Law & Order (1990–2010): Season 5, Episode 4 - Law & Order - full transcript

Detectives Briscoe and Logan investigate the disappearance of Laura Madsen, a successful editor at a book publishing firm. Her car is found parked near a bridge with her shoes and other effects on the front seat. Her body is eventually found in the river and the medical examiner concludes that she was dead before she hit the water. The police initially suspect her ex-husband, Victor Connor, who of course denies having anything to do with her death. He has an alibi for the time she disappeared however. When they learn that her new husband Steve Martell is something of a philanderer he becomes their new prime suspect. Laura's 17 year-old daughter Maggie gives her stepfather an alibi and tells the police they were having an affair. He denies having the affair with his stepdaughter and determining just which of the two is telling the truth is is ADA McCoy's major challenge.

Are you wondering how healthy the food you are eating is? Check it -
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.

GAYDOS: That's the motor for the
wipers, Einstein. Check that one there.

DWYER: Here, this has
got to be it. Give me the knife.

What are you talking
about? This is the starter.

So cut the wire here.


This your car?

No. We just stopped to
help. I think it's a bad plug.

So where's the
owner of this boat?

We don't know. It
was just sitting there.

Of course it was. Come on, hands
on the hood where I can see them.

Hey, take it easy! We were
just trying to help. I swear to God.

We were going to
take it to the pound.

CAMPOS: This is 2-7-Charlie,
location, 59th Street Bridge, westbound,

signal, 10-15,
possible stolen vehicle.

We didn't even steal nothing.
The car was here, broken down.

The driver must have gone
and went to get a tow truck.

Yeah, right.

And he left the
keys on the floor?

The Benz is registered to a
Laura Madsen, 135 Gramercy Park.

We called the house. Phone
was answered by a Steve Martell.

Identified himself as
Ms. Madsen's husband.

He said he was asleep, and that
he doesn't know where his wife is.

At 2:00 a.m.?

Nice marriage.

Hey, you checked
the gas stations?

Both sides of the
bridge. No Ms. Madsen.

Anyway, the Benz started
up just fine. Tank is half full.

Thanks, bud.

Messieurs Gaydos and Dwyer.

A couple of high-beams
out taking the night air.

Thought they found
Christmas in July,

only they tried to hot-wire the car instead
of looking for the keys on the floor.

They didn't teach
you much at Spofford.

You know, the woman's shoes
and jacket were still in the front seat.

Could be somebody grabbed her.

Or she did a solo act.

Hey, call the Harbor Unit,
we're going to need divers.

East River.

I'd rather eat a gun.

I just can't believe this.

I mean, are you sure
that nobody has seen her?

No one has seen
her yet, Mr. Martell.

Did she tell you she
was going out last night?

I came home late. I was
finishing a job up on 95th.

I'm a painting contractor.

Then I stopped off at
Gibby's on the East Side.

I guess I got home around 1:00.

She wasn't here, and I
just figured she was working.

And where would that be?

Madsen Publishing on
Madison. Her family owns it.

I called over there, and
she wasn't there, and I...

I waited up for her
and I fell asleep.

Has your wife been upset lately?

Just the usual.

Work at the book
company, you know,

Maggie's grades,

but I didn't see this coming.

It's very possible
we jumped the gun.

No. I mean... No,
it does make sense.

She did this before.

Three or four years
ago, before I knew her.

She's been going
to see a shrink.

Is there anybody else she might
have talked to? A friend, a relative?

I don't... I don't know.

I mean, we're her
family. Maggie and me.

I just can't believe
this is happening.

I was at a school
concert at Alice Tully Hall.

When I got home,

Mom looked okay.

Did she say anything
about going out?


She just asked me
about the concert.

And then I went
to bed around 9:30.

Mom wants us to use these.

Was anybody else
around then? A maid?

Theresa goes home at 6:00.

It was just Mom and me.

I just want her to be alive.

Yeah, right. She
drives to Queens,

turns around, and then
takes a header off the bridge?

Maybe she wanted to go
with a view of the Bronx.

It doesn't add up.
There's no note.

People check out. They
don't always say goodbye.

She had a 17-year-old daughter.

I'd like to think
she'd make the time.

LOGAN: Unless
somebody is rushing her.

Laura Madsen is the sole
heir to Madsen Publishing.

Fifty million bucks.

You see evidence
of a kidnapping?

