Law & Order (1990) s19e11 Episode Script

Lucky Stiff

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.
No.
The problem is I've got too many damn trucks off the street.
That's the problem.
It was freezing last night.
This is what happens.
The fuel filter clogs.
So change it.
We're going through filters like toilet paper.
I used the last one an hour ago.
Go pick up another case at Auto Mart, and from now on, just fill the tank with the regular stuff.
You're the boss.
I gotta go.
(CHATTERING ON POLICE RADIO) I take it he didn't get hit by a bike.
Yeah, a.
45 caliber Schwinn.
Two to the back.
No powder residue, it wasn't close range.
Running from a mugging? No, his wallet was in his back pocket.
But check out that wrist.
Hmm.
Yeah, somebody ripped off his watch.
Vic Russell, President, Westside Express.
"We're quicker than you think.
" Wrong.
Yeah, that That's Vic.
Oh, my God.
Oh, we're sorry, miss.
Was Mr.
Russell married? Did he have a family? No.
He never mentioned any.
What's going to happen to the company? I don't know.
Was there a manager? I answered the phones, routed the drivers.
But Vic ran everything, 40 trucks, day and night.
Including last night? He left early, around 6:00.
He say where he was going? That would have been a first.
We operate on a need-to-know basis around here.
Klein, 6:30.
Got any idea who this is? Oh, Mr.
Klein.
Vic? God! I thought these things don't happen anymore.
They still happen.
We understand he came to visit you last night.
He was right here.
He was one of my carbon-offset contractors.
We thought he ran delivery trucks.
That's right.
People today are very concerned about the greenhouse gases produced by their consumption.
Some of them buy carbon offsets to balance things out.
I bring them together with businesses that need financial help to run clean and green.
Hmm.
Why bother to turn off your own lights when you can pay someone else to turn off theirs? That's not exactly the way I would put it.
Okay, so, uh, Vic Russell was one of the companies that needed financial help? He ran a fleet of trucks.
I paid him to convert to biofuel.
It's good for the planet, it's good for everybody.
You know, the average American is responsible for the emission of 45,000 pounds of carbon dioxide every year.
What kind of car do you drive to work, a compact, sedan? I take the C train to the Four.
(CHUCKLING) What was Mr.
Russell doing here last night? We were talking about renewing his contract.
It was working great for him, for us.
Did he mention where he was going when he left? He said he was going to dinner.
He invited me to come, but I had to get home.
It was my wife's birthday.
Russell's last meal was a pricey one.
M.
E.
Said his stomach was full of caviar and some kind of dumpling.
Now we just need to find who he ate it with.
Vladimir Rezanov.
That was Russell's dinner date? That was Russell, his real name.
He immigrated from Russia 15 years ago.
OCID's had him on their radar for a while.
BERNARD: Russian mob? I thought they were way past trucking.
Into counterfeiting, identity theft Well, this recession is tough on everyone.
OCID say who he ran with? Uh, yeah, Abramovich in Brighton Beach, Pavluchenko out of Sheepshead Bay Alex Arshavin, he's a loan shark who works out of the Samizat Restaurant, West 39th Street.
That's a few blocks from the body.
Uh-huh.
I bet they serve caviar there.
Just don't try to expense it.
Vic? Sure.
I know him a long time.
When's the last time you saw him? You're kidding.
No, I'm not kidding.
Okay.
It was last night.
Here.
We had dinner.
Were you talking about a loan? We know how you make a living.
Okay.
Vic owes me money.
We were talking about repayment, but nicely, nicely.
He was getting some money soon, making big payment.
There was no reason for you to kill him? That's what you're saying? Sure.
Who's going to pay me back if he's dead, worms? What time did Rezanov leave here? Come on.
You know all this.
We do? Vic walks out that door, cop across the street is watching, gets in his car, follows.
There was somebody following Rezanov? Somebody, yeah.
NYPD, FBI, there's always somebody.
Last night, it was black SUV.
(CHUCKLES) Very subtle.
Ooh, I'm so fooled.
What? You mean wasn't cop? No, no, nose was bigger, like from Tomsk.
There.
Yes.
