Law & Order (1990–2010): Season 6, Episode 3 - Law & Order - full transcript

The death penalty has just been passed in New York and prosecutors must decide whether or not it is appropriate after an unlikely suspect murders an undercover police officer.

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

DOMINIC: Thirty-two yards.

My grandmother
could've kicked it.

Bad for you
she wasn't suited up.

Hey, what do they pay that guy
to put it through the posts?

I just know what you're
supposed to pay me.

You're 20 short.

Double or nothing next week.

You should be like Mr. C.

He plays the spread,
he pays the green.

Oh, he's a loser, too?

You keep betting on the Jets,
you're going to make me a rich man.

Mr. C?

Bobby! It's pay up time.


Yo, Mr. C?


RIVERA: Dominic,
call the police.

Name is Bobby Cassidy, lived
here the past six months or so.

Nobody's supposed to live here.

Building's zoned commercial.

Man who makes the rules is
somewhere in the south of France.

Who else don't you know about?

Oil painter, up on seven.

Guy strokes them like Picasso.

Check it out, all right?

Super's no help.
No sign of forced entry.

It's probably not a robbery.

The shooter left 200
and change in the wallet,

which this poor sap withdrew from
an ATM machine in the Bronx.

Grand Concourse Savings.

Yesterday about 2:00.

CURTIS: I usually drink
with friends.

Yeah, I've always said,
drinking alone is underrated.

We've got 68 TVs, 96 VCRs,

37 microwaves and
a handful of walkmans.

Maybe Cassidy was
dealing stolen goods.

I doubt it.
He's got a bunch of shipping orders.

Looks like he was
paying full price.

Hey, Detective!
You got to see this.

The stiff is sporting a girdle.

Looks like my grandmother's.

Did you see what's inside?

Oh, yeah.

Old undercover trick.

What do you mean?
This guy was on the job?

I better call Van Buren.

Bad time to kill a cop.

There's a good time?

No. Only now the State
gets to fry his ass.

VAN BUREN: Real name's
Bobby Croft.

Undercover, seven years.

Gives him a lot of enemies.

We know who he was working?

Intelligence division's
stingy with details,

but like everybody else real
generous with attitude.

Did you get a statement
from the other resident?

Yeah. He came home around midnight from a T.
S. Eliot reading.

Heard nothing, saw nothing.

So, assuming the gun made noise,
Croft was shot before then.

There's got to be some
surveillance we can look at.

You're used to working
on an OCCB budget.

Croft's lucky if he's
reimbursed for pencils.

The department's not so broke
it can't afford backup.

On the books,
I was Bobby's backup.

On the street, he didn't
want to know from me.

Afraid you'd blow his cover?

Once he became Bobby Cassidy,

the rest of his life
all but disappeared.

Well, that's the
drill for undercover.

GILBERT: Yeah, also, the way
to get yourself killed.

Did he have any family?

Girlfriend, but he didn't
give her much time.

As hard as he worked,
wasn't much to spare.

He didn't have much time for
filing status reports, either.

Hey, Bobby kept me
up to speed by phone.

He had Ted Quinlan
in his crosshairs.

Wise guy dealing smack
out of Hell's Kitchen.

Poses as some kind
of antique importer.

Drugs? I thought Croft's
front was dealing swag.

Yeah, part of the scam.
He needed to blend.

Wait a minute. It says here,
Croft requisitioned $125,000.

Yeah, that was going to
be the closer on Quinlan,

but they changed the location
of the buy and we lost them.

And you didn't think to call
Croft or go to his apartment?

Well, we figured it
was just Bobby

being Bobby and he'd
show in the morning.

You found the money, right?

The heroin?

Well, you got your motive.

That mick bastard got greedy.

Just a kid from the streets.
Import-export, who knew?

The way we hear it,
Mr. Quinlan,

you're importing from
Mexican poppy fields.

Sounds like libel.

Maybe, I should
call my attorney.

Maybe you should
put him on speed dial.

I'll take it under advisement.

Now, you here to buy
or just browsing?

Was Bobby Cassidy one of
your regular customers?

A punk.

Wanted me to unload
some cheap VCRs.

So you offered him
some smack instead, huh?

I offered him
a Queen Anne chair.