BRISCOE: There's no
forced entry. The car is clean.

And, unless you're getting psychic
messages, no ransom demand.

Unless there's
none we know about.

Sometimes families feel
better when we're not involved.

This lady has done
a dry run before.

Now maybe this
time she got it right.

Talk to her shrink. See if she
was thinking about an encore.

Laura Madsen is not
a candidate for suicide.

She's too dedicated to her
daughter to abandon her.

Well, now, hold on, because
we heard she had a history.

Four years ago, she took
24 milligrams of Dilaudid.

Not enough to kill herself.

She had back pain. She
took the prescribed dose.

She said later she forgot
and took another one.

Still, she doesn't sound like
the happiest kid on the block.

Her parents were gone. She'd
lost her younger brother to AIDS.

She felt very vulnerable.

She was especially
concerned about her daughter.

Why? Were there problems?

Laura was just
very afraid for her.

She didn't want Maggie to go
through what she went through.

Bad relationships,
a drug addiction.

Yeah, can you tell me
specifically what kind of drugs?

As I said, painkillers.

But she overcame that
problem with her husband's help.

He's a very strong presence. She
felt fortunate to have a man like him.

Had she been burned before?

Victor Conner. Maggie's father.

I can't give you any details,
but he put her through hell.

Are they still in touch?

They see each other
at least once a month

when Laura drives Maggie to
Mr. Conner's home in Queens.

It's horrible.

I can't imagine what happened.

LOGAN: What time
did you talk to her?

Well, it must have
been just before 9:00.

She called. She
thought Maggie was here.

Your daughter told us
she was at a concert.

She was probably three
nanoseconds late getting home.

Not to speak ill,

but Laura is the mother
of all mother hens.

We argued about that.

I believe Maggie should be
allowed to express herself.

Childrearing? Is that what
your divorce was about?

Lord, no.

Marriage didn't bring
out the best in us.

But that's all in the
past. Mr. Conner,

you have no idea why your ex-wife's
car was found coming from Queens?

I'm sorry, I don't. And you
were home all evening?

Yes. I was waiting
for a car to La Guardia.

I had an 11:30 flight to Boston.

I had an early morning
meeting with an author.

You do books, too, huh?

Yes. At Madsen Publishing.

My office is just two
floors below Laura's.

See, it was all very amicable.

Mr. Conner was
flattering himself.

He keeps an office here.
Part of the divorce settlement.

Last year he put out a
coffee-table book on vintage cognac.

Well, if I had to work with
one of my exes all day...

Oh, they didn't work together.

Laura handles new fiction.

Seven titles this year, including
two on the shortlist for the Pulitzer.

She has great intuition.

Well, how's her intuition about
husbands like Victor Conner.

Ms. Kessler,

if you have anything to say about their
relationship, now is the time to do it.

Well, Laura never complained,

but she came in one
day, before the divorce.

She had a bandage on her
lip. Her cheek was bruised.

Yeah, let me guess, she ran
into a flying coffee-table book?

Mr. Conner was a
no-show for a week.

Draw your own
conclusions. LOGAN: Okay.

After the divorce?

Well, sometimes
I'd pass this office.

The door was closed, but you
could hear them from down the hall.

What did you hear?

Well, last week it was about
some paper she wanted him to sign.

I'm not sure what.
Something legal.

SALLY: Laura was concerned
about Maggie's grades.

She wanted her to do a year
at a school in Switzerland.

But the custody agreement stipulates
that Maggie can't leave the state

without Conner's approval,
which wasn't forthcoming.

What, Conner figures his
signature is worth a few bucks?

Tack on six zeros,
then you get the idea.

It was pure blackmail.
Laura was incensed,

and I told her to
let me handle it.

Did she take your advice?

Not in matters
that affect Maggie.

Laura could be ferocious.

I have to ask. Is Victor
Conner a suspect?

Well, until we find a body,

we don't really know
that anybody did anything.

You know, we had
the S.O.B. arrested.

We heard a rumor
that he hit her.

Rumor? Maybe you
should hear this for yourself.

Eloise, would you bring in the
cassette in the Victor Conner file?

It's the 911 call Laura made.

LAURA: Please hurry!
He's coming up the stairs.

I'm in the bathroom,
my daughter is with me.

MAN: Ma'am, there is a
patrol car in your sector now.

VICTOR: What are you
doing locking the damn door?

Laura, open the door!

