Law & Order (1990) s17e03 Episode Script

Home Sweet

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.
You like the museum.
Mom, I hate the museum.
You like the dinosaurs, don't you? No.
Well, you do like Michelle.
Can we go to Ben & Jerry's before, please? First we'll feed your head, then we'll feed your tummy.
How's that sound? Cherry Garcia? Anything you want.
Hey, honey, where's Lucy? There she is.
I don't think she's hurt.
Be careful, honey.
(CELL PHONE RINGING) Hey, it's me.
(PEOPLE SCREAMING) MAN: Somebody get help here! (WOMAN CRYING) Jen? Jen? Jen! Jen! Jenna! Help! (MEN CHATTERING) (CHATTERING ON RADIO) ED: What the hell? No kidding.
And the owner survived it, Miles Schaffner.
Anyone else in the house? Neighbors say it's just him living there, but there's a little girl missing.
Fire marshall's looking for you.
Was it a bomb? No.
Just a good, old-fashioned electrical burner.
Hit a gas leak and boom.
The owner's a lucky bastard.
What caused it? Gas pipe in the basement's punctured, electrical wire was cut.
Please tell me a rat did that.
Only if the little guy had a very sharp steak knife in his claw.
This wasn't an accident.
Somebody definitely wanted this puppy to come tumbling down.
MAN: We found her! Watch your back.
Jenna? Jenna! Jenna! Jenna! Come on, baby.
We'll get some Cherry Garcia like you like, honey, okay? (CRYING) (SIRENS WAILING) I should have been the one who died.
How old was she? Eight.
Oh, my God! I don't understand.
I I had all new wiring put in.
If there's anything I can do for those poor people.
When you say "all new wiring", do you mean within the last year? Six months.
Don't you worry, Miles.
I've already got an associate writing up the complaint.
Are you his lawyer? And his friend.
Roger Trent.
Well, lwouldn't jump on that lawsuit just yet, Mr.
Look, Mr.
Schaffner, I'm sorry to break this to you, but this doesn't look like an accident.
CASSADY: Any idea who might have done it? ROGER: You gotta to be mistaken.
We're talking to Mr.
I can't imagine anyone who would do anything like this.
If you could give us the name of the electrician who put in the new wiring.
Ikeep Mr.
Schaffner's records.
I'll get them for you.
My house How could someone do this to my house? We use BX-350.
No better electrical wire for home use on the planet.
Rodent food? Ah, not a chance.
Unless, of course, his name was Godzilla.
You get a lifetime guarantee on that stuff.
And you did the rewiring yourself? It was a big job.
I had two or three of my guys on it, my top guys.
And I personally inspect all the work on a job.
Did any of your guys notice anything wrong with the gas pipes? Even the slightest problem with gas, we would've been out of there before you could say "Mrs.
O'Leary's cow.
" VAN BUREN: I know this must be very hard for you, Mrs.
Wechsler, but if you can remember anyone leaving the building or anyone standing around watching.
Wait a minute.
You don't think this was an accident? It's looking like arson.
You're saying some freak blew up a building and our daughter was collateral damage? I am so sorry.
KENT: Where the hell were you? Aren't you people supposed to protect us from lunatics like this? What the hell's going on in this city? Come on, Dana.
DANA: We have a panic room.
A $20,000 security system.
I take her to school every morning and pick her up.
But who can plan for a building blowing up? I need to be with her.
I need to see her again.
We'll keep you in touch with the developments.
When I was a kid I used to be afraid of falling air conditioners.
When I was little Can we, uh, skip the existential anguish and try to figure out who had a problem with Mr.
Schaffner? Yes, ma'am.
ED: Anybody besides Mr.
Schaffner have access to the apartment? I told you, Miles lives there alone.
CASSADY: No wife? No kids? He's been divorced for awhile, but he and Rosalie don't really speak.
How about a housekeeper? Flor.
She's in the Dominican Republic visiting her family.
What does he do for work? He doesn't.
ED: Ever? Family money.
The idle rich can make people jealous.
Miles is hardly what I'd call rich.
ED: Are you kidding me? He's got a four-story brownstone on the Upper East Side, his monthly mortgage nut must be more than a year of my salary.
It's paid off.
It's his parents' home.
