Law & Order (1990–2010): Season 20, Episode 12 - Law & Order - full transcript

The death of a journalist who worked for a celebrity gossip website leads detectives to her publisher, who sought to use information she gathered for a story to blackmail a well-known talk show host.

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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 would be a totally
anonymous source.

You know what?

I just don't really see the
point in talking about it.

I wouldn't have
to use your name.

Yeah, but how hard
would it be to figure out?

Look, I have a new job.



I'm not widely
considered a slut.

Things are just fine
the way they are.

It's not right. You know it.

And it keeps happening
over and over again.

Let me think about it.

I'll let you know.

Developer ran out of money.

One day he's selling the greatest
new project since Rockefeller Center,

the next he's
selling the fixtures.

When did construction end?

Maybe six months ago.

Security's half-assed.

Junkies, homeless,
who called it in?

9-1-1 call, from a pay phone.



The caller forgot
to leave his name.

Yeah, he was
probably scavenging,

pulled back this sheet of metal.

And voilà.

Bruises on her neck. No blood.

Anybody find a purse?

No. No cell phone. No ID.

Hey, you think
maybe a working girl?

She brought a John up here?

Her clothes are clean. No
track marks on her arms.

No chips in her manicure.

She could have been here
forever before somebody found her.

I think that was the plan.

Well, she's fresh. Died
sometime last night.

Cause of death is
definitely strangulation.

The bruises look hand-shaped.

I'll put her in the fridge and
see if I can get more definition.

Any signs of sexual assault?

There's no vaginal tearing
and there's no semen in her,

so she hadn't had sex within
72 hours or she used a condom.

But I did find this.

A pubic hair from her upper
inner thigh, and it isn't hers.

Wrong color?

No, wrong gender.

Find the penis it belongs
to and you'll have a lead.

We'll get right on that.

Lieutenant, we got a hit.

What would you think M-R-S
stands for on a hospital bill?

What?

M-R-S on a hospital bill.

"Mrs."?

It costs $89 and it's not
covered by insurance.

Well, then it's
definitely not "Mrs."

"Mucous Recovery System."

A box of tissues.

All right, one second.

These... These I fight.

These I got 30 days.

Okay. All right, you
have something?

Yes.

Our Jane Doe's
name is Megan Kerik.

Her fingerprints matched a
set in the Pentagon's database.

She was a soldier?

No, a freelance journalist

who accompanied a
USO troupe to Afghanistan.

The Pentagon, they
take their prints and DNA

in case they get
blown up by an IED.

It's thoughtful.

They also list next of kin.

I just got off the phone with
Ms. Kerik's sister in San Diego.

They weren't very close, but
she said Megan wasn't married,

she'd never heard
of any boyfriend,

and our victim spent
most of her time

Is that what it sounds like?

Digs up dirt on
celebrities and others.

The more embarrassing,
the more they like it.

You'd better find out who Ms.
Kerik had been embarrassing lately.

Megan Kerik? She's
been murdered?

We were hoping
you could help us out.

Has this been
reported anywhere yet?

You're looking for a scoop?

It depends what
she was working on.

Derek? Yeah.

What was Megan Kerik working on?

I don't know.

Just that thing about the
big environmental movie star

who sent her cocker
spaniel to Paris. Why?

These are police.
Megan's been killed.

Has it been reported
anywhere yet?

It doesn't matter.

Megan wasn't working on anything
for us that could get her killed,

if that's what you're asking.

You figure the cocker
spaniel's in the clear, then?

That's...

How well did you know Ms. Kerik?

She's a freelance
contributor. We have hundreds.

Did she have a desk?
We'd like to take a look.

No, as far as I know,
she worked from home.

Shopping list.

Yogurt, coffee, ink
cartridges, cupcakes...

Yeah, a freelancer's diet.

This place is neat and tidy.

If she was killed here, she
didn't put up much of a fight.

Ink cartridges would be for this
printer here. You see a computer?

Nope.

Somebody took it.

This file drawer's unlocked.

There's a big gap inside.

The killer took her purse.

He had her keys.

She was working on
something, or he thought she was.

What?

Look, it's Sara.

I'm sorry, but I really
don't want to talk about this.

I think you should
just forget the story.

It's just going to upset a
lot of people for no reason.

What did Megan
want from you exactly?

I only met her that one time.

She emailed me out of the blue

and said she wanted to
interview me for a story.

A story about what?

