Law & Order (1990) Episode Scripts

N/A - Flight

NARRATOR: In the criminal justice system the people are represented by two separate yet equally important groups, the police, who investigate crime, and the district attorneys, who prosecute the offenders.
These are their stories.
Okay, sleepyheads, come on it's time to get up.
There you go.
Alice, will you, uh, get out the finger paint and pass out the smocks, please? Sure.
Come on, up, up, up yeah.
Here you go.
Fold up your blanket, sweetie.
Ryan, honey, wake up.
BOY: What are you gonna be? Ryan Downing, come on now, rise and shine.
BOY 2: Where's my blankie? (CHILDREN CHATTERING) Okay.
Um, everyone, let's visit Mrs.
Fredman's class.
Call 9-1-1.
Go.
Ryan Downing spiked a fever of 106.
DOA at Lenox Hill.
Kids still die from staph infections? Not usually.
Vancomycin-Resistant staphylococcus aureus.
V.
R.
S.
A.
Meaning it doesn't respond to antibiotics? Yeah.
A few mutant bacteria survive broad-spectrum antibiotics.
A million reproductive cycles later, V.
R.
S.
A.
, killer bacteria.
With all due respect, Doc, shouldn't you be telling all this to the Health Department? I already did.
So what are we doing here? This strain of V.
R.
S.
A.
Doesn't occur in the US.
Well, then how'd the Downing kid get it? That's why I called you.
It didn't walk out of a lab.
Somebody let it loose.
Somebody? You talking about a terrorist? I sure as hell hope not.
It's cheap.
Fast.
Deadly.
Gene stereotyping says the bacteria that killed Ryan Downing comes from rural France, outside Chambord.
What, the kid picked this up from a tourist? No.
A sick tourist would be hospitalized by now Or dead.
So what are we looking for? Muscle aches, dehydration.
Body temps go ballistic, you know the rest.
Well, how long start to finish? Forty-eight hours for the Downing kid.
Maybe longer for an adult.
So the kid picked up the bug Tuesday.
Any other cases? No.
Ryan Downing's the only one that's turned up.
So far.
Look, the kid's infection could be an isolated episode.
Like some nut trying out a science project? Or a dry run for a terrorist attack.
Well, whatever it is, we need to get a handle on it.
How do you get your hands on this V.
R.
S.
A.
? Anyone with credentials can order a sample from a bio-supply house.
So we're talking a couple of dozen microbiologists? Any idiot with a PC and a printer.
How do you mean? Well, you dummy up some medical letterhead, you fax it in with a credit card number, one of these companies will ship it to you overnight.
It's easier than getting a gun.
Yeah.
And a thousand times more dangerous.
Well, suppose you wanted to infect somebody? WEISS: One person? You get a $1.
99 plant sprayer, you spritz the kid in the face.
Put an aerosol bomb in the subway, you got the beginning of an epidemic.
(SIGHS) WEISS: The boy's family and apartment came up negative.
HARKAVY: How about the boy's school? Clean.
We checked every student.
No V.
R.
S.
A.
Hospital notification? The BCD's faxed every hospital and clinic in a 50-mile radius.
The hazmat unit's on stand-by.
Good.
Agent Sykes.
The bureau is handling the terrorist angle.
We've contacted Interpol, our anti-terrorism people are monitoring our home-grown crazies.
By the way, we're putting our usual turf skirmishes on hold.
Everybody cooperates.
What about the outfits that sell this stuff? We faxed a bulletin to every bio-supply house in the US and overseas.
I'm putting together a joint task force, law enforcement and the CDC.
Your squad will take up the point on the local end.
Find out how that Downing boy was exposed.
Maybe my detectives should get their shots first.
WEISS: Wouldn't help.
Once you get infected, you're dead.
The commissioner's office wants a complete lockdown on information.
They don't want to start a panic.
What do we tell the parents? Low-key it.
This is a routine investigation.
Well, how contagious is this stuff supposed to be? Well, it can't be passed by casual contact.
As long as you don't get sneezed on.
And what if we do? What can I tell you? Did somebody infect our son on purpose? BRISCOE: It was probably an accident, but we need to know exactly where Ryan went Tuesday.
He's a five-year-old kid.
He went to school, he came home, same as every other day.
CURTIS: He was feeling fine that day? He had a little trouble getting out of bed.
I didn't think anything of it.
Which one of you took him to school? PAULA: Uh, I did.
Um, it starts at 8:30.
And then Angie picked him up at 2:00 and brought him home.
(SOFTLY) Oh, it's okay.
(SOBBING) Angie? Our housekeeper.
BRISCOE: How's she feeling? I don't know.
They told her to see a doctor.