Miles's dad made a little money in real estate, which he left to his only son.
But between some very bad money management and some enormous divorce payments, Miles can't afford to be frivolous.
We need to talk to the ex-wife.
Did Miles have any enemies? Maybe.
He definitely didn't have a friend in me.
Ugly divorce.
Over what? Money, what else? He was born a spoiled, selfish kid and he stayed that way.
Just thinking of him makes me need a glass of wine.
Selfish? Looks like he gave back a little something.
Thejudge ruled I was entitled to keep the same lifestyle I had during the 20 years we spent together.
She awarded me 20 million.
It's been 10 years, he's paid maybe five.
And we'd cry for you, but we're more concerned with a dead little girl.
That's awful.
But I had nothing to do with it.
No? Financially, how would you have made out if Miles died? Terribly.
I need him living.
His folks put his inheritance in a trust.
He lives on income.
Principal can only be distributed in dire emergencies.
He doesn't have anything that you get if he dies? Anything left in that trust after Miles kicks goes straight to charity.
And you never get the rest of your cash.
He has acreage of undeveloped land in Brooklyn he could sell and be done with me.
But no, Mr.
Al Gore-Save the Fishes mortgaged his property for cash to cover his shortfalls and then let the Green People grow vegetables on it.
Doesn't charge them a penny.
But my lawyers went to court and I'm forcing a sale.
You wanna see some pissed off people, go talk to them.
Pissed off at Miles? At Miles, at me.
Scathing e-mails calling us greedy bastards.
Tree huggers.
Can you show us these e-mails? "Take our land, you'll suffer.
"Expect trouble.
" All signed by Michael Kaplan.
"President of the Brooklyn Chapter of Green People.
" (PEOPLE PROTESTING) Excuse me, is there a Michael Kaplan here? MICHAEL: You're stinking up the neighborhood! I'm just doing my job, now get out of my face! Come on, big man.
What are you going to do? Huh? Hey, hey! Hey, break it up! What the hell is wrong with you? (PEOPLE CLAMORING) It's an offense against nature, that's why.
So's murder.
Now that depends on who's getting murdered.
Really? Okay, I'm gonna use really simple sentences for you.
No earth, no people.
We are living in America in the 21st century and we have every right to provide our children with unpolluted, affordable food.
We are talking about Brooklyn, right? Sit down.
Sit your ass down! Whoa! I saw you assault someone.
Yeah, he was trespassing on the People's property.
Shut up.
I'm talking.
Should he expect trouble? Are you going to "make him suffer"? What was the other thing in the e-mail, Nina? Vengeance.
ThafsfighL vengeance.
Did you already get your vengeance on Miles Schaffner, Michael? What are you talking about? Somebody tried to kill him.
You think that I No, Miles has always been good to us.
He let us use the property.
He's always been one of the good guys.
Oh, come on.
We know he's selling your little Eden to developers.
You're looking at assault.
You threatened him.
You better say something.
I have nothing against Miles.
He didn't want to sell the land.
The courts made him do it and that bitch ex-wife of Do I need a lawyer? We're going the best we can, Counselor.
I am sure you are, but we've got the mayor breathing fire on this.
A building blows up in this town and people think terror.
And we're confident it's not and our concern is not the mayor, it's who killed the little girl.
So is ours.
Hey, Ed.
Where are we on this guy, Kaplan? Uh, he's still a candidate, but I don't see him doing it.
He's a conservationist.
Or it's a violent splinter group.
Schaffner's selling out from under them.
They want to keep their squat on his land.
Or Kaplan's telling the truth and he and Schaffner really are best pals.
Even if they weren't, why wouldn't he just stab him or shoot him? Why blow up his whole building? Is there anything that says this guy knows his way around a circuit board? Gas pipes? Nothing so far.
Dig faster and harder.
Counselor, no one is sitting on their hands.
Keep me apprised.
Look, I got word Miles Schaffner is loitering around the crime scene.
See if you could get an idea if he's really so buddy-buddy with this guy Kaplan.
All right.
Michael Kaplan? The group called Green People? From my Brooklyn property.
He He used to bring me fresh vegetables every now and again.
Did he ever threaten you? No.
Ever since they've spoken with Harvey Wallace, he's the real estate developer who I planned to sell the land to.