Victor, I'm talking
to the police.

Maggie, don't open
the door! Get away.

Ma'am, tell him the police are
on the way. MAGGIE: Daddy, stop!

He's drunk. He
doesn't give a damn.

Victor, if you come in
here... Just open the door!

I can hear a siren!


Don't... Give me that phone!

So, he pled nolo to
misdemeanor assault.

Hundred hours of
community service.

But get this, he hosted a
charity tennis tournament.

And the night Laura
Madsen disappeared?

LUDs confirm one 10-minute call
from her house to Conner's at 8:55.

Then, two hours later, he's
got the limo ride to the airport.

LOGAN: Yeah, Gramercy
Park to Forest Hills Gardens,

that's about a
half an hour, right?

She goes there to ream his
butt over the papers for the girl.

Conner is up to his
eyeballs in vintage cognac.

This time, Laura Madsen
can't dial 911 fast enough.

And he leaves her car on
the bridge to fake a suicide?

Doesn't give him much time
to get back for the limo ride.

Mr. Conner is a regular
account. Short rides to La Guardia.

He likes to be picked up
45 minutes before flight time.

Two nights ago, everything
on schedule? No, hardly.

I get there at quarter to, ring
the bell, there's no Mr. Conner.

He's usually waiting
in the hall with his bags.

What time did he show? I
called him on my cellular.

First time, I got his machine.
Second time, I got him.

He said he'd be right down.
That was just after 11:00.

The whole time you
were parked out front,

did you see
anybody go in or out?

No, I couldn't say.

I was doing a puzzle
and watching the clock.

So did Conner say
why he was late?

Yeah, like he thinks
it's any of my business.

All he told me was to
haul ass to the airport.

LOGAN: It's cutting it close,
but it fits the time frame.

Yeah, and then he puts the body in
the wine cellar while he flies to Boston.

He could have ditched it
on the way to the bridge.

You heard the tape,
Lennie. The guy smells right.

Why, because he's got
country club written all over him?

No, because he likes money,
and with the ex out of the picture,

who gets custody of Maggie
and her 50 million friends?

Yes? No, I'm waiting!

Look, if Mom drove over to
Dad's in the middle of the night,

don't you think Maggie'd
know about it? Maybe she did.

On the tape, Maggie
was gonna let Conner in.

She was 13, she was scared.

Look, when Mom
wants to find Maggie,

where's the first place
she's gonna look?

Dad's. Hello. Yes.

Okay, we'll be right down.
And notify Steve Martell.

They found her.

STEVE: Laura.

That's... That's Laura.

Well, now we've got a body.

Mom never said that
she was going to Dad's.

Maggie, this is very
important. I know,

but she didn't say.

Maggie, if she mentioned
anything about your father that night,

you have to tell them.

We didn't talk
about him. I swear.

Did you talk about why

he wasn't letting you go
to school in Switzerland?

Because he knew
that I didn't want to go.

That's the reason.

We heard the argument
was about money.

So you think that's why he
killed Mom? To get her money?

I'm afraid we have to consider
everything. Dad's not like that.

He cares about what I want.

Anyway, no one
can touch that money.

It's in my trust fund
until I'm 30 years old.

Cause of death is an
intracerebral hematoma

caused by a fracture of
the right temporal bone.

Your basic blow to the head.

Any chance she got it doing
a half gainer off a bridge?

You mean by hitting a piling?

A body accelerates at 32
feet per second, per second.

Over 200 feet, speed
at impact is 68 mph.

Half her skull would be missing.

Sorry we asked.

I looked at the lungs. No sigh
of hypoxemia, no atelectasis,

no surfactant loss,
i.e. no drowning.

This woman was dead
before she hit the water.

The past two days, we've had
slack tides and slow currents.

She goes in off the bridge,
we're going to find her mid-river

just up from the Williamsburg.

What if she was dumped on the
Queen's side, like Hunters Point?

Well, she might get as
far as Wallabout Bay.

But to end up on our side
she'd have to catch a ferry.

Meaning she started
out in Manhattan.

I put her going in about here.

Between 14th and 23rd.

Not my choice for
an afternoon swim.

So, unless Conner keeps a
speedboat in Newtown Creek,

I don't see how
he pulled it off.

Well, cheer up, Mike. It doesn't
mean you have to start liking the guy.

There might be someone
closer to home to dislike.

Laura Madsen went in the
water 10 blocks from her house.