What do you say we
cut the crap here?

His name wasn't Cassidy, it was
Croft and he was on the job.

He's dead now and that
pisses us off extra special,

you catching on?

A cop?

No way he could
afford the Queen Anne.

Just for the record, Mr.
Quinlan, where were you last night?

Where I am every night, eating
my dinner at Stafford's.

BRISCOE: You have company?

My accountant, Paul Sandig.

We were reviewing
my projections.

He had steak au poivre.

I had fettuccine Alfredo.

We were there from about
8:00 until I left at 11:45.

Was this business or pleasure?

Oh, strictly business.

Quinlan lmports is exceeding
projections by almost 30%.

Turns out Ted's got a real gift

for predicting
currency rate changes.

You seem like a sharp guy,
Mr. Sandig.

You had to know what
Quinlan was all about.

I'm a certified
public accountant.

I independently review financial
information provided by my clients.

Anything they don't provide
is outside my purview.

I knew Bobby Croft.

(SIGHS) Used to work
homicide out of the 37.

His wife dumped him, he
volunteered for undercover.

I really hate this job.

Yeah, not one of my
better days either.

Your shooter emptied his
revolver from about three feet.

He hit all six?

Yeah, but we're not talking
about Lee Harvey Oswald.

Areas of entry range from
Croft's shoulders to his knees.

Angles of entry indicate he kept
shooting after Croft went down.

So the shooter panicked.

Or he wanted to make sure.

One more thing, Bobby
had traces of semen

and vaginal discharge
in his undershorts.

I thought he didn't have
time for his girlfriend.

Catch this guy, will you?

SARAH: I wanted to be
Bobby's wife.

I wanted to have his children.

I settled for an occasional
weekend in the Poconos.

Well, undercover
work and marriage...

He was thinking about you.

Get off it. If he thought
so much about me,

he would have quit
the damn job.

BRISCOE: Last night?

We were together, at my place.

He said he was going to take me
to Atlantic City this weekend.

CURTIS: Do you remember
when he left, Sarah?

We left together,
about 11:00.

He brought me here,
on the way to his place.

Did he say anything about
meeting someone later?

He checked his machine
before he left.

I think...

I think he returned a call.

I'm not looking
forward to going home.

Yeah. Dead cop, the divorce
rate always doubles.

My wife worries,
I can't say I blame her.

She'll feel better
when we put this guy away.

She'll feel better
when we bury him.

The little lady wants blood?

From a cop killer?
You're damn right.

What are you, a
bleeding heart, Lennie?

Albert Grazzo, 22 years old,
scar from here to here.

Three years ago, he walks
into a Korean joint,

grabs $141 and a Raspberry
Snapple and on the way out,

he pops Mr. And Mrs. Lee
just for the hell of it.

There's a point to this?

Goes straight to his girlfriend's
place on 98th and Columbus.

Logan and I walk up
about 10 minutes later

and we're eyeballing
a thirty-eight.


And he dropped the gun.

Well, good for him.

He thought twice
about killing a cop.

Yeah, what I'm thinking is if
he was already facing the chair

for popping the two Koreans,
he wouldn't have thought once.

Screw bleeding heart.
I just don't want to end up bleeding

on the floor of
some joint on Columbus.



All right, thanks.

Girlfriend's LUDs.

Croft called Quinlan?

Next best thing. One call to the
restaurant where Quinlan ate dinner.

BRISCOE: He called you, Ted.

And an hour later
he had six holes in him.

I told you.
He was a punk.

In my neighborhood, that's
what happens to punks.

Really? And who do you
think put them there?

I'm sure you'll let me
know when you find out.

About the call?

Like always,
he was hot to unload

some cheap computers
or something.

I didn't pay him any attention.

Yeah, that'd be
a good story, Teddy,

except we know
that Croft was a cop.

We also know he requisitioned
over a hundred grand

to buy some heroin from you.

And we didn't find the heroin,

and we didn't find the
bucks in his apartment.

I don't know a hell of a lot
about Queen Anne chairs,

but I know how to
add one and one.

Well, then maybe you
deserve a promotion.

My coffee's getting cold,
I think I'll freshen it up.

Hey, I got some rights here.

