Law & Order (1990) s06e13 Episode Script

Charm City

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.
She wants a pool.
Now, who in Queens has a pool? My nephews would love it.
Well, let them chip in then.
You know what one of those things cost? Hey, Celia works.
Two incomes, it shouldn't be a problem.
Celia? Her money's hers.
My money's hers.
I got to cut back on bowling to buy a T-bone for dinner.
Don't get married, man.
Hey, man, you okay? Subway.
Coming through.
Coming through.
Coming through, please.
Good morning, America.
We were on the graveyard.
Just headed back to the precinct.
I never seen anything like it before.
You didn't see anybody running away? Everybody was running, except for Henry.
He went in the car.
I carried him back myself.
He's got a wife and kid, you know.
Who else was on the train? Here.
Over here! Me.
I was.
I work for the city, too.
Paralegal in the Corporation Counsel's office.
You ride the train every day? When I stay over at my girlfriend's.
She's up in the Heights.
All right, just tell me what you remember, Mr.
Well, I was at the other end of the car, you know.
I thought I heard like a pop or something, and I didn't really pay attention, figured it was just the brakes.
And when did you realize it wasn't? When I heard some screaming.
A kid, he called out "Mommy.
" Then a lot of expletives.
Then, the other end of the car was filled with smoke.
Thank God we were near the next station.
I almost got crushed in the stampede.
Thank you.
And it smelled funny.
Like old garlic.
Well, here, take my card.
You give me a call you remember anything else, all right? You notice anything they all have in common? Yeah.
They're all alive.
Hell of a mess.
What was it, a firebomb? That's what I thought first, but no damage to the train.
Just some charring, some residue on the floor.
A smoke bomb wouldn't have killed these people.
That depends on what kind of smoke.
There was something definitely toxic floating through that car.
We found this shattered glass.
Could be part of the bomb.
It's kind of thin.
You think it could do that much damage? Twenty dead.
You tell me.
All right, you get the glass and the residue down to the lab ASAP.
All right.
This is gonna be fun.
Whoa, fellas.
Detectives Curtis and Briscoe, from the 27.
Damn, and I left my autograph book at home.
Hey, we don't need this crap.
We don't need anybody screwing with the integrity of the scene.
Fifteen years in Homicide, I think I know what I'm doing, all right? How many arsons you work? That's what I thought.
Protocol is hands off till we're done.
Twenty dead.
MTA gonna sure enough raise the fare.
You talk to all the survivors in the car? The ones that weren't loaded into an ambulance.
Nobody saw anything unusual.
The train was up near Columbia.
Maybe some budding chemist dropped his homework.
You're kidding, right? So call me a cock-eyed optimist.
Let me ask you this.
Which way was this train headed? It was a number nine, downtown.
Downtown from Harlem? Let's hope Lennie's right about this chemistry student.
When you finish eating, get over to Forensics.
Definitely cacodyl.
Sounds like some kind of cough medicine.
If your allergist is Dr.
Simply replace the oxygen in butanol with metallic arsenic and voila.
We found traces of it on the glass you found on the train as well as on the floor.
And it's toxic? Oh, it's a honey.
As soon as it's exposed to the air, boom, it bursts into flames.
The flames are followed by a dense white cloud.
And that's what kills you? One, two, three.
This guy was definitely looking to pile up a stack of corpses.
So, unless he was a kamikaze, there had to be some kind of time delay.
Well, so to speak.
CSU also found traces of a brown paper bag near the glass.
Easily breakable glass.
So he puts the bomb in a bag and leaves it on the floor of a rush-hour train just before he exits.
Then some unsuspecting commuter steps on a time bomb.
So, where would you find this metallic arsenic? Check the Yellow Pages under "chemical company.
" Metallic arsenic.
That's right.
Well, what's the difference what it's for? Well, how much? An ounce.
You're kidding.
I'll wait.
I'll wait.
It's for my son's science project, all right? Forget about it.
