City Council passed a resolution yesterday calling for the city of New York to “acknowledge the years of suffering of all those involved in the Central Park jogger case,” including five men whose convictions were overturned, and the assaulted jogger herself. The decision, sponsored by councilman Charles Barron, comes after a lawsuit from the convicted men and a celebrated documentary on the case from filmmaker Ken Burns–from which the city subpoenaed outtake footage for its defense against the suit.
The case involves five men who were convicted for raping a woman in Central Park under a confession that happened after 24 hours of detainment and was immediately recanted. Thirteen years later, another man admitted to the rape, his DNA matched what was found on the victim’s body, and the original five were released.
“These young men lost the best years of their lives, the best years of their lives, they’ll never be able to get back,” said Barron. “There’s no amount of money they can ever receive from this city to compensate those years that they lost.”
Thus far, the city is resolute that it did no wrong. “The civil lawsuit is not about guilt or innocence,” said Celeste Koeleveld, the city’s lawyer. “Because it was brought in federal court, it’s about whether the police and prosecutors acted with malice and wrongdoing. They did not.”
(Photo: Steve McFarland/Flickr)