Okay, but everybody swears on a
stack it was the perfect marriage.

I've worked for Mrs.
Laura for almost 20 years.

She was very kind.

Our daughters, they used to play
together when they were babies,

and she always
treated us like a family.

How was her family life?

Oh, with Mr. Conner, it
was no good. He was a bum.

But Mr. Martell, he's a real
man. He works for a living.

That's all it took to
make her happy?

He saved Mrs. Laura.

They met at a clinic.

Mrs. Laura was taking a lot
of pills because of her back,

and he was there because
he was drinking too much.

But she got better
because of him.

What about him? Did
he stay on the wagon?

I never saw him drinking.

Mr. Martell has values.

He visits his parents every week
and he took Mrs. Laura to church.

And she said he was a
good influence on Maggie.

You know, he said he was working
late the night she disappeared.

So was that a regular
thing with him? I don't know.

I leave at 6:00, and
Mr. Martell keeps his own hours.

Seems they both did, Mrs.
Aguilar. Mr. Martell told us

when he came home at 1:00
that night, his wife wasn't there.

Maggie was alone in the house?

That must be a mistake.

Mrs. Laura would never
leave Maggie alone.

Okay, well, listen,
thank you very much.

Appreciate it. Thanks.

Hey, Maggie is 17 years old.

She still needs Mommy around
in case she has a nightmare?

Look, maybe Mommy
wanted to be around.

You heard the shrink,
she was mother superior.

Oh, look, the maid
leaves at 6:00.

How would she know what goes on?

Hey, in my first marriage,

our cleaning lady knew
about our divorce before I did.

I mean, if she says her boss stayed
home all night, she probably did.

Okay. Martell said he worked at
95th and Second until midnight.

Good, I want to find out
if he got that part right.

Don't ask me why, but he
wanted to finish it himself.

"Don't worry," he says, "I'll
have it done if it takes all night."

This look done to you?

Well, maybe he ran out of paint.

Hey, when I left at 6:00, he had
enough paint for 100 Rembrandts.

When I came back
at 9:00, he was gone.

Did you find out where he went?

I damn well tried. I
wanted to terminate his butt.

I called this apartment
he has over at Bleecker.

I got his damn machine.

Wait a minute, he's
got an apartment?

Yeah, he does his
business out of there.

Anyway, I tried him at home.

His wife didn't have
a clue where he was.

Oh, so you spoke
to Laura Madsen?

Yeah, she wasn't
happy to hear from me.

I guess she thought
Martell was busy working.

You got the address
of that apartment?

Yeah, I'll get it for you.

Okay, that's two
lies for Martell.

I'm not giving up on him, okay?

Right, your working-class hero.

We're looking for
a Steve Martell.

He's not here.

Ever since that thing with his
wife, he hasn't been around.

I never met her myself,
but I hear she was okay,

you know, as far
as rich people go.

Steve tell you that?

MAN: No, he's not
into the family chitchat.

It's cozy.

Somebody live here?

Steve did, before
he got married.

It's rent control.

Guess he didn't want to give
it up, you know, just in case.

Yeah? What were the
odds on the "just in case"?

Come on, the guy
is my boss. Hey!

You want to be difficult, huh?

We'll start all over
down at the precinct.

You better call your wife, 'cause
you won't be home for dinner.


Wait, it's like this.

You paint houses, you
meet a lot of housewives.

Steve takes advantage.

Well, who was the
flavor this month?

Brunette, young, real pretty.

I don't know her name. I saw her
here last week when I was driving up.

She was getting in a cab.
What about Tuesday night?

Was he here then? Yeah.

I didn't expect him.

I stopped by to pick up
some supplies for an early job.

Steve tells me to come back later.
Man needs his space, you know.

What time was later?

I swung by around 10:00. Lights
were out. Nobody answered the door.

I went home.

I didn't want to
walk in on anything.

Well, so much for the
rags-to-riches marriage.

That's too bad. I had
high hopes for this guy.

That's lie number three. You
want to try for number four?

Next stop, Gibby's bar.

He showed up about 12:30 out of the
blue. He said he had to use the john.

Only time I see him here
is when he has work for me.

I moonlight for
him on my days off.

You think he had
something else on his mind?

I thought maybe he
had a fight with his wife.

You know, a guy is here, but he
wants to be home, but he can't.

Yeah, I know the dance.

