The Thin Blue Line (1988)
Errol Morris's unique documentary dramatically re-enacts the crime scene and investigation of a police officer's murder in Dallas, Texas. Briefly, a drifter (Randall Adams) ran out of gas and was picked up by a 16-year-old runaway (David Harris). Later that night, they drank some beer, smoked some marijuana, and went to the movies. Then, their stories diverged. Adams claimed that he left for his motel, where he was staying with his brother, and went to sleep. Harris, however, said that they were stopped by police late that night, and Adams suddenly shot the officer approaching their car. The film shows the audience the evidence gathered by the police, who were under extreme pressure to clear the case. It strongly makes a point that the circumstantial evidence was very flimsy. In fact, it becomes apparent that Harris was a much more likely suspect and was in the middle of a crime spree, eventually ending up on Death Row himself for the later commission of other crimes.(IMDB Tad Dibbern)
Director: Errol Morris
Randall Dale Adams (December 17, 1948 – October 30, 2010) was wrongly convicted of murdering police officer Robert W. Wood and was subsequently sentenced to death. He served more than 12 years in prison and some of that time on death row. His death sentence was reduced through appeal to the United States Supreme Court, and eight years later he was released when evidence was uncovered to prove his innocence.
His case is profiled in the 1988 documentary film The Thin Blue Line, and the evidence presented in the film had a significant impact on obtaining his release.