They got no problem with the sale.
My father used to say, "Home was where you're treated the best, but complain the most.
" If only it had been me who died instead of that poor, little girl.
Come on, Mr.
Come on.
HARVEY: I tell Miles the Green People got no problem with the sale.
It keeps him calm.
But I've got some letters from them, nasty e-mails.
Was there anything that made specific reference to the deal not going through? Uh, yeah, most of them.
Any mention of Mr.
Schaffner specifically? Uh, like threats? Veiled ones.
ED: Like what? Uh, you have an obligation to the earth.
You will do the right thing.
Or what? They're gonna come and get him? No, they never get that explicit.
They're smart.
Look, we were over at that Brooklyn site.
It wasn't exactly peaceful.
Hey, I take them seriously, but I've been banking on the hoopla dying once my contract with Miles was signed.
After they see they still have their vegetable patch, just not as big.
That's their main concern? The mini-farm? The rest is just a show for the Ideal Mart people.
They've also shown interest in buying the property.
Miles would never sell to them, but the protesters, they gotta be sure.
Look, anything more you need, here's my card.
Trade me? (SCOFFS) (CHUCKLES) Ideal Mart is one of the biggest corporations in the country.
They don't lose bidding wars to a dude like Wallace.
Well, maybe Schaffner's just not a big business kind of guy.
Although, if he died, the executor of his estate would be legally obligated to sell the property to the highest bidder.
I'm impressed you know that.
My grandma had a place at Sheepshead Bay.
When she died, I was outbid by a guy who writes birthday card poems.
How depressing is that? Anyway, if Miles was dead, Ideal Mart would definitely be in the driver's seat.
You're buying the hype, folks.
Ideal Mart is big, bad box store monster.
We're a company providing a service.
And we're police officers investigating a homicide.
Hold up, man.
Correct me if I'm wrong.
You don't have a store in New York yet, right? The one in Brooklyn would have been our first.
A lot of money to be made.
We projected And the roadblock to all that is nearly killed.
We made our play.
He went with Wallace.
What did you bid? Twenty five million.
Wallace only paid 10.
I mean, you seem like a company that gets what it wants.
Except, he went with Wallace.
Anybody lose a job over it? We did 30 billion in sales last year.
If we wanted the land, it would be ours.
But he went with Wallace.
End of story.
So, what am I reading? It's Ideal Man's withdrawal of its offer to purchase the property.
Although, I suppose if Schaffner died, they could always make another offer.
They have enough money that if they wanted him dead, he'd be dead.
VAN BUREN: When does that happen in the real world? Not often.
When a guy gets a divorce and someone tries to whack him, the first three people you talk to, the ex, the ex, and the ex.
We did talk to her.
She wouldn't shut up.
Well, talk to her again and see to it that she listens.
Would I want the SOB to sell to Ideal Mart? Famous for no benefits, no unions, slave wages.
Damn straight.
The question is, how far would you go to see it happen? I've got lawyers for that.
Ideal Mart was ready to give Miles anything he asked for.
I mean he could have been done with you forever.
But he decides to sell to Harvey Wallace in Queens for less than half the asking price.
And we hear the deal doesn't give him any principal payments for 10 years.
Which once again means you have to wait for your money.
He wakes up in the morning thinking of different ways to screw me.
Well, let's just say Miles gets blown up before Harvey can close the deal.
Property goes to the highest bidder, which in this case, would certainly be Ideal Mart.
More money for you.
How old are you, honey? Twenty-eight? Playing the field? Good for you.
But one day you're gonna give some lucky bastard of your life and you know what happens then? You end up like a leftover rump roast, all gristle and fat and nothing else.
I don't care if Miles dies.
I care about me and the But I didn't kill him and I want to talk to my lawyer.
Man, this woman goes to the hairdresser a lot.
Check this out.
Bergdorf's, three grand.
Bergdorf's, 10.
Barneys, five.
And you're still on the Bs.
Hermes Damn.
Here's something new and different, Kaskell Electrical.
Is that what an arson for hire goes for these days? They're open until 9:00.
Yeah, I used to do electric until the accident.
Then with the insurance money I opened up this joint.
Do you work here alone? I'm all there is now since Judith's passed.
