Maria Shepherd was just 21 years-old when her step-daughter, Kasandra, passed away from complications of a grand mal seizure. After a respected child pathologist incorrectly conducted Kasandra’s autopsy, Maria was sentenced to 2 years less a day in prison. After leaving early on parole, things only got worse for Maria. Her marriage suffered, she was unable to become a paralegal because she was an ex-con, and she fell into a deep depression. It wasn’t until it was found that Kasandra’s autopsy was misconducted that Maria's life slowly began regaining hope and finally, after 25 years, Maria was exonerated in 2016.

  • Kieran Stanley
  • Kieran Stanley
  • Victoria Paige Elliott
  • Maria Shepherd
    Key Cast
  • Dylan Felato
  • Desiree Ubalde
    Director of Photography
  • Angel Ivan Torres
  • Andrew Boulos
    Composer/ Music Mixing
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Student
  • Runtime:
    10 minutes 34 seconds
  • Production Budget:
    1,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - Humber College
Director Biography - Kieran Stanley

Kieran Stanley is the director of the upcoming documentary, Injustice, a film about Maria Shepherd, a woman who was falsely imprisoned for the death of her step-daughter. He previously wrote and directed Judge Softly, a film about sexual assualt allegations and the people it affects. He is very excited to have the opportunity to tell Maria’s story. He is an avid crime doc fan and plays a little too much solitaire.

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Director Statement

When I first heard about Maria's story, I was far more interested in the criminal aspect of the case. It wasn't until I read more about the case and spoke to Maria herself that I saw the much more interesting side of the story: the human side. Maria's discussion of the grief, anger, and the sense of injustice that permeated her life was so much more powerful than I could have anticipated. Not only did she have to suffer through the loss of her daughter, but she also had to suffer through being labelled her murderer. Now, 20+ years later, I am honoured to have the chance to tell her story and hope you enjoy watching it as much as we enjoyed making it!