On December 9, 1991 Rick Walker was convicted and sentenced to 26 years in prison for a murder he did not commit. Linked to the crime by false testimony and questionable legal tactics, Walker would spend the next 12 years in some of California's most dangerous prisons.
$100 a Day is a compelling story of gross injustice, political partisanship and the heroic struggle to prove Walker's innocence. Once exonerated, he would face yet another barrier to justice - the California State Legislature. Entitled to one hundred dollars for each day spent falsely imprisoned, Walker would become a pawn in the annual partisan battle over the California budget.
Ultimately, $100 a Day is about hope - hope that in one man's quest for justice lays the inspiration for our elected officials to govern with the true strength of their convictions.
The story of Rick Walker - the injustices he suffered and the heroic efforts that saved him - is in many ways a microcosm of the struggles American society faces today. Many aspects of our political, judicial and economic systems operate within a win-at-all cost mentality, considering the consequences only when taken to task or exposed for wrongdoing. This cultural dynamic has plunged our economy into a tailspin, exacerbated political partisanship and pressured the criminal justice system to emphasize win/loss ratios. As a result, people are sent to jail for crimes they did not commit, political reforms are tied up in gridlock, and the funding needed to help those caught in the crossfire is insufficient.
$100 a Day chronicles the quintessential "perfect storm" and leads viewers to wonder if society's fundamental systems of government are able to protect innocent people from complex and oftentimes indifferent bureaucracies.
documentaries • political/public affairs • arts & education