Well, if I ever need to make a semiconductor or do some electroplating, now I know where to start.
No, no.
Never mind.
Forget it.
It's a regulated carcinogen.
You need an OSHA ID number to even buy it.
Any luck? Better odds at jai alai.
Well, get over to the hospital.
Maybe the rest of the survivors are ready to talk now.
Are you all right? I'm in a hospital, aren't I? I mean, should I call for a doctor or something? Hey, I'm recovering.
I've been coughing my guts out all day.
If I could help you, believe me, I would.
Ruiz, call ER, stat.
You? Dr.
Ruiz, call ER, stat.
I don't know how much more of this I can take.
Excuse me, sir.
Sir, may I ask you a question, please? Were you a passenger on the subway? Yes.
Can I have your name, please? George Bell.
I have a Susan Bell and a Thomas.
I didn't really see anything.
I got off before the bomb exploded.
Bell, why'd you get off the train before your wife? I have a job, you know.
Look, my wife's in there, fighting for her life.
My son's dead.
He's only 15 years old, and he's dead.
We think whoever did this may have been carrying a brown paper bag.
My God.
What? You saw someone? He was sitting next to my son.
He had a bag on his lap, holding it tight.
I got off at 125th.
When I got up to the street, I saw him.
Only he didn't have the bag anymore.
Of all the people in that car, you remember him? He was the only white guy.
He was sitting right in front of me.
You think you can describe him to our artist? Okay.
And a little balder.
How's that? A little more on the left.
And he had, you know, a stubble.
A little bit more.
I guess that's close.
What about clothes, Mr.
Bell? Do you remember what he was wearing? He had an army jacket, kind of worn, you know.
A red scarf and boots.
Those high boots that tie.
You got all that, Howard? Yeah.
All right.
Every precinct gets it.
Put it on the NCIC.
Could be the guy wasn't local.
Oh, come on, John, she was 78 years old, and you were looking for a new song on the radio.
That's not central to the issue, Frank.
Look around you.
It took four full days for Clint Eastwood to get a verdict against the National Enquirer, for God's sakes.
The jury is the big toe of democracy.
You stub it, eventually you get a cramp in the calf.
Then you start limping.
Before you know it, the whole damn body, everything, we, as citizens of the good old red and white and blue, start gimping around.
You know what happens then? You get a prosthetic device.
You get anarchy.
Frank, see if this jogs your memory.
Even your mother couldn't love that face.
Read what he did.
Gasses a subway in New York City.
Probably improved the smell.
Metallic arsenic, 20 people dead, all African American.
White male, mid-30s, approximately six foot, around 180 to 200 pounds, wearing army jacket and boots.
You guys wanna share with the class? Yeah.
About five years ago, a church in Madison East End was gassed using metallic arsenic.
Six dead.
Never closed? Son of a bitch.
Lieutenant Van Buren, these are Detectives Bayliss and Pembleton.
They're from Baltimore.
A hundred-and-eighty-five miles, you must have more than a passing interest in our subway mishap.
Mishap? I don't think so.
Five years ago, a gas bomb went off in a church in the Madison East End district in Baltimore.
Six people died from toxic fumes.
Frank was the primary.
Let me guess.
Madison's not in the best part of town.
Do you have a name? No.
A woman saw a Caucasian man, maybe late-30s, running away from the building.
He was wearing an army jacket and boots.
Same as our guy.
Thank you, Detective.
I'll be in touch with your lieutenant.
Begging your pardon, but I didn't spend three hours drinking coffee on Amtrak for a"We'll get back to you.
" If he is from your fair city, maybe he's already gone home.
Well, what if he hasn't? Like I said before, we'll let you know when we catch him.
It's been nice.
Well, it's a good guess our guy's from Baltimore.
Or he's from New York, and he likes to take day-trips to go eat crabs and bomb churches.
Let's hope it's the former.
What, civic pride? Put an APB out on anything with Maryland plates, and say a prayer he drove.
So you're gonna call every chemical company in Baltimore? Every one that sells metallic arsenic, yes.