My air, my rules.

Now, my partner, he's
a patient man. Me?

I get pissed off real easy,
especially when I'm lied to.

I told you already,
I didn't kill that cop.

The more you lie,
the more impatient I get.

Well, I suggest
a change of underwear.

You listen to me,
you piece of crap.

That body lying in
the morgue could be me.

So when I see you sitting there
with that smirk on your face,

I don't really feel like
waiting for the State

to put that needle
in your arm.

This is getting out of hand.

I'm not looking.

I can't breathe. Guess what?
It's just me and you, buddy.

You happen to croak, I can bury
this so deep in self-defense,

the mayor will be pinning
all kinds of medals on me.

Get him out of there.


Give me a minute.


That son of a bitch
is swimming in it.

You ever hear of
the Fourth Amendment?

He killed a cop!
He's got rights.

Well, let me get him a cup
of tea and some crumpets,

and I'll tell him how sorry I
am for wrinkling his shirt.

Can the attitude, detective.

What the hell is going on here?

That guy is laughing at us!

I let you back in there,
he'll be suing us.

And that scares you?

What scares me is
you giving this kid

carte blanche to
mau-mau a witness.

Guys like Quinlan don't exactly
respond to "please" and "thank you."

Oh, great!
So I'm supposed to let you

turn Curtis into another Rambo.

Remember where that
landed your last partner.

Let Quinlan go. Now!


Detective Curtis, if you want to
arrest someone, you need evidence.

Let him go.


Is she still chapped?

Oh, that was nothing.

You should have seen her the
day I took a three-hour lunch.

A dead cop, you'd think
she'd bend the rules.

Hey, she just doesn't want to
be testifying at your trial.

She hates the hell
out of going to court.

This just came in.

A warrant for Quinlan's
financial records.

Oh, great, we'll nail him
for not declaring his maid.

Croft used marked bills
when he made his buys.

We pick up the trail, maybe it
leads back to Quinlan or the maid.

Corporate and financial records
of Quinlan lmports Inc.

Can't imagine
you'll find this useful.

Just following orders,
Mr. Sandig.

You do all of Quinlan's
corporate housekeeping?

A perfectly legitimate
accountant's function.

So everything's in here?

C of I, minutes, by-laws,
banking records?

Whatever he gave me.

Like I said, I'm not
my client's keeper.

I see numbers like this, I want to
reach for a tall glass of Bromo.

And this is just
the legit money.

How we doing?

Oh, great. I got all
the way through January.

Yeah well, the public
wants us to pick up the pace.

Nothing like
being the test case.

You don't sound
too happy about it.

If justice were color blind,
I'd be dancing in the streets.

Hey, the only color
I'm thinking about is blue.

The statute says cop killers are
the first in line for execution.

Yeah, but we've got to prove that
Quinlan knew Croft was a cop

before we start
filling the syringe.

Hey, this is interesting.

On January 21st,
Quinlan wrote a check

to the New York
Department of State.

Yeah, his annual
corporate franchise tax.

Right, so why
did he pay it twice?

Here's another check
dated two weeks later.

He's got another corporation.

I got a friend at State.

You get married, that's
the last I hear from you.

Three kids and a shield,
Marcie, I've been busy.

Detectives don't eat lunch?

Okay. Here we go.

Check number 262

was the corporate franchise
tax for Quinlan lmports Inc.

Check number 275
was for CJC Corp.

Do you have records
on the second one?

One thing we got
plenty of is records.

CJC Corp. 10,000
shares issued,

10,000 shares outstanding.

All shares held
by Edward Quinlan.

CURTIS: Do you have
anything else?

Incorporated August 12, 1992.

Primary place of business,
New York, New York.

Three bank accounts,
Grand Concourse Savings.

BRISCOE: That ATM slip?

That's the place where Croft withdrew
money the day he was killed, right?

I see here that once
a week for the past year,

there were $9,000 deposits into
each of three Quinlan accounts.

CURTIS: Ten grand triggers
federal reporting requirements.

So you can see, we've
done nothing wrong.

Aiding and abetting
a money-laundering scheme,

you're kidding, right?

Look, I'm just as
surprised as you are.

Our software's designed to spot
this and bring it to my attention.

