Law & Order (1990–2010): Season 16, Episode 11 - Bible Story - full transcript

A synagogue's Chumash is stolen and desecrated, and the crime must be solved before a religious war breaks out in downtown Manhattan.

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.

Officer, officer.

Whoa, whoa, street cleaning, lady, I
already started writing the ticket.

Look, look what I found,
from a Chumash.

It's a shanda, I
tell you, a shanda.

Yeah, I'm sure it is.

People say it can't happen
again, but look at this!

You've got to do something!

Look, lady, why don't you call the
precinct, and somebody might...

Oh, looks like blood on there.

Where'd you get these?

There's one! There's some,
there's some! Get it, get it!

What the hell? Stop him!

Are you crazy?

Gently, gently, treat them gently.
Get them all. Get all of them!

Those pages
are from a holy book.

Central, this is 2-7 Charlie.

Let me get some Traffic Control
down here at Hester and Eldridge.

Stay right there.

Central, 2-7 Charlie again.

Make that a bus and a
supervisor, forthwith.

I checked his Vitals then I called
for a supervisor and a bus.

Well, was anybody
around the building?

Are you kidding? There was like a mob
of people out here chasing those pages.

What the hell happened to them?

They scattered when
the RMPs showed up.

And nobody said anything
about what happened?

They wouldn't even
give me any names.

They were really pissed off, though.

I live right around the
corner from the shul.

I walk by here every day.

And when you came by here this morning,
did you notice anything suspicious?

The pages! Thrown all over the
ground where everybody can walk!

Well, did you see anybody
fighting around here?

Nobody fighting.

We need more police
in this neighborhood,

so things like this
never happen anymore.

Yes, ma'am. The sergeant will make sure
you get home safe, all right? Thank you.

Thank you very much.

Blunt force trauma to the head.
Looks like a fractured skull.

When? About an hour or two.

He's still warm.

Any ID or a wallet?

Nothing in his pockets. Uh, I didn't
want to move him till you had a look.

Okay, let's roll him.

It's Hebrew.

Wow, must have
been some special book.

Fasten your seat belt.

Ah, this is a Polish
edition of the Hebrew Torah.

The Old Testament.

Looks like it's 60
or 70 years old.

And all that damage
was done recently?

Yeah, the tearing is fresh.

Uh, see, paper is organic
so when it oxidizes...

Beck, Beck“. How fresh is
the blood on these pages?

It's brand-spanking new.
Matches the victim's.

But the test on the saliva
won't be back for a few days.

Saliva? Somebody spit on it?

Uh-huh. Ls that a crime?

Murder is.

Okay, but how do you know
if the dead guy

was trying to protect
the book or rip it up?

Your John Doe's
in his late 20s, fit.

From his tan line, it's probably a
good bet that he works outdoors.

Any prison tats?
Aryan Brotherhood stuff?

No, clean as a baby.

According to the Old Testament,

it's blasphemy
to mark your body.

Well, somebody marked him,
with something heavy.

It shattered his temporal bone,

subdural hematoma killed him.

These bruises on his shoulder...

Yeah, he's got half a dozen
defensive wounds on his arms, too.

Fending off whoever
was waling on him.

You mind if I take a look?

Knock yourself out.

Well, there's one clue.

Our John Doe is not circumcised.

My constituents
want answers, information.

Anything. This was blasphemy!

And I'd be happy to work
with you, Councilman...

Have you seen what's going
on Delancey Street?

Orthodox men are
blocking traffic!

Our Hate Crime Task Force
and Community Affairs

have already been notified.

You better get some boots on the ground
before there's a riot out there.

You know what, Councilman?

It's also your responsibility
to keep the people calm!

Easier done if their concerns
were taken seriously

by the police, the FBI...

We're not ready
to call this terrorism.

What is it, then?

Have you spoken
to the Palestinian man

working at the Laundromat
on Grant Street?

Fadi Abu Libdeh?

He harasses the congregation walking
to that synagogue on Saturdays.

He says things to the children!

Look, him being rude

doesn't tie him
to this desecration.

There was an arson at the Cultural
Center on Forsythe Street last year.

The police called him
in for questioning.

Was there an arrest? No!