How long has Angie been with you? Oh, three years, since I went back to work.
Would you know if Angie stopped anyplace on her way back? No.
We give her cab fare and she brings Ryan straight home.
Am I going to get this? If the doctors were concerned, they wouldn't send you home.
It's important that we find that cab you took with Ryan.
Did you happen to get a receipt? I didn't take a cab.
Ryan likes to go on the bus.
BRISCOE: What bus? The 104.
Look, I took Ryan straight home.
While you were on the bus, did you see anything unusual? Like what? Anybody spray anything on Ryan, maybe sneeze on him? No, no, nothing like that.
Do you remember who was sitting next to you? I wasn't paying attention.
How could something like this happen? MTA took the bus out of service 15 minutes after you called.
The hazmat unit's just about finished up.
The passengers went home? Yeah.
They're not in any danger.
The bacteria dies within seconds after it's airborne.
Well, why the Tyvek suits? It's just standard for a level three bio-hazard.
Well, that makes me feel better.
No aerosol bomb.
Bus is clean.
If somebody released V.
R.
S.
A.
Inside, it would've showed up.
So as far as we know, nobody got sick except for the Downing kid.
Yeah, we may have lucked out here.
Even at the far end of the curve, the incubation time's past for aerosol infection.
Well, does exposure have to be through the air? No, it's just most likely.
How about unlikely? I went over every inch with a 20-power glass.
Here.
A small injection mark over the left quadricep, less than a week old.
Well, maybe he got vaccinated? Not according to his medical records.
This kid could have been injected with V.
R.
S.
A.
Okay, so the kid's walking home from school and some wacko jabs him in the leg with a needle.
The fact he was injected changes the time-line.
Different delivery system, different absorption rate.
Symptoms would develop more slowly with injection into hard muscle tissue.
All right, assuming he was injected, when did this happen? Working back from time of death, Sunday night, early Monday.
Somebody stuck Ryan with a needle? Any chance you could be wrong, detective? There's a puncture wound on your son's left thigh.
Any idea how he got that? No.
Of course not.
Who would do that? Anybody have anything against you or your wife? CURTIS: Somebody at work, maybe? I sit behind a desk at Foxbury Insurance, crunch numbers.
My wife is a systems analyst.
Who could hate us that much? I can't think of anyone.
You sure he wasn't picked at random? (CELL PHONE RINGING) It's possible.
Did Ryan go to school on Monday? AARON: Same as every week day.
I was out of town, my wife took him on her way to work.
Angie picked him up.
And Sunday? He was at home with us.
I was working on my quarterly revenues.
And he never complained about pain in his leg? No, no, I don't think so.
Lennie.
LT got a call from Beekman hospital.
Another case of V.
R.
S.
A.
The man's girlfriend brought him in with a temp of 105.
BP, heart rate, off the charts.
Resident botched the diagnosis.
Asian flu.
The patient got a name? Yeah.
Clarence Meeks.
You check him for needle marks? Ah, that's the problem.
Mr.
Meeks has been main-lining heroin for BRISCOE: When can we talk to him? He died 10 minutes ago.
WEISS: Clarence Meeks' personal effects.
You need gloves? We have our own.
You should have been with me in South America in '89.
Bolivian hemorrhagic fever.
Pick that up from clothing, bed sheets.
Stuff kicks ass.
Internal hemorrhaging of the organs, bleeding from every orifice, vomiting Yeah.
Yeah.
We get the picture, Doc.
Two dime bags, Armageddon.
Poor Clarence, too sick to shoot up his last score.
I got it.
Clarence's works.
Or the murder weapon.
There's V.
R.
S.
A.
In the syringe.
Genetic analysis indicates it's the strain that killed Ryan Downing.
Both samples came from the same batch of bacteria? Exactly.
And there were trace amounts of Ryan Downing's blood in the needle.
So Clarence stuck the kid, then stuck himself? I don't see a junkie ordering up some exotic germ.
Figure Clarence for another victim.
So where'd he get the needle? Doesn't make sense.
I take Clarence to the hospital for a fever, now I'm planning a funeral.
They won't even tell me what killed him.
Do you know if Clarence was in Midtown on Monday? He went with me up at the VA, in the Bronx, registering for a drug program.
The man was finally pulling himself together.
He was clean for two weeks.
Except for his works and the two decks of smack we found in his pocket.
The bacteria that killed him came from his needle.
He didn't have a needle.
Son of a bitch, Willie.
Who's Willie? Him and Clarence used to get high together.
Where's this Willie live? I don't have a clue.
But he He sells his junk over on Clinton street.
Willie deals drugs? Not that kinda junk.
You know, junk.