Didn't we have that nose 30 minutes ago? With different ears.
It don't look right, was different ears.
I called OCID, the FBI, DEA, DHS and ICE.
Some of them have surveilled Arshavin and his friends in the past, but no one was on him or Rezanov last night.
No, more forehead, like Putin.
He's been going around in circles for an hour.
Do you think he's making this up? He popped Rezanov himself? Well, he says no way.
He says Rezanov owed him money.
He was about to pay him back.
Does that make sense? What do Rezanov's books show? Well, the trucking company was scraping bottom.
What about the money he was getting from Klein to go green? It's not in here.
But there are some, uh, coded entries.
There! Yes! It's him! Hey, hey, Lupes.
Look at what we got.
Klein.
BERNARD: Keep an eye on him.
It's Klein.
So Klein's payments to Rezanov are missing or in code, and he was following Rezanov before he got killed.
Okay, we go see Klein again.
Not without ammunition.
Follow the money trail first.
Go see his customers.
WOMAN: Red velvet? Fresh this morning.
Yeah, thanks.
I joined up with Zero Sum as soon as I heard about it.
Nah.
To really help save the planet, it's exhilarating.
So you do more than hang the sign.
Hey, don't knock the sign.
It's been great for business.
Even at an extra quarter a cupcake to offset the transportation of the flour and the sugar.
Did Mr.
Klein say where those extra quarters were going to? Uh, I had my choice between windmills in Alberta or a methane capture in West Virginia, but I wanted something local.
So he told me about these trucks that we could convert to biofuel.
At Westside Express? That's right.
I even got a tour of the lot.
Stan told me that my contribution was personally responsible for getting 20 trucks off fossil fuel.
Not everyone who buys a trip decides to offset their emissions.
But offering the option is part of our image promotion.
Green marketing works.
Did Klein tell you what programs your customers' payments would subsidize? I insisted on it.
He took me to this lot where a fleet of trucks was waiting to be converted to biodiesel.
Westside Express? Yeah.
It cost $2000 a truck, but I could see that it would have a real effect.
I took the entire fleet.
WOMAN: Mr.
Walcott? Excuse me.
Mmm-hmm.
This is math I can do in my head.
Okay, this guy pays to convert 40 trucks.
Mary Cupcake pays to convert 20 trucks.
The total fleet is 40.
So 40 plus 20 equals 40, right? Not in my neighborhood.
Mmm-hmm.
Yeah, the boss ran tours through the lot all the time for that tree-hugger Klein and his bleeding hearts.
I mean, this global warming thing, there was an ice age before we had cars and stuff, right? So what caused that? Uh, we'll look into it.
Hey, what were your boss and Klein selling to those people? They told them their money was going to convert these trucks to biofuel, fermented soybeans, I don't know.
It clogs the fuel pumps when it gets cold, so we pretty much stopped using it.
You know how many people signed on to the deal? Not my department, but Klein must have been through here, eight, ten times.
Did your boss and Klein get along pretty good? I guess.
Until a couple of days ago.
One of the geeks asked me how come it cost 2 grand to convert a truck.
Vic was standing right there.
He was a little surprised when he heard 2 grand.
Then he took Klein into the office.
I heard some shouting.
(MEN EXCLAIMING) Aw, crap! MAN 1: Turn it off! MAN 2: All right, I got it.
Hmm.
You know, there was an ice age before we had cars and carbon emissions and stuff.
What did cause that? (CHUCKLES) I'll buy you the Al Gore movie for your birthday.
BERNARD: The fraud's a slam dunk.
Klein sold those 40 trucks 10 times over.
God only knows how many times he sold the windmills in Alberta.
Well, we can arrest Klein for fraud, but you like him for murder? Well, we had an accountant look into the coded entries in Rezanov's books.
Klein was paying him $300 per truck.
Rezanov just found out Klein was getting 2000.
Hardly seems fair.
Well, the night of the murder, Rezanov told his loan shark that he'd be getting a big chunk of money soon.
He had just been to see Klein.
You think he was shaking Klein down? And Klein had a better idea.
He follows Rezanov, gets him in his car.
Rezanov sees what's up, he makes a break.
