Ava DuVernay‘s “When They See Us” has people revisiting how the so-called Central Park 5 — Kevin Richardson, Raymond Santana, Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam and Korey Wise — endured hell for years after being wrongfully accused of raping Trisha Meili in April of 1989. While the victim has not spoken out since the miniseries premiered on Netflix, she recently made comments doubting the innocence of the young, even after they were exonerated and received a settlement of over $40 million.
“When that lawsuit was settled, it gave some the impression that the detectives and the prosecutors had acted improperly and I’d like to see it be acknowledged that there wasn’t a violation of (the teens’) civil rights,” she said at the time.
Even though there was zero DNA that linked the five children to her and there was DNA that linked Matias Reyes, the man was confessed in 2002, Meili said she was still unsure if the admitted rapist committed the crime, describing him as a “pathological liar.”
She also claimed the settlement for the boys was political.
“I was shocked and somewhat disgusted and really so disappointed that the case against the city claiming the detectives and prosecutor had acted improperly … that it was settled for what seems to me like a campaign promise from then-candidate Bill de Blasio,” she said at the time.
It didn’t stop there.
She also previously complained to ABC News about the settlement and praised the prosecutors.
“I so wish the case hadn’t been settled,” Meili said in January. “I wish that it had gone to court because there’s a lot of information that’s now being released that I’m seeing for the first time. I support the work of law enforcement and prosecutors. … They treated me with such dignity and respect.”
While Meili was a victim and no one should have to suffer what she went through, the children were also victims and not treated with any dignity or respect.
Meili said she has no memory of what happened that night.
All five of the boys were exonerated by the New York Supreme Court in 2002. Sadly, even with all the facts, which includes a confession and DNA evidence, their innocent was still being doubted.
Watch the powerful trailer for “When They See Us” below, which is available on Netflix.