And you didn't do this five years ago? Well, five years ago, I didn't have a face.
Well, how do we know it's the same guy? It's the same guy! I mean, how do we know the guy who planted the bombs is the same guy who made them? Hello? Yes.
Is this Mr.
Spivack? I see.
But you do work in personnel? This is Detective Pembleton from the Baltimore City Police Department.
We believe that someone in your company witnessed a criminal act.
No, no, I don't know his name, but I can fax you a likeness of his face.
Indeed, I have spoken with your supervisor.
That would be about one half hour.
Thank you.
Okay, that's the last of the six biggies.
Now all we have to do is find ourselves a fax machine.
Back to the precinct? No, no, no! Bad idea, Tim.
Wait a minute here.
This mean you're gonna keep them out of the loop? I saw an 8-year-old girl as they loaded her daddy onto the meat wagon.
So that means you get to pull the switch? Well, his first felony was committed in our town.
First come, first served.
Come on.
Let's go! Well, it's started.
Eight different groups staking their claims.
Anything serious? No, but I got Profaci, Sweeney and Dworkin on it.
So far, 42 cars with Maryland plates.
I can use the overtime.
Well, if we're lucky, we can save the city some bucks.
One of the cars was parked illegally and towed.
I ran the plates.
A Mr.
And Mrs.
Maskowitz reported it stolen in Baltimore three days ago.
You get to the docks.
I'll call for a warrant.
We picked it up three days ago.
Nobody's claimed it yet.
A Lincoln? You didn't think that was odd? You kidding? Once we had a Ferrari here for six months.
Here you go.
It's locked.
Not to worry.
This isn't exactly kosher.
The warrant's on its way, don't worry.
So how come it got towed, anyway? Out-of-towners, they don't believe in alternate-side- of-the-street parking.
Four tickets.
Where was it parked? Land of the one-night stands.
Nothing, Lennie.
All right.
There's a forensics team on its way down to check it out.
What'd this guy do anyway? Guy steals a Lincoln, then checks into a dump like this? Come on, you don't wanna give up now, do you? Besides, compared to the last two places, this is the Ritz.
Hey, we don't know he checked into a hotel.
Hey, if he did spend the night, he'd want to stay anonymous, right? Believe me, these people here are anonymous.
Come on.
Angela was either gonna sleep with Pablo or kill him.
I had to wait for the commercial.
All right, I have Room 319.
I have 404.
That's a little extra.
Has a larger bed.
How many hours you gentlemen gonna want? We're detectives, Mr Belcher.
And whatever goes on in those rooms is really none of my business.
You ever see this face? Whatever he did, I don't know anything about it.
I'm sure you're a model citizen.
Now, did he sign in or anything? Everyone signs in.
Security reasons, you understand.
Here we are.
It's Room 515.
Looks like R.
Real secure.
Paid for five days in advance.
In cash.
He's got two days left.
Housekeeping! Looks like our friend travels light.
Most of our guests do.
This is today's.
Let's hope he comes back to finish the puzzle.
We're gonna wait here, Mr.
You lock the door on your way out.
But if you guys break anything, you pay like everybody else.
Nothing to nobody, or you're liable to break, too.
His name is Egan.
Brian Egan.
He works as a part-time truck driver for Berkman Chemical.
Well, what difference does it make? He lives at Hang on.
He lives at 8910 Boston Avenue.
If he's there, arrest him.
Then find out when he's coming home.
We're gonna be down at the Gramercy Hotel.
That's 212-555-7211.
No, I don't know what's playing at the opera.
Hey, there's a minimum, fella.
What? For using a phone? My place.
My rules.
Well, I got an apple truck double-parked outside.
We gotta get back to Hokeyville.
What? We got a wiseass here? Where'd you get that badge? Out of a Cracker Jack box? Listen, two bucks, or I call a real cop.
Now I remember why I left this dump.
I don't know, Frank.
This is great.
It's pedestrian.
