Carl Upchurch (Omar Epps) grew up in a Philadelphia ghetto and spent most of his young adulthood in and out of prison. While incarcerated, a compassionate teacher helped to turn his life around through education and religion. Upchurch became inspired to reach out and help other troubled youth. In the early 1990s he became a crusader for peace among inner-city gangs, organizing the first national gang summit which brought about truces between deadly rivals. The film is based on Upchurch's autobiography CONVICTED IN THE WOMB.