Law & Order (1990) s04e02 Episode Script


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.
Robert, someone might see us.
So? Oh, God.
Give me some change? Beat it! Come on, I'm hungry.
Robert, there's someone.
Yeah, that guy's in orbit around Pluto.
Let's just get a cab.
This time we stay, they go.
What are you doing? Hey, buddy.
Come on, let's go.
We worked with him for over three hours.
Multiple fractures of the skull, intracranial hemorrhages It's a miracle he's alive.
Broken kneecap, broken leg, he got the full workout.
What do you think, baseball bat? Narrower, like a pipe.
It left a crisscross pattern on the wounds.
Any idea when he'll be conscious? With injuries like this? Tomorrow, next week, next year.
Assuming he lives out the night.
What about his name? You find any ID? I didn't search his pockets.
His clothing is here.
We had to cut it off him.
Your turn to sort the laundry.
Let's get it all.
Broken pencil, string paper clips, crack pipe.
Nice to know he had a hobby.
Appointment card at Friedland Psychiatric for Roland Kirk, eight days ago.
No wallet.
He left that in the other suit with the credit cards.
Yeah, he preferred cash.
Whoa, there's a couple of grand, here.
All in 20s.
So who says clothes make the man? Couple who found him, we had to fight with them to get their names.
Wedding rings didn't match.
They see a guy with a shopping cart? Before they came into the alley, he spare-changed them.
"White male with red hat.
" Too early for Christmas.
We found a crack pipe on Kirk.
Stoned and hassling the locals.
That was him.
He had $2,200 on him.
What, was he selling crack to the other pipeheads? Between fighting and getting high he hardly had time for anything else.
This a playground? That's Kirk's.
Anybody comes near it, he decks them.
A nightie? Christian Dior, still got the price tags.
A little something for the missis? Yeah, right, he was dating Marla Maples.
Did Kirk have any associates? Aside from the imaginary ones? No.
Detective? This is real.
So is the blood.
Hey, get us a shot of this It reinforces concrete, what do you call it? Rebar.
Right there.
Come on.
Hey, I'm walking.
I'm cooperating.
You wanted a guy in a red hat? Meet George Siddell.
Siddell, how're you doing today? Listen, gotta ask you, were you here last night after midnight? I'm not sure.
I lost my watch.
A guy named Roland Kirk got beat up bad last night.
With that.
Now we know you were around.
Roland? I'm shocked.
I'm desolated.
I bet.
You ever hassle with him? I respected Roland.
He means he was terrified of Kirk.
He's terrified of everybody.
He's harmless.
All right.
Get him a cup of coffee.
We're gonna want to talk to him later maybe.
Rooms with a view.
Want to start ringing doorbells? We hear all kinds of things from the street.
We used to call the police.
Now, we don't bother.
They can't do anything.
Look, I have to perform a root canal in 20 minutes.
This Roland Kirk.
Now, you saw him around? Everybody did.
He was a problem around here.
But was he a problem to anyone in particular? Yes, the people of New York City.
Now, I really have to go.
So long.
We went to the movies.
We got home at 11:00.
This would've happened around midnight.
The news was on.
We didn't hear anything.
It was a street person? He was attacked 30 feet from your living-room window.
I mean, how loud do you play the news? We've lived here for eight years.
We stopped listening to the street a long time ago.
Twenty years ago, I wouldn't live anywhere else.
Now, it's like Calcutta.
People living and dying in the streets.
Yeah, but last night around 12:00, Mr.
Prosky? Yeah, well, I close at 11:00.
halfway across the Triborough.
When you were leaving did you happen to see Roland Kirk? Not last night.
But I've seen him around with some other lowlife.
A guy in a red hat? I don't know about a hat but I can tell you about the smell.
How about a name? Yeah, sure.
It was, "Hey, you, stay out of my garbage.
" So what else is new? Nobody heard anything, nobody saw anything and nobody gives a damn.
And the victim was a model citizen.
Roland Kirk, 43.