Does Klein have a black SUV? Well, in his name there's a Prius, in his wife's, there's a black SUV.
Ah! Hypocrite and a crook.
I will get you an arrest warrant for the fraud and a search warrant for the house and car.
Two warrants in one trip? That's fuel-efficient.
We do what we can.
This is a mistake.
Right.
Do you own a gun, Mr.
Klein? Our lawyer's on his way.
Well, if he misses us here, we'll all be at the precinct.
My husband's not a crook.
He's won awards.
I'm not saying anything till he gets here.
He says he lives here.
What's going on? Who are you? Who are you? Hey, that's my computer.
That's my room up there! This is Chad, Stan's son.
He's been staying with us.
You'll get that back when we're done with it.
That SUV you pulled up in, that's your mother's? Stepmother's.
Yes, it's mine.
Keys.
We'll be searching that, too.
There was no weapon in the house and the car was clean.
But Klein's thumbprint did match a latent on Rezanov's wrist.
Well, that's something.
Yeah.
You know, I never been on this side of the glass before.
It's very interesting.
Is regular part of your job? Do you recognize the man you saw outside the restaurant, Mr.
Arshavin? He's the one killed Vic? Cost me big money? Number four.
Connie? Book him, fraud and murder.
Connie, ooh! I love this country.
You were ripping off Rezanov, collecting 2000 a truck and only giving him 300.
Even if that's true, how's it supposed to be a motive for murder? Rezanov wanted more.
Mr.
Klein preferred killing him to paying him.
He's not a thug.
He's a member of the New York Council on Environmental Awareness.
His thumbprint is on Rezanov's wrist, and we have a witness who saw him stalking the victim.
What witness, a mobster? No, no.
Uh, please.
We've hired a forensic team to deconstruct that thumbprint.
How did it get there? Is it really my client's? Is there no one else in New York with a similar thumb? We've got investigators digging up your witness's criminal history on two continents.
Our accountants are examining Rezanov's so-called books.
I hope your office has the resources to sustain a lengthy and complicated trial.
We do.
CONNIE: Lovely! He steals a fortune, and then uses it to fight conviction.
He may not start the trial broke, but we can make sure he ends up that way.
Forfeiture proceedings? Those take forever.
Let's make it automatic.
We can argue that the murder and fraud were part of a single corrupt scheme.
We can roll them into a charge of enterprise corruption.
If we convict, he goes to jail and we get his assets, automatic.
Enterprise corruption is a conspiracy charge.
Who are we saying that Klein conspired with? Rezanov.
They ran the con together.
So we're going to put a dead man on trial for murdering himself? Why not? JUDGE DELANEY: A superseding indictment, huh? CONNIE: Yes, Your Honor.
The People are merging the previously charged counts of fraud and murder into a single count of enterprise corruption.
The purpose of that statute is to prosecute organized crime, not environmental entrepreneurs.
Some of the People's witnesses more closely resemble the statute's intended targets.
You don't get to escape the law because you drive a hybrid.
You realize that if you fail to prove enterprise corruption, double jeopardy will prevent you from retrying Mr.
Klein on the underlying offenses? The People accept that risk.
Very well, then.
Bail? Remand.
The defendant has significant resources and may be a flight risk.
Mr.
Klein will surrender his passport and is prepared to post bond in any amount the court deems appropriate.
How nice for him.
Bail is $1 million.
The defendant is subject to home confinement with electronic monitoring.
Anything else? (WHISPERING) Oh, uh, just that my client has a new home address that differs from the one in the file.
He and his wife have separated.
Condolences.
He's confined to whatever home he has.
You'd think the wife would give him an alibi, not kick him out of the house.
Maybe she wasn't comfortable sharing her bed with a murderer.
I don't believe Stan killed anyone.
It's preposterous.
So this sudden separation had nothing to do with the murder? Of course it did.
Stan needs to concentrate on preparing his defense.
We have reporters calling the house.
Our friends don't know what to think.
There are some details of our personal life that I don't believe I'm required to (STAMMERING) Mom, you don't have to talk to them.
Maybe you should leave.
Okay, but I'm not hearing an alibi here.