So either your computer
caught a cold

or somebody's been
doing an end run.

The software's
definitely working.

Looks like it was
manually bypassed.

This by-passer have a name?

Oh, my God, I knew this
was going to happen.

Why don't you
tell us all about it?

He told me it was just once.

He said he needed to hide some
cash because of his divorce.

A deposit once
a week for a year?

Must've been the world's
worst divorce lawyer.

Come on, Ms. Byman.

You had to know he
was laundering money.

I never asked any questions.

I wanted to stop, but he
said I was in too deep.

He tape recorded all our
phone conversations.

He said he was going
to use them against me.

And how much did Quinlan
pay you for all your help?

Who's Quinlan?

Who are we talking about here?

Paul Sandig.

The damn accountant.

I swear. I don't know
anyone named Quinlan.

Well, what about Croft?


This face, you recognize it?

Day before yesterday, he came in
about an hour after Mr. Sandig.

He said Mr. Sandig sent him,
he wanted the same service.

And you quoted him a price?

I told him I had no idea
what he was talking about.

Then I called Mr. Sandig.

He said he didn't send anyone.

He asked me to
describe the man.

Am I in a lot of trouble?

Sandig finds out Croft's
onto him, then he panics.

Come on. A pencil-head like Paul
Sandig a murderer? I don't think so.

Why? Because he spent
four years on an ivory tower

and he's got
a diploma on his wall?

Listen, Sandig left the
restaurant before Quinlan.

He had more time to
get to Croft's place.

My guess is he just didn't want

to see those diplomas
in a cell in Attica.

Well, we can arrest him
for laundering money then.

I want the son of
a bitch for murder.

Let's see what's
on those tapes.

I'll call for a warrant.

Yeah, while you're
at it, call Profaci.

Tell him to pick up
Quinlan for laundering.

Paul is going to be furious when
he gets back from Tarrytown.

You can tell him to send his
complaint to Judge Fishbein.

This has to be a mistake.

Paul is president of
his son's little league.

His wife runs the PTA.
He's not a criminal.

You have any more
storage space in here?

Well, yeah, but I assure you,
you're wasting your time.

This is terrible.
I'm expecting clients.

The sooner you
show us everything,

the sooner we'll
be out of your hair.

LYNDON: Paul keeps some
of his stuff in there.

He's got the key.

You want to open this up?

SANDIG: Why would I send
somebody? You stupid...

BYMAN: I didn't
tell him anything.

Did he leave a name?

The teller goes on
to describe Croft.

We're getting warmer.

We're getting hot.

The next call was
from Marty Prince.

Why do I know that name?

BRISCOE: Sleazeball
insurance adjuster.

Two steps ahead of a fraud
scheme a couple of years back.

Paul, it's Marty Prince.

I got what you need
on Cassidy.

Not on the phone.

I don't get it. What's an insurance
guy got to do with this?

Hey, I knew all about my
second wife's boyfriend

way before I went into court.

Insurance guys can find out
anything about anybody.

We figure Prince did a make on Croft
and told Sandig he was a cop.

Which knocks this up
to murder one.

Talk to Prince.

Sandig said he was
checking out a new client.

He pays my full rate,
I don't get too curious.

Well, what'd you
find out about Cassidy?

First of all,
it wasn't his real name.

No credit history.

BRISCOE: Sandig didn't
need you for that.

Yeah, how about this?
I knew he was a cop.

How'd you figure that out?

Nothing gets by these
eyes, gentlemen.

Mr. X drives a car repoed
in an NYPD drug sting.

The car is never resold.

Now, unless the
department started

a leasing company
I don't know about,

he had to be one
of New York's finest.

Well, now he's one
of New York's deadest.

Everything I did was kosher.

Just stick around
to testify, all right?

Let's get a warrant
for Sandig's house.

We find a weapon...

You've been here for hours.

I don't know what
you expect to find.

Just what it says on
the warrant, ma'am,

"evidence relating
to a homicide."

This is ridiculous.

My husband is a CPA,
not a murderer.


First my office.
Now this?

What's going on?

It's a mistake.
Did you call the lawyer?

They're trying to find him.

I'm going to sue you and then
I'm going to sue the city.

