Law & Order (1990) s02e04 Episode Script


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.
Can't you hold it? No, I can't.
Why the hell not? See, you're just like my wife when we go to Jones Beach with the kids, she stops six times along the way.
So I tell her, "Put a cork in it.
" She says, "No, no, pull over.
I have to go.
" Maybe if you had put a cork in it, she wouldn't have had six kids and ruined her plumbing.
- Man: What are you talking about? - Woman: What do you mean, what am I talking about? - Man: What's the matter?! Why are you doing this? - Why don't you think about - Woman: Stop yelling at me.
- I don't mean to yell at you.
Will you do me a favor and get me a cruller? I have no idea why you're so upset.
Come out this minute.
Come out! Mind me! Hey, sister, got some spare change? Can I get a cruller and a coffee, regular? That'll be a buck and a quarter.
Your change.
- Streetwalker: Keep your hands inside the police car.
- Cop: I never moved my hands.
Keep your hands on the wheel.
All right.
Woman: I don't think we can start all over again, Nathan.
Let's do it! Let's just do it! - You and I, we'll do it tonight.
- Oh God, stop bugging me! "Bugging you"?! Is that what you call this? Mimi! No bag.
Nathan? Aw, damn it! Nathan! Oh my help! Help! Help! Dispatcher: Assistance requested at 74th and Columbus.
Mimi: Help! Help me here! Help! Help me! - Mimi: Help! Help! - Police, out of the way.
Move! Police! Out of the way.
Move it, move it, move it! It's okay, you're gonna be all right.
You're gonna be all right.
It's okay, honey.
You're gonna be all right.
Just you hang in there.
You hang in there.
Woman: And night before last, there was a naked man with a crossbow running up and down West 74th Street.
Where did he keep the arrows? How come every freak in the country lives in New York? Why don't some of you people move to Nebraska? I'm from Nebraska, sweetie.
How do you think I got this way? All right, did anybody see the actual stabbing the one we're talking about? Let's get some names.
Elsie Hatch, 186 West 74.
Sal Violet V-i-o-I-e-t.
The Hampstead, room 1220.
- Address? - Sal: The Sherry Netherland a little pied-a-terre for those gala dumpster parties.
Riverside Park in the 80s.
I got to go.
Hey, hey, hey, hey! - I didn't see anything.
- Cerreta: Of course not.
- Was she the one in the box? - I didn't see anybody in the box.
Okay, but you all did see Mr.
Robbins fall to the ground? You were all standing there.
- There was a guy - Fine, describe him.
- 5'10" - Uh-uh, 6'2", at least.
Logan: Ma'am.
A man went running away he was well over six feet.
What was he wearing? Wearing a red parka a greasy red parka.
A parka? I'm sitting here, I'm sweating like a pig and you're telling me this guy was in a ski parka? No, no, no, no he was wearing overalls.
I've seen this slob before sleeping in cardboard boxes.
- Ms.
Murdoch? - It happened too fast.
- Did you get a look at the man in the box? - I need new glasses.
They told me at Social Services I could get some, but they never I saw a red parka with a torn pocket.
Okay, the red parka huh? Was he in the box? No running away.
Oh, man.
I just talked to the people in ER the kid was DOA.
Isn't it funny how three bystanders fail to notice a stabbing right under their noses? Where was the girlfriend during all this? She was inside the coffee shop, or just coming out, whatever.
Everything everyone saw is contradictory.
Okay, there was a lover's quarrel but she shivs him in front of three witnesses? Oh, well, they were "great" witnesses.
Crime of passion could explain why he still had that wallet on him.
- Or a botched robbery.
- Forget the girlfriend.
Let's say it was a mugger.
He got scared off before he could get to the money.
Or maybe he just got mad because somebody kicked his box.
- Well, wouldn't you? - Don't you kick my box.
Let's go find out if that girl's recovered.
All right, Mimi, you were in the coffee shop, then you came out what's the first thing you saw? I don't know, I don't remember.