Did Steve go around the
ring very often with his wife?

We're not that familiar.

Ever since he's
been on the wagon,

he pops in maybe once
a month for a club soda.

So after he taps a kidney, what then?
Nothing. He just left through the back.

What, he parked in the alley?

You mind if we take
a look? Free country.

He's five minutes from Gramercy
Park. He can't hold it in that long?

So he parks back here.
What's the attraction?


for dumping.

Empty. They must have
come through this morning.


Look at that.

Must have torn off when
they emptied the dumpster.

It's white canvas,

and that looks like paint to me.

We just want to
get inside the house.

You're just assuming it was the
crime scene. A judge won't buy it.

Look, the wife knew
that Martell ditched work.

She was probably
waiting with a frying pan.

Yeah, except she's the one
who got her brains scrambled.

And he rolls her up in a drop
cloth for the ride to the East River?

LOGAN: That's what I'd do.

Fine, show me the drop
cloth, and I'll get you a warrant.

We traced the dumpster
through the carting company.

That load went straight
into the incinerator.

But Forensics analyzed the
paint on the piece of canvas.

It's the same composition as
the brand that Steve Martell used.

So it was a
painter's drop cloth.

It doesn't mean it was Martell
who put it in the dumpster.

Look, Martell's told more fibs than
my eight-year-old. Isn't that enough?


As long as I catch Judge
Fraser after his nap.

We picked up a faint blood patch on
the carpet, just outside the bathroom.

Most likely from the
bottom of somebody's shoe.

The real deal is in here.

Luminol brought up traces of blood
protein on the tile grout in the floor.

Well, at least he tried
to clean up after himself.

Well, he forgot to
wash behind his ears.

We found the drop of the fresh blood
right under the lip of the soap dish.

With a nice, fat
thumbprint right next to it.

As big a fan as I am
of forensic science,

I doubt they can
date blood stains.

For all you know, Laura Madsen
stepped on a piece of glass five years ago.

Yeah, well, Forensics are
pretty good about thumbprints.

But can they tell you

if the print was put there at
the same time as the blood?

I don't think so, or Mr. Martell
would be under arrest right now.

Oh, well. There's
plenty of time for that.

What cinched it
for you, Martell?

Your wife threaten to kick you out
with nothing but your paint cans?

At least now we know
what this is really about.

If my client's blood was
as blue as Victor Conner's...

Victor Conner doesn't live within
pitching distance of the East River.

I didn't kill Laura.

How stupid do you think I am?

Well, we know which head
you do your thinking with.

If you weren't home
killing your wife, Steve,

maybe you should tell us

what you were doing
between 10:00 and midnight.

I wasn't home.

If you don't believe me,
ask Maggie. She knows.

I was in my room.

I'm on the third floor. I can't
hear anything from up there.

So your stepfather could have come
home, and you wouldn't hear him.

He wasn't there. I
know he wasn't there.

Why can't you just believe
him? Why should we?

He lied to us. He
lied to your mother.

He was having an affair
practically under her nose.

What's wrong, Maggie?

Are you afraid of Steve?

Did he tell you he'd hurt
you if you told the truth?


Steve would never hurt me.

What makes you so sure?

I lied to you.

I didn't get home at 9:00.

I got home just before 12:00.

Steve dropped me off.

Mom wasn't there.

Steve came home later.

You were with Steve?

Mom always treated
him like a servant.

But I love him.

Her husband and her daughter.

If Laura Madsen weren't already
dead, this would have killed her.

The media is lapping it up.

Publishing heiress,
working class husband.

A hell of a story. JACK:
They'll love Martell's version.

While he's in bed with Maggie,
his wife is killed by a gang of elves

who mop up the blood
and cart the body away.

You think the girl would lie to
protect the man who killed her mother?

Yes, if they're acting together.

Or if she doesn't
want to be next.

You have a fingerprint?

It only proves Martell was in the
bathroom before or after his wife's murder.

We're not giving the Grand
Jury much to sink their teeth into.

While we're dotting the "I's,"

nothing is stopping Martell
from leaving the jurisdiction.

Clip his wings.

STEVE: Okay, this is base boards,
that's the window trim, all right?

Now what? Haven't I
seen enough of you guys?

Be happy. You get
the rest of the day off.

What are you talking about?

Steven Martell, you're under arrest
for the murder of Laura Madsen.

You have the right
to remain silent.