Jenny, get them out of here.

Boys, go up to bed.

CURTIS: Look what I found.

Thirty-eight special, huh?

And there's more.

Looks like 125k worth.

Paul Sandig,
you're under arrest

for the murder of
Detective Robert Croft.

You have the right
to remain silent.

Anything you do say
can and will be used

against you in a court of law.

You have the right to an attorney.
If you cannot...

Docket 2715, People v.
Sandig, Paul Michael.

The charge is murder
in the first degree.

Do we have a plea?

Not guilty.

Ms. Kincaid?

The People urge Mr.
Sandig be held without bail.

Mr. Sandig has
no criminal record.

He has strong ties
to the community,

and he'll post cash collateral
sufficient to secure his presence.

This is a capital
offense, Your Honor.

Nothing like being first.

The defendant will be
held without bail. Next.

So, Claire, how savage
are we feeling today?

If you're asking
whether the State is going

to ask for the death penalty?
It's not my call.

You're saying you haven't
talked to Jack about this?

Adam Schiff has
120 days to decide.

I'll get back to you.

We haven't even tried Sandig

and the papers are
clamoring for an execution.

Because they know
that's what the people want.

Pataki rode the
death penalty plank

all the way to
a mansion in Albany.

Political propaganda.

The voters just jumped
on the bandwagon.

You don't like the law
so it's propaganda.

Come on, Jack.

The homicide rate is at a 25-year
low without the death penalty.

Pataki failed to mention that
fact during the campaign.

Maybe that fact's irrelevant.

People are sick
of crime, period.

Yeah, my neighbor would have
us kill the old lady upstairs,

because her dog
barks all night.

Fortunately, the
statute only applies

to such trivial
offenses as cop killings,

torture killings,
felony murders

and killing the
witness to a crime.

I've been all over the file.

We've got Sandig
dead to rights.

The envelope filled with heroin

had both his and Croft's
fingerprints on it.

Ballistics match.

He knew Croft was
onto his laundering.

He also knew he was a cop.

I think you have to look
at the big picture, Adam.

Paul Sandig is the poster
child for the death penalty.

He's white, he's rich

and he killed a police officer.

Not in the heat of passion,
but in cold blood.

You're so sure?

Maybe he was nervous.
Maybe he panicked.

He has a wife and kids.


Well, I appreciate your
enthusiasm, both of you.

But the statute puts
the burden on you.

All I can say is I'm glad I'm
not on the bench anymore.

Good fight's not
so good of late.

The constitution is
a living thing, Adam.

It expands, it contracts.

It has to cast off what it
cannot use, otherwise it dies.

You're telling me
you've changed your mind

since your opinion
in People v. Davis?


Just because something is constitutional,
that doesn't make it moral.

Johnson, up in the Bronx, said

no one would ever be executed
in his jurisdiction.

That's nonsense, Al.

Any district attorney
who speaks in absolutes

is abdicating his

Well, since you
hold no absolutes,

then there are circumstances

where you'd be comfortable
with the death penalty?

Objection, assumes
facts not in evidence.

I called you...

To be taken off the hook.

You wanted to be able to
file it under murder two?


Can anything be moral if it
doesn't apply to all men equally?

Sandig kills Croft in
the Bronx, he lives.

In Manhattan, he dies?

Answer! Morality is not
now and never has been

a significant part of the
criminal justice system.

Very nice speech.

Oh, no.

You make the speeches, you get
your picture in the Times.

The price of the party.

I want you to file the notice of
intent to seek the death penalty.

It's the right thing, Adam.

It's the law.

But you don't have to use it.

Although I'd like to pretend I'm Solomon, Ms.
Kincaid, I'm not.

Just an elected official who hasn't
slept the past three nights.

Wait a minute. You can't tell me
that you think it's all right...

If we don't ask for the
ultimate punishment here,

what are we saying about society's
position on cop killings?

CLAIRE: Yes, what Sandig
did was despicable,

but how many people are
sitting on death row

because of a bad attorney,

rather than because they
committed a heinous crime?

That won't be
Paul Sandig's problem.

He just hired Helen Brolin.

Look at the facts.

A couple of overzealous cops
got a little overanxious

and they stepped all over...