Multiples for vandalism, misdemeanor assault criminal mischief, disorderly conduct, possession.
Why wasn't this man in jail? Hey, the DA keeps pleading him out as an emotionally disturbed person.
The weapon was a rebar, probably from a construction site down the street.
Blood and hair are Kirk's.
No prints.
Whoever popped him left his money, so it wasn't a robbery.
He didn't make $2,200 dealing dime bags.
Maybe he stole it from someone higher up the food chain.
Maybe he played the ponies.
How much time we gonna spend on this? As long as it takes to check off the boxes.
Didn't he have a card from a hospital? Friedland Psychiatric.
Maybe he was on medication.
If he was getting pills from some hospital he would've had a Medicaid card.
Maybe somebody beat him up for it.
George Siddell? I like offices.
Used to work in one.
Sorting, filing Come on, George.
Focus on the card.
Whose name does it say? Roland Kirk.
Very good.
But we found it in your pocket.
You see our problem? People are gonna say you clobbered Kirk and took his card.
No, I didn't.
He gave it to me, a long time ago.
I'm sure he did.
But we're gonna have to keep you here, until we can ask him.
That's just like the cops.
Never believe anything you tell them.
I used the card.
A week ago.
At the hospital, bought some pills.
Sixty of them.
So where are the pills now? I sold them.
I like wine.
First admitted, June '77.
Drug-induced psychosis.
Again in '78, '79, right through till last May.
Most were for court-order evaluations two weeks treatment, and out he goes.
Oh, right, the miracle cure.
I read about it at the checkout stand.
Hey, we don't make the guidelines.
Once a patient is no longer a danger to himself or to others, we have to release him.
Okay, but his prescription, did you fill it here? Yes.
He's supposed to come in once a month.
When was the last time? Last week.
Sixty units, Lithium.
Would he have to show ID? No.
Just his Medicaid card.
Doc, in his file, does it say anything about his friends people he might know on the outside? A peer group? No, socialization was something he needed to work on.
How about next of kin? Sharon Kirk signed him out two years ago.
When Dad had a heart attack, my brother never showed up at the funeral.
Three weeks later, we found out he was living on the street.
There'd been signs before.
He had a routine, he had his medication.
He seemed to be well, so they'd release him.
Did he take his pills? Long as he'd remember to, he'd be fine.
When he stayed with us, two years ago I trusted him to baby-sit my kids and then one day he was gone.
Back to Bedford Street? He said that was his home.
He said it had something to do with a sonic convergence.
He tried to explain it to me, but You have any idea why he had a pocketful of cash? No.
He panhandled.
How much could he have? $2,200.
What on earth was he doing A couple of weeks ago he sent me a check for $108.
I figured it was worthless.
He said it was for a doll he broke when I was four years old.
You still have the check? I think so.
Account was opened five weeks ago with a balance of $15,000.
Tax refund.
I don't know.
The account was set up for Mr.
Kirk as a trust, with a daily withdrawal limit.
And Kirk maxed out the limit.
Withdrew $200 a day.
$7,000 in five weeks.
Faster than he could smoke it.
Who's the trustee? Richard Gillrich, Mental Health Legal Advocates.
His signature's required on all withdrawals over $200.
I'm amazed to see you investigating.
Mindless violence against the homeless is business as usual.
What about lawyers and trust funds? Is that business as usual for the homeless? If they're being harassed, it is.
Did you sue the CIA for putting transistors in Kirk's head? We did even better than that.
We sued the residents of Bedford Street.
Read our brief.
They tried to have him classified as an habitual offender.
They tried to get him committed to Friedland Psychiatric Center.
Where he might've gotten some help.
Kirk felt fully capable of deciding for himself what he wanted.
I see you got him released from the hospital last February.
Took him home with you or just left him on the sidewalk? Spare me the homilies.
Kirk could've afforded a different choice.
The Block Association insisted on a gag order, but they settled for $30,000 plus our costs.
Half this year, half next.
Sounds like a shakedown.