Anything you say can and
will be used... Come on.

Against you in a court of law.

You have the
right to an attorney.

Martell barely
managed to post bail.


Marrying the Madsen fortune gave
him bragging rights, but not much else.

His wife kept him on
a monthly allowance.

It's all here in their pre-nup.

Volume one and volume two.

My mother was right.

Marry a rich girl and expect
to work hard for the money.

Martell may have the last laugh.

Unless we break his alibi, he just has
to sit tight until the will clears probate.

It's all up to Maggie.

She said she went to a concert?

Let's start there.

was a horrible tragedy.

The media camped outside
the school all last week

just to catch a
glimpse of Maggie.

I feel just terrible for her.

If you could just tell me
what happened at the concert.

Yes. It was a Chopin recital.

Three nocturnes and
a polonaise. Bad call.

At least my girls had
the manners not to snore.

Did Maggie stay till the end?

No. She didn't make it
to the first intermission.

The girl next to her said she
was in the bathroom, feeling sick.

I looked for her, but she'd
left. So I called her mother.

Did Maggie often skip class?

No. I couldn't ask
for a better student.

Well, her grades are spotty,
but not for lack of trying.

She's always eager to please.

Frankly, I doubt it would
occur to her to be any other way.

I'd like to talk to the
girl who covered for her.

It wasn't really a lie.
She was in the bathroom.

She was changing.

She was hooking
up with her boyfriend.

She didn't want to
go looking like a geek.

Well, did she mention what
they were planning to do?

Well, I can guess.

Besides the obvious.

Her mom was expecting her home at
9:00. I doubt they had time for much else.

Anyway, she was dressed for it.

Black dress, spaghetti
straps, fishnet stockings.

Total killer. And the FM
shoes, four-inch heels.

Definitely a statement.

You know, this guy was the
first serious boyfriend Maggie had.

Her mom never let
her go out with anybody.

Did she complain
about her mother a lot?

Maggie said that if she could,

her mom would put a
LoJack around her neck.

Sounds like a pretty typical
mother. She was a trip.

Last semester, Maggie was
with me when I got my tattoo.

Anyway, she decided she wanted
one on her ankle. A little black kitten.

A week later, she comes
in with a bandage over it.

Her mom had a
doctor burn it off.

How did Maggie take
it? Was she angry?

I think Maggie was
scared of her mom.

Like this school in Switzerland,
Maggie didn't want to go.

I told her to stand up for
herself. But she wouldn't.

She never got
anything she wanted.

Like the stuff that she
wore for her boyfriend.

She had to borrow everything from
me. Where are those clothes now?

She gave them back to me
the day after her mom died.

I told her it was no hurry.

Forensics found blood traces

on the right heel of the
pantyhose Maggie was wearing.

They matched it to
her mother's blood.

Martell must be proud
of his little Maggie.

She just graduated from
girlfriend to accomplice.

Why not give her all the credit?

You really think she's
capable of killing her mother?

They were competing
for the same man.

Imagine the
jealousy, the anger...

I can certainly imagine Laura
Madsen's outrage when she found out.

If I were Maggie, I
would have run for cover.

Everything I've heard tells
me Maggie was a ticking bomb.

If her mother confronted her,
she might have lost control.

Laura Madsen might
have forgiven her daughter,

she'd never forgive Martell.
He had the most to lose.

If anyone lost control,
my bet is it's him.

Martell is the only
boyfriend Maggie has had.

If that relationship was threatened,
there's no telling what she'd do.

I'm not minimizing
her feelings for him.

I want to know how far
she'd go to protect him.

Have her arrested.

Margaret Conner, you want
to step over to the car, please?

Why? What do you want?

You're under arrest for the
murder of Laura Madsen.

No. What are you doing? You
have the right to remain silent.

Anything you say can and will be
used against you in a court of law.

Do you understand that?

I don't see how you conjured
up probable cause for this arrest.

Your own witness said that Maggie
wasn't home when she called her.

If I was busy cleaning up after a murder,
I wouldn't answer the phone, either.

You should be more careful
where you step, Miss Conner.

And I wouldn't pat
myself on the back.

Your crack Forensics
team left open the possibility

that blood belonged to any one

of 80,000 people
in the five boroughs.

Give it a few weeks. The
DNA will narrow the field.

This is unbelievable.

Why are you tormenting her?

Mr. Conner, you are
here strictly as a courtesy.