So, I figure you aren't here for track lights.
Listen, Mr.
Kaskell, about two weeks ago a woman named Rosalie Schaffner wrote you a check for $15,000.
Don't see anything in here worth that.
Since when is it against the law for a kid to help out her old man? Mrs.
Schaffner is ls ajerk for marrying that putz Miles.
I know his old man out in Queens.
A real get-your-hands-dirty kind of guy.
But the kid, a real putz.
Everyone knew it except for Rosalie.
She sees him and never picked up another pair of stripping pliers again.
Wait a minute.
You're saying your daughter worked as an electrician with you? Yeah, she worked college summers with me.
Why didn't you tell us your ex used to be an electrician? I didn't think it was relevant.
No disrespect, Mr.
Schaffner, but your house went boom because somebody messed with the wiring.
Look, man, you may not give a damn if your ex-wife tried to kill you, but the fact of the matter is, she did kill an innocent eight-year-old girl.
Now, if she was near your house, I wanna know.
She still has a key.
CASSADY: When was the last time she used it? I don't know.
The day before the explosion, did you leave the house? Ihadlunch with Roger, my lawyer.
How many times do I have to tell you that you have to fold these three ways? Three ways! Nina, cuff her.
Rosalie Schaffner, you're under arrest for the murder of Jenna Wechsler, the attempted murder of Miles Schaffner, and arson.
What the hell are you talking about? What are you doing? You have the right to remain silent.
Anything you say can be used against you in a court of law.
You have the right to "Docket number 067823 ”People v.
Schaffner, Rosalie P.
"Charges are murder in the second degree, "arson in the first degree and attempted murder in the second degree.
" Do we have a plea? Lisa Denton from Gault, Michaels & Gault for the defense, Your Honor.
Actually, I I won't be handling the case, uh Um, what I mean is First time, Ms.
Denton? Yes, Your Honor.
It's weird, isn't it? Hearing your own voice above the fray.
Okay, let's just take a deep breath and give it our best shot.
What I meant to say was that Alissa Goodwyn will be counsel of record.
After I make a motion that she be admitted to the court pro hoc vice, that is.
Very good.
Now, where's the esteemed Ms.
She's not here yet.
I mean, uh, her plane from Miami was delayed.
You know something? I'll bet you can handle this on your own.
Let's give it a shot.
Not guilty.
Rubirosa? People request bail in the amount of $1 million.
Demon .
I'll tell you what.
We'll run with that.
If and when Ms.
Goodwyn arrives and wants to oppose the people's request, I don't think Ms.
Rubirosa will oppose.
It's fine with me, Your Honor.
Welcome to the club, Ms.
God, I hope I was never that green.
I actually felt sorry for her.
My first time in court No offense, war stories bore me.
What I don't get is Gault, Michaels, they're a top notch firm.
Why bring in a ringer from out of state? Does this ringer have a name? Allison Goodwyn from Miami.
She's the queen of darkness.
She went from New York court street divorces to standard bearer for women's issues nationwide.
Is that a friend of yours? Definitely not.
Did I mention she was gorgeous? How are you, Alissa? Better than you, Jack.
I believe that's the same suit you were wearing the last time I saw you.
I like gray.
Alissa Goodwyn.
Connie Rubirosa.
ALISSA: Thank you for showing mercy on that poor kid Gault, Michaels sent to court this morning.
We've all been there.
Where is that exactly? This is a bunch of nonsense, Jack, and you know it.
JACK: But enough about me.
If I had a nickel for every time a woman was falsely accused for trying to kill herhusband for something as mundane as money.
It's as good a motive as any.
Make my point, why don't you? Greed is a guy thing.
So, I'm just projecting my own inadequacies onto the poor, misunderstood defendant? Nobody said that you were dumb.
Let me ask you, Alissa, if I'm so greedy, if I'm so venal, what am I doing still in the same job, in the same bar, in avariation of the same suit? Excuse me, are you somehow saying there are women's issues hidden somewhere in this case? There's a woman's issue in every case, honey.
Motion to dismiss.
I'd expect no less.
Actually, Ms.
Goodwyn, I'm glad you're playing to inject women's rights into this case.
She's a quick study, Jack.
Because the victim here, Jenna Wechsler, she's never gonna get the chance to become one.