Your husband told the police that he was home the night of the murder because it was your birthday.
It was, but I wasn't well.
I took a sleeping pill and went to bed early.
So you don't know if he was here or not.
I know he's not a murderer.
What about you, Alicia, were you here that night? I live in a dorm at NYU.
I gave my mom her present the next day.
Chad, right? You're helping your father move out? He's already out.
I'm moving, too.
Did you see your father the night of the murder? I wasn't here.
I was out.
Look, you people really believe my father killed somebody? Yeah, we do.
Wow.
Dad.
ARSHAVIN: That's the guy.
He was outside restaurant.
When Vic walks out, he gets in his car and follows.
And that's the same man you picked out of a lineup shortly after the murder? Yeah.
Absolutely.
He's got that forehead like Putin.
(ALL SNIGGERING) So, um, if I understand it, you were here.
That's right.
And this mystery man with the SUV was standing here.
Mystery man is the one sitting at your table.
So you say, but the nearest streetlight is way over here.
There are lights on buildings.
I could see.
What business are you in, Mr.
Arshavin? Gardening supplies.
You don't also make loans? Sometimes I try to help out some friends.
Like Arkady Stenov? I don't think so.
You don't remember lending $80,000 to Arkady Stenov in 2006? I can play surveillance tapes where you talk about the loan.
Okay.
I did.
Where is Mr.
Stenov today? I heard he passed away.
He was found shot four times in December, 2006.
Objection.
No connection has ever been established between that incident and Mr.
Arshavin.
Stenov owed this man money.
He was shot.
Rezanov owed this man money.
He was shot.
The objection is sustained, Mr.
Feldman.
The jury will disregard your analogy, for which no groundwork has been laid.
No more questions.
How much money did Mr.
Rezanov owe you? $113,000.
And did you ever get it back? I never going to get it back.
I going to send that man a bill.
Clogged oil filters were the least of it.
We had blown transmissions, cracked engine blocks.
We were holding trucks together with chewing gum.
Why didn't Mr.
Rezanov get them fixed? Business was off.
We used to run a lot of stuff around for Wall Street guys.
But the day before he got killed, Vic told me to start ordering new parts.
Why, he suddenly had money? He said he had some coming in and he was going to get it.
Now, was this before or after he heard from one of Mr.
Klein's clients how much they were paying to convert his trucks? After.
Thank you.
Uh, Mr.
Rezanov never told you he was going to get that money from Mr.
Klein, did he? No.
It just seemed pretty obvious.
To you.
But you don't like Mr.
Klein, do you? What's to like? Every time he came by the yard, he'd make us run his stupid little Prius through the truck wash.
Never a tip, not one time.
So he's a bad tipper.
That doesn't make him a killer.
He had enough nerve.
The whole damn family.
The morning after the murder, his son shows up in the other car, the SUV, and runs it through the wash.
The morning after Vic gets killed, they're using his facilities! We get it.
Uh, no more questions.
That's why there was no evidence in the SUV.
Chad cleaned it up.
Maybe he cleaned up the murder weapon, too.
Get a warrant.
My dad's the one on trial, not me, remember? Did your father have a gun, Chad? No.
I never saw one.
Your dad ask you to wash the car that morning? I didn't even see him.
I borrowed it to meet some people.
I don't like to drive a dirty car.
Hey, if I was washing brains off the dashboard or something, you think I'd be stupid enough to take it to that truck place? I don't know.
Why did you take it there? Because it's free there.
12 bucks anywhere else.
And I'm just getting my business going.
Yeah, real estate, right? CHAD: Great time to buy.
Look, I'm getting some investors together Hey, look at this.
What's this? That's my watch.
These aren't your initials on this watch.
I got it used.
The band's broken.
That looks like that could be a speck of blood on the link.
What? You think it's the dead guy's? His initials weren't "B.
P.
" either.
In the Russian alphabet, a "B" is a "V" and a "P" is an "R.
" V.
R.
, Vladimir Rezanov.
You mind telling us how you happen to have the dead guy's watch? You're making that up.
Maybe we arrest you as an accomplice to the murder and figure it out later.
No.