These people have lived in peace

on the Lower East Side
for 100 years.

The Arabs opened up businesses,

now there's graffiti
on the temples,

insults, a fire!

We'll talk to them.

You better! Or I'm going to raise
hell like you've never seen before.


With all due respect,

what does a Arab have
to do with a dead white guy?

Well, this wasn't
some random murder.

It's connected to that book.

Figure out how.

Who's saying
these things about me?

Do you yell insults
at them or not?

I have no interest
in these people.

Arabs, get out of here!
Get out of here!

I can see you're all good
friends down here.

This is our store,
I do laundry, that is all.

Well, what about
the fire last year?

I was cleared, 100%!

Isn't this the flag of Hamas?

It is a wall calendar.

What does it mean to you?

Tells me what day it is!

And maybe how you feel
about Jewish people?

It's just a calendar.

So it wouldn't spike
your blood pressure

if I threw it in the gutter?

I may have a political
disagreement Yeah, what's u p?

With the people who illegally
invaded my homeland,

whose soldiers slaughter...

If you have any involvement

with the dead person
at the synagogue,

let's get in front of it now.

He's no one I know.
I heard it was a white guy.

Okay, thanks.
His name's Jeffrey Kilgore.

For Jeffrey Kilgore,

But I have nothing
to do with this.

Excuse me.

Jeffrey Kilgore?

Yeah, the prints came back. His last
known was Patchogue, in Suffolk County.

He did a bullet a few years
back for commercial burglary.

Let's put a pin in this guy

and see if anyone
at synagogue knows Kilgore.

Detectives, this is Father
Royce and Imam Adjani.


Father. Sir.

They came to offer their support

in this terrible time.

We were hoping
that we can ask you

some questions privately, Rabbi.

If you need anything, Rabbi.

Let's all pray that
cooler heads prevail.


Rabbi, this is the man that was
killed outside your synagogue.

His name is Jeffrey Kilgore.

I've never seen
this man in my life.

Why would he come here
and defile our shul like this?

Our more immediate concern is
why somebody would murder him.

But surely it's no coincidence that he
died holding a book from our sanctuary.

This goes to a much
larger issue!

Would you mind if we saw the
place where the book was kept?

After the incident, I found several
torn pages scattered about here.

Exodus, Chapter 3.

Moses and the burning bush.

Are you a religious man,
Detective Green?

I was raised that way.

So, what can you tell us
about this bible?

It's a Chumash,
it's a copy of our Torah,

which we read from
during the services.

It's the lifeblood
of our people.

This one belonged to Barry Speicher,
who's the president of our congregation.

He kept it on the bamah,
right by his chair.

Was this sanctuary in use
yesterday morning, Rabbi?

Morning prayers
ended about 8:30.

No one else in the building?

Oh, there were quite a few people upstairs.
Teachers, children,

the girls in the synagogue office
are on, too, but not down here.

The man easily could have walked in
here without anybody seeing him.

So anybody could just walk
through the front door?

We don't lock up until
after evening service.

We had a guard
about five years ago,

when that neo-Nazi shot at the Jewish
school children in California.

Thankfully, that's not
what this is about.

But it was a man
sending a message.

We must always be vigilant.

My father smuggled that Chumash
out of the Warsaw Ghetto.

He would have been shot on sight
if he was caught with it.

He hid it in a hayloft while he
was on the run from the Nazis.

Thirty-five years later,
he went back to Poland,

he found it right
where he left it.

My father passed away
eight years ago.

I've read from that Chumash
almost every day since.


do you know this man?

His name's Jeffrey Kilgore.

No, is he the one who
destroyed my book?

You haven't seen him around
the neighborhood at all?


Have you talked to the man
who shouts insults?

The Palestinian? So far
we can't tie him to Kilgore.

How about to everything else that's
happened in this neighborhood recently?

It's enough already.

Our congregation has been on the
Lower East Side since 1928.

Maybe it's time to move on.

Well, we'll let you know if there's
any new developments, all right?

So, where's the smart money? Somebody inside
the building who caught Kilgore in the act?

Or somebody in the neighborhood
who saw him coming out.

What do you suggest, Detective?