Well, what do I know? I'm not a connoisseur.
Hotdogs, you go to Nathan's.
Deli, you go to the Carnegie.
Chinese, Shun Lee.
Northern Italian, Primavera.
Southern Italian, it's Luna.
There's a difference? Olive oil.
Come on, come on, come on, come on! Munch is gonna call us back at the Gramercy.
Yeah? Yeah, I'm looking for Brian Egan.
Well, he's not here.
Hey, man.
Who the hell are you? Friend of the family, son.
Is your mom home? No.
She's not here, either.
Look, I think you should leave.
I know you.
You're the kid who shoves Santa back up the chimney.
Who kicks the gift horse out of the barn.
Hangs up on Ed McMahon, right? What the hell are you talking about? I'm talking about a windfall, son.
Look, you know, whatever you're selling, we don't want any, okay? You already got it.
You see, your dad won a bet on the Caps-Flyers game.
My dad bet on a hockey game? He's been in and out of work lately, it's weird, him betting like that.
This thing actually flies? Oh, yeah.
That's my uncle Alex right there.
He hasn't taken me up in it yet, though.
When's your dad coming home? He called about a half hour ago.
He's on the next train down from New York.
Look, if you want me to hold that money for him, I will.
Hey, I give you the money, you say you never got it.
Now, where does that leave me, huh? We don't even know how accurate this sketch is.
I wish we had a name.
I wish I'd have bet Soda Pop in the third at Aqueduct.
It's okay.
Okay, I'm gonna take my hand away, and you're not gonna scream or say anything, right? Right? Okay, it's all right.
What the hell? Hey, I ain't gonna steal nothing.
I swear.
We're homicide, ma'am.
Marcy, where's your friend? Gwendolyn? She's riding the E train, but she wouldn't kill nobody neither.
Look, Marcy, what made you come to this room? Oh, that nice man Did he kill somebody? That's what we're trying to figure out.
He stopped me on the street and asked directions.
Then he plops this key in my hand, and he says the room is paid for.
I thought he was Santa.
Where did he wanna go? Penn Station.
What do you think? Wardrobe looks right.
Ronald Reagan.
That's cute.
You're not going any place, Mr.
Whoever you are, you're under arrest for murder.
You have the right to remain silent.
Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.
Oh, look at this.
Sorry, fellas.
Finders, keepers.
A guy moving interstate with no ID whatsoever.
It makes you wonder.
Somebody picked my pocket.
This is New York.
Oh, so you are from Baltimore.
No, Rey.
He's from Harlem.
He's the kind of guy who blends right in.
I don't even know where Harlem is.
It's the place where you left 20 dead bodies sprawled out in a subway car.
This is going nowhere.
Give them time.
Your guys are running on empty.
My partner here, he's young, he still has great expectations.
And you've got a full tank? He figures, if he closes on this 20 homicides here, he gets a little closer to his gold shield.
Well, I'm rooting for him.
Twenty people on their way to work, and they never got there.
Somebody did it.
You got the wrong somebody.
We got a witness who ID'd you.
Twenty bodies, scuzzball.
In case you haven't been reading the papers, we got something called the death penalty here in New York.
You think about it.
Give him 15 minutes.
He knows you don't have anything.
So you think we should let him go? Well, why don't you give us a stab on the Baltimore church.
You got even less than we do.
Well, you loosened the cap, perhaps I can open the bottle.
Be my guest.
Wait a minute.
Wait a minute.
Hey, there! What are you guys, the cavalry? That's funny, Frank.
It sure is.
Your wife didn't tell us you were that funny.
What are you talking about? Stephanie.
She told us all about you.
Yeah, right.
Lucky guess? That son of a bitch.
Now your boy, Kenny, he thinks you're a real crack-up.
How'd you talk to my kid? We know all about you, Mr.
Oh, he's a good guy, Frank.
I think that he'll let us call him Brian.
Can you believe these bastards? We've been to your house, Brian.
It really could use a paint job, you know.
