Real Justice: Convicted for Being Mi’kmaq

The story of Donald Marshall Jr.

by Bill Swan

How wrongfully convicted Donald Marshall Jr. forced the justice system to confront its racism
When a black teen was murdered in a Sydney, Cape Breton park late one night, his young companion, Donald Marshall Jr., became a prime suspect. Sydney police coached two teens to testify against Donald which helped convict him of a murder he did not commit. He spent 11 years in prison until he finally got a lucky break. Not only was he eventually acquitted of the crime, but a royal commission inquiry into his wrongful conviction found that a non-aboriginal youth would not have been convicted in the first place. Donald became a First Nations activist and later won a landmark court case in favour of native fishing rights. He was often referred to as the "reluctant hero" of the Mi'kmaq community.

About the Author

Bill Swan
BILL SWAN is the author of nine Sports Stories novels and another Real Justice title on Steven Truscott, which won the 2013 Red Maple Non Fiction Award. Bill is retired from Durham College and teaches online courses in journalism and business writing. He lives in Courtice, Ontario.


"Bill Swan presents a straightforward, compelling narrative, easily followed, that will astound today's teenagers." Rated G, good, even great at times
Joan Marshall, Resource Links
"the important subject matter, meticulous research, and ultimately balanced portrait of the flawed man Marshall was makes this an engrossing and enlightening read for curious teens." Recommeded
Todd Kyle, CM: Canadian Review of Materials
"Much of this disturbing but well-researched book is impressively drawn directly from court documents and is part of the valuable Real Justice series, which features wrongfully accused Canadian youth and their fight for freedom."
Booklist Online


Best Books for Kids & Teens - Canadian Children's Book Centre

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