Did you see the guy in the box? Mimi: No.
Did you see a man in a red jacket? All I saw were Nathan's feet his legs sticking out from under that box.
What were you and Nathan arguing about? We weren't arguing.
We we never fought hardly ever.
We were just having a discussion, okay? Okay.
What were you discussing? It was private.
Sternhagen, I know it's a very rough time for you right now, but this is a homicide investigation, and from here on, very few things will be private.
Well, we weren't fighting.
You were animated? Maybe.
All right, all right.
About anything in particular? Um well, we were at a party, and we were both kind of bombed.
I just I didn't want to be proposed to like that.
I always thought it would be on a boat sailing to Paris or something, not him waving a ring around, going, "Let's do it! Let's do it!" Then what happened? I walked into the coffee shop, I walked out, Nathan was gone.
Mimi, the ring the one he's waving, what happened to it? I don't know.
Did you ever see him with a knife? If I say "yes," does that get him out of my doorway permanently? Hey, listen, you help us, we'll help you, all right? Tony, take this.
Look, the guy is crazy he thinks everybody he sees is a KGB agent.
I told him the Cold War was over kaput.
So he thinks I'm the KGB agent trying to fake him out.
- The knife? - I never saw a knife.
- Okay, describe him.
- 5'10", crewcut.
That makes it a lot easier.
Color? - Man: Yellow.
- What do you mean, "yellow"? - Like Chinese? - Like jaundice.
A lot of these street people have hepatitis and God knows what else.
Does he usually wear a red parka? No, overalls.
You have any idea where else he might hang out? Actually, he told me one time I should "stay away from the lake in Central Park.
" - Did he say why? - Yeah it's CIA headquarters in New York.
" Got to be.
- Because his head looks like a lemon.
- Mm-hmm.
Does he have a last name? Yeah, T Tyler.
No, no Taters.
What? Taters.
- "Lemonhead Taters"? - Mm-hmm.
Tatum, Christian Tatum.
Drinking scotch.
That's right.
This doesn't look like the "scotch and soda crowd" to me.
Yeah, yeah, not too many social drinkers sleeping in the park.
That's right.
Son of a bitch wouldn't pass it around.
Is he selfish? He got up in my face.
He said he'd killed one guy already, and he'd do me too, if I didn't get my hands off of his booze.
- That's right.
- You think he did kill a guy? Last week he said he cut the privates off somebody from the CIA.
You have any idea where he is now? He had a meeting with what's-his-name? William Casey.
Down at the Dunsmore Arms.
Man: You got a cigarette? What can I do for you? - Cerreta: Do you know a guy by the name of Christian Tatum? - Yeah.
Would you mind pointing him out to us? He's not there.
Try room 40.
Tatum? "Lemonhead" we have a warrant for your arrest.
Logan: Well, no Lemonhead.
But we got a red jacket.
Torn pocket? Yep.
Cerreta: Hey! Hey! Are you Christian Tatum? Answer me, yes or no? Yep.
You have the right to remain silent and refuse to answer any questions.
Do you understand that? ¢Ü 'Round the flagpole ¢Ü Take your time.
I want the good-looking one bachelor number two.
Number two, step forward, please.
A romantic weekend in Miami, all expenses paid Get her the hell out of here! Number two, step back.
Number four, step back.
Earth to number four, step back.
Step back.
For the record, I'd like it noted that your witness isn't exactly grounded either.
Logan: So noted, Ms.
All right, Sal.
Could you have them turn around? Turn around and face the rear.
Number three.
I never forget a nice behind.
Was he or was he not in the vicinity of the stabbing? - Well, no, but I - Next! Okay, you can face forward.
Are you sure? Absolutely.
The one you saw running away, the one in the red parka? He's not there.
Although Cerreta: Yes? Number four.
He was there, too.
"Too"? Two guys two different guys! Yeah.