Hell, they trampled my client's
Fourth Amendment rights.

If counsel is referring
to the search

that uncovered
Mr. Sandig's tapes,

it was executed pursuant to a
warrant signed by Judge Fishbein.

Only the warrant covered
Mr. Sandig's office,

which is suite 242.

The tapes were
found in suite 248.

JACK: In the firm's
storage facility.

But even if the warrant
is narrowly construed,

the police were provided access

to the locker by
the defendant's partner.

It's well settled that
a partner can consent

to the search of
partnership property.

Counsel should do his homework,

he'd save us all a lot of time.

As you can see
from the agreement

between Messrs
Sandig and Whitney,

they had a space sharing
arrangement, period.

They didn't share clients, they
didn't share profits or losses.

Therefore, they were not,
in fact, a legal partnership.

And Mr. Whitney didn't have the
authority to consent to anything.

She's right.

Even if Mr.
Whitney didn't have actual authority,

he had apparent authority.

The cops thought...

Apparent authority
has to be reasonable.

If he'd had a key,
maybe it'd be arguable.

But a bolt cutter?
That's ridiculous.

I have to agree.
The tapes are inadmissible.

Thank you, Your Honor.

I also move that
any evidence arising

from the illegal search
be excluded as well.

Namely, the testimony of an insurance
adjuster, Mr. Marty Prince.


As such, Your Honor, the State
has no evidence whatsoever

that my client
had any knowledge

the victim was
a police officer.

And there goes the State's
murder one charge.

They weren't partners.
We looked pathetic.

Jack, at least we can still
put Sandig away for 25 years.

They strap you down, they
stick a needle in your arm

and run poison
through your veins.

It's barbaric.

I wouldn't weep
for Paul Sandig.

Revenge is sweet, huh?

Yes, it is.
It's a natural human instinct

and there's no need
to apologize for it.

No, except for the fact
that it's illegal.

That's exactly my point.

There is no private
right of action

under the criminal
justice system

and so the State
has an obligation

to mete out fitting punishment.

And that's why we have prisons.

Because life without
parole is fitting enough.

Let me ask you, Claire.

Why do you suppose 38 states
and the federal government,

and the military
have all of a sudden

adopted or re-adopted
the death penalty?

Like you said,
people are sick of crime.

And the death penalty
gives the feeling

of control demanded by society.

People are frustrated by the
uncertainty of the system.

They want to know for sure

that Charles Manson won't ever
be walking the streets again.

You don't think there
are less draconian ways

to gain the public's

No. I don't.

And believe me, if the State
doesn't seek retribution,

then the people will.

There'll be more Ellie Nesslers

walking into courtrooms
with loaded pistols.

You kill a cop, how long do you think
it'll be before the cops kill you?

Legal execution is a means
to prevent street justice.

Well, after Judge Boucher's
decision, in this case, it's not.

Maybe it is.

The statute includes
as a capital offense

the killing of a witness
to a crime, right?


Think about it, Claire.

Bobby Croft witnessed a
lot of criminal activity.

Only we can't prove it.

I think we can.

QUINLAN: Maybe you haven't
been watching your Court TV,

but I'm supposed to squeal on
the other guys, not myself.

Ted, a deal's a deal.

Don't worry
about their reasons.

Mr. Fat Retainer here, like he's
got my best interest at heart.

Tell me again what you need?


Testify that you
personally sold drugs

to the man you
knew as Bobby Cassidy.

What do I get?

JACK: Two years for
money laundering.

Forget about it.
It's a good deal, Ted.

That is why lawyers never
make it in business.

Don't you see
what's going on here?

He needs me to
fry his cop killer.

And I'm guessing he's
willing to pay heavy.

A year. A year pro.

I'll tell you what, Counselor.

You want my testimony?

You drop the laundering
charges completely,

and I get blanket immunity
for anything that I say

that might tend
to incriminate me.

You got it.

You should be paying me.

Have we become that savage?

How far can our
blood lust drive us?

I've had a long morning,

Can we skip the do-si-do?

The defendant worked
for a Mr. Edward Quinlan,

a known drug dealer being
investigated by the victim.

It is the state's theory that Mr.
Sandig killed Mr. Croft

in order to prevent him from
testifying against Mr. Quinlan.