Next time I run out of beer money, I'll call you.
If your rights are being violated, maybe you should.
This Block Association.
It had assets? Individual members did.
This was a civil rights issue.
We have the minutes to their Association meetings.
The harassment was clearly premeditated.
I don't think you realize what Mr.
Kirk put us through.
Well, then, he won't find a vacancy in yuppie heaven.
Too bad he lost his Gold card.
We tried kindness, Detective.
The Block Association isn't interested in putting the homeless just on the bus.
We tried to find them public housing, jobs - Now wait a minute he picked your pocket for $30,000.
I mean, is there anybody on the block that wants a refund? Everyone was outraged.
We thought he belonged in a hospital.
But the doctors said his problem wasn't mental and the judges said it wasn't criminal.
Well, being homeless and crazy isn't against the law.
All right, maybe the guy was a nuisance.
Nuisance? Let me show you a nuisance.
The last time a judge released him from the hospital our lawyer thought we should follow Mr.
Kirk around with a video so the next judge would see what we have to go through.
Get out! Get out of here! Get out of the street! I told you not to come around, didn't I? What you doing in my street? Get out! Out of here! Crazy! This is my street! Bang! Hey.
Out! Get out of here! Get out! I told you to get out! I want you out now! Get out! Three weeks later, that nuisance pushed a child into a busy intersection.
Hey! Even the night he was attacked he was still at it.
How's that? I was told he mugged somebody.
Irene Morrissey.
Right in front of her house.
Put her in the hospital.
It was about 11:00.
I was coming home from an art class and he just attacked me.
Took my shopping bag, and ran down the middle of the street.
That bag, was there a nightgown in it? Yeah.
I had bought it that afternoon from Bergman's.
Why didn't you call the police? What's the point? Last time they arrested him, he was back on the street two hours later.
It happens, Mr.
When he ran away, did you see where he went? I went in the house.
I was upset.
He nearly tore her arm off.
I mean, we thought her shoulder was broken.
It's just a torn rotator cuff.
It'll be all right.
And her face was bloody where he scratched her I took her to the emergency room over at 12th Street.
Did anybody see you get mugged? I wasn't paying attention.
When we moved in here four years ago we used to leave food out for this guy.
You know, a homeless guy gets attacked with a rebar nobody calls the cops.
But a woman gets mugged, and still nobody calls the cops? Let's complain to the union.
They're trying to put us out of business.
Yeah? Well, keep him awake, okay? Thanks.
Kirk's out of his coma.
Oh, man, I hurt.
Who are you? You don't live on Bedford Street.
Take it easy.
We work for the city.
We're detectives.
You remember who attacked you? The other night, Roland.
In the alley on Bedford.
Yeah, I know.
It was a bald woman.
She jumped on my chest.
A bald woman? Yeah.
In a flowered dress.
Pounding on me and kissing me.
Doc are we wasting our time here? There is a hairline fracture of his breastbone.
I think he remembers the paramedics giving him CPR and mouth-to-mouth breathing.
You get a lot of bald women on the ambulances these days? She was bald.
She had a flowered dress.
You don't believe me, ask Governor Cuomo.
First of all, he's insane.
Second of all, he was whacked in the head with a metal bar.
He's gonna make a terrific witness.
So what? You want us to call off the search for bald women? I want you to find out what went on at the meetings of the Block Association.
$30,000 gets you some strong opinions.
Kirk's lawyer did say he subpoenaed the minutes.
Yeah, well, these people might be mad as hell.
But you really think one of them's gonna whack him on the head with a rebar? Look at the minutes.
See who the hotheads are.
Out of two hours, they spent an hour and 45 on Kirk.
"Kirk smashed my car window with a brick, and urinated into the car.
" As of last month, After 50, I'd call the realtor.
And sell for peanuts when your life savings is holding up the roof? This is a creative bunch.
One guy thought seeding the alley with broken glass would keep Kirk from sleeping there.
Well, he was a nightmare.
Hey, Mrs.
