NEW YORK, March 7, 2020 / PRNewswire / – CONVICTION, the long-awaited short documentary by the future director Jia Wertz, in partnership with Tribe Builder Media, will debut at NewFilmmakers New York on April 8, 2020. The film will be released at the Anthology Film Archives in the East Village in Manhattan.
The intimate documentary captures a man’s three-decade struggle to fight the justice system. The film explores the aftermath of growing up in prison after the forced confession and the subsequent conviction of Jeffrey Deskovic for the rape and murder of a fifteen-year-old boy Angela Correa. Correa mysteriously disappeared November 15, 1989, in Peekskill, New York after going out with a portable cassette player and a camera for a project for her photography class. Two days later, the girl’s body was found beaten, raped and murdered.
The subsequent conviction of a classmate, Deskovic, 16, has been widely discussed in the media and on television. The story of Deskovic aired on ID Discovery Shadow Of Doubt, season 2, episode titled A new girl in town and was covered in the New york times several times.
CONVICTION tells the story of Deskovic’s life from the time two undercover detectives approached him on the way to high school, to his forced confession for the murder and the sixteen years he spent in maximum security prison .
The documentary examines the aftermath of prison growth, the shortcomings of the US justice system, the impact it can have on family members and relationships, and the stigma of going to prison, innocent or not.
“Working with Jeffrey has been such an honor. It’s the ideal subject for a filmmaker – not only is he a great person who has dedicated his life to helping others, but he’s also very outspoken and open to his experiences of life, and extremely supportive of the process and the project, “says Wertz.
It is estimated that around 10,000 people in United States are wrongly sentenced each year for serious crimes and some are even at risk of execution. Statistically, 4.1% of those sentenced to death are innocent and at least 340 of them may have been executed since 1973.
“My mission around the world is to fight wrongful convictions – this is how I understand the 16 years of wrongful imprisonment I have suffered. The criminal justice system as it is currently under construction is broken, and that’s why I’m working to pass laws to prevent what happened to me from happening to others and to help free those who have already happened. I can’t forget the men and women which I have metaphorically left behind. Although I have achieved modest success in helping to free seven wrongly convicted prisoners and helping pass six laws, there is still a lot of work to be done at the national and international level because the wrongful conviction is a global problem. It happened to me and it can happen to you, “says Deskovic.
Directed by Jia Wertz, the director’s first film quickly gained ground in the film festival circuit. CONVICTION was accepted at many film festivals during its first month of release, including:
- The showcase for independent cinema in Los Angeles
- New York Cinematography Awards
- Cannes International Independent Film Festival
- New Filmmakers New York Film Festival
CONVICTION offers new exclusive interviews with people entangled in the affair over the past three decades, archive footage and photographs, documents from files, family photos and an overview of maximum security prisons. The story unfolds to reveal the challenges and current triumphs of Deskovic.
The cities and dates of projection are available at https://www.jiawertz.com/event.
Sure Jia Wertz
Director Jia Wertz is dedicated to pursuing stories that explore the conflict between institutional systems and the victims of these institutions in the name of protecting social order. She is currently investigating the whims and inconsistencies of the American criminal justice system throughout the history of Jeffrey Deskovic and others exempt from regaining their freedom at the cost of irreparable damage to their minds, relationships and families.
In addition, Jia is a featured writer for Forbes, and the founder and fashion designer of Studio 15. Jia lives in New York City with her husband and son and graduated from the New York Film Academy.
Tribe Builder Media
SOURCE Tribe Builder Media