I I didn't know.
Where did you get this? I found it in my father's car.
CUTTER: The black SUV that was registered to your stepmother? My dad drove it mostly.
I know he had it the night before.
I went to borrow it and it wasn't there.
The night before being the night that Vladimir Rezanov was murdered? Yeah, I guess.
And the next morning, when you found Mr.
Rezanov's watch, was the band broken like this? Yes.
And this spot that's been identified as the victim's blood, was that there, too? (STAMMERING) I don't know.
I was just cleaning up the car.
I was going to meet a girl.
I found it under the passenger seat.
I didn't know anything about any murder.
I just took it.
Thank you.
I'm sorry, Dad.
Madame forewoman, have you reached a verdict? We have, Your Honor.
JUDGE: On the single count of enterprise corruption, how do you find? FOREWOMAN: We find the defendant, Stanley Klein, guilty.
Pending sentencing, we request the current bail terms and home confinement be continued.
Your Honor, he now has every incentive to flee.
JUDGE: We've got his passport.
He keeps the bracelet on.
Bail is continued.
(GAVEL BANGS) One more? CONNIE: Hmm.
Connie, we lose too many close ones.
I learned a long time ago to celebrate my victories.
Your victory? (CELL PHONE RINGING) Our victory.
Another beer? Yeah.
Uh-oh.
You'd better make it to go.
GIBBON: We called as soon as we realized you had an interest in this guy Stanley Klein.
Apparently, he rented this place after he and his wife split up, but she was visiting.
Then her daughter came by to pick her up for dinner.
She got pretty upset.
EMS had to treat her.
This is what she found.
They gave her a shot.
She was still freaking out when I got here.
So you weren't with her when she found the bodies? She called me after she called 911.
I'm her next of kin.
We're the only kin each other's got now.
We're very sorry about your father.
You wanted him to go to jail.
To jail, not this.
Hey, you mind if we talk to Alicia alone? It's okay.
I'll be right over there.
(SIGHS) Can you tell us what happened? My mother wanted to talk to him.
To your stepfather? Do you know what time she came over here? I don't know.
She wanted me to meet her.
I saw him first, lying on the floor.
I thought he'd had a heart attack, and then I saw the blood.
Was anyone else around? Did you see anyone leave the building? And the door, it was locked? I don't know.
It was shut.
I had a key.
We're very sorry.
He was talking.
Who? Your stepfather? He said, "The Russians.
"It was the Russians.
" And then he stopped talking.
He stopped everything.
We been partners so far.
I thought you're going to give me a badge.
Mmm-mmm.
No badge.
See, we're thinking that you've been jerking us around from day one.
I been your number-one witness.
So be it again.
Help us find the Russians who killed Klein and his wife, and maybe we can get Connie to come in here and take your statement.
No, I don't know nothing.
Maybe it was you then.
Maybe you killed them.
Me? (LAUGHING) I don't even know Klein.
BERNARD: Who did? Hmm? If Rezanov wasn't the only Russian working Klein's scam after Klein got convicted, somebody wouldn't want him naming names.
Was he going to name your name, Al? We show your picture around the truck yard again, we gonna find out you were in on the deal? Maybe Rezanov made you a partner when he couldn't pay you back.
(MUTTERING IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE) What did you say about my momma? I said, "My mother told me never talk to the police.
" Yeah, okay.
It's not him.
OCID was sitting at a nightclub in Brighton Beach yesterday, (CHATTERING) And our friend there was visiting when the Kleins were murdered.
So maybe one of his friends.
BERNARD: Or maybe not.
How did the Russians get access to Klein's gun? Ballistics shows the gun that killed the Kleins was the same gun Klein used to kill Rezanov.
Well, unless Klein didn't kill Rezanov.
I mean, could we be wrong about that? Could this be all Russian on Russian? No.
Klein killed Rezanov.
Okay, so Klein's gun drifted off to where? Don't ask me.
No one ever found it.
We figured he was smart enough to throw it in the river.
You know, Klein's son, Chad, has a habit of picking things up.
CONNIE: Yeah, but you searched his apartment.
There was no gun, only Rezanov's watch.