Bundy? The little old lady who told us she couldn't hear anything from the alley? She complained here six times that Kirk was keeping her awake.
It was after midnight.
I was asleep.
You told your neighbors you couldn't sleep because of Roland Kirk.
How do you know that? We're detectives, Mrs.
We know how to find things out.
Now why don't you just tell us the truth.
I was in bed.
I heard voices.
What were they saying? I couldn't tell.
Well, you didn't just go right back to sleep though, did you? I got up.
I looked down.
I saw two men leaving the alley.
One, I couldn't tell who it was.
The other was Dr.
The dentist? He went into his house, through the back way.
He was wearing his bathrobe.
I didn't see anything wrong.
The next morning, after Kirk was found didn't it occur to you to say something? I didn't see anything wrong.
Bundy's a sweetheart.
One evening last week, she mistook me for her son-in-law.
Night blindness, very common among the elderly.
Lying afflicts all age groups.
Kirk ever give you any trouble? I live here, don't I? Last spring my 11-year-old son's standing at the corner waiting for the light to change.
Kirk shoves him out into traffic.
It's a miracle he wasn't killed.
Boy, if somebody messed with my daughter like that It crossed my mind.
But I'm not as crazy as he is.
Creighton's bald, and he was wearing a bathrobe.
And he's trained to perform CPR, so it fits what Kirk said.
He said it was a woman.
Maybe Creighton kisses like one.
Are you volunteering to find out? The good people of Bedford Street have been putting up one brick wall after another.
Now, maybe we make an arrest, maybe we shake something loose.
Your eyewitnesses aren't reliable enough to support an arrest warrant.
How about a search warrant? You do CPR on a bleeding victim, you're gonna get wet.
Hey, that's right.
Maybe Creighton got some low-rent blood on his silk pajamas.
Convincing a judge to play along won't be a walk in the spring rain.
I already looked at the calendar.
You got Judge Reisman or Judge Talbert, take your pick.
I've gotten some shaky drug warrants past him.
This is your basis for a search warrant? An elderly witness who wears glasses? You can't be sure what she saw.
She saw two things the victim saw.
A robe that could've looked like a dress and a bald head.
Creighton's a doctor, he'd know CPR.
If he worked on Kirk that night, there'd be blood on his robe.
Is that what you're looking for? Evidence of CPR? I didn't know that was a crime.
We're after bigger fish, Your Honor.
Attempted murder.
Creighton's an oral surgeon, not a thug.
Judge, you ever had your wisdom teeth pulled? Give me the warrant.
I've called my attorney.
He'll be here in 10 minutes.
Keep him out of our way.
I can't believe they have the right to do this.
Ray will take care of it.
Got a robe here.
It's brand-new.
These aren't.
Forensics found blood on Creighton's slippers.
It matches Kirk's.
That puts him at the scene.
It doesn't tell us when, or what he did there.
But the old lady puts him there and at the right time.
Bring him in.
And arrest him for saving Kirk's life? Hey, who says he didn't try to kill him first? There's no direct evidence of that.
Well, if he didn't swing the stick, he probably knows who did.
There was a second person there.
I'll prepare the warrant.
Oh, yeah.
I know what's going on now.
I know exactly what's going on.
All right just relax, Roland.
Now you're gonna look at some people and you're gonna tell us if you recognize anybody.
State's key witness, huh? Congratulations.
I can rest my case right now.
Here they come.
Okay, here we go.
The lineup.
Here we go.
Right there.
Right there in the middle.
That's her.
Next case.
"Docket number 63181.
People v.
Steven R.
"The charges are attempted murder in the second degree "assault in the first degree.
" What's the plea? Not guilty.
People? The People ask for $150,000.
That's ridiculous, Your Honor.
The victim identified the defendant.
The victim doesn't know his birds from his bees.
The People's case is predicated on the testimony of an insane person.
Save it for your opening.
Your Honor, my client is a respected oral surgeon.
You're on thin ice, Counselor.
I've seen Marathon Man.
