Synopsis by Mark Deming
The hard work of bringing a criminal to justice goes under the microscope in this documentary. In 2003, a team of filmmakers began work on a profile of Samantha Steinberg, a sketch artist working with the Miami-Dade County Police Department in Florida, who creates portraits of fugitive criminals based on descriptions from victims. Midway through filming, one case Steinberg was associated with became a hot topic in Miami -- she had created a sketch of a serial rapist who was believed to be responsible for seven assaults in Miami's Little Havana district. With few leads, Fernando Bosch and Elio "Chills" Tamayo, the detectives assigned to the case, distributed the sketch as widely as possible and attempted to bring in as many people as possible who resembled the picture for DNA testing. While media coverage of the case sent the community into a panic as the rapist remained on the loose, the fact the man in the sketch was African-American led many activists to accuse the Miami Police of racial profiling, with the detectives left between a rock and a hard place. Code 33 follows the case from Steinberg's initial sketch to the eventual capture and confession of the rapist. Code 33 was directed by David Beilinson, Michael Galinsky, Suki Hawley, and Zachary Werner; Beilinson, Galinsky, and Hawley previously collaborated on the award-winning film Horns and Halos.
community, crisis, detective, diversity, fear, forensic-science, human-rights, immigration, investigation, manhunt, media, notoriety, police, rape, sketch, suspect