Yeah, but he didn't know it was Rezanov's.
He didn't know he needed to hide it.
The gun, he would know he needed to hide.
Chad was with the girl at the crime scene when she told you Klein said the Russians did it, right? She didn't say anything about Russians to the first officers there.
Because she was so hysterical.
Or because it didn't happen.
Chad could have asked her to tell a story.
Well, the kid's a bum.
He's dropped out of four colleges, he's sponging off his dad and his stepmom.
You know, before we go down that road, talk to the M.
E.
Let's find out if the dead man could really have been talking.
LUPO: Well, we just want to know if it's possible.
You mean, like in a movie, where a guy gets shot and then gives a whole long speech before he dies? Yeah, like that.
Yes.
Yes? Yes.
Klein was shot in the torso.
A wound like that, if the bullet doesn't hit your heart or a major vessel, while you're bleeding out, you can talk for half an hour, give the world your parting thoughts, remind your wife to buy the buttermilk, whatever's on your mind.
(BOTH CHUCKLE) Thanks.
We need to know what he said exactly.
I told you, "The Russians.
It was the Russians.
" Only one time, or more than once? One time.
I don't know (SIGHING) Maybe two.
The thing is, Alicia, you didn't mention this at first.
I don't remember what I said.
I don't even remember dialing 911, but I did.
Did you discuss what your stepfather said with Chad when he got there? I might have.
(SIGHS) What does it matter? Were Chad and his father having problems? Chad had just testified against him.
That was probably a problem.
How about the other way around? How did Chad feel about his father? I don't know.
I don't see Chad that much.
I'm in school and he's (SIGHS) Wherever he is.
LUPO: "Vulture Investing.
"How to Profit from Real Estate Calamity.
" This yours? No.
It belongs to a friend.
Who? I'm not sure.
She has a friend interested in real estate.
Yeah.
Just can't remember who.
Let's see if one of her roommates can.
I've seen Chad there.
He comes to visit.
Alicia said that she didn't see him much.
Is that a fact? I'm not really sure.
This is a murder investigation, Sarah.
It's a crime to lie to us.
(SIGHS) It's just It's just so weird.
I didn't even know they were brother and sister at first.
Oh? At first what? Well, when they first started You know.
No.
Alicia told me it wasn't like they were raised together.
Their parents just got married a few years ago.
When Alicia was 14 and Chad was 20.
Oh, yuck.
Yeah.
So the two of them were pretty regular? Hot and heavy.
But they kept it quiet.
They didn't want their parents to know.
Alicia told me they were really mean and would, like, disinherit them or something.
LUPO: You ever kissed your sister like that? Not on camera.
She's not my sister.
All right, then why keep it a secret from mom and dad? Well, her mom thought Alicia was a little girl who needed protection from boys.
All boys.
Not from you in particular? No.
Not from me in particular.
She was 14 when you moved in together.
That's kind of a little girl.
We didn't move in together.
Our parents did.
Why are we talking about this? All right? Someone killed my father.
Yeah, with his own gun.
You didn't happen to pick that up while you were picking up Rezanov's watch or washing the car? I didn't know my father had a gun.
Did he find out about you and Alicia and threaten to cut you off? Tell Alicia's mother to cut her off? He did find out.
But he wasn't going to do anything.
Rezanov told him.
Rezanov? He saw me fooling around with Alicia at his car wash one day.
He told my dad, my dad didn't care.
Until Rezanov threatened to tell Alicia's mother about us.
My dad knew she'd freak out, and he didn't want anything to upset his marriage.
It was pretty profitable.
So we had Klein's motive wrong? He was worried about Rezanov telling his wife that their children were We knew We knew Rezanov was shaking Klein down.
We just never said exactly how.
Anyway, the kid could be lying.
It's a way for Chad to say he had no motive to kill his father.
But how would he even know all of that stuff? Well, if it is true, it gives Chad a motive to kill his stepmother.
She was the one with the money.
He was worried that she would cut Alicia off.
No, no, no.
We can't even get our own story straight.
Did he go there to kill his stepmother or to kill his father and she just happened to be wrong place, wrong time? WOMAN: Mr.