People who sleep
with their bosses.

Which I did.

And didn't want to talk about?

I have a boyfriend.
I have parents.

I have a new boss. I...

I really didn't need
for them to know.

Yeah, but Megan was
gonna do the story anyway.

I don't know. I never
talked to her again.

If you'd never met her before,

how did she know
about your history?

She said that she
talked to a woman

who used to work
where I used to work,

and had the same
position before I did.

That would be your
position with the boss?

No one lasted more
than a few months.

Sara, we're going to
need to talk to this guy.

Ah. That's just the thing.

It's not a he.

What?

Well, maybe that's what you'd
advise a teenage daughter, Bella.

Remind me never to
send my kid to talk to you.

But seriously,

I think we can all agree
that communication

with our children is...

Vanessa Carville?

Megan Kerik wasn't
writing an article

about women sleeping
with their bosses.

She was writing about women

who were sleeping
with Vanessa Carville.

That may have included Megan.

It turns out that before
she reduced herself

to digging up
gossip for CitySmear,

she was a production
associate on The Sisters.

I love this show.

It's a great way of turning
off your brain for an hour.

Would you love it as much
if you knew Vanessa Carville

was plowing through
her female employees?

She's married. She has a family.

If she caught wind what
Megan was writing about...

Go see her.

You know, if it were
for anything else,

I'd ask you to get me tickets to
the show. And one more thing...

You know, I don't know what kind

of downtown look
you guys are going for

with the stubble and
all, but it's not working.

For downtown or for you?

Both.

Have you looked in a
mirror lately, Detective?

You're not in Karachi anymore.

All right?

Okay.

Of the trust that
people have in you,

and you know, in the end,

it always comes down to trust.

Am I right, ladies? WOMAN: Yeah.

Who's with me? Can
I get a what, what?

You ever watch her show?

Sure, when I'm not
knitting booties for my cat.

There she is.

You think one of those
guys is her husband?

Yeah, this could be awkward.

Well, that's why we
get paid the big bucks.

This costs. I swear, I
have to set someone...

Ms. Carville? Yes?

Mr. McCoy?

Detectives.

You must be mind readers.

I was just going to call 1PP.

You may know Vanessa
Carville, by reputation anyway.

She just came to me with
her attorney to report a crime.

She's being blackmailed.

I leave for the studio early.

I like to read the papers
before anyone else gets there.

So, it was about 6:00 a.m.

I came out of my house
and nearly tripped over it.

"Personal and confidential."

I'd say that was
an understatement.

Did you see who left it?

No. My driver
pulled up just then.

I had brought it into the back
seat with me and took a look.

What I saw, let's just say I didn't
need a second cup of coffee.

Emails, diary entries, photos,

messages, you
with various women.

Are they authentic?

Does that matter?

It probably does.

They're real. But I'd
rather deal with it, all of it,

than pay $3 million
to some blackmailer.

The cover letter
asks for $3 million,

or this will all be
published in a book.

Ms. Carville is supposed to stand by
at home for a phone call today at noon,

to arrange payment.

A lot of this concerns a
woman named Megan Kerik.

I'm aware. Things with
Megan ended rather awkwardly.

It's occurred to me this might be
some sort of attempt at revenge.

Megan Kerik was
murdered two nights ago.

Oh, God.

And before she died, she
was interviewing women

for a proposed
article about this.

So I'm a suspect?

Vanessa... I have to be.

Did you know she was
working on that article?

No. I... I hadn't talked
to Megan in over a year.

This is awful. Just
worse and worse.

So, what do we do now?

It can't be a coincidence
that the blackmail

comes at the same
time as the murder.

We play along
with the blackmailer,

if you're up to it. Are you?

Well, I've got to
get to the studio.

But I'll be home before noon.

Well, I'd like to get my
people in before that.

I'll arrange for it.

Jack, thank you.

What do you think?

Well, if she killed Megan
Kerik to keep her quiet,

coming forward with a
bogus blackmail story

would be a pretty smart
way to throw us off.

I find that hard to believe.

But just in case...

This blackmailer, whoever he is,

is probably the murderer, right?

That's possible.

Half the stuff in that
envelope came from Megan,

the rest could have
been stuff she gathered,

so he got it from her,
maybe she tried to back out.

That's a theory.

And the other
theory is that I did it?

That's a theory.

No more sandwiches for you.

It's nearly 1:00. He said
he was gonna call by noon.