I say due diligence on Jeffrey Kilgore
before we point any more fingers.

You a relative? Girlfriend.

We're sorry for
your loss, Miss...

Uh, Kayla Watson.

Miss Watson, what did your
boyfriend do for a living?

He was a mason.

Stone walls, patios,
stuff like that.

This doesn't make any sense.

They said on TV that
Jeff tore up a Jewish bible.

Did he belong to any clubs
or political groups?

Political groups?

People who might not think
too kindly of Jewish people.

Jeff didn't have
anything against them.

I mean, the ones he worked for would
try to get out of their bills

and say that he didn't
do the work right.

But not all of them,
just sometimes.

Like the rich ones
in the Hamptons.

What was he doing
in the city on Tuesday?

I don't know.

Did he have any friends
or family there?


He hated New York. He wouldn't even
go there to collect from a client.

Some guy owed him money,
and he sent me to pick it up.

Who did you pick up from?

I don't know his name.

I just met him on a corner,
he gave me cash, $2,500.

What did this guy look like?

Shorter than Jeff,
in his 30s or 40s.

A Jewish guy.

How do you know he was Jewish?

I heard him talk, he was
definitely a New York Jew.

So, did this man Kilgore belong to
some anti-Semitic organization?

We have no evidence of that.

Rabbi, we're going to want to speak to
the people that were here at the time.

Why? You think somebody saw
this and didn't come forward?

The man was killed
on your doorstep, Rabbi.

You're saying you think
it was someone here?

Actually, we're going to need
the names and the addresses

of all the members
of your congregation.

That's out of the question.

We're not going to supply the government
with a list of people who worship here.

We're investigating
a murder, Rabbi.

What the Rabbi's trying
to say is we're not authorized

to disseminate personal
information like that.

You either help us
solve this crime,

or we're going to bring it to the attention
of the District Attorney's office.

Go ahead. You're just here
looking for a scapegoat.

Michael, I'll call you back.

This was just faxed to me
from the mayor's office.

It's a subpoena duces tecum
to the Beth Tefiloh Synagogue

for the names and addresses of any and
all current members of the congregation.

We needed to provide the police
with a finite list of suspects.

It's a demand for a list
of Jews, Alexandra.

Sure, but if the murder
scene was at a church,

we'd be asking
for a list of Christians.

Well, how about exercising a
little historical sensitivity?

These aren't storm
troopers, Arthur,

they're police officers
investigating a homicide.

I'm getting calls from here
to Tel Aviv on this case.

I want you to back off,
withdraw the subpoena,

and tell the detectives
to come up with Plan B.

The synagogue's newsletter says that there's
over 100 families in the congregation.

Whose names we have no access to,
thanks to the D.A.'s office.

And they won't get us a search
warrant for the synagogue.

And the Rabbi has decided not to
let us back into the building.

We're hitting brick
walls left and right.

Well, are you sure Kilgore
was paid to do this?

When are we absolutely
sure of anything?

The only political cause Kilgore
had were some posters from NASCAR.

And nobody owed him that kind
of money from masonry.

Okay, but why would someone
retain his services for this?

Well, maybe someone who had
something against the congregation?

Or a particular member.

Well, the book holds sentimental value
for the congregation's president.

So, if it's not political,
maybe it's personal.

Talk to Barry Speicher, again.

Barry's downtown at a
Preservation Committee hearing.

I'm his partner, Eric Speicher.

You're his brother? Cousin.

Are you guys here about
Uncle Daniel's book?

Well, and the murder.

What a thing, huh?
Makes me sick.

The whole congregation's
up in arms.

Was your partner here
on Tuesday morning?

He got in around 10:00. Why?

He seem okay to you?

Yeah. Everything was cool.

Did he have any ongoing
problems with anybody?

Business disputes? Uh,
tenant-landlord types of thing?

We hire a management
firm for that.

Keep it arm's-length,
so it's pretty low-key here.

Ben-Daniel's a family company, as you
can probably tell from the name.

Ben and Daniel are your fathers?

Yeah. It's a little old-fashioned,
but we'd never change it.

How about Barry's personal life?

Fine, as far as I know.

Uh, Barry did have some issues in his
first marriage, but that was years ago.