(SIGHS) WILLIE: Clarence Meeks? Haven't seen him all week.
That's because he's dead.
Oh, man.
OD'd? Something like that.
His girlfriend says you hooked him up.
Not me.
You got a permit to sell this stuff? This is a free gallery.
I don't need a permit.
Oh, maybe we ought to toss you just for the hell of it, see what we come up with.
Whatever snuffed Clarence, he scored on his own.
Where'd he get his works? I sold him a set-up, Tuesday, I think it was.
Did you use that needle? I got my own.
Where'd you get the one you sold to Clarence? I found it.
Show us.
Who's gonna keep an eye on my sculptures? Oh, I wouldn't worry about that.
So what'd you charge Clarence for the needle? Ten.
Did you bother to clean it first? Yeah, yeah, of course.
You know, your buddy got sick from that needle I wiped it off.
Hey, hey, this is it.
Yeah.
Yeah, yeah.
Right in those cans.
What were you doing back here? Looking for materials.
You can't believe what people throw away.
Or pick up.
So what do you think, Rey, about 90 apartments? That's a lot of buzzers to push.
Let's get a tenant list from the building manager.
CURTIS: Mildred Kinsky.
Forty years in the building.
BRISCOE: What's she pay? $212 for a three-bedroom.
With that rent, I could retire.
FBI sent these.
Responses from European bio-supply houses.
No V.
R.
S.
A.
Shipments.
CURTIS: What about the American firms? Two checked in negative.
And get this.
The others want to run it by their lawyers.
They're hiding something.
Yeah, people are dying from the germs they're selling.
Well, Forensics went through the trash cans.
There's nothing there.
What about you guys? We went through all the tenants there's no doctors, no biologists, nobody who works for a lab VAN BUREN: Nurses? Hospital employees? One chiropractor.
Retired.
Theresa Copeland.
Apartment 8C.
Mr.
Downing works in insurance? Yeah, the Foxbury group.
Uh, 42 Park Avenue.
So does Miss Copeland.
Well, it's a big company.
Get a photo of Theresa Copeland from DMV.
Show it to Downing.
Theresa Copeland.
She works in Claims.
Uh, Foxbury has Are you sure? Uh, in the elevator.
Maybe.
Your department have anything to do with Claims? Nothing.
What's this woman have to do with my son? We traced the needle that was used on your son to her apartment building.
Why would some stranger kill Ryan? Maybe your wife knows her? I don't see how.
We can show her the picture, if you think it'd help? You know a man named Aaron Downing? He works upstairs, in Compliance.
(SCOFFS) We don't have anything to do with Compliance.
That's not what he asked you.
Sorry, I don't know him.
Mind telling us where you were on Monday? Here.
How about before work? Monday.
Oh, I showered at my sister's.
They were working on my water.
You leave the office during the day? I went out on my lunch break.
Did someone accuse me of something? Where'd you eat? I didn't.
I needed a pair of platform sandals.
Did you get a receipt? No.
I just looked.
Where'd you look? Prada, Chanel, Manolo Blahnik.
Midtown.
How long were you out of the office? I don't know, about two hours.
That's not a crime, is it? The kids ate early on Monday.
About 11:30.
Then rest time.
We got them up, it was a nice day, so we took them to the Heckscher playground, in the park.
A stone's throw from the shoe stores.
Is it possible that you noticed this woman in the park? Her name is Theresa Copeland.
Oh, I'm sorry, I don't recognize her.
Is she the one who Right now we're running down leads.
She's pretty.
Is she a friend of the Downings? She works for the same company as Mr.
Downing.
Why do you ask? Well, I'm not sure, but, Mrs.
Downing brings Ryan to school because she says that Mr.
Downing runs laps around the reservoir at 7:00.
And? Well, I run the reservoir that time every morning and I haven't seen him in there for at least six months.
Daniel, Christopher! Excuse me.
Wanna guess where he's getting his exercise.
Yeah.
Right, Miss Copeland, 8C.
Take a look at this.
Name's Aaron Downing.
You ever see him go up to her place? I'm usually down here.
I don't keep track of who comes and goes.
Oh, yeah, this guy.
He was having trouble with his vestibule key so I let him in.
When was this? Uh, last month.
In the morning.
And he was here to see Theresa Copeland? Well, he had a key.
I figured he was showing her apartment.
Oh, she's moving? Hell if I know.
She's given notice three times in the last three months.
Keeps changing her mind.
You've been to my office.
One of the parents told me you were around the school.
What more do you want me to tell you? Why you're covering your ass.
You having an affair? With this Copeland woman? Come on.
Hey, you want to lie to your wife, fine.
But don't play us for idiots.
She might've murdered your son.
