The boys’original videotaped confessions are included in the
film and are shocking examples of how their words were literally
orchestrated by detectives and a high-profile Assistant D.A.

Today, after they have managed to piece together their lives, the
five young men quietly, articulately and without visible rancor relate
their life stories before, during and after their convictions,
incarcerations (six to 13 years) and exoneration.  Significant family
members also remember the confusion, disbelief and shame that decimated
their families at the time. Tears are shed on screen, and you will
surely share the pain and relief that they felt after they recall the
confession (replayed here) of serial rapist Matias Reyes to the crime
and its support by DNA evidence from the scene.

The Central Park Five is a remarkable segue into investigative
journalism by Ken Burns with Sarah Burns and David McMahon that
underscores how prejudice, racial profiling, sloppy detective work and
the miscarriage of justice destroyed many innocent lives. And how,
through the perspective and example of these young men, we can learn,
heal and grow from those mistakes.

You also have the opportunity to tap into a TimesTalks conversation with Ken and Sarah Burns and the Central Park Five tomorrow evening (Wednesday, April 17).  The New York Times will be hosting the TimesTalks conversation to be streamed live on the Web at 6:30 p.m. EDT at

via — The Central Park Five Debuts on PBS Tonight | FrontRowCenter.

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