You have no standing in this
case. I'm her father, damn it!

I want that pervert behind
bars for what he did to her.

I'd like to put him behind bars
for what he did to your former wife,

but that's up to your daughter.

I don't know what you're
talking about. We weren't there.

Mr. Wheeler, I don't relish
putting lovesick girls in prison,

but unless your client stops lying,
that's exactly what I'm going to do.

I don't know who killed my mother.
I don't know anything about it.



All right.

If you'll excuse me a moment.

Let's get the
ground rules straight.

My client pleads guilty
to obstruction. Period.

What he did, he did out
of fear and compassion.

And for God and country.

What have you got
to say, Mr. Martell?

Okay, you have to understand
that I never touched Maggie.

It was all in her head.

Now, I let her come
to my office that night

'cause I wanted to tell her
to stop this crazy infatuation.

But she got all dressed up.
See, she had the wrong idea.

So do you. You're up for
murder, not statutory rape.

I came home around 1:00.

Laura was lying on
the bathroom floor.

She was dead.

Maggie was crying.

Laura had found this black
dress in Maggie's gym bag.

She accused
Maggie of being a slut.

Laura was a real piece of
work when it came to Maggie.

Anyway, there was a fight.
Maggie said she pushed Laura.

Laura had slipped. I don't
think Maggie meant to kill Laura.

I said we had to call
the police. She said no.

She said if I didn't help
her, she'd say I did it.

I wasn't thinking. I was
scared out of my mind.

You were scared of a
17-year-old girl? Well, why not?

When she told you we had an
affair, you believed her, didn't you?

Like we believe you now.

While Maggie was fighting with
her mother, where were you?

He was at a bar, as he
originally told the police.

That still leaves a few
hours unaccounted for.

I was spending the
evening with a friend.

A woman.

Someone I care about very much.

I met him five months ago. I
was redoing the master bedroom.

Rearranging deck chairs
on the Titanic, as it turns out.

Steve was very
understanding. Very attractive.

It was all unexpected.

The night his wife was
killed, you were with him?

My husband was out of town,

and Steve was over
for an intimate dinner.

I wanted to cook for him.

And dinner went on until
what time? I'm not sure.

We'd had a bottle of wine.
It was sometime after 12:00.

I wish I could be more exact,

but I wasn't wearing a
watch, neither was Steve.

Mrs. Whitburn, Mr. Martell has been
under suspicion for quite some time.

Only now it occurs to
you to come forward?

Steve didn't want to
compromise my marriage.

Now it doesn't matter. My
husband found a hotel bill last week.

It was a long time in coming,
and I was tired of all the lies.

You see, I am in
love with Steve.

You're lying. We can
show you their statements.

I don't care. You don't care?

Thanks to this woman,

he's got an airtight alibi that
leaves you as the only suspect.

Maggie, he even denies
you two were having an affair.

He said you made it up. I know
Steve. He loves me, not her.

That's enough, Maggie.
Come on, we're leaving.

Miss Conner, you're
only 17 years old.

Do you really want to spend the rest
of your life in jail for Steve Martell?

First you have to convict her.

Is that the advice you're
giving her? Watch me.

Maggie, for God's sake, tell
them what they want to hear.

Leave me alone.

You don't know Steve.

You don't know him at all.
He'll prove you're wrong.

You'll see. He loves me.

What is the matter
with this girl?

She's obviously in
love. Desperately in love.

As much as she is in
denial. Can you blame her?

Every aspect of her life
was controlled by her mother,

almost to the point of cruelty.

Martell was her lifeline
to the outside world.

Not to mention sleeping with him

was a wonderful way of
saying Happy Mother's Day.

She had every wrong reason
for getting involved with him.

Is it possible she'd kill
her mother over him?

I don't think so. But she
might lie to protect him.

She has a lot invested. She
won't give up on him easily.

How do we get her to face the
truth? Nothing works like reality.

If she thinks her white knight
is going to come through for her,

wait till she sees
him under oath.

And that means you intend
to put her on trial for murder?

Well, Adam, we know she was there.
At a minimum, she's an accomplice.

You're talking about cutting a deal
with someone you believe is a perjurer.

We don't know for
a fact Martell is lying.

Don't bother inviting me
to your disbarment party.

This tactic of yours has a wonderful
chance of blowing up in your face.

That's a risk I'm
willing to take.

STEVE: Maggie never
went out on dates.