What did you say? BRISCOE: Theresa's super ID'd you.
We know the work-outs you've been getting are in her bed.
So, we on the same page? (SIGHS) Yeah, okay.
I was seeing her.
How long? Almost a year.
But it was just something on the side.
No big deal.
CURTIS: For you.
What about for Theresa? She knew the score.
Maybe she didn't like the score.
So she killed Ryan? Hey, I've been there, pal.
You make a few promises under the sheets, the lady gets expectations.
There were no expectations.
Theresa kept giving notice to her landlord, kept changing her mind.
You were stringing her along.
Maybe it looked that way.
Come on, Aaron.
A single woman investing the best years of her life in a married man.
Maybe she got tired of waiting for you to dump your wife.
Theresa understood I had no problem leaving my wife.
But she knew I'd never leave Ryan.
No.
No, that's crazy.
Maybe she's crazy.
I don't believe it.
She couldn't do something like that.
Any headway? Well, he copped to the affair, but he insists it was strictly recreational.
Theresa's credit card information came in.
Any charges to a bio-supply house? No, but check out her balance.
Whoa.
$20,000 on her Amex card.
She's way in the hole.
It's a credit.
$20,000 on her MasterCard, $45,000 on her Visa.
She's using her credit cards as bank accounts.
Where did she get that kind of money? You'll talk to us without a lawyer? I don't need a lawyer.
I didn't do anything.
We got a witness puts you in the park the day Ryan was injected.
What? The closest I ever got to Ryan was when Aaron showed me his picture.
The needle you used on the kid was found in your building's trash.
Uh, I didn't put it there.
You have to believe me.
Why? You were in deep with Aaron Downing.
He told you he'd never leave his family as long as his son was around.
Did Aaron say that? Come on, Theresa.
He was going to leave his wife.
This wasn't just a fling.
We had something special together.
He told us it was no big deal.
No.
Aaron needed me.
He said there was something missing until I came along.
Yeah, a different bed to jump into.
You don't understand.
We talked about getting married.
We found an apartment with a room for Ryan BRISCOE: He was jerking you around.
You gave notice on your apartment three different times.
You got tired of all his promises, and you figured, hey, maybe without the kid around I didn't kill Ryan! CURTIS: He thinks you did.
He wouldn't say that.
We had plans.
Is that what the money was for? What money? The cash balance on your credit cards.
BRISCOE: We know all about you now.
And we're gonna find out how you got that bacteria.
That's 25 years minimum, Theresa.
Your boyfriend is selling you out.
So if you have something to say I I saved that money.
From what? Your $500 a week paycheck? I made some investments.
This is bull, Lennie.
Let's book her for murder.
Okay.
Okay.
We stole the money.
Me and Aaron.
From Foxbury.
$100,000.
That was our money, so we could start a new life.
He was gonna leave his family.
Ryan wasn't a problem.
She masterminded a six-figure fraud from her cubicle in the Claims department? Well, it looks like she had help.
JACK: Downing? Theresa paid in premiums for lapsed accounts, submitted change of address forms.
Downing knew where to channel the paperwork.
Arrest them both for embezzlement.
Downing was also smart enough to have his girlfriend do all the dirty work.
CURTIS: And smart enough to keep most of the money for himself.
They embezzled $450,000.
$350,000 is missing.
Downing's bank account? Not a bank account on these shores.
Maybe Theresa killed the kid so she could shake a bigger cut out of Downing? Then why fess up to the embezzlement? That's handing us her motive on a silver platter.
Then who did it? Aaron Downing? Wait a second.
He murdered his own son? Don't rule it out.
He had opportunity.
He was cheating on his wife, hiding money from his mistress, who knows what he's capable of.
CURTIS: Killing his kid? I don't believe it.
You don't have to believe it.
Just prove it.
Connect him to the syringe.
Nail down his movements to the minute.
Your wife told us you went to Syracuse.
Right.
I told you that already.
You never told us you went that morning.
You didn't ask.
Didn't you think that was important? Why would it matter where I was? How'd you get to the airport? Taxi.
And where'd you get the cab? In front of my building.
Make any stops along the way? No.
I had a plane to catch.
Good.
You were on a business trip means you got a receipt.
We can get the hack number off that and verify your story.
I forgot to get a receipt.
That's because you were at Theresa's place, just like every other morning, yeah? That's where you dumped the needle you used to kill your boy.
No! Why don't you tell us all about it, Aaron.
Get it off your chest.
There's nothing to tell.
Well, how about the money you embezzled with your sweetheart? I don't know what you're talking about! Your little war chest? We know all about it.
What were you gonna do? Skip out on your wife, on your girlfriend? That's why you killed your son, isn't it? That's enough! I know all about guys like you, Aaron.