Has that bastard
called yet? Not yet.

Why not?

I mean, what's he waiting for?

You don't need to be here,
Wayne. They're handling it.

I don't know.

My wife's affairs with
other women, $3 million.

It's a little more interesting

than anything happening
in the office today.

I'm heading for the studio.

You can stay if you
want to. All of you.

Just us guys.

He never called.

Did he know you were there?

Maybe he was watching the house.

Well, we were careful.
There's a service entrance.

So he's leaving $3
million on the table?

Maybe he's reformed.

Or Vanessa Carville
made the whole thing up.

She didn't make this up.

"I see you behind the monitor
and all I can think about

"is licking the sweat
rolling towards your nipple."

A message from
Carville to Megan Kerik.

Have you seen the stuff
in this blackmail package?

I'd have paid the 3 million.

Here's one from Megan's diary...

"I was nervous at first, but
we split one of her Vicodins

"and a bottle of
wine and then bliss."

Hey, Lupes, look at this.

What do you see?

That picture. BERNARD: Mmm-hmm.

It's in Sara
Bradley's apartment.

Yeah, the girl who said
she didn't cooperate

with Megan Kerik's research.

So how did that picture end
up in the blackmail surprise?

Yeah, I took that.

But I never gave it to Megan.

I never gave Megan
anything. I told you.

Well, then how did she get it?

I don't know. What
does it matter?

Did you give it to anybody else?

No. Like who?

The person who got it might be
the person who murdered Megan.

If you have any involvement
with him, you should tell us now.

What, like I'm an accomplice?

That is ridiculous.

I never gave Megan anything.
I never gave anyone anything.

And I definitely...

My hard drive.

Your hard drive?

I kept some old photos
on a backup hard drive.

A couple of weeks ago my
apartment was broken into

and that was one of the
things that was stolen.

Did you file a police report?

Yeah.

Is that why somebody broke into
my apartment, just to get that picture?

Lupo.

All right. We'll set it up.

Carville got the
call. It's a go.

Excuse us.

I got her. BERNARD
OVER EARPIECE: Gotcha.

Ms. Carville, can you hear us?

Yeah, loud and clear.

I haven't been this nervous
since I interviewed Dick Cheney.

You're doing great.

Take a seat on the
bench right there.

He's late again.

I've got a visual on a male in a
black overcoat, 40 feet and closing.

I got him.

Oh, God.

Okay, stop talking to us now.

It's Di Palma, Megan's editor.

Yeah, the one who said he had
no idea what she was working on.

Well, I guess he lied.

Did you bring the check?

Who are you?

Did you bring it or not?

Why are you doing this?

What the hell is she doing?

I'm not the one paying
to keep dirty secrets.

Conducting an interview.

When do I get the originals
of the things in that envelope?

As soon as I know
your check is good.

Oh, and I'm
supposed to trust you?

Vanessa.

You have no choice. Now,
you have about 10 seconds.

Just give him the damn check.

You should be
ashamed of yourself.

He's got it.

Hey, remember me? Turn around.

Let's go.

My client has nothing to say.

Your client just got
caught red-handed

committing larceny by extortion.

He needs to help
himself out here.

It was a simple
misunderstanding.

Yeah. For Megan Kerik it was.

She brought you her
big story, didn't she?

She wanted you to publish it,

but you had a better idea.

A way of making some real
money. Then what happened?

She disagreed?

I had nothing to do with
what happened to Megan.

Dennis, don't say anything.

No more questions.
Should I try that in French?

Just one more.
Does your client want

to give us a key
to his apartment,

or would he prefer we
take the door off its hinges?

Search warrant is on its way.

What did the police find?

Enough to nail Di Palma on
the blackmail ten times over.

Megan Kerik's
notebooks and diaries,

the originals of all
the blackmail material.

The stolen computer hard drive.

How about for the
murder of Megan Kerik?

The pubic hair found
under Di Palma's sheets

matches the hair
found on her body.

So they were lovers. And?

It seems pretty
obvious what happened.

Megan felt burned by her
relationship with Carville.

She was expecting
a promotion, at least,

but instead got dumped

for the next flavor of the
month and then laid off.

It's all in her diaries.
She wanted to get even.

And Di Palma
hijacked her article

and turned it into blackmail.

Can you prove that?

That wasn't in her diary.

So what have you
got on the murder?

Enough to nail Di Palma on
the blackmail ten times over.