Laura was worried that she'd, you
know, get mixed up with the wrong crowd.

I guess that's why she got
fixated on me. I was there.

How did she express her
fixation? She gave me gifts.

She left notes in my clothes.

It was embarrassing.

I had to set her straight. That's
why you saw her that night?

To straighten her out? Yes.

Is that all that happened
between the two of you?

Mr. Martell?

Your Honor, permission to
treat as a hostile witness?

Go ahead.

Mr. Martell,

did you make love with
Maggie Conner that evening?


I just sent her home in a
cab. Then what did you do?

I had dinner with a
friend, Christine Whitburn.

In a prior sworn statement,

you said that Mrs. Whitburn is a
person that you care about very much.

Do you care about her
more than Maggie Conner?


Now, when you got
home later that night,

you found your wife dead?

Laura was lying on
the bathroom floor.

Where was Maggie? Maggie
was sitting on our bed crying.

She told you she killed
your wife, isn't that right?

Maggie, I'm sorry.

I tried...

Mr. Martell, you will direct
your answers to the court.

Maggie said that Laura
and her were arguing.

She said that she pushed Laura.

In your statement, you said

that she threatened
to implicate you

unless you agreed to help
her dispose of the body.

Is that right? Yes.

Is that the only reason
that you helped her,

because you were afraid of her?

Yes. Maybe I felt sorry for her.

Thank you. No more questions.

Mr. Wheeler?

If it pleases the court,
we request a short recess.

Granted. Court will
take a 30-minute recess.

MAGGIE: It isn't
at all like he said.

I didn't imagine things.

That night, we did go to bed.

It was only our third time.

He said that he loved me.

And that he would
always be there for me.

When I got home, Mom busted me.

I was so tired of
her always riding me.

I just wanted to
rub it in her face.

Steve was the one thing that I
had that she couldn't take away.

Mom just...

As soon as I said it, I
wanted to take it back.

Steve came home

and Mom let him have it.

She wanted him out of the house,

and I said that I
would go with him.

She went crazy.

She screamed that she
would leave him with nothing.

She started hitting him.

And he punched
her and he threw her.

And she hit her head,
and I saw all of this blood.

And Steve told me
to stop screaming.

He said that the cops
would say that we both did it.

I was in love with him.

I did what he told me.

We cleaned up the blood,

and Steve took Mom away.

Martell preyed on her, Jack.

He even borrowed money
from her to pay for his lawyer.

This girl is not a killer.

Give me a good
reason to believe her.

What do you want? A trial by fire?
She doesn't have any Polaroids.

You just have to
take her word for it.

I'm sorry, Mr. Wheeler. I'm going
to need a little more than that.

Jack, there is a
way she can prove it.


I don't know why
you've brought me here.

I've already given
you my statement.

Mrs. Whitburn, I suggest you listen
closely to what Miss Conner has to say.


please tell us about the first time
you and Mr. Martell made love.

She lied from the beginning,
she's going to lie again.

JACK: Sit down.

Maggie, go ahead.

We were in Sag Harbor.

Mom was in New York.

It was a Saturday.

Steve and I were in my room.

I don't know how much
you want me to say.

As much as you
feel comfortable with.

He kissed me.

He said that he liked
the way my skin felt.

He started to undress me.

And then?

We got down on the bed.

He kept kissing me.

He said that he wanted me to be on
top, so that he could see more of me.

He pulled me to him and
whispered things in my ear.

How he didn't feel good enough to
have someone like me make love to him.

He wanted me to
keep my eyes open,

to keep looking down at him.

He said it turned him
on. That's enough.

Sound familiar does
it, Mrs. Whitburn?

Christine, you can't
believe any of this.

I lied.

He wasn't with me that night.

I'm leaving.

I can't look at him anymore.

You said that you would
never hurt me. You stupid little...

BOWDEN: Steve, shut up.

Mr. McCoy, we made a deal.

I haven't forgotten, Mr. Bowden.

Two years’ probation
for obstruction.

He can serve it concurrent
with 25 for man one.

He has till Monday
to make up his mind.

Once Christine Whitburn recanted,
Martell didn't have a leg to stand on.

Eight and a third-to-25 years?

Hardly seems enough for
what that man did to that family.

You spend your whole life
protecting your kids from harm,

then a distinguished citizen
like Martell comes along.

He didn't just come along.

He was invited in.