Bail is set at $150,000.
Next up.
Creighton stepped in that blood when he took the trash out the next evening.
The night you're talking about he was enjoying a good night's sleep.
Not according to our eyewitnesses.
Yeah, a lunatic and Mrs.
Magoo? This is a farce.
Ray, I don't see the humor in someone getting beaten by a steel bar.
And, Dr.
Creighton, we know that someone was in the alley with you and when we find them, they might be more cooperative than you are.
What if he had nothing to do with the attack, if he just administered CPR.
He's a doctor, he left a man dying in a garbage heap.
He could be facing a murder charge.
I resent that.
I saved his life, for God's sake.
I gave him mouth-to-mouth- Doctor.
We drop it down to failure to report.
He pleads no contest.
Will that satisfy you? It depends on his story.
It was over by the time I got outside.
Prosky was there.
He said he'd called the paramedics from his restaurant.
Did he say who did the beating? I didn't ask.
Kirk was barely breathing.
I started compressions.
I did everything necessary.
Except wait for the paramedics.
Prosky said he'd take care of the rest.
That he'd keep my name out of it.
I have friends, doctors, who've been sued over this.
You help somebody in trouble.
Next thing, they take your house.
I was closing up for the night, when I heard all hell break loose.
By the time I ran to the alley, nobody was there except Kirk flat on his back.
Next thing, Creighton came out.
That's not the story you told the police.
This is great.
You people drop the ball and then you start pointing the finger at us.
I didn't want to get Creighton in trouble, all right? He's worried about lawsuits.
Just being a good neighbor? How gullible do I look? Miss, we don't take care of ourselves, nobody else will.
You told Dr.
Creighton you called the paramedics.
Unfortunately, there's no record of that call.
I didn't make any calls.
And I sure as hell didn't tell Creighton I did.
He's lying to save his own ass.
I left him with Kirk.
He was supposed to take care of it.
Well, we have two suspects passing the buck.
Your victim can't make the call? We're afraid to ask him.
His performance at the lineup hardly inspired confidence.
His psychiatric records indicate that when he's off drugs he's somewhat coherent.
There's a long road between coherence and competence.
Yeah, you don't want to prosecute.
Even with direct evidence it's tough to sell a jury that's been inundated with the homeless.
That guy terrorized the neighborhood for three years.
And you think what they did is a solution to the homeless problem? What next? Flying squads in the middle of the night? If it was my child he pushed into traffic, I might consider it.
Yeah, that's only capital punishment.
Or do you make an exception for people like Roland Kirk? I'll have Elizabeth talk to him.
When I smoke up, these people are munchkins.
Little things I can just flick out of my way.
You're not high now.
Is it possible you remember more about what happened in the alley? What happened in the alley.
What do you think? I got messed up.
You described a bald woman.
Yeah, the dentist.
He walks around in a dress, and they say I'm crazy? Do you remember anybody else in the alley? Yeah, I know who.
"We reserve the right to serve.
" The man with the restaurant.
You mean Leon Prosky? He'd never even give me a damn glass of water.
Yeah, he was there.
Do you remember what he was doing? I was getting whacked.
I was bleeding.
I tried giving him the bag.
Well, what bag is that? The one with the purple letters.
He kept pulling at it.
Did he say why? His wife gives me the bag.
Then he wants it back.
I can't figure these people out.
What is that, Roland? Can I keep this? Sure.
Happy birthday.
He drew this while I was talking to him.
Once the drugs clear his system.
He settles down.
He becomes more lucid.
It explains why they keep putting him back out on the streets.
Where he resumes his old habits.
The drugs trigger psychotic episodes, back he goes to the hospital.
At some point, doesn't someone catch on that he needs long-term treatment? There's no place for him.
Drug treatment programs won't take addicts who are mentally ill and psychiatric hospitals don't treat addicts.
So the system's crazier than the people it's trying to help.
Liz do you believe Roland Kirk? I think he's the one person who has no reason to lie.
You know, I already went through all this with the police.