Mr. Quinlan will testify.


You said yourself
he's a known felon.

And he will testify to selling
drugs to Bobby Croft.

The jury can draw
its own conclusions.

Your Honor...

I need a score card here
to tell the players.

I'll read your papers.
You'll have my answer by the end of business.


Bad news?

Judge Boucher
granted your motion

to reinstate
murder one charges.

So you won.




Ladies and gentlemen of the jury,
have you reached a verdict?

We have, Your Honor.

Would the defendant please rise.

On the sole count
of the indictment,

murder in the first degree,
how do you find?

We find the defendant,
Paul Sandig, guilty.


Motion to set aside
the verdict, Your Honor.

BOUCHER: Overruled.
This court is in recess.

Sentencing hearing begins
Tuesday at 9:00 a.m.

Tuna fish?

Is that how you
celebrate a victory?

It's chicken salad.

It's not over till after
the sentencing hearing.

Then it's tuna fish.

Well, I wouldn't go
planning my menu just yet.

My motion for
a declaratory judgment,

with Judge Boucher's decision.

Denying it.

Yes, well...
And my appeal and my brief.

The way I see it, the New York
State death penalty statute

doesn't even come close to
passing constitutional muster.

She's brilliant.

Her appeal is based
on substantive due process.

What happened to
cruel and unusual?

It's been done.

Brolin is arguing that
under the constitution

a State doesn't have
the power to take a life.

This should keep us in the
library for a couple of months.

BROLIN: The 14th Amendment
provides, in part,

that " No state shall
make or enforce any law

"which shall deprive any person
of life, liberty or property."

You're not going to start
talking about penumbras.

I hate penumbras.

I wouldn't think
of it, Your Honor.

I intend to deal only with that

which the framers literally
included in the constitution.

the taking of a life...

Without due process of law.

The death penalty statute
provides for a hearing

that more than fulfills any
constitutional requirements.

Procedurally, yes.

But I'm talking of
substantive due process.

The limitations on a state to
regulate certain areas of life.

The Supreme Court has severely
limited the State's power

to infringe on what it deems
certain fundamental rights.

I believe the court has limited
such fundamental rights

to sex, marriage, child-bearing,
and child-rearing.

Begging your pardon,
Your Honor,

the court never said
that list was exhaustive.

And what right do
you plan on adding?

Don't be dense, Douglas.

The most fundamental
right of all,

the right to live and breathe.

If we agree that is
a fundamental right,

any legislation that restricts it,
must survive strict scrutiny.

In other words, the State's
objective must be compelling

and the means of obtaining that
objective must be necessary.

I don't think you can argue

that crime prevention is not
a compelling state interest.

No, but an execution is not necessary
to achieve crime prevention.

That fact is abundantly clear
from recent crime statistics.

it has been estimated

that the death penalty will cost
the State $118 million a year.

Wouldn't crime be
better prevented

if we used those funds to hire
additional police officers?

Thank you, Your Honors.

With all due respect
to learned counsel,

her 14th Amendment analysis
is completely misplaced.

She made a lot of sense to me.

Because she focused on only one
clause of the constitution.

Although the 14th Amendment
deals with the issue generally,

the Fifth Amendment specifically
refers to capital crimes.

And once again, requires
due process of law.

That's correct,
in its application.

The court in Gregg v.
Georgia held that

the death penalty is
constitutionally sound

if it is administered
without arbitrariness

or prejudice on
the part of juries.

To this end, the jury's
discretion has been restrictive,

limiting the factors that may be
presented at a sentencing hearing.

Correct me if I'm wrong,
Mr. McCoy,

but hasn't a line of
recent rulings insisted

that the jury be free
to hear any evidence

that a defendant might put
forward on his own behalf?

Yes, but...

MACNAMARA: So, there is
an inherent contradiction.

It seems to me that
the decision whether

to take a life is so
inherently subjective

that it defies the consistency
required by the constitution.

That would only be
correct if one dismissed

the viability of
the jury system.

Show me a jury that can control

its prejudices and passions
to the point of objectivity.

JACK: The bottom line,
Your Honor,

is that the constitution
cannot prohibit

what its text
explicitly permits.

