Tuesday, June 28, 2011

PBS Frontline examines false convictions for child abuse, and for-profit universities and veterans

PBS Frontline tonight aired “The Child Cases” (35 min),  produced by Catherine Upin, about the tendency for prosecutors to jump to conclusions and go after caregivers or parents in cases where small children die, on faulty or incomplete medical evidence of child abuse. The documentary covered a case in Amarillo, TX where a young Hispanic father was accused of abuse of a female baby who showed bruising, when later medical examination showed a blood disorder that could have explained it. Still, the state is slow to give him a new trial. It covered a case in Georgia where a mother was accused of the death of a small day care child for “shaken baby syndrome” based on wrong evidence. Even though her conviction was overturned, she remains listed in the system as incarcerated.

Here is the PBS website for the episode. 

The remaining segment was “College Inc” about the tendency of “for-profit” universities to try to enroll veterans (with GI benefits) who cannot do college work or when they cannot provide academic course work that would be recognized.  Frontline has produced earlier reports on the "for profit" education world in general. I can remember almost signing up for a programming school to learn COBOL in 1971, but getting a job at the last minute and not needing to. 

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