That's why I'll never get married again.
Whoa! She was your Second wife's attorney.
ALISSA: Okay, let's assume my name isn't Alissa, it's Alan.
And I have the physical equipment that usually accompanies said appellation.
Now let's further assume that I have a contract with Mr.
McCoy to sell him 100 widgets on Tuesday for $100.
Tuesday rolls around, I show up, he's 50 bucks short.
What happens? That is an issue of contract law, which in this criminal case, is irrelevant.
Not withstanding counsel's newfound equipment.
We can either cancel the deal or make a new agreement.
He'll pay me the $50 he has on hand.
He'll keep the widgets, he'll pay me the remaining amount next Friday, plus 10 more for the inconvenience.
But somebody kills him on Thursday.
Now do you actually believe that I would be the first person the cops would suspect? (SIGHING) I don't recall her selling any widgets.
No, she sold her very being.
And her ex didn't live up to his end of the bargain, so they made a new agreement, which included ending the marriage and a payment of certain consideration.
$20 million is a little more substantial.
It's the principle, not the amount.
JACK: If Mrs.
Schaffner's ex had, in fact, died, she stood to collect a lot more money from the sale of land.
If she knew how much Ideal Mart was willing to pay for the land.
That's a very big if.
The defendant had the opportunity to commit the crime, Your Honor.
When you New the smoke away, Y our Honor, we're right back to Alan and his widgets.
But he's the least likely suspect on the block.
But Mrs.
Schaffner is being charged with several Class A felonies.
Why the difference? JACK: We have motive, opportunity, and the ability to commit the particular crime.
A lot of cases go to trial solely on circumstantial evidence.
And hopefully they're not a result of latent sexist attitudes.
Oh Do you have a problem? I do, Your Honor.
The fact that you'd even listen to this argument is a problem.
McCoy? Fine.
Motion to dismiss is granted.
You want to go to trial, Mr.
McCoy? Come back with some evidence.
I don't care what you think.
You don't insult the judge.
Milbanks had her mind made up before we ever walked into chambers.
She and Goodwyn, both down for the sisterhood.
Facts and the law win cases, not personal politics.
Really? Why don't you tell that to your girlfriend Alan? I'm sorry if I stepped over the line, but I am the one who opens the case file every day and looks at photos of a mangled eight-year-old little girl.
Then I suggest you do something productive.
Lisa, right? Oh, my God.
I'm so embarrassed.
I spent the entire day with my door locked.
Oh, no.
Forget about it.
Do you mind if I Uh, yeah, go ahead.
Um, I should thank you.
You could have totally humiliated me.
Oh, now what would be the point of that? Well, I owe you.
You know, actually there is something.
I don't know if you heard what Goodwyn did today in chambers.
Yeah, she is a piece of work.
There's a lot of experienced litigators at your firm in New York City.
Why did Rosalie Schaffner reach out to Miami? Oh, look, I appreciate what you did, but um My firm's name is still on the court papers.
Oh, I'm not trying to get you to tip her defense.
Um, Rosalie got a freebie.
Goodwyn did this pro bono? Her fees are being paid by the East Coast Women's Defense League.
They track all cases that potentially involve women's issues.
We just get her admitted on a case-by-case basis.
Kind of like her pimp.
We got her, Jack.
Board of Directors for the East Coast Women's Defense League.
Fifth name down from the top.
The Honorable Edith Milbanks.
So? They're paying Goodwyn's fee.
Which means Judge Milbank should have recused herself.
Twenty-three years on the bench and no one has questioned my integrity.
And I don't mean to do that now.
It's the appearance of impropriety I'm talking about.
No way.
What you did is improper.
Maybe even unethical.
Don't you know you're supposed to housebreak them before you take them out in public, Jack? The bottom line, Judge, is that not only are you on the board of directors for the organization paying the defense council's fees, but you are on the committee who picks which cases to take on.
I had nothing to do with selecting this case.
It doesn't matter.
It's a conflict of interest that a first-year law student could spot.
The question is whether she was biased in deciding the issue at bar.
And the answer to that is also obvious.
EDITH: Well, it's not to me.
And I will not recuse myself and I will not reverse my decision.
One more word and I will hold you in contempt, Counselor.
Looks good.
