BET Networks continues its award-winning “Truth Series” programming with the premiere of the compelling documentary, Charged: The DA vs. Black America, which will air Tuesday, November 7, at 9:00 pm EST. #Charged is BET’s battle cry for all registered voters on election day to pay close attention to the men and women on the ballot for district attorney in their local community.
Produced by “NBC News” Senior Producer and Emmy nominated Shoshana Guy, and narrated by Tarik “Black Thought” Trotter of the legendary hip hop band The Roots, #Charged is an “alarming wake up call” regarding the absolute power of the District Attorney. With an in-depth and unprecedented look into the DA’s impact on individuals and families across the country, the documentary exposes how these elected prosecutors have contributed to the mass incarceration of Black men.Today, there are more African-American men in prison, on parole or on probation than were enslaved in 1850.
The documentary features an exclusive interview with Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, one of the few Black female prosecutors in the entire country who garnered notoriety for charging six white police officers in the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray. “I had a number of death threats, hate mail, obituaries describing the way I would die, the way my husband would die,” says Mosby.
Rashad Robinson, executive director of Color of Change, the largest online, non-profit racial justice organization, recalls the recent victory in galvanizing Chicago voters, using the hashtag #ByeAnita, to dethrone Cook County District Attorney Anita Alvarez following her mishandling of the LaQuan McDonald case, a 17-year-old African-American male shot 16 times by a police officer.
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There are over 2,300 prosecutors in the country, 95 percent of who mare white. And it is the prosecutor and the prosecutor alone who decides who to charge what charges to bring, and what the plea bargain will be. All of these negotiations happen behind closed doors.
The film asks the question of every African-American voter today: Do you know who your local District Attorney is? #Charged is part of BET’s “Truth Series,” where passionate award-winning, independent filmmakers like actor/activist and executive producer Jesse Williams ( Stay Woke: The Black Lives Matter Movement), television producer and journalist Sacha Jenkins (CNN Film’s Fresh Dressed), Emmy award-winning director Stanley Nelson ( The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution), and Emmy award-winning producer Candi Carter (Katrina 10 Years Later: Through Hell or High Water), are given the creative freedom to document the Black experience. “Truth Series” is designed to tell our stories to evoke progressive dialogue about social justice.
The premiere of Charged: The DA vs. Black America is Monday, November 7, 2016 at 9:00pm EST. BET will also host an online panel discussion with:
- Shoshana Guy (the documentary’s director/producer)
- Color of Change Executive Director Rashad Robinson
- Rapper/activist David Banner
- Tamika Mallory (civil rights leader and anti-gun advocate), and
- Harlem’s Arva Rice (President and CEO of the New York Urban League)
On Wednesday, November 2nd at BET.com and Facebook LIVE to raise awareness about prosecutors and their limitless power to charge and determine the outcome of Black lives.