Stuck with a wife, a job, obligations.
You can't hack it.
No.
Yeah.
You want to leave but you can't run out on your kid.
So you go into his room, while he's sleeping, pull down the covers, maybe you stroke his hair a few times before you stick the needle in his leg.
I did not hurt my son.
You gonna arrest me? If not, get the hell out of my office.
Downing had to dump the needle at Theresa's on the way to the airport.
I know it's a long shot, but we could start canvassing the cab companies.
Hey, you know what? Theresa said there was a problem with her shower on Monday morning, right? So you were in her apartment fixing her pipes? Yeah.
The girl left.
She was pissed I cut off her water.
Did you happen to see a guy come around the apartment, uh, would've been around 9:00.
Yeah.
A guy with a suitcase.
He was there for a minute and he left.
Uh, this the guy? Uh, could be.
He would've been wearing a suit and tie.
Could be, but I dunno if I could swear to it.
Hey, fellas, I was under a sink.
Yeah.
Okay.
Thanks anyway.
Guy with a suitcase in Theresa's apartment who could be Downing? Sound like probable cause to you? I'll call Carmichael.
Downing, put the clothes down.
Why? Just do it.
You're under arrest for the murder of Ryan Downing.
You have the right to remain silent.
Anything you do say can and will be used against you in a court of law.
You have the right to an attorney.
If you cannot afford one, one You can skip the next part Lennie.
Mr.
Downing's got a wad of cash, passport, airline ticket.
Fiji islands.
Open return.
Come on, Robinson Crusoe.
Your Honor, Mr.
Downing has never been in trouble before.
He's pleaded not guilty.
He's entitled to bail.
The defendant murdered his five-year-old.
He's the child's natural father? HARWOOD: Yes, Judge.
And he strenuously denies these allegations.
Mr.
Downing injected his son with a deadly bacteria.
Which can't be connected to Mr.
Downing.
CARMICHAEL: We can connect him to the murder weapon.
A man fitting Mr.
Downing's description was seen where the syringe was discarded.
By a plumber who couldn't positively ID my client.
Motive, Miss Carmichael.
Mr.
Downing was leading a triple-life.
He was deceiving his wife, deceiving his mistress, embezzling money from his employer.
Yes, but murder his own son? Why? CARMICHAEL: Motive isn't relevant to Mr.
Downing's bail status.
He was one step away from fleeing the country.
He had a ticket to the Fiji islands in the trunk of his car.
My client's no longer a flight risk, Judge.
The police have seized his passport, the ticket, his money Except for $350,000 he probably has stashed somewhere.
Enough.
The defendant clearly had his traveling shoes on.
But your murder allegation strains the imagination, Miss Carmichael.
I hope you have more for the grand jury.
I'm setting bail.
$1,000,000.
(GAVEL POUNDING) (BUZZER BUZZING) He'll plead guilty to embezzlement, that's it.
With the evidence you got, that's a gift.
Then the three of us took a long ride for nothing.
Mr.
McCoy, I didn't murder my son.
JACK: Then who did? What about Theresa? You're the one who was running away from his life.
Okay.
Okay, I just needed to get away for a while, think things over.
I was suffocating.
My job, my wife, Theresa.
I just needed to get out of there.
I'm not defending that part of it.
Ryan No.
Murder two.
Maximum time.
We throw in the embezzlement.
Can't do it.
See you both in court.
Oh, you may never get to court, Mr.
McCoy.
You've got a grand jury to worry about first.
Downing can't raise $1,000,000.
He's not going anywhere.
For the next six days.
If we don't indict him by then You've got a bigger problem than bail.
Judge Fraser nailed it on the head.
If we can prove Downing injected his son, we don't have to explain his motive.
You're positive it can't be someone else? We exhausted the other possibilities.
It's not a terrorist, it's not his wife or his girlfriend.
Everything lines up against Downing.
ADAM: You have a smoking gun? Circumstantial evidence.
CARMICHAEL: There's evidence of intended flight.
Downing made inquiries about buying a restaurant in Fiji.
He was cashing out of his life.
We can sell it, Adam.
But first he injects his son with a little bacteria? CARMICHAEL: He said he'd leave his wife, not his son.
It doesn't make sense.
We still have six days to present our case to the grand jury before Downing's ROR'd.
If you can't convince me how are you gonna convince them? What do you know about his background? Middle class, grew up in Meriden, Connecticut.
Uh, majored in Biology at Brown, couldn't get into med school.
Explains his interest in microbes.
JACK: Now he's counting beans for an HMO.
And stealing them.
Any history of abusing his son? Nothing.
The parents at the pre-school say Downing's a great father.
