Constitution Day 2013
False Confessions: When the Innocent Confess and the Guilty Go Free
Ken Burns to be Honored with Constitutional Commentary Award
On September 17, The Constitution Project will present its annual Constitutional Commentary Award to the award-winning filmmaker Ken Burns and his colleagues for their documentary, THE CENTRAL PARK FIVE, and will host a panel discussion on false confessions. Mr. Burns will be present to accept the award and participate in the discussion.
THE CENTRAL PARK FIVE tells the harrowing story of five teenagers from Harlem who were wrongfully convicted of raping a woman in New York City's Central Park in 1989, in part, based on false confessions. Conservative columnist George Will calls it "a meticulous narrative of a gross miscarriage of justice." Excerpts of the film will be shown as part of the program.
Unfortunately, the case is not an anomaly -- false confessions are one of the leading causes of wrongful convictions in this country. The panel discussion will explore why innocent people confess to crimes they did not commit and examine best practices being adopted by law enforcement agencies across the country to help prevent wrongful confessions.
What is Constitution Day?
Constitutional Commentary Award Presentation & Panel Discussion
A live webcast will be available.
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Reception begins at 11:30am
Program from 12:00pm to 2:00pm
Arent Fox LLP
1717 K Street NW
Washington, DC 20036
Ken Burns, Filmmaker, THE CENTRAL PARK FIVE
Carrie Johnson, NPR (moderator)
Shawn Armbrust, Executive Director, Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project
Saul Kassin, Distringuished Professor of Psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice
James Trainum, Retired Detective, Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia
A riveting panel discussion will focus on wrongful convictions, more specifically false confessions.
Larry Akey, Director of Communications
The Constitution Project
Direct - 202.580.6922; Cell - 202.580.9313
When & Where
The Constitution Project
Created out of the belief that we must cast aside the labels that divide us in order to keep our democracy strong, The Constitution Project (TCP) brings together policy experts and legal practitioners from across the political spectrum to foster consensus-based solutions to the most difficult constitutional challenges of our time. TCP seeks to reform the nation's broken criminal justice system and to strengthen the rule of law through scholarship, advocacy, policy reform and public education initiatives. Established in 1997, TCP is based in Washington, D.C.