Yeah, Presto Paint on Lombard, I think that'd be the one for you, Bri.
Who the hell are you guys? Do you miss Charm City, Bri? I sure as hell do.
I got lots of good memories there.
Like, you know what I remember? I remember a gas bomb going off about five years ago in a church.
Six people died.
You remember that, Bri? Of course he does, Frank.
You don't forget something like that.
Why don't you tell us what you remember? You want your kid to know what you did? 'Cause we're gonna have to tell Kenny.
Twenty-six dead bodies, women, children.
Hell, you're up there in Ted Bundy territory.
That should make him real proud.
I can't talk about it.
You don't want to talk about it, or you're not able to talk about it? 'Cause if you're not able to talk about it, that's one thing, but if you don't want to talk about it, well, that's a whole another ball game.
Which is it, Brian? Okay, okay.
Have it your way.
All I'm saying is, it would be a lot easier on your wife and kid if you talked now.
'Cause you gotta know, our next stop is home sweet home.
What the hell's he doing? That thing in Baltimore, I didn't know that there were kids in that church.
You mind? You'll excuse us, Mr.
What's the matter with you? He told you he didn't want to talk to you! Oh, I didn't hear that.
Tim, did you hear that? You know what it is, Detective, judges up here, they tend to pay attention to the Constitution.
The guy says he doesn't wanna talk, we gotta stop talking to him.
In Baltimore, we don't You're not in Baltimore, Detective.
I thought we were on the same side here.
Well, like I said, you loosened the cap.
If you kept us up to date, we could've closed it ourselves.
Now if you'll prepare the prisoner for departure.
You guys can start packing, but he's not going anyplace.
Hey, he as much as confessed to our bombing.
First, the statement is garbage, second, we've got an eyewitness here.
And third, the SOB's in our cage.
Get him arraigned.
That's a long way for a client like that, Mr.
Le Clair.
Well, we're both from Baltimore.
We speak the same language.
Now, you wouldn't consider Twenty dead bodies.
I plan on going the full nine yards.
Murder one.
Death penalty.
I guess it doesn't matter that he says he's innocent.
We'll see you in court.
But, now, the issue becomes which court.
My motion for a change of venue.
The crime was committed solely within the boundaries of New York County, Your Honor.
Which is exactly why the venue should be changed.
Manhattan subway was bombed, killing Manhattan commuters.
How could we possibly find an unbiased jury? That's what voire dire is for.
For the record, which court do you propose gets the case? Well, now, I'm not familiar with the city, but Staten Island sounds like a lovely place.
Why don't we just move it to Simi Valley? Like I said, I'm from Baltimore.
I'm not familiar with the city.
Up here, Counselor, we call a motion like this chutzpah in the first degree.
Look at the statistics, Judge.
In an urban environment, like the Bronx, when the jury is 80% black, there is almost a 50% acquittal rate of black defendants.
First of all, this is not the Bronx.
Well, look at the jury pool here, you can't tell me it's not primarily made up of minorities.
Are you forgetting that your defendant is white? What's good for the goose, Your Honor.
The victims were all black.
A largely minority jury may tend to overlook the State's lack of evidence.
My client's life is at stake here.
You want me to go federal with this, I will.
How about we meet half-way.
I'd agree to Westchester County.
Sounds fine to me.
You gotta be kidding.
I was just playing the percentages.
Well, you lost.
Le Clair obviously wanted a white jury.
Now he's got one.
Look, the last thing Scarletti wanted was a federal judge examining our jury selection process.
There's no question he was gonna transfer the case somewhere.
We're better off in Westchester.
Oh, I see.
Twelve Jewish golfers don't have a biased bone in their bodies, but Irish and Italian working class, they'll lynch you as soon as they look at you.
I'm sorry.
I must have missed the day they taught ethnic stereotypes at law school.
We didn't make the system.
We just try to survive within it.
I spoke to Dillon in Westchester, he's all for you trying the case.
Just came by hand for you, Jack.