Help yourself.
I'm waiting for Maggie.
How's she doing? Well, better than my A-team's doing in your courtroom.
They were out of line.
In their choice of words, maybe.
So you think my decision was biased? No, I don't think that.
Thank you.
But I know you don't have a legal leg to stand on.
Since when did circumstantial evidence become insufficient to send a case to the jury? Legal sufficiency is always ajudgment call.
Lucky for me, I'm the decider.
If you're ever in the position I'm a politician.
I get to have opinions.
I have opinions, too.
But I pride myself on leaving them at the door when I put my robes on.
(SCOFFS) Widgets? Are you kidding me? When you start playing politics, you're playing in my ballpark and I don't lose home games.
Is that a threat? No.
But that Article-78 petition I'm going to file against you tomorrow is.
So, you can make a damn fool out of yourself before five appellate judges or you can reinstate the indictment and immediately recuse yourself.
Have a good night, Edie.
I thought you were waiting for Maggie.
No, no way.
We like our fish fried.
She was just eight years old.
We had a party for her the week before.
Please tell us what happened on the morning of the 14th.
She died.
A building blew up and now for no reason whatsoever, my little girl is dead.
I show you what was previously marked People's three.
You recognize this, Mrs.
Wechsler? Yes.
This was Jenna's favorite.
We gave it to her for her birthday.
She kept it with her all the time.
Meaning she had it with her that morning? She dropped it.
I saw it on the sidewalk lying there.
She went back to get it.
That's when it happened.
Did you see her actually pick it up? Excuse me.
She She picked it up, and she held it up to show me that it was okay.
She smiled at me.
And And then she disappeared.
Just for clarification, Mrs.
Wechsler, this doll was just a week old at the time of the explosion? Objection, please.
JACK: No further questions.
FIRE MARSHALL: On its own, the cut wire might have caused some damage, but with the alarm system in the house plus the flame retardant used in the inner lining of the walls, I doubt there would have been a major problem.
So, what happened? Unfortunately, in addition to the cut wire, we've determined there was a leak in the gas line in close proximity to the defective wire.
When the electric current hit the leaking gas, there was a sudden, intense hot blast of flame, which then spread throughout the house beneath the walls.
Flames filled the space between the interior and exterior walls, eating up all the oxygen and the house exploded.
This was previously marked as People's seven.
Is this the faulty gas line that you found? Yes.
You can see the puncture here.
Can you determine how this hole was made? Just like the cut wire testified about earlier, it was sabotaged.
So, in your opinion, this explosion was caused intentionally? Definitely.
By someone who knew what he, or she, was doing.
No further questions.
Was there any evidence whatsoever, a fingerprint, DNA, anything that might help us determine who cut that wire or puncture that gas line? No.
Yes, I'd probably get more money for the land in Brooklyn if I sold to Ideal Mart.
Which means the defendant would get more money.
That's correct.
But this is my dad's property and I want to do with it what I believe he would have done.
I owe his memory that much.
JACK: Thank you.
When you divorced the defendant, how much money did the judge order you to pay? It's misleading, I Just answer the question.
$20 million.
And over the past how much do you think you've actually paid her? I couldn't say for sure.
Nearly five million.
That's not bad.
You've lived up to a quarter of your legal responsibility.
Did you ever share with your ex-wife the precise numbers involved with the two competing offers? She spoke to my attorney.
(SIGHING) I can see why you live alone.
Just answer the question.
You don't know if she was actually aware that she would make more money if you sold to Ideal Mart? She certainly thought.
But she didn't know for sure, did she? No.
(KNOCKING ON DOOR) I was going through documents we subpoenaed relating Ideal Mart's potential purchase of the Brooklyn property.
I don't think she did it, Jack.
Why? I don't know if I should show you.
I mean, what I mean is I'm not sure that it would be ethical.
Neither is convicting an innocent woman.
I found the, uh, confidential memo prepared by Ideal Mart's outside council, Magilicutty Parks.
I've never heard of them.
Neither had I.
They're out of Hartford.
You obviously know what's in there.
I didn't see that it was marked Attorney Work Product until after I had read the contents.
I can put that stamp on a Chinese take-out menu.
The memo incriminates another party.
Does it implicate Ideal Mart or any of its employees or agents? No.