What kind of issues?

His first wife couldn't
have children.

But Rachel's made him very happy.
Five rug-rats, unless I missed one.

I lived in Philadelphia
when my husband and I first met.

We married nine years ago.

Wow, you do have a lot of kids.

Uh, do you remember
what time your husband

left the house last Tuesday,
Mrs. Speicher?

Uh, he was gone by 7:30. He
always goes to morning services.

That takes, what, about an hour?

Except for Tuesdays, he stays for
a Talmud study with Rabbi Geller.

Now, do you have any ideas who would
want to destroy this prayer book?

Why would I know
about any of this?

Wasn't it somebody
off the street?

Has your husband had any difficulties
recently? Maybe with his first wife?

I wouldn't really know.
Barry's a good provider.

Our life was fine
until that man mutilated...

Did Barry tell you where
that Torah was from?

I don't want my children to
know that kind of hatred.

Tell me you guys have
something for me.

Barry Speicher's
financial records,

so far the guy's a Boy Scout.

But we can put him at the temple
at the time of the murder.

His charge accounts
look spotless,

there's contributions to a half-a-dozen
Jewish charities every month,

and flowers to his wife
every Friday.

He's either a saint or a sinner.

Hey, check this out. This is
his personal bank account.

$400 withdrawals from the same ATM
every Thursday night, like clockwork.

Cash for the weekend, the Orthodox
don't bank on their Sabbath.

No, but the location's not
Speicher's normal stomping ground.

It's 545 West 23rd.

545? I handled a double
homicide at a hotel next door.

It's a "gentleman's club."

Four Benjis buys a whole
lot of lap dances.

Or something even better.

A regular girl. We're missing
a piece on Barry Speicher.

Catch him away from his rabbi,
we might be able to fill it in.

Is Barry here yet?

Barry who? Barry Speicher.

He asked us to meet him here.
Never heard of him.

Maybe we should take this
conversation out front

so everyone can see how much
you're enjoying yourselves.

Barry had to make a shiva call.

This is about his
Chumash, isn't it?

Our holy book was defiled. Someone
should be held accountable.

What do you know about it?

Just that it happened. And
the goy responsible is dead.

So why did Barry miss
this little celebration?

I'm serious. He's really
making a shiva call.

And he wouldn't skip this obligation
to cry on his girlfriend's shoulder?

There's no girlfriend. He just comes
in to relax, like the rest of us.

The rebbes say, a happy husband
makes a happy marriage.

Which Barry has. His only
flaw is being too trusting.

Should learn to put a lock on his building
so things like this don't happen.

His building? The synagogue?

He owns it. Him and his cousin.

It's not a secret.

Our congregation rents this property
from the Speichers' company.

Ben-Daniel Realty?

They've been charging
us the same rent

since Daniel and Ben
bought this place in 1952.

Which is what?

$800 a month.

For the whole building?

We couldn't afford to operate here
if we had to pay market rent.

The Speichers could
get a hundred times that.

Evicting your own synagogue must get
you in trouble with the man upstairs.

It's forbidden by the Talmud.

It's quite a mitzvah
that Barry is doing for us.

How about Eric?


After his Uncle Daniel died,
Eric stopped coming to services,

he doesn't even buy
a seat on the High Holy Days.

I tried talking to him about
it, he's not interested.

Look, I already told
you everything I know.

Yeah, like you said you were still
a member of the congregation.

I never said that.

You led us to believe that.

Are you accusing my husband
of misleading you?

We're accusing him of lying.

I think we should continue this
conversation at the precinct.

Then let's go. Eric...

Look, don't worry, baby. This is
all just a big misunderstanding.

Let me go clear it up.

Why did you make it seem like you
gave a damn about that book?

You think I don't care?

My Uncle Daniel and my father
were Holocaust survivors.

This is the holiest
book in our religion.

Which you don't
even use anymore.

I'm sorry, are you
attacking my beliefs now?

Don't get all high and
mighty with us, sit down.

Now, we know you don't go to synagogue,
and we know how you're living.

You'll like this.


You want to tell us about the
home that you own in Southampton?

Home of the Muffies
and the Maxwells?

That was 20 years ago, okay? There
are plenty of Jews there now.

