See a preview of this Truly CA episode.
Watch this entire Truly CA episode: Witch Hunt by filmmakers Don Hardy and Dana Nachman. (Running Time: 1:28:28)
On the night John Stoll was roused from his bed and carted off to jail, he had no idea what was in store.
"Aren't you worried?" his lawyer wondered.
"Hell no, I ain't worried," John answered. "I didn't do this. You can't convict me of something I didn't do."
Stoll was incarcerated for more than two decades before The Innocence Project proved he was telling the truth.
John Stoll was not alone. In a startling indictment of the American justice system, Witch Hunt chronicles how dozens of innocent working class parents in Bakersfield, California, were convicted of horrific sex abuse crimes during the 1980's. Thanks to an atmosphere of "cowboy law enforcement" perpetuated under the watch of Kern County District Attorney Ed Jagels, key child witnesses were encouraged to lie on the stand as they described disturbing testimony of sexual and Satanic rituals. Often, it was their own parents who were put behind bars.
Through new interviews, archival footage and narration by executive producer Sean Penn, Witch Hunt illustrates a universal point: when power is allowed to exist without oversight, the rights of everyday citizens can become lost for decades.
This program is not currently scheduled for broadcast.
Learn more about Don Hardy and Dana Nachman, the directors of Witch Hunt.
Also on KQED.org this week ...
Latino Heritage Month
KQED proudly celebrates the diversity of our community by commemorating Latino Heritage Month. During September, KQED Public TV 9 and KQED 88.5 FM schedule programs that focus on Latino themes and issues.
San Francisco Opera on KQED
Get your front row seat at one of the leading opera companies in the world! Shot in brilliant HD, the fifth season of San Francisco Opera's acclaimed series brings you four spectacular productions performed by world-class singers.