Damn! What can you tell us about the ring? When is Mr.
Rehnquist getting here? Listen, he's caught up in a Supreme Court thing.
Hang tight.
Crosstown traffic.
I'm sorry.
We were just about to extract a confession from your client.
Extract this, Logan.
Fahey's a hell of a lawyer.
You don't have to say anything you don't want to.
Don't worry, he hasn't.
All right, all right, Christian, your attorney is here now so, what about it, hmm? Hmm? It was in your jacket the ring.
Not my jacket.
You were wearing it.
James put it over me.
Would you explain that? I was safeguarding it till I saw him again.
You told your friends in the park you stabbed a man.
Was James in on that? You should know.
But I don't know.
I didn't stab anybody.
James did.
But I helped him.
How? I was the lookout.
In your box.
In my box.
- Problem? - Maybe.
Look, this "other guy" theory I thought that was solid, based on the old lady with the dog.
Cerreta: Yeah, Ms.
But the second guy, coming from Lemonhead it sounds like a kid's imaginary playmate.
You know "My friend James who lives in the park"? Or outer space.
Well, see if you can find out whether "friend James" is real or not.
If that doesn't work, call Dr.
I didn't stab anybody.
Well, you told your friends in the park you did.
That's for protection.
You mean, you made it up? Anything's possible.
What about that CIA agent last week you told your friends that you chopped off his Stop that! Sorry.
I've killed lots of people.
Including Nathan Robbins? Word out is there's a reward.
I wouldn't know about that.
You in a position to claim it? ¢Ü Anything is possible.
I know you don't want to hear this, but I don't believe he stabbed Robbins.
Cerreta: You think he's capable of it? He told me he's killed 17 people, "give or take a few.
" Well, so he exaggerates.
He's delusional.
He sees and hears things that aren't there.
He remembers things that never happened.
What about all the stuff with the red parka and the imaginary homeboy? That sounds on the level.
The way he described wearing that red jacket, it's it's like a badge of honor with him.
There is honor among these people, you know.
Cragen: Fine, great, I'll accept that.
So what happened is he's a psychopath, and he thought Robbins was attacking him when he started kicking his box.
So he comes out, flies into a rage He's psychotic.
He's not psychopathic.
What's the difference? "Psychotic" is when you believe the doorman was sent from Planet X to put mind control devices in your teeth.
"Psychopathic" is when you blow the doorman away and take out 20 other people while you're at it.
Now, come on, you guys.
You're making me late.
And remember, in a moment of lucidity, he told me James lives under a big tree near the bridle path.
And then she said, she said, "What about Tuesday?" And then she said you said, "What about Tuesday?" And then she said she said "Security in section three, row 12 " I want the reward.
I thought this guy James was your friend? I'm flexible.
Crazy, but not stupid.
Okay, listen, you help us find James, and he's guilty, you'll get your reward, okay? How's that? Cerreta: Well, somebody lives here.
Maybe you? James.
I told you.
Aghh! Uh-uh-uh.
Social Services ID.
"James Joseph Polesky.
" Good.
He's got 28 bucks in a savings account at Manufacturers Hanover.
Well, well, well.
What have we here? It's a match.
Blood on the handle is B-neg, chest hair, hair samples match Robbins'.
The size of the wound is consistent.
- That's all? - Would Polesky's prints be overkill? Cerreta: Now, one thing I'm not really clear on Christian? If this was a robbery, then how come your friend James didn't take Mr.
Robbins' wallet? He didn't see the wallet, he saw the ring.
If only he'd given James what he wanted, then everything would have been fine.
Cerreta: But he didn't do that, huh? He held onto it.
And then? And then James stabbed him.
Th-thhk! Is that a "yes"? Fahey: Christian Yes, yes, yes! Ahem I think I'm gonna get an arrest warrant.
Cerreta: James J.
Polesky? - Man: What's going on? - Cop #1: I got him! Logan: Phil? Yeah.
You see him? Yeah.