And I'm sure they all used the same
ex-burglar that you used to build your patio.

We're going to bring in Kilgore's
girlfriend from Long Island.

Maybe you've met her before?

I might have, I know
people in construction.

Last week, at 86th and Columbus?

Okay, okay.

I paid Kilgore to go to the
synagogue and mess up the book.


The synagogue got
tagged a few times.

There'd been a lot of problems in
the neighborhood with the Arabs.

Barry's been threatening to sell the
building and move the congregation,

but he won't get off
his ass and do it.

You used this as a prod
to get him to sell it?

You know what we got offered
for that building recently?


So you paid somebody
to destroy the bible?

It's a book!

It's a book you just said your
cousin's father saved from the Nazis!

Oh, please! You know, Barry's
religion is all about him.

He loves to sit up there on
that bamah and feel important.

Every Rosh Hashana, he'll brag to
anybody who'll listen about how

he's leaving the business
and moving to Israel.

Yeah, well, guess what?

After five years of hearing that
crap, I got tired of waiting.

So you sent Kilgore there
to get his head beaten in?

It wasn't supposed
to happen like that.

How'd you work this
out with Kilgore?

Barry's in a study group
on Tuesday mornings.

I called his cell phone to tell him
there was an emergency at work.

So he'd be the one
to find the book.

I had no idea anybody
would get hurt.

Beside your cousin?

Beside my cousin.

You're interrupting, Detectives.

We have a warrant, Rabbi,
we need to see Mr. Speicher.

We're in the middle of
Ma'ariv, can't this wait? No.

What happened? We had a
talk with your cousin.

We found blood on the umbrella
stand in the coatroom.

That bastard did this,
didn't he?

You're under arrest for
the murder of Jeffrey Kilgore.

Can we please take this outside?

Too much has happened
in here already.

"Docket number 57503.
People v. Barry Speicher.

Charge of Murder
in the Second Degree."

How do you plead, Mr. Speicher?

Not guilty.

Co-owner of a real estate firm,
president of his congregation,

he looks like a pretty
good bail risk to me.

But he does have
contacts in Israel.

You want to hold
that against him?

Mr. Speicher had
an obvious motive

and an exclusive opportunity
to commit this crime.

The police recovered an umbrella
stand from Beth Tefiloh

with traces of the victim's blood and the
defendant's fingerprints all over it.

Along with God-knows-who else's.

Let me remind the court that the
so-called victim in this incident

was a burglar who desecrated
the holiest Judaic text.

License to murder him
in the street, Mr. Malloy?

Whoever killed Mr. Kilgore
was obviously responding

to the severest
form of provocation.

Perhaps justifiably so.

Uh, for the record,

my client intends
to testify at the grand jury.

I'm sure Ms. Borgia
can arrange that.

L won't set a parade
for you yet, Mr. Speicher.

Turn over your passport,
I'll set bail at $250,000.

Barry Speicher made bail
right after arraignment.

I booked some time in the grand
jury to present the case.

Your sense is that Speicher's
grand jury notice isn't a bluff?

It sounds like a prelude to some
kind of justification defense.

"L was protecting a book."

More like,
"I was protecting our faith."

From his cousin's

You weren't in the courtroom, Jack. This
isn't playing like a family dispute.

Speicher's some kind of hero.

Speicher's justification
defense won't hold water.

Inside the courtroom, maybe.

Have we had any plea
discussions with Malloy?


Well, set something up.

What are you looking for?

Man one. Sentence somewhere
near the minimum.

I don't know if that'll
do it for me, Arthur.

These cousins have done
a lot of damage.

Well, you don't have to tell me!

That's why we need
to do some fence-mending.

I got my best suit dry-cleaned!

I was expecting to be at the grand
jury tomorrow with my client.

You may still have a chance
to wear it, Mr. Malloy,

but I thought we should explore
whether there's any common ground

before we throw down
the gauntlet.

The only common ground
for my client is a dismissal.

Do you think you should walk
away soot-free, Mr. Speicher?

I'm not a criminal.

You beat somebody to death.

Are you a religious man,
Mr. McCoy?

That's beside the point.

I don't think you can fully wrap
your head around what happened here.