It's better than nothing.

And could be a lever to shake
something loose. Move on it.

"Case 34321 People
v. Dennis Di Palma

"attempted Grand
Larceny in the First Degree."

The defendant enters
a plea of not guilty.

People request
remand, Your Honor.

In addition to the crime
he's charged with here today,

Mr. Di Palma is the key
suspect in a related homicide.

Says who? Based on what?

That's completely irrelevant

to the issue of
bail on this charge.

This is the attempted extortion

of that television
personality...

for $3 million? Is that correct?

That's the charge, but
Mr. Di Palma is innocent.

You mentioned that.

Meanwhile, for bail, why
don't we pick a number

that is relevant to this case?

$3 million?

In this case, so far, we've
only heard one side of the story,

Ms. Carville's side.

Which the police and District
Attorney have swallowed whole.

But this case isn't just
about the motive, intent,

and conduct of Dennis Di Palma.

It's also about the motive, intent
and conduct of Vanessa Carville.

Mr. Di Palma looks forward
to telling the full story in court,

and, if in defending
his reputation,

other people's are damaged,

well, that's just the
way it's got to be.

I for one have a few
questions for Ms. Carville.

Actually, more than a few.

Now the real blackmail begins.

It's only fair, Your Honor.

Mr. Di Palma has the right
to get his side of the story out.

This is rather a long list
of material you're seeking.

All of which is likely to lead

to credible and relevant
evidence for the defense.

Ms. Carville's tax returns
for the past 10 years?

To see if she's taken
any business deductions

for the purchase of
embarrassing material.

Oh, you think she itemized
previous blackmail attempts?

I want to know if she's
bought any material

similar to that offered
her by Mr. Di Palma.

He wasn't selling her a book.

He was committing
larceny by extortion.

Actually, he was
conducting a journalistic sting.

Mr. Di Palma was going
to publish an exposé

of Ms. Carville's
behavior on his website.

Well, then why didn't he?

Why demand $3 million
check not to publish it?

He was never going
to cash that check.

He was going to post a
photo of it on his website

as proof that she
had something to hide.

We are straying into
absolute fantasy here.

Really? What kind of blackmailer
asks for payment by check?

A dumb one.

This isn't an intelligence test.

This is a criminal proceeding.

And these defense subpoenas
are onerous, unreasonable,

and designed merely to harass
the victim of the crime. I mean...

"Full personnel files"
of more than 200

of Ms. Carville's employees,

going back to 1992?

Have any complained
of sexual harassment?

Have any been
granted special treatment

in exchange for sexual favors?

Your requests are
extraordinary, Mr. Baron,

but I will see
the briefs on this.

The judge is going to allow it?

No. She just hasn't decided yet.

I can't imagine she'll give
him everything he's asking for.

But some of what
he's asking for?

We're using all
of our resources.

The law is on our side.

I just had a candid talk with my
audience about this whole situation.

I hoped I would never
have to say anything else.

Well, you will have to
be a witness at the trial.

I guess I knew
that. I just didn't...

Things are a little tense
right now on the home front.

My husband, or his attorney,

may end up
sitting at that trial,

taking notes if we end up
fighting about child custody.

The things that could come out.

I promise you, we'll fight

to keep the trial as
narrowly focused as we can.

The other guy's the criminal.

Why are we doing
all the fighting?

Child custody?

She's probably wishing
she paid the 3 million.

Baron's playing a game.
Nothing he's asking for is relevant.

Well, that judge might disagree.

We'll handle it.

Meanwhile, let's
shoot down the claim

that Di Palma was practicing
journalism, not blackmail.

That check he was
supposedly never going to cash.

Yeah, made out, at his request,

to something called
Feature Literistics.

And what the hell is that?

I'm a little busy.

The owner made me Acting
Editor until this business

with Dennis gets sorted out.

Well, by the looks of things,

you may be acting for
the next eight-to-ten.

Oh, no, thank you.

I'm getting a little tired of
sorting through celebrity trash.

I might be going back to school,
though, maybe architecture.

I just need to know,
have you ever heard

of something called
Feature Literistics?

Feature Literistics?

Sounds like a
literary enterprise

named by someone who can't read.

Was Di Palma involved
with anything with that name?

A publishing house? A magazine?

Anything with a bank account.

I've got to tell you, I think
you're on the wrong trail here.

Dennis was never
hard up for money.