- Cerreta: There he is! - Cop #2: There he goes! There he goes! - Cop #2: There he is! - Woman: Guys? Logan: You ain't going anywhere! Get your hand behind you.
You are under arrest.
You have the right to remain silent and refuse to answer questions.
Anything you do say may be used against you in a court of law.
Cerreta: If we put you in a lineup, we're gonna get a positive make, James.
So why don't you just help yourself out, okay? Is there a deal on the table? No.
You want me to sign this? Cerreta: Yes.
Go pee up a rope.
I will, and then I'm gonna wrap it around your scrawny little neck.
If this guy hits me, I'm off the hook, right? Stone: We've got irrefutable physical evidence, we've got an eyewitness so you tell me, why would I want to make a deal? My client was drunk, and he has a history of impulsiveness.
If you can sell that to a jury, try, Mr.
Scoler, but I think they'll see it as I do an opportunistic cold-blooded killer.
No deal.
See you in court then.
He's gonna turn this into a forum on the rights of the homeless.
So let him.
What's wrong with that? I'm seeing editorials in my head "Power of State Versus Victim of Society" that kind of thing.
We're gonna get it from the other side, too "Homeless lunatics, they kill innocent citizens.
Is the State powerless to protect us?" Let's not start worrying about the ink we're getting.
I'm not, but the public's perception of us we could have made a deal, saved a lot of bad feelings.
I'm flexible on Lemonhead, he's crazy, but Polesky he killed a man in cold blood.
And homeless or not, we get a conviction, and the public will see us in a very kindly light, believe me.
Charge is murder in the second degree.
- How does the defendant plead? - Not guilty, Your Honor.
Do the People wish to set bail? Robinette: Mr.
Polesky is a transient, Your Honor.
He has no ties to the community, and given the viciousness of this crime Judge: Bail is denied, defendant is remanded.
In the case of "People versus Christian Tatum," charge is murder in the second degree, conspiracy and larceny.
Your Honor, the People have turned nothing over to us no voluntary disclosure forms, no - Judge: Mr.
Robinette? - The people were never asked for VDFs, Judge.
Statement, witness ID, arrest warrant.
No search warrant? So? What happened? The judge had a problem with no search warrant.
C'mon, Paul! We took him where we found him.
I told him all that, Mike.
He didn't buy it.
We were concerned about securing the area, not worrying about some search warrant.
For all we knew, that guy was in the closet with a hunting knife! I understand.
I need one of you guys to testify at the suppression hearing.
I'll do it.
Logan: As I was saying, the desk clerk directed us to a vacant room.
Lemonhead was not there.
The jacket was in plain sight I understand, Detective.
Nevertheless, I am going to grant the motion to suppress on the illegal search of the defendant's jacket.
The ring belonging to the victim is hereby ruled inadmissible as evidence in "The People versus Christian Tatum.
" No ring, no case.
I don't understand why you're being so obstinate.
I'm not allowed to plead down that far.
Besides, he confessed.
The man's non compos mentis no way he understood his rights.
Your client is an accomplice to murder.
How about attempt rob two? Rob two.
He testifies against Polesky, he can get whatever help the system still has left to offer him.
All right, deal in writing.
He was losing it I thought I better get him out of sight.
Stone: Hello, Mr.
I saw James out there.
I saw him you didn't tell me that James was going to be here.
James is the one who's on trial, Mr.
Where do you think he'd be? Maybe I could just get the reward and leave now, huh? James had the knife, you know that.
I don't want him to see me.
James doesn't have the knife anymore, we have it.
You just tell the court what you saw James do He's going to kill me, don't you understand?! - Stone: Mr.
Tatum - He's gonna slice me! - He's gonna feed me to the pigeons! - Quiet! Mr.
Tatum! Knock it off! Stand up.
Your psychiatrist tells me that you have moments of rational thought.
Now we're gonna go back in there, and we'll take care of you and you are gonna have one of those moments.