Then talk to me, Mr. Malloy.

Imagine finding someone defiling
the place where you pray.

Mutilating the cornerstone
of your faith.

I would be very upset,
but that doesn't...

Spare me the sanctimony!

We all know Mr. Speicher
isn't a Boy Scout.

This isn't just about
faith, this is about family!

Kilgore trashed
his father's legacy.

If that's your defense, you're
doing a disservice to your client.

The justification statute doesn't
cover a bible, or a memory.

It's about defending
an actual human being.

But I think that we can all agree that Mr.
Speicher acted in the heat of the moment!

He hammered Kilgore
with the 10-pound marble base

of an umbrella stand and
left him to bleed to death!

And I admit that,
but he had the book.

So, what does the bible you defended
deem appropriate, Mr. Speicher?

A free pass?

Of course not.

Because maybe the book is more
precious than a human life!

So if I'm found guilty,
how much time could I do?

On murder two, 25-to-life.

I have a wife,
I have five children

whose bar mitzvahs
I'll miss, weddings...

A plea to manslaughter would
solve most of those problems.

You'll recommend the minimum?

Five years, straight time.

Today only.

I guess that's fair.

When do you want to calendar
Speicher's sentencing?

Give him a month or two
to get his affairs in order.

She insisted on speaking
to you, Alexandra.

I'm Barry Speicher's wife.

I know, what can I do for you,
Mrs. Speicher?

My husband told me he's going
to jail for five years?

He agreed to it,
it was a plea bargain.

My husband is a good
man, a family man.

I'm sure that he is.

And now, because he can't work,
we have to sell the synagogue.

I'm sorry about that.

What about the congregation?

I don't know what's
going to happen.

But his cousin, yeah,
he got everything he wanted.

First, he sent that man into our
shul, paid him to use our Chumash

like toilet paper.

That's our religion,
Miss Borgia.

And for doing that to his own
people, you know what Eric gets?


That's all I want to say.

He hired a man
to mutilate a book.

That doesn't translate
into a homicide!

Kilgore died because Eric Speicher's
actions placed him in peril.

It's manslaughter.

He could foresee that his cousin was
going to fly into a violent rage?

That was his stated purpose.

Without the homicide!

You were out of the fire, now you want
to jump back into the frying pan.

Kilgore's dead
because Eric Speicher

aimed the most powerful gun
he could find at him!

Religious fervor.

The nitroglycerine
of the 21st century.

That's what makes me so nervous.

A Torah's been desecrated, and the only
people who are going to jail are Jewish!

What Eric Speicher
did is unconscionable.

If we can't go after the bad
guys, what's the point?

I'm all for going
after the bad guys

if we've got a legal
theory to hang our hat on!

I'll tell you what,

I'll handle the law if you'll
handle the political fallout.

Then we can remind ourselves
how noble our motives were,

as we're both sitting around waiting
for outplacement counseling.

Manslaughter? Oh, you are pulling
this one so far out of your...

It's textbook recklessness.

Your client should have considered the
consequences when he retained Kilgore

to burglarize a synagogue
and desecrate a family bible.

Look, I admit
I did a terrible thing.

Never mind that a man was killed,
you nearly started a race riot.

I never thought it would
turn out like that.

Have you read the front page of a
newspaper lately, Mr. Speicher?

You used religious paranoia
to shake down your cousin.

And the bottom line
is you acted out of greed!

You think it's that simple?

From where I sit,
it's about $7,000,000.

I've been treated like garbage, because
I won't buy into what they believe.

My father had to pay my Uncle
Daniel to make me a partner.

My holier-than-thou cousin, he
wouldn't even come to my wedding!

His family won't eat
what my wife makes,

they bring their own food
and paper plates...

Eric... Why? No!

Why do I have to live
my life by their rules?

You can live any way
you want to, Mr. Speicher,

you don't have to savage
other people's values!

All this self-righteous

"Oh, my father's sacred book,

"he saved it from the Nazis."
Please. Okay?

My Uncle Daniel was a
handler, a businessman,

he survived on his wits.

In the Warsaw Ghetto, he would have
traded that book for three potatoes!

And desecrating your cousin's bible was
going to get you your three potatoes.

