Central Park Five Settles Decade Long Civil Suit

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The Central Park Five, found guilty in a sham trial for the vicious sexual assault and attempted murder of a white investment banker jogging in Central Park in spring 1989, have settled a decade long civil suit, for $40 million, with New York City.

 

The five, four African-Americans and one Latino, Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Raymond Santana, Korey Wise, and Yusef Salaam, were coerced into confessions after being held against their will and separated from their parents for 36 hours, for a crime that divided the city and ignited racial tensions,

Slammed by some; lauded by others the settlement is as divided as the initial arrest.

The fact remains these men were arrested for crimes they did not commit, in order to reinforce racial stereotyping, the five were blasted in the media, by fictitious accounting, created by the detectives and Manhattan D.A. prosecutors, of places and times throughout the night of the attack that they could not have been.

The settlement can never return the years which were taken from them and fulfills a campaign promise of then candidate Bill De Blasio who pledged if he were elected he would put this blight behind the city.

From the Central Park Five Documentary review . . .

After aggressive interrogation by the NYPD, that lasted thirty-six hours, the five teenagers, clearly not naive and still not aware of the cruelty of the system, had made confessions. The woman, still unknown, was not expected to live. The brutality so causally described without remorse or concern by the teens made it impossible for a blood thirsty media and a deeply concerned public not to feel satisfied with the swiftness of the arrests.

Having seen the confessions the first time around, it is important to stress they did not appear coerced, in fact the confessions looked genuine, an actual recounting of the outings of a group of "wilding" thugs.

What follows is truly hard to describe as these teenagers, Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Raymond Santana, Korey Wise, and Yusef Salaam, tried to explain they were forced, coerced, lied to by the NYPD, told they could leave, free, could go home with no worries, if they just "helped out" and made the confessions.  

And if one hell wasn't bad enough, the judicial process began with full guilt already rendered, pre-trial, the public calmed, the media prepared and readied for a sensational season of sales and the five . . . . well they might as well have been declared dead to all, they received their due penalty. Case closed.

The five were the focus of a documentary in 2012 that this magazine covered.

Click here to read the entire review of The Central Park Five.

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