HOUSTON, Oct. 3, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- As new death sentences and executions continue at record lows in Texas, a group of murder victim family members will kick off a two-week tour of the state with the Texas premiere of an award winning documentary film on October 14, 2017 at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory in Houston.
"The Gathering" is a film about exonerated death row survivors who become warriors against the death penalty. Award-winning filmmaker, Micki Dickoff, will be at this special screening for the Texas premiere. Admission is free.
Following the film, the Journey of Hope …From Violence to Healing will host a panel discussion featuring exonerated death row survivors and murder victim family members who oppose the death penalty. This will be the first of dozens of such events in schools, colleges and faith communities in Houston, Dallas, San Antonio and Austin over the following two weeks.
"The death penalty is a distraction from the real needs of victim families," said Bill Pelke, founder of the Journey of Hope …From Violence to Healing, a national organization led by murder victim family members opposed to the death penalty. "Most cases are not eligible for execution, but anyone with a relative who has been murdered wants the right person to be caught and held accountable. We include exonerated death row survivors on our tours because wrongful convictions are a real problem. It hurts victim family members even more when we learn that all this time we were focusing our anger on the wrong person. And to think they might have been killed in our names? That's unacceptable."
Pelke supported the death penalty for the girl who killed his grandmother, but then he came to understand the healing power of forgiveness. This experience and that of others on the Journey of Hope tour provide the opportunity for the public to look at crime and punishment from different perspectives, including that of the families of killers. Three speakers on the tour have brothers who faced execution, including David Kaczynski whose brother is Ted Kaczynski, AKA the Unibomber.
PRODUCERS: Tour speakers are immediately available for advance interviews and live programs.
Tour dates, public event details, speaker bios, and additional information: www.DeathPenaltyAction.org/JourneyofHope.
Details about "The Gathering": https://www.witnesstoinnocence.org/the-gathering-film
Contact: Abraham Bonowitz, 561-371-5204
SOURCE Journey of Hope... From Violence to Healing