I thought maybe they'd
get scared and move.

And a part of me just wanted
to lash out against Barry.



I never expected...


So, what can you
do for us, Mr. McCoy?

The same thing we do for a drunk
driver who causes a fatality.

Reckless manslaughter.

Six years.

But I didn't kill anybody!

That's why we have trials.

We'll call you to the
stand last, Mr. Speicher.

We'll put in all the pieces
with our other witnesses,

but then you'll tie
it all together.


You'll have to be totally truthful
about what you did to Jeff Kilgore.

I have no problem with that, as
long as I get to say what Eric did.

We'll get most of that in
through the other witnesses,

your testimony is primarily
to establish Eric's motive.

Can I tell how he
hated our religion?

Facts, Mr. Speicher.

That the only reason he ever
set foot in Beth Tefiloh

was so my father would give
him a piece of the business?

We want to focus on your
strained relationship.

Can I testify about the time that
son-of-a-bitch threatened to kill me?

Look, Mr. Speicher. You can't
come off like a hothead.

The whole idea here is that even
though you've killed somebody,

you've also been victimized
by your cousin's actions.

It wasn't just me.

Can I tell about all the arguments
we had over the synagogue?

Let's go over these
things one by one.

Jeff asked me to go into the city and
pick up some money some guy owed him.

Did he say what for?

A job. He was supposed
to get $2,500 up front.

What instructions did Jeff
give you for the meeting?

Just to go to the corner
of 86th and Columbus.

The guy would know what I'd look
like and he'd give me the cash.

And did you go there?


Do you see the man you met
that day in the courtroom?


Him. The defendant.

Did Mr. Speicher say anything
to you at that time?

To make sure I tell Jeff that the
job needs to be done on Tuesday

at 9:30 or else he wouldn't
get the rest of the money.

He set up my boyfriend
to be killed!

A group of men from our congregation
meet every Tuesday morning at 8:45

for Talmudic study.

Barry Speicher was
one of the group.

How long do these sessions
last, Rabbi Geller?

An hour.

So Barry Speicher would leave
every Tuesday at 9:45?

Usually. But this morning,

he had a call on his
mobile phone, at 9:30.

He said it was an emergency,
and he had to leave.

People's D.

Do you recognize
this book, Rabbi?

Yes, that was Barry's Chumash.

He kept it in the sanctuary.

Are you aware of the
history of this book?

Yes, it belonged to
Barry's father, Daniel,

who was also a member of the
congregation before he passed away.

And how did his father
come by this book?

You traveled with Daniel Speicher to
Poland to retrieve this book, didn't you?

I traveled with Daniel
to Poland in 1978, yes.

Could you please
elaborate, Rabbi?

We drove to a
village near Warsaw

called, uh, Glogowek.

Daniel had passed
through there in 1943

as he was running away
from the Nazis.

We went to find where
he hid the Chumash.

Daniel had wrapped it in canvas,

so he was very sure that
it would still be there.

But when we drove
down that road,

the farm was gone.
It was a tire factory.

Why didn't you ever mention
this before, Rabbi?

I've wrestled with this since
the Chumash was destroyed.

I know how hard
it's going to be.

But with everything
that's happened,

I think it's finally time for the
congregation to know the truth.

So where did this
book come from?

It was purchased in a bookshop in
Warsaw before Daniel and I left Poland.

No one knew about this till
now, not even his own family.

Why did you go along
with this deception?

How do I explain
this to you, Mr. McCoy?

The bible is full of stories
that may be apocryphal.

Do we believe that
Methuselah lived 900 years?

Or that Moses
parted the Red Sea?

Their truth is in the inspiration
that we gather from them.

And this particular book
inspired a lot of people.

Even if it isn't the same book,

it's just a symbol
of our survival.

And I don't see
what's wrong with that.

Big surprise in there,
any second thoughts, Jack?


Your client was acting under the
assumption the book was genuine.

Look what this religious
stuff does to people.

Wasn't it enough
that my uncle survived?

Why'd he have to come
home with a fake book?

I don't know, Mr. Speicher, but
none of it justifies what you did.

As I was leaving
the synagogue that morning,

I saw the torn pages
of a Chumash on the floor.