Le Clair's been staying up nights.
A motion to exclude Egan's statement about the Baltimore gassing.
You lose that, you lose motive evidence.
I questioned him as I would any other witness.
He says he invoked his Fifth Amendment rights.
I did not hear words to that effect.
How long have you been on the job, Detective? Long enough to know when to stop an interrogation.
Long enough to get a confession when your cops walked out of that room with nothing but their good looks.
Did the suspect ever invoke his right to remain silent? Not to my mind.
Well, Frank has a way.
He gets inside the suspect's head and bangs around till something comes out.
Even if his way violates constitutional guarantees? Well, the envelope sometimes gets pushed, but no lines are crossed.
Did Egan invoke his right to remain silent? Well, I didn't hear him.
So this affidavit's a lie.
That's right.
He said he couldn't talk about it.
Then I asked if that meant that he wasn't able to talk about it, or he didn't want to talk about it.
And what did he say? He just stared at us.
You wanted to see us? Yeah.
Have a seat.
And then what happened, Detective Bayliss? Tim.
Frank repeated the question.
And then what? He shrugged.
He shrugged.
He shrugged.
And then what? Frank said it'd be better for everybody if he spoke up now.
Oh, damn.
I alluded to the well-being of his family, and he made a statement.
I've done it a million times.
You did it once too often.
Frank asked him if he wanted to keep quiet, and he shrugged.
So what? So that's not an explicit waiver of his rights.
It's the law.
Not in Maryland, it's not.
Too bad you're in New York.
It's gonna be excluded.
We're out of here.
A little testy today, huh? Shove it, okay.
Shove it where? Hey, you know what? I don't like you, Pembleton.
Well, that brings tears to my eyes.
You're a self-congratulatory ass and you screw up and blame everybody else.
So you don't oppose any of the factual allegations in the affidavit? No, Your Honor.
Then I don't see what the problem is.
A shrug can be interpreted in many ways, Your Honor.
The interrogator took it as an explicit waiver of the defendant's right to remain silent.
If it can be interpreted in many ways, how explicit can it be? Your Honor, the State's asking for the death penalty here.
It's well settled that when dealing with a capital crime, any potential abuse of a constitutional safeguard must be strictly scrutinized.
When the abuse is by a police officer.
Frank Pembleton had no authority in New York State.
He's a member of the Baltimore City Police.
At a minimum, he was an agent of the New York cops.
Do they really let you get away with this crap in Manhattan, Mr.
McCoy? The confession is excluded.
This job would be easier if it weren't for the cops.
I didn't know the law was different down here.
I'm sorry.
Why don't I take Egan back to Baltimore? And be laughed out of the courtroom? Let me give you the short course on full faith and credit, Detective.
A court of competent jurisdiction has just ruled that you violated a defendant's constitutional rights.
That means every court, including every court in your hometown, has to abide by the ruling.
Look, Bayliss No, call me Tim.
You said you could help us with this trial.
Are we talking smokescreen here? Me? Yeah, you.
I should be getting back to the office.
What if I handed you a woman who saw a white man running from the all-black church right before the bomb went off? Can she ID him? No.
But it is the same MO.
It could help with motive.
Only she'd be destroyed on cross.
It's a circumstantial case, it can't hurt.
Good, good.
Because I begged my lieutenant for the petty cash to get Mrs.
Chapman up here, and she'll be on tomorrow's train.
This isn't gonna make up for that stupid interrogation.
I never said it would.
So, Counselor, you seeing anyone or what? It's gonna take a lot more than a half-assed witness.
Well, I'm just getting started here.
It was 7:30 or so.
And I was on my way to work with my wife and son.
At which stop did you get off the train, Mr.
Bell? At 125th.
Is there anyone in the courtroom who you recognize from the train? Yes.
The defendant.
He was sitting next to my son.
I was standing in front of him.
He was holding a brown paper bag.
Did you see him get off the train? Yes.
He got off at my stop.
Only he didn't have the bag with him anymore.