He has a nice apartment,
nice car, takes nice vacations.

Vacations where?

The Cayman Islands.

An offshore bank account.

Opened one month ago in
the name of Feature Literistics,

a corporation registered to
a Bahamas post office box.

Mr. Di Palma went to a lot of trouble
to create an untraceable account

to deposit a check that
he was never going to cash.

Yeah, he was definitely more
interested in the $3 million

than the Pulitzer Prize.

But there's more.

He opened the account in person

during a three-day stay at a
beach resort, with Megan Kerik.

A little more pubic hair
transferring going on?

Apparently.

Either they were doing the blackmail
together, and had a falling out.

Or she really was
working on an article,

he found out about it,

decided to go the
blackmail route instead,

she didn't want to go
along, and he kills her.

Or his accomplice did.

What accomplice?

The weekend they
were in the Caribbean

it was the same weekend Sara
Bradley's apartment was broken into,

and her hard drive with
the compromising photos

showed up in Di
Palma's apartment.

The police assumed
that he had stolen it.

We all did.

My accomplice to
what? I didn't do anything.

Mr. Di Palma, you may
have an opportunity here.

I don't know what
they're talking about.

So let them explain.

As you know, we're taking this
blackmail charge very seriously.

But murder is always
a higher priority.

Murder, again?

You know, and I know, you
don't have a shred of evidence

against Mr. Di Palma.

If another person was involved,

and Mr. Di Palma can
help us find that person,

then there's always the
possibility of a plea negotiation.

Sara Bradley's computer hard
drive was found in your apartment

after it was stolen from hers.

How did it come
into your possession?

That was research, for
my exposé. I got it myself.

You're confessing to burglary?

He's not confessing to anything.

Well, he's covering
for somebody. Why?

Well, I guess we don't
have anything else to say.

Except...

I've been reviewing the briefs
in this matter with interest.

But I see no basis for the defense
to get Ms. Carville's tax records.

And the request to see the notes

of her marriage
counseling sessions

is out of bounds for about
five different reasons.

The personnel files of
Ms. Carville's employees

are likewise privileged
and confidential.

They're also relevant
and material on their face.

This case is about Ms. Carville's
relationships with her employees.

Actually, it's about your client's
attempt to commit blackmail.

If you lost your copy
of the indictment,

you can take a look at mine.

The material Mr. Di
Palma compiled

came largely from a
woman named Megan Kerik.

Whom we suspect
Mr. Di Palma of murdering.

I didn't see any mention of that

in the indictment, either.

Ms. Kerik had conducted research

amongst Ms. Carville's
former employees,

several of whom are not named.

We need to find these
women to ask them

what Ms. Kerik told
them about her project.

These women do not want to
be dragged into the limelight.

If they can shed
exculpatory light

on Ms. Kerik's and
Mr. Di Palma's intentions,

that's not their choice.

My client has the right
to compel their testimony.

That's the one point of your
argument I'll grant, Mr. Baron.

But you need to draft your subpoena
more narrowly to include the files

only of those women who
might have been candidates

for Ms. Kerik's research.

Very good, Your
Honor. Thank you.

Former lovers on parade.

I wonder how Vanessa Carville
is going to feel about that.

I'll go talk to her.

How did it go?

See for yourself.

Well, I don't know
about the rest of you,

but I've been having
a pretty lousy week.

Yeah. Thank you.

As I mentioned before, I've done
some pretty kinky things in my life.

I mean, was anybody
really surprised?

But now, owing to the wondrous
nature of our legal system,

the man accused of
blackmailing me about those things

has been granted the right

to drag a whole lot
of wonderful people

who've worked for
me through the mud.

Yeah, I know. She's good.

I know. It's true,

and on some level
that's fair, I guess,

but I think it stinks.

And as much as I would
like to see justice done,

I wouldn't be able to
live with myself if I thought

so many good people,
so many good friends,

many of whom I've already hurt

would have their reputations
and lives messed up.

So I feel I have no choice.

I'm going to abandon my
complaint against this man,

even if it means a
blackmailer goes free.

Not to mention a murderer.

Right.

The defense motion
to dismiss is premature.

Our evidence hasn't disappeared.

Your complaining
witness has, Mr. Cutter.

I do read the papers.

The trial hasn't even begun.

It's a little early to say that
she's not going to show up.

She just told 10 million
people she wouldn't.

Yes, and that made
good television, didn't it?

