Discovery: Legal Action 1of4 Crimes and Misdemeanors DivX AC3 (www.mvgroup.org)
San Francisco experiences the full range of criminal cases but has the lowest conviction rate in the U.S. Famed for its liberal attitudes, has San Francisco allowed the justice system to slip? This series explores crime and punishment on the west coast, USA, from the relatively liberal bay area to the more traditional hardline approach of district attorneys in the surrounding districts. Produced by Nick Catliff (Boston Law, Real Justice) and narrated by Dylan McDermott of The Practice.
1..Crimes and Misdemeanors
Welcome to San Francisco's Hall of Justice. Its 20 courtrooms are the frontline of the city's criminal justice system. One of the busiest is called Department 15 with the Honorable Judge Tsenin presiding. Everyday the judge sees as many as 200 defendants. Most need the help of a Public Defender or PD who is a free attorney appointed by the court. Most of the PD's are young and inexperienced. But for their clients, they are the only defense. If convicted, they could go to jail for up to a year. With dozens of cases a day, this is where new PD's cut their teeth.
2..25 to Life
It's a typical Friday afternoon in San Francisco. A police undercover narcotics team is at work. During the course of the evening they'll make six arrests. Every weekend in San Francisco the police arrest over 300 people for offenses ranging from petty misdemeanors to murder. Most have been in trouble before. For the city's 20 judges the priority is to stop the cycle. But now the courts have a new weapon. Under California's controversial "three strikes law" thousands of repeat offenders are in prison for life. For them it's three strikes and you're out. In San Francisco, as in many other American cities, sentences are getting longer as judges clamp down on repeat offenders. This get-tough policy seems to work. Crime rates are falling, but critics say it's barbaric and point to a prison population that has soared to two million in the United States.
3..Dead Men Don't Talk
San Francisco is one of the wealthiest and safest cities in the United States. But even here, not every one is immune from the most serious crime of all, homicide. In 2000, 58 people were murdered in San Francisco. The District Attorney's Office Homicide Team is responsible for bringing the killers to justice. D.A. Terence Hallinan leads the team. He's flanked by Homicide prosecutor Jim Hammer, and prosecutor Kimberly Guilfoyle who is dealing with the highest profile death in recent history... but is it murder? If you commit homicide in San Francisco, this is the team that will come after you.
4..He Said She Said
San Francisco's Hall Of Justice deals with as many as 20,000 criminal cases every year. Many are not random acts committed by strangers but involve crime such as rape or domestic disputes carried out by a person the victim knows. These cases range from long running disputes within the marital home to attacks by mere acquaintances. The criminal justice system is crammed with prosecutors and defense attorneys trying to sort out human relationships that have gone wrong, and the cliche that truth is stranger than fiction frequently applies to what you see in criminal court.
Video Codec: DivX
Video Bitrate: ~1850 Kbps/part
Video Resolution: 640x480
Video Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Video Framerate: 29.97
Audio: English (subs included)
Audio Codec: Dolby AC3
Audio Bitrate: 384 kb/s @ 48KHz
Audio Channels: 2
Runtime per Part: ~46 minutes/part
Number of Parts: 4
Part Size: 746 MB/part, 2/3 DVDR total
Ripped by: PolarBear