What's he do for fun? His wife said he loved to golf, but he quit that cold turkey.
Came home drunk once in a while.
He used to run in the mornings, but he gave that up to shack up with the girlfriend.
You want an educated guess? Sounds like a guy whose whole life turned out to be one huge disappointment.
Stuck in a boring job, feels like he settled when he married his wife.
I know a lot of guys feel that way.
His whole life's a compromise.
The embezzlement and the mistress tell me he's groping for another strategy to get by.
By blowing off everything and heading for Fiji.
Jimmy Buffett syndrome.
Pure fantasy, escapism.
Yeah, everybody daydreams.
But murdering your own son He probably thinks he did him a favor.
Saved him from life's inevitable pain, disappointments and betrayals.
So Downing's sullen, selfish It's more than a personality flaw.
To do what he did, you have to be one sick bastard.
Like that guy in California, torched his kid rather than lose custody.
"I love you so much I have to kill you.
" You think he has a viable psychiatric defense? Viable, I don't know.
If he's been in therapy a few years, his lawyer would have a platform for an argument.
Aaron would never go near a psychiatrist.
I had to drag him into marriage counseling.
Anyway, he quit after four months.
What prompted you to go in the first place? Well, he was having a mid-life crisis.
He hated his job, he hated how we lived.
CARMICHAEL: Did it get any worse? The same.
I just thought he was moody.
I mean, I didn't know.
You ever get any hint he might do something violent? No.
Maybe if he'd murdered me.
At our sessions, I was usually the scapegoat.
The scapegoat for what? For Aaron's unhappiness.
He, um He said I didn't stimulate him anymore.
You know, that he'd married the wrong person.
That I'd trapped him in this empty, materialistic life.
Did he ever blame your son? No.
No.
He and Ryan were the victims.
There is something he said once.
Aaron knew I wanted to have another child.
A few months ago, I was late.
And Aaron got this look of panic on his face.
He told Dr.
Newman, "What's the point in having more kids? "They're just going to grow up miserable like me.
" Aaron said kids were better off never seeing the light of day.
He murdered his boy because he was depressed? He's the man in the gray flannel suit, Adam.
With a syringe in his pocket.
When I'm in the dumps, I have a scotch and put on Louis Armstrong.
Downing had his back up against the wall.
He couldn't stay, he couldn't leave.
Make sure this crackpot doesn't get out.
Can you connect him to the bacteria? Every supply house has accounted for its shipments.
Except the Allgen Corporation.
They're stalling.
Or stonewalling.
They mailed the stuff to Downing, they won't come clean.
Go easy.
We need their cooperation.
You don't have a case without them.
JACK: We're putting Paula Downing in front of the grand jury tomorrow.
Mr.
Downing said some things in therapy that should convince them he's capable of this.
We can indict him by the end of the week, we can keep him locked up.
Thank you.
That should solve our 18080 problem.
Motion to exclude Paula Downing from the grand jury.
Hearsay? Privilege.
Wonderful.
Any statements my client made are protected by privilege.
The defendant's wife can't reveal her husband's confidential communications.
Marital privilege doesn't apply.
A third party was present.
The third party was a licensed psychologist.
If there's no marital privilege, then the doctor- patient privilege applies.
We're not calling the doctor.
What difference does that make? You're calling the wife to breach the confidentiality of the therapy session.
JACK: Her presence defeats the privilege.
There was no private communication between Mr.
Downing and his doctor.
Your Honor, Mr.
McCoy's playing games here with rules of evidence.
He's using one privilege to defeat the other.
It's defense counsel who's playing games.
He's trying to use the rules of evidence to shield a murderer.
Gentlemen, gentlemen, look.
The law should encourage troubled couples to seek counseling.
What they say in therapy isn't fair game for subsequent litigation.
Mrs.
Downing's testimony is out.
But he said my son was better off dead! JUDGE: Please sit down, Mrs.
Downing.
You killed him, you son of a bitch, you killed my baby! JUDGE: Take her out.
You killed my baby! (SOBBING) That's it? I can't testify? We can take another shot with the trial judge.
You said if you can't indict him the judge will let him out.
In or out, we'll get him.
He's going to jail.
He'll run, Mr.
McCoy.
I hope you have some way to stop him.
What do you want to do, Jack? Go to the grand jury with what we have? Not until we can prove he ordered the bacteria.
It's time to play hard ball with Allgen.
Well, every time I call, they refer me to their lawyer and he's always with a client.
Let's drop a subpoena on them.
Let's get their attention.
I don't understand the problem.
All we need is a few shipping documents and a clerk for an hour.
I'm sorry, it can't be done.
Allgen was served with a subpoena.