We are continuing communication

with the victim of this crime.

And good luck to you.

I won't dismiss for now,

but I'm releasing Mr. Di
Palma on his own recognizance.

There doesn't seem much
point to keep him in jail

waiting for a trial that
may never happen.

Oh, that's great. Now he and his
accomplice can go out for a beer

and have a big laugh
about this whole thing.

You know what?

That might not be a bad idea.

Have you seen
what's on the internet?

It says here Dennis Di Palma
just got half a million dollars.

To write a book about
Vanessa Carville.

His lawyer always said it
was a journalistic project.

He's only 2.5 million short.

So far. There's still paperback,

first serial, movie rights...

This could be as profitable

as what he tried with Carville.

Publishing that
material is perfectly legal,

while threatening to
publish it is a felony.

That doesn't seem to make
sense, yet, somehow, it does.

Because it's coercion.

Glad to know we
prosecute it for a reason.

Yeah.

Feel good to be back?

What do you think?

I hear congratulations
are in order.

Yeah, I graduated top
of my class at Rikers.

I just read about
your book deal.

I'm surprised you didn't call
me to share the good news.

No one's called me. It's
just publishing gossip.

Half a million
dollars. I want 250.

There is no money.
It's just a rumor.

Really? Are you
hiding it in the Caymans

like you were going to hide
the money from Carville?

There's nothing to hide.
I'm telling you. I swear.

Are you sure that's
the way you want to be?

It worked, the phony
book deal story.

I thought it might give Di Palma

and his friend
something to talk about.

Do the police know
who the caller is?

Yeah, Derek Fanning. Works
on the website. I met him.

He told me he was thinking
about going to architecture school.

Guess he's raising
tuition money.

Well, there were two
calls made after this one.

Fanning kept asking for money.

Di Palma kept saying
there wasn't any.

Fanning kept calling him a liar.

Hello?

We'll be right over. Thanks.

That was Lieutenant Van Buren.

The police just found
Megan Kerik's missing laptop.

It was dropped off in the
lobby of Megan's building

with a note saying
that it had been found

abandoned in a coffee shop.

Megan's address was
on a sticker on the bottom.

That was very nice of
some Good Samaritan.

Oh, you have no idea.

Wait until you see the
video we found on it.

Play it.

A video of Di Palma
murdering Megan Kerik?

Or having rough sex.

She didn't die. Not on camera.

Is there a date on that?

The day of the murder.

But it's not hard to
fudge the time stamp

if you know what you're doing.

This Good Samaritan,
do we know who it was?

The note was
unsigned and no prints.

If we arrest Di Palma for murder
based on this, there's a provenance issue.

That's the least of it.
You see his right hand?

That ring would leave marks.

The M.E. didn't find any matching
marks on the victim's neck.

She was still alive. He took
the ring off before he killed her.

If he's the one who did.

There's a reflection
in the alarm clock.

Someone else was in the room.

Okay, so, on its face,

this is evidence that
Di Palma is a murderer.

But it miraculously shows up
right after Di Palma's accomplice

demands a quarter
of a million dollars

and Di Palma tells
him he can't pay.

The blackmailer was
being blackmailed.

So what's new? It's no
secret my client was dating her.

Dating? That's what you call it?

If you thought that made
my client a murderer,

then he'd already
be under arrest.

Well, we haven't
given up the thought.

I hope you brought
your toothbrush.

Something's wrong
with this video,

and you know it, or
we wouldn't be here.

Well, we'd like to hear what
Mr. Di Palma has to say about it.

About everything,

or this becomes People's Exhibit
Number One at his murder trial

and we can discuss what's
wrong or right about it there.

He made me do it.

Who made you do what?

Derek Fanning.

He showed up while I
was with Megan with a gun.

Where was he standing?

On the side of the bed.

You knew someone was there.
You knew this video is fishy.

What exactly did
Mr. Fanning make you do?

Pretend to strangle Megan.

He... He said he would
shoot me. He was crazy.

Why did he do that?

When Megan came to
me about Vanessa Carville,

I thought it was a great story.

I asked Derek to
help with the research.

And he broke into Sara Bradley's
apartment when she wouldn't cooperate?

He said we shouldn't
publish the story,

that we could make a
lot of money. I went along.

I dropped the stuff
at Carville's door.

That night Megan figured
out what we were doing.

She said she'd call Carville,

she said she'd
call the police, so...

Derek made me do that.

