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"Incarcerating US" film and discussion on September 20

MORGANTOWN, WEST VIRGINIA—The West Virginia University College of Law will host a screening of the documentary “Incarcerating US” followed by a panel discussion on September 20 at 6 p.m. in the college’s Event Hall.

Admission is free and the public is invited to attend. A reception will follow in the lobby.

This program is part of WVU’s 2016-17 Campus Read of “Just Mercy,” the Bryan Stevenson book that explores the moral implications of the American justice system.

The prison population in the United States is 2.3 million. “Incarcerating US” highlights the overpopulated prison system and discusses ways to change it through criminal justice reforms.

Through first-hand accounts, expert testimony and statistics, the film questions the purpose of prison, why its population has increased greatly since the 1970s and what can be done to make the system more just.

The panelists following the film screening will be Betsy Jividen, assistant U.S. Attorney, Valena Beety, WVU associate professor of law, and three former prison inmates.

Jividen, a 1980 WVU Law graduate, is the first woman to be sworn in as First Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of West Virginia. She has served in the Criminal and Civil Divisions and has held the positions of Civil Chief, Senior Litigation Counsel and Interim United States Attorney.

Beety is the deputy director of the WVU Clinical Law Program and the chair of the West Virginia Innocence Project at the College of Law. She will speak about partnering with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and U.S. Federal Courts to assist people with reentry after incarceration.

The film screening and panel discussion is sponsored by WVU Law’s Black Law Student Association and American Civil Liberties Union student organizations.

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