The Suspect, the feature debut by Stuart Connelly, a film we first alerted you to in late 2011, when it was in pre-production, is now set for release on DVD, on April 22, 2014, stars Mekhi Phifer and Sterling K. Brown

According to the film’s synopsis, Pfifer and Brown play two African American social scientists who pose as bank robbers in an effort to understand the racial dynamics of small-town law enforcement. However, their experiment takes an unplanned, deadly turn.

A small town bank robbery leads to a brutal showdown between a sheriff and a mysterious stranger in this high stakes game of shifting identities and hidden motives, starring Mekhi Phifer (ER), William Sadler (The Shawshank Redemption) and Sterling K. Brown (Person of Interest). When the obvious suspect is apprehended not far from the crime scene, the police think that the case is solved, but they couldn’t be more wrong. The real crime hasn’t even happened yet. Before it’s over, two desperate men will be pushed over the line where innocent lives – and a lot of money – hang in the balance.

The thriller, produced by Connelly, Mary Jo Bartmaier, Robyn K. Bennett and Scott Aronson, also stars William Sadler, Derek Roche, James McCaffrey, Rebecca Creskoff, Lizzy DeClement and Bernadette Quigley

Connelly, a National Education Press Award winner, is the co-author of Behind the Dream: The Making of the Speech that Tranformed a Nation, a thrilling behind-the-scenes chronicle of events leading up to the “I Have A Dream” speech, as told by Clarence Jones, MLK‘s close confidant and co-writer of the speech.

Connelly also has said that he has “long been interested in America’s relationship with her people of color.” The writer/director aims to “turn on the instincts and emotions of people in the grip of deep-seated prejudice.”

Ahead of the film’s April 22 debut, S&A has your exclusive first look at the film’s release trailer and key poster art, both embedded below: