Harris pens op-ed telling Trump to watch Ava DuVernay's series on Central Park Five

Harris pens op-ed telling Trump to watch Ava DuVernay's series on Central Park Five
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Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisThis week: House to vote on legislation to make lynching a federal hate crime Juan Williams: Black votes matter Clyburn: Biden 'suffered' from not doing 'enough' in early debates MORE (D-Calif.) encouraged President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump suggests Sotomayor, Ginsburg should have to recuse themselves on 'Trump related' cases Sanders says idea he can't work with Republicans is 'total nonsense' Sanders releases list of how to pay for his proposals MORE to watch “When They See Us,” a Netflix series depicting the wrongful conviction of five teens in 1990.

Trump “and all Americans” should watch the miniseries, directed by Ava DuVernay, Harris wrote in a Thursday editorial for NBC News.

Harris's piece came after Trump said he still believes the five were guilty.


The senator and presidential candidate called the miniseries a “masterpiece,” touting its depiction of the arrests, wrongful conviction and imprisonment of Korey Wise, Raymond Santana, Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson and Yusef Salaam in connection with the brutal rape and assault of a jogger in New York’s Central Park.

“Systemic biases and racism cost these boys their childhood. Sensationalized media coverage — including a 1989 full-page ad placed by Trump — made it almost impossible for them to be treated fairly,” Harris wrote.

Harris highlighted the experience of Wise, the oldest of the boys at 16, who was sent to an adult prison. The depiction of Wise’s exposure to the adult prison system, Harris wrote, illustrates a "need to change our approach, by sentencing young people more leniently, ending the automatic transfer of children to adult prisons, and eliminating youth solitary confinement.”

All five men served time before their convictions were vacated by the state supreme court in 2002 due to DNA evidence exonerating them and a confession by serial rapist Mattias Reyes. In 2014, they settled with the city of New York for a record $41 million.

Trump, in addition to placing the ads, wrote an editorial for the New York Post blasting the settlement in 2014 and maintained in both 2016 and last week that the five “admitted” their guilt. The men have said their confessions were coerced.

“The criminal justice system failed Korey, Raymond, Antron, Kevin and Yusef. We owe it to them, and to all of our children, to fundamentally change the way that we treat our most vulnerable,” Harris wrote.