Don't you people talk to each other? I read your statement.
It wasn't clear what time you got home.
Look, this drug addict mauled my wife.
He separated her shoulder, he drew blood.
You've got some nerve making me feel like I'm the one under investigation.
My questions are very routine, Mr.
Yeah, right.
So tell me where you live.
Next time we have a problem with Roland Kirk, we'll send him over.
I have tax reports to do.
Goodbye, Miss Kincaid.
We signed Mrs.
Morrissey in at Yeah, I remember Mr.
Morrissey now.
Out of a roomful of emergencies? The squeaky wheel.
You'd think his wife had been shot through the heart.
Do you know what time they left? She had blood panels and x-rays, they were here maybe an hour.
But you're guessing.
Look, all I know is the guy was a pest and he took all my change for the pay phone.
He made one phone call before his wife went into x-ray and one phone call right before they left.
I checked the usage on the pay phone.
Two calls were made to Prosky's restaurant between 11:00 and 12:00.
Morrissey is upset.
He wants revenge, and he calls Prosky.
Prosky tells him Kirk's in the alley.
And Kirk ends up in a coma.
Except the calls don't prove Morrissey was in the alley.
So we start with Prosky.
Have him come in with his lawyer.
These are more than just customers, Mr.
Prosky considers them his friends.
Prosky, we could be looking at a conspiracy charge here.
Based on what? Answering the phone? He acted as a lookout for Harold Morrissey.
That's enough to make him an accomplice.
But I didn't do anything.
Leon, please.
I can see a light touch doesn't come naturally to you.
What are you offering? That depends on what he says.
Tell them.
I saw Morrissey do it.
He came back from the hospital.
He grabbed a rebar from the construction site.
He went in the alley, and he- Wait a minute.
He grabbed the rebar before he went into the alley? Yeah.
And the next thing I knew Call Briscoe.
Harold Morrissey, you're under arrest for the attempted murder of Roland Kirk.
You have the right to remain silent and anything you say can be used against you in a court of law.
Do you understand that? You have the right to an attorney.
Should you refuse that right He's hiding behind a justification defense.
Now listen, Ben.
Lawful use of physical force to terminate a larceny is always a good reason to beat up a mugger.
Morrissey was mugged two hours before the beating.
After three years of harassment the jury's not gonna start counting minutes.
It is a clear case of premeditation.
He walked in that alley with the rebar.
He knew that Roland Kirk was violent, he was preparing for the worst.
It's called self-preservation.
It is also called vigilantism.
I'm in for a chorus of Amazing Grace.
I didn't know that he had time to cool off.
An hour earlier, Kirk was fair game? I'm not saying that I'm comfortable prosecuting a man that but for the grace of God could be me.
If the Almighty looked away for half a second you could also be Roland Kirk.
My wife and I were returning from a dinner.
We saw Mrs.
Morrissey get out of a cab.
She had a shopping bag on her arm.
Kirk pushed her, grabbed the bag and ran away.
I went to see if she was all right and then Mr.
Morrissey came out of his house.
And did Mr.
Morrissey say anything to you? He was furious, understandably.
Kirk had scratched her face.
I told him his priority was getting his wife to the hospital.
That's what he did.
They got into a cab, and I went home.
Did there come a time later that evening when you heard a disturbance in the alley? Yes, I went outside.
Prosky was there.
Kirk was unconscious.
His breathing was labored he was in obvious cardiac distress, so I administered CPR.
And what time was this? Around 12:30.
And what time did you see Mr.
Kirk take Mrs.
Morrissey's bag? That had to be 10:30.
That's a full two hours earlier, correct? That's right.
Thank you.
Yes or no, Doctor.
After you administered CPR to Mr.
Kirk did you wait around for the paramedics to arrive? No.
Did you do anything about the blood gushing from his head? He was breathing when I left.
There was - But had the paramedics been delayed he could have bled to death, isn't that right? It's possible.
True or false.
Six months ago Mr.
Kirk pushed your 11-year-old son in front of a moving car.
