Scott Lewis was the focus of a crooked New Haven detective who framed him for double-murder.
Now Lewis is the focus of a documentary about how he spent 20 years in prison, then triumphed over the criminal injustice system that stole two decades of his life.
Lewis’s at-turns infuriating and inspiring story is the subject of 120 years, a new film made by three Yale students. It premieres Saturday with a screening followed by a panel discussion with Lewis and some of the people who helped him gain freedom, including two crusading attorneys.
Click here to read about how Lewis was eventually freed following years of appeals in state and federal courts. Click here to read the original story about the blockbuster FBI report that not only raised questions about Lewis’s arrest but revealed deep drug-related corruption in the New Haven police department. Click here for a story and radio interview about how Lewis and co-defendant Stefon Morant began new lives after their releases. And click here for a story about the $9.5 million New Haven ended up paying Lewis for his ordeal.
The event takes place at Luce Hall, 34 Hillhouse Ave., Saturday beginning at 6:30 p.m.
I worked in the prison during a period when Scott filed his motions and appeals. I thoroughly read the transcripts and even appeared in court. Everyone in the prison knew Scott was innocent and I am happy that he has been released…Justice, however has not been served- Raucci was never arrested. I don’t know if this dirty cop is alive or dead, but I am sure karma will have the last say. I am very proud of you Scott! I asked every New Haven Police Chief to review his case and the findings of the feds, who stated clearly that something was wrong with the conviction. I have a lot of respect for you, serving time in prison for a crime that everyone knew you didn’t commit- and remaining upright throughout the ordeal. Blessings to you.
posted by: challenge on September 7, 2018 4:05pm
There are many untold stories of police abuse and corruption that occurred in this city going back decades ago. Some may be shocked; others are not even surprised. They normalized police terror never expecting any officer would ever be held accountable.
posted by: Sally Joughin on September 10, 2018 12:13pm
In 1998 I was corresponding with a “jailhouse lawyer” at Cheshire Correctional Institution; he sent me a list of the prisoners he had helped, all of whom he believed to be innocent. Scott Lewis and Stefon Morant were on the list. Our newly formed grassroots organization People Against Injustice was just about to put on our first event, a big conference on Police, Court and Prison Injustice. We sent an event flier to everyone on my pen pal’s list, with a note saying, “Tell your family members to come.” That’s where we met Stefon’s mother and Scott’s mother and sister; they spoke out during our event. I was sure the two men were not guilty. Later I got a copy of the FBI investigation, which totally “proved” their innocence. I attended many of Scott’s and Stefon’s court appearances, including hearing Scott brilliantly represent himself. Sadly, it still took many years before they finally won their freedom. It is still way too easy to accuse and convict innocent defendants—through insufficient evidence, officials’ misconduct, false and mistaken eyewitnesses, poor representation—but so difficult later to overturn a wrongful conviction. I was so happy when Scott and Stefon, with the help of caring attorneys, were finally able to prevail. Now I’m waiting for the same outcome for George Gould, another innocent man on my pen pal’s list, another young African American New Havener forced, like Scott and Stefon, to lose many years behind bars for a murder he did not commit.