Tatum, were you offered a plea bargain in exchange for today's testimony? Yes.
And you have admitted your part in the robbery of Nathan Robbins, is that correct? Yes, I was standing out front of the coffee shop looking for somebody to rob.
Somebody easy.
Stone: Would you explain that? Well, somebody, you know, who's drunk or high you know, so they weren't thinking straight.
Was this plan your idea? No.
It was James'.
Is James in this courtroom? Stone: Let the record indicate that the witness is pointing at the defendant, James Polesky.
What was James doing the night of the murder? He was hanging out.
I saw this guy and this girl, they they weren't paying attention, so I go up to James "That's them.
" Then I went inside for a while.
Inside the cardboard box? Then I see James going for the guy.
And he went after him why? The guy had a ring he wanted to give to his girlfriend.
Is this the ring? Your Honor, I offer into evidence People's Exhibit number 25.
- Objection inadmissible.
- Sustained.
Your Honor, may we approach? This ring was suppressed.
Ray Tatum, not I'm well aware of that.
I made the ruling.
Anything else? Then it's perfectly admissible against Polesky.
I'll make that determination, Mr.
Thank you.
Your witness.
What an idiot.
Would you describe what happened after Mr.
Polesky approached Mr.
Robbins? He pulled out his knife and he pig-stuck him! Would you describe the knife, please? Yeah, it's like the one you showed me the one you got on the table.
And then he pulled the knife right out No more questions of this witness, Your Honor.
Tatum has the CIA ever tried to assassinate you? Yes.
When was the last attempt on your life? Tuesday.
Objection, Your Honor.
Scoler: Why would the CIA want to kill you, Mr.
Tatum? Eastern Europe.
I briefed Mikhail Gorbachev several times last year, before it all happened.
So you made them look bad? Yes, they don't like that.
Thank you, Mr.
No further questions.
How old are you, Ms.
Hatch? Objection relevance.
Eyesight fades as we grow older, Your Honor.
How is your eyesight, Ms.
Hatch? I need glasses to read.
Otherwise, it's fine.
Now this is your sworn statement to the police, in which you claim to have seen the defendant in front of Ezra's Coffee Shop.
So? Do you see the same man in the court today? Scoler: I'm impressed.
There's a mural behind me, Ms.
Would you describe it for the court? Staten Island and the Narrows.
You're you're familiar with the Staten Island of the 19th century, Ms.
Hatch? I can read the legend.
I hope your eyesight is better than your manners, young man.
It was in a clearing under a mattress where Mr.
Polesky sleeps.
Stone: What did you do with the knife, Sergeant? I bagged it, took it to the lab.
- Did you read the lab report? - Cerreta: Yes, of course.
The blood matched, the hair matched, and the size of the knife was consistent with the wound.
There were fingerprints on the knife? One set those of the defendant.
Thank you, Sergeant.
Upon your conviction of the crime of murder in the second degree, the court sentences you to a maximum term of imprisonment of from 25 years to life.
Robinette: The victim was assaulted with a copper saucepan.
- Stone: His wife? - The sous-chef.
Robinette: The guy complained of too much salt in the bechamel bam! Notice for appeal on Polesky.
Give me a break.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph.
Everybody appeals everything.
- Why come all the way down here - I wanted to see your faces.
So what is it? The appeal is based on the Fourth Amendment.
You didn't have a warrant when you searched the appellant's place of abode.
"Place of abode," huh? It was in the damn bushes! " based on an illegal search of appellant's non-traditional place of residence.
" Got to hand it to Scoler, that's pretty good.
It wasn't Scoler.
Norman Ackerman, ACLU.
His brief in Skokie was 120 pages.
His buddies on Wall Street do his research out of the goodness of their hearts.
Wall Street lawyers doing pro bono? Makes them feel good.
Stone: I don't care who wrote the brief.
No way the court can extend Fourth Amendment protection to a bush in the park.