Then it's not a problem.
Come on, Jack.
Ideal Mart is not a defendant in our prosecution.
"The law firm's due diligence "on the Schaffner Brooklyn property.
" I don't understand.
Go to section 6, down to paragraph 16.
"During the week of September 8th, "Miles Schaffner "let the insurance policies on his house lapse?" The house blew up on the 14th.
He kept that insurance policy alive for over 30 years and then killed it six days before the house was destroyed.
Looks like he knew what was going to happen.
And I'm not sure that we can use that memo to find out.
Why tell me? Tell ajury and convict the SOB.
I'm not sure I can do that.
Why? This Magilicutty firm didn't represent him.
They represented Ideal Mart.
Think about it, Alissa.
Why wouldn't Ideal Mart come forward with this information about Schaffner on their own? If Schaffner's in prison, it's just that much easier for Ideal Mart to buy the property in Brooklyn.
The way Magilicutty uncovered the dirt wasn't kosher.
I'd be indirectly exposing their firm to ethics violations.
Which, in turn, would put your butt in an ethical ringer, as well.
So, what about it, Alissa? Are you in? It's crazy.
Think about it this way.
Instead of making a giant step for womankind, this time you'd actually be helping one of your clients.
JACK: Mrs.
Schaffner has already expressed her willingness to accept my offer of a plea bargain.
Against my advice.
I think she's going to walk out of that courtroom a free woman.
As opposed to? JACK: I drop the arson charge, and she pleads to one count of second degree manslaughter.
What does that all mean? A six-year prison sentence.
The jury is always a gamble.
What about the little girl's parents? They've already agreed, but you're a victim here, too.
So, it's no deal if you're not okay with it.
No problem.
I'll notify the judge that we'll continue the trial this afternoon.
Six years is better than nothing.
Thank you, Mr.
There's no need for you to wait around.
We're done here? We've got a deal.
JACK: That's right.
$10 million in a money market account for six years.
I can wait for that.
What are you talking about? You're such ajerk, Miles.
There's got to be a $10 million check in the mail as we speak.
Don't try to cash it, though, sweetie, because I've already got an order of attachment.
You can't legally benefit from your own crime.
You blew the house up.
But part of the plea bargain was that she wouldn't be charged with arson.
You just agreed to it, Miles.
Is that right? I had no idea.
Can you take the deal back? I just gave my word, Mr.
(LAUGHING) What if I told you there is no money in the mail? I let the insurance policy lapse.
ROSALIE: Don't you think I know that? Alissa knew you'd probably try to pull something like this.
She arranged for the insurance company to notify me if you ever missed a payment.
They did, and I paid it for you.
Hold on.
How long have you been involved? Going on three years.
I agreed not to charge your client with arson.
I didn't say anything about you, Alissa.
Oh, give it a rest, Jack.
I knew nothing about it.
But what I do know is human nature and I know how men like to mistreat their wives.
It's my job to make sure they're compensated for it.
ROSALIE: You know how I hate to gloat, but I finally beat you, you prick.
MILES: I'm not gonna let you do it.
I'm not going to let you pick at the last piece of meat on my bones.
It's too late, Miles.
It wasn't arson, Mr.
I blew the house up.
Why would you do that? Because I had nothing left but the house! And I knew it was next on her lawyer's hit list.
I wanted to die in those flames.
And now I'd rather tell the truth and go to jail than watch you pick at the last scrap of meat.
That means no insurance settlement, sweetie! No proceeds for you to attach.
And you know what? It's all worth it, to watch you clutching with your claws and there's nothing, absolutely nothing, for you to grab.
Is that good enough? All charges dropped? As promised.
Miles Schaffner, you're under arrest for arson and the murder of Jenna Wechsler.
Love and marriage.
How about steak and potatoes? I just heard Schaffner closed negotiations with Ideal Mart for the purchase of the garden spot in Brooklyn.
Had to cover his bills.
And to all a good night.
Ideal Mart should send you a thank you note, Connie.
If you hadn't found that confidential memo, who knows, they might be looking for space in Staten Island right now.
Actually, I've been meaning to call them about their paralegal's miscue.
If it was a miscue.
Companies like Ideal Mart don't end up in Staten Island, my friend.