The train was crowded, was it not, Mr.
Bell? It was rush hour, yes.
Was there anyone else on your subway car carrying a bag? I don't know.
Well, that's because it was rush hour, and the subway was packed.
Now tell me, see any other white man on your train? Not that I could see.
So, in actuality, you only noticed Mr.
Egan because he was white, and not because he was carrying a bag, isn't that right? Look, my son is dead.
The SOB's color doesn't make a difference to me.
Well, we're just trying to see if we've got the right SOB, sir.
No more questions.
Bell described the man he saw on the train to a police sketch artist.
It resembled Mr.
CSU then found a partial thumbprint match on the arm rest next to where Mr.
Bell said he was sitting.
There were also burn marks on the floor next to that seat.
Is this the picture you're referring to? Yes, it is.
Offered as People's six.
Thank you.
Who is Roy Blanchard, Detective? He was a passenger on the subway that day.
And did he survive? Yes, he did.
Are you aware that Mr.
Blanchard spent two years in Sing Sing for aggravated assault? No, I wasn't.
What about Darnell Hurst? He was a passenger on the train that morning, too, isn't that correct? Yes.
Would it surprise you to learn that he was incarcerated for arson 10 years ago? I didn't think about it.
So your answer is yes? That's right.
What about Jaime Batista, he was a passenger on that train, too, right? Yes.
Four years in Attica for Mr.
Now tell me, Detective, why didn't you consider Mr.
Blanchard, Mr.
Hurst or Mr.
Batista suspects? We assumed the perpetrator got off the train.
We didn't look at the survivors.
So it had nothing to do with the fact that they were all black? No.
Reynaldo Curtis? What is that, Detective, Puerto Rican? Objection.
It was five years ago.
I went to get my daughter from play school at the church on South Broadway in Baltimore.
I renew my objection, Your Honor.
As I already ruled, Counselor, the testimony is relevant in that it establishes motive.
Continue, Mr.
And did you see anything out of the ordinary? I saw a man running from the church.
And then thick white smoke pouring out of the windows.
A lot of people in the church were injured.
Six were killed.
Were you able to describe the man to the police? It was dark, but I could see he was wearing an army jacket and boots.
He was white, 5'10" or 11, about 190 pounds.
No further questions.
The man running from your church, you never saw his face, did you, Mrs.
Chapman? No.
Is that because you only saw him from behind as he was running away? It was dark.
He was running in the other direction.
So you cannot say that it was Mr.
Egan you saw running from your church? No.
But you can say that the man was white? Yes.
I see.
Tell me, are you still a member of that congregation? No, I now worship at Jafaria Salaam.
Exactly what denomination is that? We are Muslims.
That have anything to do with the Reverend Farrakhan? Objection! In my chambers.
It's irrelevant, not to mention insulting.
I'm just raising the possibility of other potential suspects.
Louis Farrakhan? Please.
The Reverend Farrakhan publicly blames the white man for his people's problems.
I'm just suggesting that, perhaps, the witness is following suit.
You're playing on the fears and prejudices of the jury.
You raise the specter of a black separatist and an anti-Semite with this particular jury.
You picked the venue McCoy, and you called in the crying parents of the victims killed on the train and in the church.
Is that playing any less on the jury's prejudices? I'll let you proceed, Mr.
Le Clair, but try and limit your questioning to the colorably relevant.
Because metallic arsenic is regulated by OSHA, you can't just walk in off the street and purchase it.
So we assumed that whoever made the bomb had some sort of professional access to it.
We then sent a police sketch to several chemical companies in Baltimore.
What did you find? His name was Brian Egan, and he was a part-time truck driver for Berkman Chemical.
Is Berkman Chemical a supplier of metallic arsenic? Yes, it is.
Thank you.
What is it, Detective? Not enough crime down in Baltimore for you? You gotta come up here and solve New York's crimes as well? I was the primary on the bombing in the church.
To date, those cases are still open.