I thought it was a shack.
It makes their argument more compelling.
Actually, a cardboard box in a clearing.
The question is, can we take the temperature of the appellate court? Well, the US Supreme Court is going pell-mell to the right.
And the local magistrates.
They haven't been overly sympathetic to the indigent.
But the Manhattan appellate judges may be the last liberal activists sitting on any bench, anywhere.
Ackerman wrote a hell of a brief, but case history is on our side.
That's encouraging.
All the way back to 18th-century England, Blackstone: "An open field is not private property and is not protected.
" - What's Ackerman relying on? - Sympathy and a 1967 Supreme Court decision "Katz versus US.
" The majority held that the police could not tap a public phone without a warrant.
The Fourth Amendment protects people, not places.
Now I quoted Potter Stewart's opinion in law school and won an argument.
Things change.
Schiff may be right about this court.
Press isn't looking to make a case.
Polesky stabbed an innocent victim for no other reason than greed.
This is the wrong case to make a point, isn't it? - Woman: There's the DA.
- Man #1: Mr.
Stone! - Man #2: Mr.
Stone! - Man #3: A second please! Mr.
Stone, given the extent of homelessness, don't you think the court will jump at the chance to write new law in this case? Homelessness may be the greatest tragedy of our time, but I don't think the cure is allowing a convicted felon to wander the streets.
I'm sure the court will agree.
You've got a tough job defending a patently unconstitutional search.
Nothing is patently anything until the appeals court says it is, and my job is to preserve a solid murder conviction.
Thank you.
Stone, what about the rights of the homeless? - Man #1: There's Ackerman.
- Man #2: Mr.
Ackerman? Robinette: "The Times" called Ackerman "a modern Clarence Darrow.
" I'm sure Darrow had his off days.
- Oh, hi, Norman.
- It's been what, four, five years? At least.
You've stopped attending our annual fundraiser.
Defending the Nazis in Skokie just didn't sit right with me.
Our only client is the US Constitution, you know that.
In theory, but there are practical consequences to every one of your crusades.
People get hurt, real people.
Oh you don't want the "great unwashed" camping on your doorstep.
Norman, this is about James Polesky, and no, I don't want him hanging around my lobby at night.
Ackerman: In "Katz," Mr.
Justice Stewart wrote that "Whatever a person seeks to preserve as private, even in an area accessible to the public, may be constitutionally protected.
" The defendant here did everything in his power to preserve his private space.
Judge: Excuse me, Mr.
Ackerman, but the issue in "Katz" was whether public telephones could be tapped without a warrant.
And the same court in "Oliver" specifically refused to extend Fourth Amendment protection to open fields.
I'm well aware of "Oliver," Your Honor.
But I'm also aware that at the time of that decision, there weren't a million homeless people wandering this country.
You would have us afford the same protection to a man sleeping in Central Park as we would to a man in the comfort of his home? Central Park is his home, Your Honor.
It is also public ground, paid for by local taxes.
Ackerman: The same taxes that were supposed to build shelters to house these people and hospitals to care for them.
Once the State abdicated its responsibility to care for the homeless, the public parks, the alleys and the streets became their homes.
Just as we wouldn't allow governmental intrusion into your bedrooms, we shouldn't allow intrusion into the private corner of the world James Polesky calls home even if it is the dirt, bushes and rubble of Central Park.
Thank you, Your Honors.
Whether or not the State is responsible for the homeless Judge: You don't think it is, Mr.
Stone? What I think is not at issue here, Your Honor.
What is at issue is the scope the Constitution affords.
And you don't think it reaches Mr.
Polesky? Balanced against the People's interest in seeing a killer put behind bars, no.
Suppose it wasn't a knife found under that mattress, Mr.
Suppose it was Mr.
Polesky's personal diary.
Should the police be allowed to invade what is clearly private, or do only those who can afford a home have the expectation of privacy? Mr.
