The Emmy-winning weekly news magazine series VICE returns for its sixth season with an extended special season premiere featuring Emmy-nominated actor Michael Kenneth Williams (The Wire, The Night Of) as he embarks on a personal journey to expose the root of the American mass incarceration crisis: the juvenile justice system.

“Raised in the System” offers a frank and unflinching look at those caught up the system, exploring why the country’s mass incarceration problem cannot be fixed without first addressing the juvenile justice problem. Williams investigates the solutions local communities are employing that are resulting in drastic drops in both crime and incarceration.

With over 850,000 juvenile arrests a year and 48,000 kids sitting in lock-up daily, the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate of minors on Earth. Growing up in Brooklyn’s Vanderveer projects, Williams has seen first-hand how family and close friends have been swept up in the criminal justice system at an early age. In Baltimore, Williams reunites with former The Wire co-star, Felicia “Snoop” Pearson who describes how her life was transformed after being sent to an adult maximum security women’s facility as a teenager.

From Brooklyn to Toledo, Richmond and Baltimore, Michael Kenneth Williams traverses the country; meeting young offenders stuck in the system and the judges and community members trying to keep them out.

Watch the episode for free on