That's right.
Well, if it'd been my son I sure as hell would want the guy dead.
Morrissey called again from the hospital.
He wanted to know if Kirk was still in the alley.
I told him yes.
Did you see Mr.
Morrissey later that evening? It was after midnight.
I was closing up.
I saw him get out of a cab and head towards the alley.
And what did you do? This guy Kirk is dangerous.
I didn't want anything to happen to Mr.
I followed him into the alley.
And what happened next? The guy deserved it.
He wouldn't let us live our lives.
Prosky, please.
Just tell us what happened.
Morrissey started hitting him.
Where? On the legs.
Anywhere else? And then the head.
With what? His fists? No.
The rebar.
And where did he get it? They're fixing up a building next door.
They have them lying around.
And he armed himself with that before he entered the alley, right? Yeah, sure, who wouldn't? Thank you.
Did you see Mr.
Kirk try to give the shopping bag back to Mr.
Morrissey? No.
Did you see Mr.
Kirk attack Mr.
Morrissey before he started swinging the rebar? Yes.
Sidebar, Your Honor.
This witness has sudden recall he never told the police.
Are you saying that I'm suborning perjury? I am saying that, that witness is lying.
Credibility is left to the jury, Counselor.
If you want to discredit him, call another witness.
Then I am amending my witness list.
I want to call Mr.
Kirk to the stand.
The man's certifiable.
He's not competent.
Have him in my office.
Yes, Mr.
Kirk becomes delusional.
But typically the delusions are drug-induced.
He's been under medical care since the incident, Your Honor.
When he was high as a kite.
The issue is not whether he can stand trial but whether he can bear witness.
Now he was there, he saw what happened.
He remembers, and he can communicate that to a jury.
With how much coaching, Ben? He certainly won't perjure himself, if that's what you mean.
We'll ignore that, Counselors.
Kirk, how old are you? I'm 44, next January.
Do you remember where you were when you were beaten? I was in the alley.
I often sleep there.
I assume there won't be any trouble with the oath, Ben.
I'm a very religious man, Your Honor.
That's good enough for me.
I like to sleep in the alley.
It's quiet.
I was there the night Mr.
Morrissey beat me up.
Well, tell us what you remember.
I was asleep.
All of a sudden, my legs were on fire.
What do you mean? I was in pain.
I opened my eyes, and I saw Mr.
Morrissey standing over me.
He had a metal bar in his hand.
And what did you do? I said, "You want the damn bag so much? Take it.
" And did he take it? He kept hitting me.
How often? Again and again and again.
Thank you.
Kirk, when you first spoke to the police did you tell them this same story? No.
Why was that? I was out of it.
I was high on crack.
But I remember now.
And when you get high you have no idea what's going on around you, is that right? No.
Is that why you were involuntarily committed to the Friedland Psychiatric Center at least a dozen times in the last three years? When I'm feeling better, they let me go.
And when you get out of the hospital this time, where are you gonna go? My sister said I could stay with her.
But things didn't work out with your sister the last time you were there.
Well, it wasn't her fault.
When you left your sister's, where did you go? Where I live.
Bedford Street.
You see, there's this sonic convergence - And when you go there you get high, don't you, sir? Yes, I have to.
I feel better.
And you buy the crack with money you won suing the residents of Bedford Street.
Isn't that right? They harassed me.
Oh, they say they're the victims.
I'm the victim.
He tried to kill me.
I may never walk right again.
You gonna sue them again, Mr.
Kirk? You better believe it.
And I'll get enough crack to last me a lifetime.
And every time that son of a bitch comes out of his house he'll see me sitting in my Rolls-Royce wheelchair getting high, and getting in his pudgy little face.
No more questions.
All I wanted to do was to get my wife's things back.
Prosky told me Kirk was in the alley sleeping.
The bag was next to him.
What happened when you entered the alley? Thank God I had the rebar to protect myself.
As soon as I got near him he was all over me.
I mean, sure, I hit him.
What would you do? You saw what he was like.
