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Court, Trials, and Sentencing [electronic resource]: Due Process

According to prime-time television, criminals are brought to justice in a speedy and efficient yet drama-filled manner. In reality, the process can be slow and meticulous, as rules must be followed to safeguard the defendant's constitutional rights. This program provides a solid grounding in the processes and players involved in the court system and takes viewers step-by-step through a trial and sentencing. Legal experts explain probable cause, plea bargaining, the types of witness testimony that might be challenged, and other key elements, including how juvenile offenders are dealt with. A viewable/printable instructor's guide is available online. A Films for the Humanities & Sciences/MotionMasters Coproduction.

Juvenile Process Overview [electronic resource]: Through the System

Caught breaking into cars at a local train station, two teenaged brothers are sent to Lake County Juvenile Complex in Crown Point, Indiana. Both believe they'll be out within a couple of days. But since they are previous offenders with multiple violations, they now face the very real possibility of long-term detention, with their ultimate fate hinging on a series of hearings and evaluations that neither expected to go through. Following the brothers from the night of their intake to their eventual placement in separate residential facilities, this video illustrates with unflinching clarity and detail the procedural challenges that many juvenile defendants face when they are incarcerated. The legal, sociological, and psychological aspects of the case are further examined through one-o [...]

Moyers & Company [electronic resource]: And Justice for Some

Though a landmark Supreme Court decision 50 years ago established the right of criminal defendants to legal representation-even if they can't afford it-the scales of the American legal system still tilt heavily in favor of the white and wealthy. In this edition of Moyers & Company, Bill sits down with civil rights attorney and legal scholar Bryan Stevenson, who exposes the legal system's failures and its ongoing struggles at the crossroads of race, class, and justice. Also, journalists Martin Clancy and Tim O'Brien talk about inequities in death row legal representation and sentencing across the country. The program closes with an essay on the hypocrisy of "justice for all" in a society where billions are squandered for a war born in fraud while the poor are pushed aside.

Women Behind Bars: Part 1 Life and Death in Indiana [electronic resource]

More women are in prison in America than anywhere else in the world. Follow Trevor McDonald in this first part of a two-part documentary as he ventures inside two jails that hold some of America's most notorious women criminals, Indiana Women's Prison and the state's Rockville Correctional Facility. Trevor witnesses a world of seduction and manipulation as inmates prey on each other and those who guard them.

The Confessions [electronic resource]

Why would four innocent men confess to a brutal crime they didn't commit? FRONTLINE producer Ofra Bikel (Innocence Lost, An Ordinary Crime) investigates the conviction of four Navy sailors for the rape and murder of a Norfolk, Virginia, woman in 1997. In interviews with the sailors, Bikel learns of some of the high-pressure police interrogation techniques, including the threat of the death penalty, sleep deprivation, and intimidation, that led each of the "Norfolk Four" to confess, despite any evidence linking them to the crime. All four sailors are now out of prison - one served his sentence and the other three were granted conditional pardons last summer - but the men were not exonerated as felons or sex offenders. The case raises disturbing questions about the actions of the polic [...]

Kids in the Crossfire

Stacey Dooley travels to Chicago—the murder capital of the U.S.—where almost half of those killed in 2013 were under 25. She meets the Hardmon family, struggling to come to terms with the murder of their 19-year-old daughter Ashley, killed in the crossfire of a gang shooting. In a prison boot camp for young offenders, Stacey gets to know David. He's been in prison four times already, and he's just 19. He got his first gun at 14. Can he really turn his back on the gang lifestyle?
2017; 2014

Argentina: The 500 Stolen Babies of the Dictatorship

They are Rosa, Estela, Chicha, Elsa, Chela, and Jorgelina. All are ordinary women who, together for the last 35 long years, have fought tirelessly against the Argentine military disctatorship, travelling the world to publicize their cause. They have become symbols of the struggle against oppression, known worldwide as the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo. In 1976, a military coup overthrew the government in Argentina. There followed eight years of terrible repression against opponents of the regime. Politicians, students, and workers were sequestered, tortured, and murdered with impunity. The number of missing was estimated at 30,000 during those dark years. Young pregnant women did not escape the abuses of the military. Shackled and hooded, they gave birth in detention centers such [...]
2018; 2012

Gangs in Control of American Prisons: "The Social Order of the Underworld"

David Skarbek, a lecturer in political economy at King's College in London and the author of The Social Order of the Underworld: How Prison Gangs Govern the American Penal System talks toReason TV's Nick Gillespie about governance within prisons, the rise of prison gangs, the problems of prison overcrowding, and why reducing the prison population is vital to mitigate the influence of prison gangs. A Reason TV production.
2016; 2015

Rikers: An American Jail

The United States is facing a crisis of mass incarceration with over 2.2 million people packed into its jails and prisons. To understand the human toll of this crisis, Rikers Island is a good place to start. Of the more than 7,500 people detained at Rikers Island on any given day, almost 80% have not yet been found guilty or innocent of the charges they face. All are at risk in the pervasive culture of violence that forces people to come to terms with what they must do for their own survival. RIKERS: AN AMERICAN JAIL, a riveting new documentary from Bill Moyers, brings you face to face with men and women who have endured incarceration at Rikers Island. Their stories, told direct to camera, vividly describe the cruel arc of the Rikers experience—from the shock of entry, to the extorti [...]
2017; 2016