Free Library will screen, discuss episodes of ‘Philly D.A.’

File photo: Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner speaks during a news conference in Philadelphia, Monday, Jan. 31, 2022

File photo: Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner speaks during a news conference in Philadelphia, Monday, Jan. 31, 2022. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

For the next five weeks, the Free Library of Philadelphia will screen episodes of the 2021 television documentary about District Attorney Larry Krasner, “Philly D.A.”

The free screenings inside neighborhood branches will be followed by open discussions related to issues of criminal justice brought up in the documentary.

During his first term as district attorney, Larry Krasner gave access to a documentary film team from PBS’s “Independent Lens,” to follow him as he tried to make good on his progressive promises for criminal justice reform.

That resulted in an eight-episode series that originally aired nationally in March of 2021. WHYY-TV decided to delay its broadcast until January of this year, to avoid impacting the local election as Krasner was campaigning for a second term.

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From now until the end of June, the Free Library will screen selected episodes in a different neighborhood branch, followed by moderated discussions.

“The Free Library provides a place where we all can gather to have meaningful conversations about the issues that matter to our city,” said Free Library Director Kelly Richards. “I’m pleased that this documentary series—which will be shown in library locations throughout the city—will contribute to that important, ongoing dialogue.”

The first screening will be on Monday, May 23, at 6 p.m., at the Central Branch, where the fourth episode will be screened, about LaTonya Myers, who was held in jail for nine months because she could not afford a cash bail.

After her jail time, she was ultimately acquitted of the charges. She still faced 10 years of probation.

Myers then was hired by the Defender Association to be its first bail navigator, and to petition for a reduced probationary period.

The screening of Myers’ episode of the documentary series will be followed by a discussion of bail, probation, and formerly incarcerated people re-entering society.

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The library’s website offers a full list of screening and discussion times.

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