Thank you, Your Honors.

Mr. McCoy.

I just wanted you to know...

I shouldn't be talking to you, Mrs.

He's not really
a bad man, you know.

He murdered a policeman.

He panicked.

You know what's crazy?

Paul and I, we both voted
for Governor Pataki.

MACNAMARA: Notwithstanding the
comprehensive, and I must admit,

most convincing argument made
by the defense counsel...

We don't need the
editorial, Shawn.

This court holds,
on a vote of three to two,

that the controversy
of the issue

has not yet become sufficiently
concrete to be worthy of adjudication.

In other words,

the issue of the constitutionality
of the statute is not ripe

until someone's actually
been sentenced to death.

When and if that happens,
we will reach that issue.

The case is remanded for sentencing.

Talk about passing the buck.

It was the right
decision, Jack.

They just hope
the jury will prevent them

from ever having
to reach the issue.

You know, this is hard enough

without your eyes accusing me
every time you look up.

I'm not the criminal here.
I didn't kill a cop.

So, it's a value judgment.

It's okay to execute Sandig
because he killed a cop,

and not a hairdresser
or a dishwasher.

It's not a value judgment,
Claire. It's the law.

Like it or not, society has
established a hierarchy of evil.


Paul Sandig deprived
the community

of someone essential
to its well-being,

and I believe he deserves
to forfeit his own life.

There are cracks
in the system, Jack.

What if someone falls through?

How do we rationalize that?

First of all,
there's the trial,

and then there's
the sentencing hearing

and appeals and more
appeals after that.

Checks and balances.
It's unlikely.

You can live with that?

I've known him since I was 15.

We've been married
for the past 11 years.

Was Paul ever violent?

He's a gentle man.

Even with the boys,
I never saw him raise a...

BROLIN: It's all right,
Mrs. Sandig. Take your time.

He's not a killer.
He did it to protect us.

He didn't want
his sons to know...

Thank you, Mrs. Sandig.

Didn't want his sons to
know what, Mrs. Sandig?

That he helped a criminal.

That he was laundering
money for a drug dealer?

He wanted to stop,
but they wouldn't let him.

They threatened him.

They said they'd hurt us.

He got in over his head.
He couldn't get out.

It could've happened
to anyone, Mr. McCoy.

So, if the stress is bad enough

and you're an otherwise
nice person,

it's okay to put
six bullets in a cop?


No more questions.

I didn't know what
to do, I was scared.

Do you feel remorse, Paul?

Every minute.

I can't sleep, I can't eat.

I can't look
my boys in the eye.

If I could take back
what I did, I would.

It was a mistake.

No more questions.

How much money did you launder for Mr.

Around $6 million.

And how much money did you make

from your dealings
with Mr. Quinlan?

Almost a million dollars.

So maybe the threats weren't the
only reason you didn't stop.



What do you want me to say?
I screwed up.

You killed someone, sir.

You knew he was a police officer
and you killed him anyway.

I was a son of a bitch, okay?

Believe me,

I hated myself for what I was
doing, but I couldn't get out.

We had a life, it was...

It was going to be ruined.

I'm so ashamed of what I
did to that detective.

You know why I kept the gun?

I was going to kill myself.

And what stopped you?

I don't want to die.

I'm sorry, okay?

I'm sorry.

I made a mistake.

Please! I don't want to die.

BOUCHER: Have you reached a unanimous
verdict as to the sentence?

FOREMAN: We have, Your Honor.

We find the defendant, Paul Sandig,
should be sentenced to death,

as prescribed by Article 22B

of the Correction Law
of the State of New York.

BROLIN: The defense requests
that the jury be polled.

JACK: No objection.

BOUCHER: Do each of you, in accordance
with your duties to the State of New York,

and in regards to
the defendant, Paul Sandig,

find in favor of a sentence
of death by lethal injection?

I do.

JUROR 1: Yes.

JUROR 2: Yes, Your Honor.

I do.

JUROR 3: Yes, Your Honor.

I do, Your Honor.

JUROR 5: Yes, I do.

Yes, Your Honor.

JUROR 7: Yes, I do.

Yes, Your Honor.

Yes, Your Honor.

JUROR 10: I do.