Morrissey, you testified that you were scared of Mr.
Kirk, right? Everyone is.
He's dangerous.
That's why I brought the rebar.
And that you would use physical force if it were necessary.
Yeah, if I had to.
And at the slightest provocation, you'd come out swinging, right? Well, I'm not a wild man.
I defended myself only when he attacked me.
Did he injure you? I didn't let him get close enough.
You mean that you broke his kneecap, is that right? That's right.
And did that stop him, sir? No.
So you hit him again in the legs? Yes.
Did you have reason to hit him a third time? Yes.
Where? On the head.
Why? He kept coming at me.
How could he? You'd just broken his legs.
He couldn't walk.
I don't remember.
I mean, you know, it happened too fast.
Too fast, Mr.
Morrissey? He has by now two broken legs and it's all happening too fast? Isn't it true that you crippled Mr.
Kirk with a surgical strike to the knee while he was asleep? No.
And then you proceeded to beat his brains in so that he wouldn't bother you or your wife ever again? That's not true.
Look, I am not the animal here.
He is.
He should be locked in a cage, right? That's right but you people can't seem to do that.
You let him ruin our lives.
We're responsible for Mr.
Kirk? You're damn right.
You'd wanna come out here and beat our brains in, right? Don't think I haven't thought of it.
Thank you, Mr.
Roland Kirk smokes crack and loses contact with reality.
He throws a garbage can through a plate glass window.
We toss him into a state mental facility where they clean him up brush him off and shove him back onto the street.
Where does he go? Right back to Bedford Street.
Where he smokes crack loses contact with reality and pushes an 11-year-old boy in front of a moving car.
Again, we toss him back into the state mental facility where they clean him up, brush him off and shove him back onto the street.
And where does he go? Back to Bedford Street.
Three years of this, ladies and gentlemen with no end in sight.
Until Harold Morrissey said, "Enough.
" Roland Kirk attacked his wife and took his property.
Morrissey tried to get it back.
And now they want to put him in jail.
There's something very wrong here.
Anyone familiar with the Roland Kirk story has to feel frustrated and discouraged.
And, yes, infuriated.
The system broke down outrageously but that's no reason to disregard the laws of a civilized society.
Now Mr.
Morrissey, he was frustrated and angry.
And the night he left that hospital he found the perfect device to express his rage.
And he picked it up, and he walked with it into the alley and whatever was on his mind, he had murder in his heart.
He saw Mr.
Kirk asleep.
He shattered his legs, he shattered his skull and he left him there to die.
Now, the law says that you can use physical force to prevent your property from being stolen.
It does not say you can murder a man because the state won't do anything about him.
Yes, the people of Bedford Street had their rights violated.
Yes, Mr.
Morrissey he lost an article of clothing.
But when he took the law into his own hands he lost all connection to what every citizen must hold sacred.
The rules, the laws which we've all agreed to live by.
And when he struck Mr.
Kirk in his sleep he became a menace to society greater than Roland Kirk ever was.
On the first count of the indictment attempt to commit murder in the second degree, how do you find? We find the defendant not guilty.
On the second count of the indictment assault in the first degree, how do you find? Not guilty.
On the third count of the indictment assault in the second degree, how do you find? Guilty.
Thank you very much, Madam Forewoman.
The jury is excused.
Show them out.
I'm ready to deal with the sentencing right now.
Your Honor, please forgive me but you are required to wait for the pre-sentencing report.
I'm gonna save the Department of Corrections some ink.
Sit down, Mr.
Morrissey the statute provides for mandatory incarceration for this crime.
How much time have you spent in jail? Two days.
Pending bail, Your Honor.
Very well.
I sentence you to time served and two years probation.
Your Honor, please note my exception and the People intend to appeal.
Noted and overruled.
Court is adjourned.
Well, Judge Stein confirmed the public's greatest fear.
System fails once, keeps on failing.
That's not the public's greatest fear.
What is? That Roland Kirk'll move into their neighborhood.

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