Then I heard pages ripping,

then I saw a man tearing
apart my father's book.

What did you do?

I screamed at him,
"What are you doing?"

He ran toward the door
with the book in his hands,

I picked up a... Umbrella
stand and went after him.

What then, Mr. Speicher?

He got outside, and I
started swinging at him.

I hit him several times
and he fell to the ground.

Which is where you left him?

Lying on the book. I...

Took the umbrella stand and
put it back in the coatroom.

And I got in a cab.

Without telling anybody
or getting help?

I was too angry and
scared to think straight.

Did your cousin Eric know how
much this book meant to you?

Mr. Speicher?

I killed Jeffrey Kilgore,

not Eric, I did.
I'm going to prison for it.

This trial shouldn't
be happening.

At the time of this incident,

how was your business
relationship with your cousin?

It was fine, really,
not bad at all.

Weren't you having
a heated dispute

about the building which housed
the Beth Tefiloh synagogue?

Objection, leading.


Did Eric ever threaten
you because of this?

Objection! No, he never did.

Could we have a 30-minute
recess, Your Honor?

Take an hour, Mr. McCoy, I
think you're going to need it.

What's going on, Mr. Speicher?
You're committing perjury!

You're trying
to put Eric in jail,

I'm the one who did this.

You know perfectly well
he set everything in motion.

You've blamed him yourself!

Well, I don't anymore. Not now.

Because the book isn't real?

Because my father lied to me.

Your cousin didn't know that
when he hired Kilgore.

He used your religious faith
as a weapon against you!

Ha, well, I'll say
one thing about Eric,

he was smart enough to put
his faith into something

that he could get his hands on.

You're better than
that, Mr. Speicher!

No, I'm not.

I wouldn't sell the building
to teach him a lesson.

We're exactly alike, we ripped each
other's throats out over a lie.

I killed a man. For what?

Now, see, I just can't
go through with this now.

It isn't your decision,
Mr. Speicher.

A man was murdered, and everyone who was
involved has to be held responsible.

But it's too late.

The people who are really
responsible are all dead.

Can I go now?

Without Barry Speicher's
testimony, you can't prove motive.

What little case you had
jumped the paddock fence.

I still have enough
to go to a jury.

Well, I'd dismiss the manslaughter
count, salvage a burglary conviction.

And forget that Eric Speicher masterminded
the events which led to a man's death?

It was a reach from the outset.

One supported by the law.

There are other concerns
besides the law.


Credibility with a jury.

Which reminds me, I intend to file
perjury charges against Barry Speicher.

No, you won't.

We're not going to prolong this
battle royal with the Speichers.

This isn't a vendetta, Arthur.

We're lucky that the only
casualty here was an accomplice!

Well, sometimes
criminals get lucky.

And we don't charge them
with what almost happened.

And when the next provocateur
desecrates a mosque...

To make a political statement
or insult a family member?

It doesn't matter why you yell
fire in a crowded theater.

In this day and age, you can't
use religion as a provocation!

This is exactly the kind of situation
where you need to send a message.

Not everything fits
your little orthodoxy, Jack.

Interesting choice of words.

You're practicing your own
form of fundamentalism!

Now, I gave you some lead,
it's time to reel it in.


Or do I have to tear up a copy
of McKinney's to make my point?

Your Honor,

due to the recantation of
crucial facts by this witness,

I move to withdraw
his previous testimony

and have it stricken
from the record.

Is that true, Mr. Speicher?


I take it you won't
oppose this, Ms. Quaid?

Of course not.

Motion's granted.

But we will proceed to verdict
with the burglary charge.

Ladies and gentlemen,
have you reached a verdict?

We have, Your Honor.

Please rise, Mr. Speicher.

On count of burglary in the
third degree, how do you find?

We find the defendant,
Eric Speicher, guilty.

Can I have one second?

I'm sorry.

With the hate enhancement
on his burglary conviction,

Eric Speicher's facing
the same time as his cousin.

I suppose there's some
rough justice in that.

Very rough.

They're asking the judge to send them
to the same correctional facility.

Talk about family values.

It took a shredded bible and a
homicide to bring this bunch together.

And a lie.