When I left, Megan was alive.

Derek called me later and
said that he'd taken care of her,

and it was safe to go
through with the blackmail now.

I... I freaked. I didn't call
Carville like I was supposed to.

Derek said that if I
didn't get back into it,

he would send that
video to the police. So...

I did what he said.

I think that's the craziest
story I ever heard.

So it's got to be true, right?

"Case 35924, People
v. Derek Fanning.

"Murder in the Second Degree."

How do you plead? Not guilty.

This is related to that
blackmail case, Ms. Rubirosa?

Yes, the defendant is accused

of murdering the source
of the blackmail information

when she threatened
to call the police.

The People's main witness is
the former blackmail defendant.

He's hardly credible.

We believe he is.

He was as shocked as anyone

by the brutal and coldblooded
nature of this murder.

His credibility's an issue for
a jury, not a hearing on bail,

which I'll set at $3 million.

Why break precedent?

Our analysis of that video
will lend us some support.

We also found Derek
Fanning's gun and fingerprints

on Sara Bradley's hard drive
and in Megan's apartment.

But a jury's still going
to be skeptical about you.

We'll have to work to convince
them to trust your testimony.

We can save you the effort.

Mr. Di Palma has
decided not to appear.

Excuse me?

He's decided it's not in
his best interest to testify.

We can still prosecute
him for the murder instead.

I think that ship has sailed.

Ms. Rubirosa
already told the judge

that Mr. Fanning is the killer.

It would be pretty easy to raise
reasonable doubt if you try Mr. Di Palma.

What is it, huh?

You afraid that Fanning will be
acquitted and come after you?

Is he holding something
else over your head?

I just don't think
that publicly swearing

I was involved in
blackmail and murder

is the best possible
career move.

Plus I could get sued, the
Feds could come after me.

I don't see any upside.

We can give you immunity
and then subpoena you.

If you choose not to testify,

we can charge you with contempt.

Contempt I can handle.

Well, don't worry.
You already have ours.

So, blackmail and a brutal
murder, and everybody walks.

Maybe we should go into
another line of work. Dry cleaning?

We could charge them
together for both crimes.

And they'll both stay silent,

and you'll be pushing
two rocks up two hills.

What about your
blackmail victim?

Is she still on the sidelines?

Resolutely.

There's something in
those personnel files

she doesn't want the
world or her husband to see.

This blackmail
thing, it really works.

Maybe we should try it.

Jack, I'm sorry it
had to be this way.

I know you went the
extra mile on my behalf.

I just couldn't
let it go to trial.

I know, Vanessa. That's what
I wanted to talk to you about.

Oh, this is a surprise.

What is this, some
kind of shock therapy

to make me change my mind?

We'd like you to remember how
you felt when you got that package,

when you saw him, in the
park, demanding $3 million.

What are we doing here?
Playing a memory game?

I remember. It was awful.

But I can't let innocent friends

get hurt by him and him
in some public spectacle.

I understand,
Vanessa. So I'm sorry.

About what?

We're charging you with criminal
sale of a controlled substance

in the fifth degree.
It's a Class D felony.

What?

From Megan Kerik's diary

"I was nervous at first, but
we split one of her Vicodins

"and a bottle of
wine and then bliss."

Half a Vicodin? I gave
it to her. I didn't sell it.

It doesn't matter.

Legally, to sell means to
sell, exchange, or to give.

The law still applies
and so does the penalty.

You can't possibly be serious.

I'm sure the charge won't
do you much good in a divorce

or a fight over child custody.

You sons of bitches.

You're no better than he is.

So, you'll testify?

Sure. I can't wait.

Wait a minute. Can
she still do that?

Yes. The case hasn't
been dismissed.

But I don't think she ever will.

That's not the plan, is it?

Well, now that we have
Ms. Carville's cooperation,

Mr. Di Palma is looking at 10
years in prison for blackmail.

But if he changes his mind

about testifying
against Mr. Fanning,

you might let that slide.

We could probably
work something out.

He nails Fanning for the
murder, then takes a plea.

He does two years.

You screwed with
me to screw with him.

Bank shot.

You're still a son of a bitch.

We have a deal?

Deal.

A blackmail daisy chain. They
definitely didn't teach that in law school.

Turnabout. It was only fair.

So that's the new game
plan? We do what they do?

Next time we try a
murderer, we'll kill somebody.

I don't know. We'll
have to ask the boss.