Witch Hunt

Some Convictions are Criminal

91 minutes 8.0/10

DocumentaryStorm is proud to present “Witch Hunt,” a feature length documentary narrated by Sean Penn that tells the story of a small American city and the police’s witch-hunt that terrorized its citizens. In the 1980s, there were many rumors of child molestation and satanism around the country and the public was was full of fear. In response, voters in the small city of Bakersfield, California elected a tough on crime district attorney by the name of Ed Jagels which they hoped would keep their town’s children safe.

Not long after he was elected, the witch-hunt began. Jagels created a task force dedicated to investigating sex crimes against children and before long the court cases began. Dozens of innocent working class men and women were accused and had their lives destroyed as they were humiliated and put behind bars. Many of these individuals were locked up for decades before being exonerated of these alleged crimes.

This film makes you wonder: with over 2 million Americans in jail right now how many of them are actually innocent?

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Discuss This Documentary

  • Harry

    Losing your ENTIRE LIFE just because some assholes judge you to be a sexual criminal. The thick black cloud hanging over your head ever after, because people will always know you’ve been in jail – convicted of being child molester. Fucking hell… I’m just glad they got out and were innocent, what a fucked up way to go through life.

  • Katie

    Forcing the words into the kid’s mouths. Disgusting people, they should be so ashamed of themselves.

  • Dan

    i cant seem to get it to run.

  • Mansay Lombardy

    The opening scene is interesting. I don’t care much at all for my photos or need them to reflect on memories. I think I have maybe 3 pics of me from 15 till 24(present).

  • james

    and again they victimize all of them by deny that there was a witch hunt mentality. Wow is that ever disgusting

    • Joe

      In some ways, that’s the worst part. They can rend innocent people’s lives to pieces and then get “seconds” when the truth comes out through denial and more persecution trying to utterly destroy innocent people again. Notice at the end where they said the people are still “running the show down there.” Tragic. Why aren’t the district attorney’s being held legally liable for what they did? That’s the part of the law that needs to change.

      • Justina

        Agree! They say innocent until proven guilty but actually it’s guilty until proven innocent! The judicial system is not based upon your rights it’s based upon how much money you have to buy your way out for freedom..even when your INNOCENT!! Notice how certain celebrities do not do a lot of jail time or get not guilty verdicts because they have enough money to buy their rights!!
        We live in a country where our government runs us… Most countries run their governments not the other way
        around!!! They say children don’t lie… That in itself is one of the biggest lies ever told!! In these cases all a jury has to do is believe the children, no DNA is required no witnesses nothing just the word of the children

  • Joe

    What kind of justice system can you have when the justice system is evil wicked liars engaged in witch hunts of innocent people? The Spanish Inquisition has nothing on some district attorney offices.

  • David Avid

    As a new father, I find this movie to be horrid….using the greatest fear of responsible parents against them and manipulating the children to better the careers of public officials terrifies me. I wish they had gone and prosecuted those that orchestrated this “witch hunt”….alas… justice seems to rarely actually live up to it’s name….

  • whatever

    Sooo why aren’t the people responsible on trial??? The social workers who interrogated the kids should have been arrested and thrown in jail, they literally just picked some names out of a hat and said “ok they’re child molesters, arrest them” I would seek heavy vengeance against the individuals.

  • Douglas Deveau

    prosecute those responsible! I’m so pissed!

  • dagann

    It’s a sad day when cowardly actions by evil men threaten the forbearance of decent Christian folk. Notice the prosecutor ongoing career on the taxpayers dime. He’s allowed to maintain his righteous sanctimonious position in the community after destroying the lives of the thirty-six people and their families. I’d bet he is a deacon of his church and loves to discuss his courtroom prowess with friends at the country club.
    Yet, he’s just another shark who obviously feels the need to withheld evidence from the defense in the discovery aspect of the case. I’ve noticed over the years many prosecutors doing the same nationwide. However rarely are they held in contempt or charged with a crime. It’s a system so corrupt that what happened in Watts given me a bad taste in my mouth and i have no respect with the justice system.

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