Justice Harlan wrote in his concurring opinion on "Katz," that "the expectation of privacy must be one that society is prepared to recognize as reasonable.
" And it is your position that society would be "unreasonable" in allowing the defendant to call a dirty mattress his home? One of the attributes of private property is the right to exclude others, and Mr.
Polesky cannot exclude others from his home, since his home is, by definition, public property.
Really, Counselor, would it have been so difficult for the police to obtain a warrant? Thank you, Mr.
No, I can't say that I'm at all surprised by the court's decision.
Ackerman, will your victory affect the problem of the homeless? Wait a second, this is not my victory.
It is a victory for the Constitution of the United States.
Man: Mr.
Ackerman, what about the homeless The opinion is good.
There was nothing you could have done.
The court was predisposed against you.
Still, got a 3-2 decision.
I thought the Constitution was supposed to protect society.
And the rights of individuals sometimes, they clash.
It's a sad commentary, isn't it? It's as if the court is saying, "You have a right to a wretched existence.
" What are you gonna do? We could appeal to Albany What about a retrial? Without the murder weapon, we haven't got a prayer.
But we still have the ring.
O'Malley excluded it, remember? I know, and he's still wrong about it.
Polesky has no standing to challenge the warrantless seizure of the parka.
I cannot believe how O'Malley could have been so out to lunch.
Do you think you can engineer a change of heart? - If not mind? - I'll handle it.
New trial, Lemonhead testifies that he got the ring from Polesky, and It's circumstantial, but it should be enough.
If we can find Lemonhead he's Yesterday he was screaming for his lawyer something about "habeas corpus.
" What the hell is that? It means you can't hold him against his will.
Every nutcase has his day in court I guess.
I guess.
Robinette: I doubt he even knows his own name.
There's no way we can put him on the stand.
He was competent the first time.
I saw him, Ben.
Believe me, it's over.
Maybe Olivet can snap him out of it.
- You got my message? - Yes.
- You saw Lemonhead? - I saw Christian Tatum.
We didn't it wasn't much of a conversation.
I know the man's in trouble, Liz The man's on anti-psychotics.
Did you know that? Which leaves him nauseous, listing to one side, and in danger of choking to death on his own tongue.
I feel sorry for Mr.
Tatum's condition, but his testimony is crucial, and what I need to know from you is will he be able to take the stand for just a few minutes? Will he be able to say a simple "yes" or "no"? Nothing is that simple.
Last time he was in the court, he was terrified of James and you pushed him into taking the stand.
I pushed him into telling the truth in a murder trial in which he entered into a plea bargain.
He may be on some other planet, Ben, but the guy's hurting, and I don't think he can survive another circus.
You asked for my opinion.
I understand.
Did you read the People's bench memo, Your Honor? I did.
Scoler: And? You're right, I was in error in excluding the ring.
Getting back to the issue at hand, Judge, the Sixth Amendment guarantees my client the right to confront all witnesses against him.
Judge: Mr.
Stone? "Testimony given by a witness at a prior trial may be received into evidence when the witness is unable to attend by reason of death, illness or incapacity.
CPL Article 670.
" And your witness is incapacitated? He's institutionalized, Your Honor.
He's psychotic.
His testimony in court was practically hallucinatory.
He was competent then, and as you recall, Mr.
Scoler made no objection to his testifying at the time.
I'm going to grant Mr.
Stone's motion.
Tatum's prior testimony will be read into evidence.
Your objection is duly noted for the record, Mr.
Feel free to have another go with the "five wise men" uptown, if you like.
I'm thinking man two? I'm thinking murder two he does 25-to-life.
I'll appeal, we'll start over.
I'll be here.
Manslaughter one.
All right, but Mr.
Polesky does the max.
My client won't be very happy, but at least he'll have a roof over his head for the next 25 years.
So does Lemonhead rubber cell at Bellevue.
And then there's Nathan Robbins he's got six feet of dirt over his head.
So what's "happy" got to do with it?