Cutter? CONNIE: But kill his father, why? Mr.
Klein didn't have money anymore.
He'd been convicted.
All his assets were seized.
CUTTER: Or not.
A motion from Klein's attorney to void all proceedings against his late client.
Abatement.
You see, Klein never had a chance to complete the appeals process, so the only fair thing is to throw out his indictment and conviction.
That's the argument.
We can fight it.
But the jury found him guilty.
Well, if this motion wins, that never happened.
And his money? He gets to keep it or his heirs do.
And that would be Chad, who's trying to get his real estate business off the ground.
I think we can get our story straight now.
FELDMAN: It's simple fairness.
Mr.
Klein had not exhausted the judicial process.
The New York precedents are clear.
His prosecution must be considered void ab initio, from the beginning.
In the cases cited, the convicted parties died after they'd filed appeals.
Mr.
Klein did not file an appeal.
He didn't have a chance to.
He was murdered.
Are you suggesting he might not have appealed? I don't know what Mr.
Klein would have done.
He might have accepted the jury's verdict.
He might have negotiated for a reduced sentence in exchange for some kind of cooperation.
He might have flown to the moon in a pink tutu.
He was going to appeal.
I was drawing up the papers.
It seems the only issue here is money that would otherwise have been forfeited.
Money that Mr.
Klein swindled.
It hardly seems just to let his heirs retain stolen loot.
Heirs who may be suspects in his murder.
JUDGE: That is another case entirely, Mr.
Cutter.
It is logical to assume that Mr.
Klein would have appealed this one, therefore the precedents are binding.
His indictment and conviction are void.
(GAVEL BANGS) Thank you, Your Honor.
They get away with murder and inherit $2 million.
The American dream.
You think she was in on it with him from the beginning? I'd guess no.
But when she was the one that discovered the bodies, he figured, hey, why not get some insurance and fed her the story about the Russians.
CUTTER: All we've got to do now is get her to tell it.
It's always about money with this family.
Let's go take a look at their parents' wills.
I don't want to talk to you.
CUTTER: Well, you don't have to.
We just think there's something you should know about this house.
What? This house was your mother's, right, before she married Mr.
Klein? I grew up here.
So it's mine now, unless I sell it.
I might want to travel for a while.
Well, you'll be flying coach.
You mother didn't leave this house to you, Alicia.
She left it to Stan Klein.
She wouldn't do that.
He was a con man, remember? He got your mother to change her will.
It doesn't matter.
He's dead.
I'm still her heir.
Well, you would have been, but she died first.
What? When you found them, he was talking and she wasn't.
That stuff about the Russians.
That's what you said, right? Yeah.
So, by your testimony, he was still alive.
It's fair to assume that he lived longer than she did.
Only a few minutes.
Long enough.
When she died, he inherited everything, including this house.
And when he died a few minutes later, it all passed to his heir.
Chad? Are you sure your stepfather was talking when you got to the scene? Yes.
It doesn't matter anyway.
I love Chad and he loves me.
So everything is for both of us no matter what.
CONNIE: She's on the edge.
So let's give her a push.
This goes to Surrogate's Court for probate now.
What kind of standing do we have to get involved over there? Not much.
Good enough.
I must say I'm not accustomed to having district attorneys join our sessions.
This is not a normal session, Your Honor.
We believe that one of the potential legatees here should be barred from inheriting, since he murdered the deceased.
That's an outrageous accusation.
Mr.
Klein hasn't been convicted of anything or even charged.
That does seem to be a matter for the criminal courts, Mr.
Cutter.
We do wills here.
That includes deciding who is entitled to inherit.
I just want to ask a few questions at a fact-finding hearing.
This is a back-door attempt to revive a meritless criminal investigation.
But it does go to an inheritance issue.
Mr.
Klein can plead the Fifth if he wants.
I won't hold it against him.
And, Miss Carson, you'd better get your own attorney.
Just to keep things kosher.
Congratulations.
Now what? The M.
E.
's final report hasn't come out yet, has it? I don't think so.
Let's see if there's an early draft.
CUTTER: Mr.
Klein, did you kill your father? No.
Did you kill your stepmother? No.