You don't have a choice.
Actually we do.
We're moving to quash.
On what grounds? The board of directors needs a little more time to consider the legal ramifications of Double talk.
I want the documents in this office 9:00 a.
m.
Tomorrow.
These decisions can't be made overnight.
What's wrong with you people? Either you sold Downing the bacteria or you didn't.
It's not that simple.
It's about money, isn't it? Are you afraid of being sued? Not at all, Mr.
McCoy.
It's just a matter of corporate procedure.
JACK: Or corporate arrogance.
You people mail bacteria all around the country, you have to answer for it.
I'm not the company, Mr.
McCoy.
I just work for them.
(DOOR OPENING) (DOOR CLOSING) We just ran out of time.
I'm moving for my client's release.
JUDGE: Do the people have an indictment on either the murder or the embezzlement? No, Judge.
We're moving to extend 18080.
Grounds? Exceptional circumstances.
We have an uncooperative witness.
The people need time to secure the witness's attendance in the grand jury.
The witness is Allgen.
My client shouldn't sit in jail while Mr.
McCoy wrestles with corporate America.
Is that it, Mr.
McCoy? If Mr.
Downing is released, he intends to flee.
(SLAMMING FIST) Judge, I know my responsibilities.
I'm not gonna run from my responsibilities.
They took my passport and my plane ticket.
Mr.
Downing has $350,000 stashed away.
I loved Ryan.
Ryan was my boy.
Aaron.
Please.
JUDGE: I'm sorry, Mr.
McCoy, but the statute is clear.
You don't have an indictment.
My hands are tied.
Mr.
Downing, you're released on your own recognizance.
However, I suggest that you stay very close to home.
I had the police put a car on Downing.
They can't watch him forever.
You need to get him behind bars.
CARMICHAEL: Allgen is still ignoring our subpoena.
Since Downing was released, they even managed to push back their motion to quash.
They know how to play the four corners.
I've had enough of their stall tactics.
Downing takes off, they're responsible.
We can start a contempt proceeding.
What they've done is more than contempt.
They're complicit and now they're covering up.
ADAM: Planning on charging them as accomplices? Why not? They send out V.
R.
S.
A.
At the drop of a hat.
No verification.
No bona fides.
It's harder to get penicillin.
A tactic to get the documentation you need.
You never learn, do you? This is not a tactic, Adam.
They sent V.
R.
S.
A.
To a murderer.
One of their products gets in the wrong hands, there'll be 10,000 Ryan Downings.
Good luck.
We can charge Allgen with criminally negligent homicide in the death of Ryan Downing.
It's an E felony.
What about manslaughter? Reckless homicide? Allgen makes two phone calls, they find out he's not a doctor.
Ryan Downing's in school tomorrow.
Or his father would've found another way of killing him.
We go for manslaughter.
I'll draw up a search warrant for Allgen.
Worst case scenario, we get the documents we need to nail Downing.
Anything interesting? Allgen's sales records indicate they sold In the last year.
But we could only find Yeah.
They sanitized their files before we could get to them.
That the corporate minutes? Yeah.
Thank you.
Huh.
At a board meeting last year, an Allgen VP opposed the company's sales polices as being too lax.
Hyram Jenkins.
(SOFTLY) Jenkins.
Here.
Jenkins left the company last year.
Golden parachute? Hmm.
Three weeks accrued vacation pay.
No wristwatch? A lab in Pakistan wants a small amount of anthrax precursor.
It's got legitimate research applications.
Allgen should have put the order under a microscope.
Why is that? It turned up in the hands of an Iraqi national in Paris.
That really sent a shiver down my spine.
When I asked the obvious questions, the company honchos laughed.
Laughed about what? I suggested a protocol for handling pathogen orders.
Routine credential checks.
Interface with law enforcement.
Waiting periods for the really nasty stuff.
All sounds reasonable.
They did a costlbenefits analysis.
My suggestions were too expensive.
Cut into company profits.
Buyers would go to the competition.
When I took it to the president of the company, they let me go.
They fired you and you didn't complain to anyone? That would look really good on my resume.
I got a wife and kids.
Besides, who would I complain to? I know 26 people who would love to listen.
Let's block some time on the Downing grand jury.
Your Honor, the president and CEO of Allgen have interrupted their busy schedules, waived extradition, and traveled here at their own expense to answer this frivolous charge.
The manslaughter charge is not frivolous.
It's a ploy by the district attorney to get document production on the Downing murder case.
Allgen's lax customer screening policies caused Ryan Downing's death.
These men should be held responsible.
Can you make out the charge Mr.
McCoy.
Allgen's behavior was reckless.
They refused to adopt safeguards in their distribution of bacteria.
