Netflix’s hotly anticipated documentary Murder To Mercy: The Cyntoia Brown Story drops on Wednesday and promises to be a gripping watch.
For many of us, the distressing case – which became a global news story – will be a familiar one.
In 2006, child sex trafficking victim Cyntoia Brown was sentenced to life for the first-degree murder of 43-year-old Nashville real estate agent Johnny Allen.
Allen had reportedly paid to have sex with the then-16-year-old Cyntoia, who then shot him dead.
Cyntoia maintained that she had acted in self-defence and that she feared for her life during the encounter.
Prosecutors argued that the motive was not self-defence as Cyntoia claimed, but robbery.
The case gain the attention of the international press and caused outrage, with the viral hashtag #freecyntoiabrown used to demand justice for the young convict.
Celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Rihanna and Lana Del Ray became voices for the cause, using their platforms to support the campaign.
It wasn’t until she had spent 15 years in jail that Cyntoia was granted clemency by Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam on August 7th 2019.
Now, the Netflix original documentary will delve into the case and its backstory.
Following Cyntoia’s story from her sentencing to her release from prison, the programme looks back on the injustice she endured, and the flaws in the legal system that convicted her.
In the trailer, we hear Cyntoia defence lawyers describe her as “a runaway – beaten, pimped and raped.”
“In 2004, she was considered a prostitute,” the trailer says. “Today, she would be considered a victim of sexual predators.”
Standing before the courtroom, Cyntoia says: “When I was 16, I did a horrible thing.
“I do pray that you show me mercy and that you give me a second chance”.
Going by the trailer, the documentary promises to be harrowing and poignant watch.
Murder to Mercy: The Cyntoia Brown Story lands on Netflix on April 29th.