What makes you think the two incidents were related? Two gas bombs made the same way, from the same materials.
And that was all? The victims in both were African American.
So, obviously, you think that racial animus was involved in both these cases? It wasn't my concern.
Tell me, Detective, how many of your cases from five years ago are still open? Three.
Dominick D'A lleva, Tomasso Bucci and Fred O'Meara, isn't that right? That's right.
You still flitting around the country trying to close these cases? There's no reason to Yes or no? No.
I didn't think so.
I'll tell you what, Detective, I think racial animus is of bigger concern than you let on.
No more questions.
The People rest.
The Defense rests, too, Your Honor.
I can't believe he didn't put on a case.
I guess he didn't think you made yours.
A witness ID'd Egan, he had access to the arsenic.
We found his prints on the train.
It should be enough.
The cops who beat up Rodney King were acquitted.
They had film of Marion Barry smoking crack, he was re-elected mayor.
Juries have rendered verdicts to advance political agendas for 200 years.
We've certainly come a long way.
Reasonable doubt equals racial division.
What are you gonna do? I'm gonna lead them to the right political statement.
Some people just need to point the finger.
Things don't go as they like, it's because their forefathers were dragged here in chains.
Yes, slavery was an obscenity, but it ended 100 years ago.
Still, they're stuck in the ghetto, they blame us.
Cut off the welfare checks, we're damn racists.
Their kids are hooked on crack, our fault.
A train is gassed in Harlem, guess where they're gonna point the finger? Now, you've heard the witnesses in this case.
The only thing they've got against my client is the color of his skin.
I say, enough.
It's time to send a message.
You can't blame whitey for everything.
Not anymore.
We don't need those anymore.
Over the past two weeks, I put on a near-perfect case.
I proved the defendant had access to the materials used to make the bomb.
I proved he was on the subway the day the bomb exploded.
You heard testimony that someone fitting his description committed a similar crime, using the identical toxic gas, five years ago in Baltimore, which just happens to be his hometown.
A near-perfect case, and still, there's a chance I could lose.
That's why I tossed those law books, and that's why Mr.
Le Clair is absolutely right when he says that black fingers are pointing at us.
Where else are they going to point? No, none of us ever dragged anyone here in chains.
We never hanged anybody's grandfather from a tree for looking too long at the master's daughter.
We're a lot smarter than that and subtler.
Instead of chains, we use reasonable doubt.
Instead of restricted bathrooms, we use unanimous verdicts.
Yes, we can send a message.
We can say the racial divide in this country has grown and is growing, and here's another example of just how unfair it gets.
Or we can say, "Enough.
" Equal protection under the law means exactly what it says.
Have you reached a verdict? We have.
On the first count of the indictment, murder in the first degree of Thomas Bell, how do you find? We find the defendant guilty.
On the second count of the indictment, murder in the first degree of Harvey Brand, how do you find? We find the defendant guilty.
On the third count of the indictment, murder in the first degree of Kareem Alexander, how do you find? We find the defendant guilty.
What'll you have? Whatever's on tap.
All right.
You should quit.
I should do a lot of things.
So, all's well, right? Detective Curtis, do I detect a note of the self-congratulatory in your voice? Why not? You know, I've been thinking, how bad do you suppose Egan wants to die? I mean, it's pretty obvious, a part-time truck driver cooking up a complex bomb like that, not to mention a $50,000 retainer to his lawyer.
You won on 20 counts, McCoy.
Why the sit down? I thought maybe Mr.
Egan was ready to negotiate.
Oh, you'll knock it down to 10 counts.
Now is not the best time for wiseass, Mr.
We know you weren't in this alone.
Give us your conspirators, I'll drop the request for the death penalty.
I don't see the joke, Mr.
You don't see anything, you have no idea what's really going on.
Why don't you tell me? I'm just the tip of the iceberg.
You're a racist and a murderer, and you just found out your country won't tolerate it.
You mean your country won't.
Mine is growing.
You think you can stop it? You can't stop anything.