Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Brian Banks story - Wrongly accused of rape at 16

Brian Banks
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People don't believe it until it happens to them, but instead of proving someone did something "beyond a reasonable doubt," all it takes is someone to accused you of a sex crime, and your life is over. Brian is one of the many examples, which can be seen by clicking the "WronglyAccused" label above.

"I’m beginning to see myself re-trained, re-focused, and re-created. I thank God for keeping me another day." - Brian Banks

They say 1 out 3 African American men will experience incarceration at some point of their life. Having only 2 close friends, Brian Banks was that third. On July 8th, 2002 at the age of 16, and on a fast track to a promising college and NFL career, he was arrested on the charges of raping another student on campus.

Awaken by the heavy knee to his back and barked orders of a cop, Brian was forced from bed and stood cuffed in boxers as he was told to quickly pick something to wear. The police were in his room and with guns drawn. Their voices imitating the sound of calm, their actions filled with anxiety. Shit just got real. It was the beginning of a true act of evil. As police took him into custody and from his home, he could only watch as his mother drop to her knees shouting in terror as they lead him, her middle child, out the door. The LA Times and news reports said, “Long Beach Poly High School Football Player Arrested for Rape”. For the next 10 years he will endure some of America’s greatest nightmares, with the question “why”, an answered prayer, and an amazing struggle for vindication.

Brian was, by all accounts, a high school football star. At the early age of 16, Brian stood 6’3″ tall, 225 pounds, and played the position of middle linebacker for the legendary Long Beach Poly High School. In fact, Banks’ physical fitness and his great speed for his size meant he was heavily recruited by a number of NCAA Division I football programs. At the time of the incident, the University of Southern California had offered him a full-ride scholarship. Other universities also expressed an interest in Banks, including Colorado State, the University of Illinois, the University of Nebraska, the University of California – Los Angeles, the University of Oklahoma, the University of Arizona, Michigan State University, Utah State University, and the University of Kansas. It is indisputable that Banks was on the fast-track to a free college education and a potentially successful football career..

Prisons are often the scenes of brutality, violence and stress. Hear a story of struggle and triumph as one 16 year old boy spends the next 5 years and 2 months behind bars as a wrongfully convicted sex offender. His day to day struggles once released from prison, and the emotional roller-coaster of such an inhumane experience.

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