Suffolk University Law School will host a free screening of The Central Park Five -- a documentary film about the five teen-agers wrongfully convicted and imprisoned in the Central Park jogger case -- directed by award-winning filmmaker Ken Burns, his daughter Sarah Burns, and her husband, David McMahon.
The film showing is part of the annual Children on Trial Conference: Analyzing False Confessions and Their Impact on Juveniles, which will take place from 2 to 7 p.m., April 10, 2013, at Suffolk University Law School, 120 Tremont St., Boston. The film will be shown at 4:30 p.m. and followed by a discussion with the filmmakers and some of those who served time for a crime they did not commit.
The Central Park Five is told from the perspective of the five black and Latino teenagers from Harlem who were erroneously convicted of raping a white woman in New York City’s Central Park in 1989. The film illustrates the effects of police interrogations and false confessions and thus illustrates the topic of this year’s Children on Trial Conference.
The conference, presented by the Law School’s Center for Advanced Legal Studies, features Steven Drizin, legal director of the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern Law School and a national expert on police interrogations, coerced confessions and the juvenile death penalty. He will join a panel of judges and practitioners to discuss the relevance of recent U.S. Supreme Court cases on juvenile competency.
Additional sessions will explore why juvenile suspects are especially vulnerable to certain interrogation tactics, challenges available to juvenile defenders, options for recording interrogations and the effect of the Massachusetts “interested adult” rule on juvenile confessions.