Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Originally titled Milgaard, this made-for-TV drama is a disturbingly accurate account of one of the most infamous miscarriages of justice in Canadian history. In 1969, 17-year-old hippie David Milgaard (Ian Tracey) is arrested on suspicion for the rape and murder on nursing assistant Gail Miller (Ardith Boxall). Anxious for a quick conviction despite a paucity of conclusive evidence, the authorities in Saskatchewan rush David's trial through, and within less than two months of the murder he is sent to prison for life. As David's mother Joyce (Gabrielle Rose) and a team of dedicated pro bono attorneys battle to clear her son's name, David goes through hell behind bars--for the next twenty-three years. First telecast in Canada in April of 1999 (though banned from viewing in Saskatchewan, where the events took place), Milgaard was retitled Hard Time: The David Milgaard Story for airing in the US via the Lifetime channel. Since that time, a third title has been bestowed on the film at the behest of David's family: Innocent: The David Milgaard Story.