Crime After Crime

Director: Yoav Potash
Genre: Documentary
Country: USA
Year: 2011
Running Time: 95 min
Language: English
Date: Wednesday, October 16, 7:30 pm
Location: Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel (KI)
Special Event: Post-film conversation and reading with author Joshua Safran


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CRIME AFTER CRIME tells the dramatic story of the legal battle to free Debbie Peagler, an incarcerated survivor of domestic violence. Over 26 years in prison could not crush the spirit of this determined African-American woman, despite the wrongs she suffered at the hands of a duplicitous boyfriend who beat her and forced her into prostitution. And later, prosecutors used the threat of the death penalty to corner her into a life behind bars.

Her story takes an unexpected turn two decades later when two rookie land use attorneys, Joshua Safran and Nadia Costa, step forward to take her case. Through their perseverance, they soon uncover a trail of prosecutorial misconduct that began with Deborah’s arrest and continues to the present day. Their discoveries sent the case into the headlines and launched a movement that not only advocated for Deborah’s freedom, but also raised a banner for battered women and the wrongfully imprisoned around the world.

After the film, join PJFF and KI for a conversation and reading with one of the subjects of CRIME AFTER CRIME, Joshua Safran.

CRIME AFTER CRIME profiles the strength Safran drew from his faith as a Jew. But what isn’t explored in the film is just as dramatic and heartbreaking — Safran’s own story, which illuminates his reasons for taking on the Peagler case in the first place.

Free Spirit BookIn FREE SPIRIT: Growing Up on the Road and off the Grid (Hyperion Books), Safran writes a viscerally powerful and eloquent memoir that shows the darker side of the Age of Aquarius. He recounts hitchhiking across the American West with his Wiccan revolutionary mother and standing up to his violent, alcoholic, guerilla-fighter stepfather. He reveals how he overcame adversity and reconnected to his Jewish heritage.

Come see why Safran has been described as one of the next generation’s most inspired spiritual leaders and why Publishers Weekly calls Safran’s stories “introspective, hilarious, and heartbreaking.”