I was home that night, reading, until I got the call from Alicia.
Alicia, that's your stepsister and your lover? Yes.
How did your father react when he found out that you and your stepsister were intimate? He didn't care.
We were all grown up.
Your Honor, where is this going? He's apparently not going to confess to a double homicide, Mr.
Cutter.
Do you have anything else to ask? I do.
Now, before you dropped out of college for the last time, did you take a course called Introduction to Criminal Law? Yeah.
I thought it might be fun to be a lawyer.
Is this the course syllabus? It looks like it.
Do you see where it covers abatement? That's the doctrine under which your father's murder will allow you to inherit a fortune that would otherwise have been seized by the state.
That was week 12.
I'd stopped going to class by then.
I was wrong about the law.
It was boring.
(SCOFFS) No.
Chad didn't tell me to lie about anything.
My stepfather said what I said he said.
And you never thought to mention that to anyone until after you'd talked to Chad? I was out of my mind that night.
You were communicating.
You called 911.
You called Chad.
I had just seen my mother's dead body.
So it's even more appalling that you would lie Your Honor, my client has answered the question.
I'm going to stop this, Mr.
Cutter.
You have the police department at your disposal if you want to pursue it, but nothing I've heard here bars either of these people from inheriting.
The only issue left to determine is who died first, Mr.
Klein or Mrs.
Klein.
MILLS: I believe that's been established by this witness's testimony.
While Mr.
Klein was still talking, Mrs.
Klein was already unconscious, probably dead.
KARR: Not necessarily.
I've seen a draft copy of the Medical Examiner's report.
Just because Mrs.
Klein was unconscious doesn't mean she was dead.
An autopsy found more blood in her chest cavity than was found in Mr.
Klein's, which means she bled longer before she died, which indicates she died after he did.
In fact, Mr.
Klein's talking may have hastened his death.
We'll all need to see that report.
It's on its way, Your Honor.
KARR: It's pretty clear Miss Carson inherits the entire estate.
(WHISPERING) MILLS: That will have to be litigated.
Medical evidence of this type is subject to varying interpretations.
What does that mean? We have to sue each other? If I may suggest, that kind of litigation can be very painful.
The parties could compromise.
Just split everything 50-50, the house and the money.
That's good on our end.
(WHISPERING) We don't agree to that.
Chad? MILLS: Mr.
Klein wants what's rightfully his.
But Chad.
Don't worry, Alicia.
We're going to share everything.
It's just simpler this way.
You're going to fight me in court for my mother's house? Chad? That is his right.
And he has a good case, thanks to your testimony.
Look, we're going to be together, sweetie, okay? That's all that matters.
No.
Sweetie He asked me to lie.
He said otherwise that the police would suspect him.
I didn't understand it, but I did it.
She's confused.
That night was crazy.
You just wanted the money.
That's all you ever wanted.
What lie did he ask you to tell, Alicia? That Stan was talking.
That he said the Russians did it.
Stan didn't say anything.
He was dead.
They were both dead.
You killed them.
Didn't you? Didn't you? Don't worry, pal.
You have the right to remain silent.
I hope you rot! I hope you rot! (SOBBING) This is the draft report that was leaked to the girl's attorney? CUTTER: Apparently.
My name's not even spelled right.
I have a "D" in "Rodgers.
" So I guess it didn't come from you.
You forged one of my reports.
No.
A report by someone named "Rogers" without a "D.
" It never went into evidence.
I wouldn't have let it.
(KNOCKING ON DOOR) Hey, McCoy just got back from Washington for his campaign kickoff.
His secretary baked a cake.
Now? Yeah, he's on his way up.
Does he know about this? He has so much on his mind.
What happened to Chad Klein? We gave him a chance to show his greed and it did him in.
His girlfriend's testimony puts him away for two murders.
Don't do it again.
Unless we have to.
Right.
Cake? In a minute.
MAN 1: Welcome back, Mr.
McCoy! WOMAN: Welcome back! MAN 2: Good to see you.
Congratulations! (PEOPLE CHEERING) (PEOPLE CLAPPING) (PEOPLE SINGING HAPPY TUNE)