It caused Ryan Downing's death.
The boy's father injected him with a bacteria, not Allgen.
If Allgen hadn't sent V.
R.
S.
A.
To Mister Downing, his son would be alive today.
Mr.
McCoy can't even say for sure that the bacteria came from the company.
JACK: Allgen has never denied it.
There's a V.
R.
S.
A.
Order that's unaccounted for.
If you're moving to dismiss, Mr.
Axtell, forget it.
Arraign the defendants on the manslaughter indictment.
What? Mr.
McCoy, do you really think you can prove this? Hyram Jenkins is ready to testify.
You risked thousands of lives to put a few dollars in your pockets.
This is just about the Downing child.
Yeah, only one dead little boy.
Does that help you sleep better? We'll sleep better when we get the hell out of your jurisdiction.
JACK: If you don't get jail time.
I'm going to paint the jury a picture of a boat cruising down the Hudson, spraying Allgen's products into the wind.
Maybe we can dispose of this quietly.
What do you have in mind? Downing's V.
R.
S.
A.
Order.
Maybe we can locate it.
We do, and we're off the hook? Not quite.
You plead down to negligent homicide.
No jail.
JACK: No jail.
Mr.
Buckner? You'd make a good businessman, Mr.
McCoy.
And what was that all about? You just dealt a C felony down to an E.
We got the documents we need to prosecute Downing.
You made a devil's bargain to get them.
Or I killed two vultures with one stone.
Let's get the Downing jury off its ass.
The only V.
R.
S.
A.
Shipment to the New York area in the past 12 months.
It just turned up.
Filed in our archives by mistake.
Faxed order form.
Under the name of Medical Diagnostic Labs.
Probably phony.
On Allgen's invoice to a private mailbox on I'll send Briscoe and Curtis over there with Downing's photo.
Your Honor, my clients don't want to belabor this matter.
Without admitting any specific wrongdoing, they would like to enter guilty pleas to the lesser included offense of criminally negligent homicide.
You've secured Mr.
McCoy's approval? Yes, Judge.
The plea's accepted.
Defendants waive a pre-sentence report? It's my understanding that the maximum fine is $10,000.
Or double the profits from the criminal conduct.
Right.
Which comes to about $18.
JACK: I'm asking the court to fine the Allgen corporation twice their corporate profits for as long as they've been selling V.
R.
S.
A.
That's five years' profits.
$11,000,000.
Your Honor, we are being sandbagged.
The only promise on sentence was no jail.
Right, but that's not what double the profits means.
Read the statute.
Penal law section 80.
Point ten.
I know where it is.
Then you have no reason to complain.
Interesting interpretation, Mr.
McCoy.
Allgen doesn't have that kind of cash.
(WHISPERING INAUDIBLY) Yes.
Then the court can appoint a receiver to run the company until the fine is recouped.
He can't be serious.
Well, if he's not, I am.
This is outrageous.
Submit a list of candidates for receivership, Mr.
McCoy.
I'll take the matter of sentencing under advisement.
(GAVEL POUNDING) Home field advantage, Mr.
McCoy.
Let's see how you do on the road.
The grand jury voted murder two on Downing.
Call the police, have them pick him up.
I just got this.
A federal restraining order? Mmm-hmm.
Prohibiting Judge Schreiber from imposing sentence on Allgen.
They must've raced their limos over to US District Court.
Jack, it's just a temporary restraining order.
The good news is we indicted Aaron Downing.
A clerk in the mailbox store recognized him.
You have him back in custody? Police are on their way.
Allgen dodged the bullet.
Let it go.
Companies make business decisions everyday that kill people.
Spend a few bucks more on a brake assembly, save a hundred lives.
A car is not a deadly weapon.
Do we prosecute the gun manufacturers for shooting deaths? Well, maybe we should.
Hiding behind a corporate logo doesn't absolve these people of responsibility.
Where does it end? The paper mill that makes the boxes that holds the bullets lock up the criminals.
Let the legislators and the civil juries worry about the other nonsense.
(KNOCKING ON DOOR) Downing sniffed out the arrest and took off.
He's been spotted in New Jersey.
JACK: The airport? At the Eden motel in Secaucus.
Curtis wants us to meet him there.
Route three.
West of the Turnpike.
You can see it from the highway.
Hudson county PD spotted his car.
Clerk said he checked in two hours ago.
Alone? He's in number four.
Well, it ain't Fiji.
Send your materials to Paula Downing.
She has a civil suit against Allgen.
They've got a battalion of lawyers on their side.
Allgen'll wear her down.
They'll walk away from this.
Just like Aaron Downing.
Not quite.
Got that Louis Armstrong record handy? Yeah.