Law & Order (1990–2010): Season 2, Episode 6 - Misconception - full transcript

A young pregnant woman is found beaten and has a miscarriage, Cerreta and Logan are soon led to the lawyer she was working for, who may or may not have been involved in the attack.

Narrator: In the criminal justice
system, the people are represented

by two separate, yet
equally important groups...

The police who
investigate crime,

and the district attorneys
who prosecute the offenders.

These are their stories.

So my brother-in-law
moves into Hell's Kitchen...

Man: The doctor? The genius.

Quarter mill on 46th Street.

He says he's a pioneer.

Hope he's got a gun.

I'm just happy for the overtime.

We do all the work,
they make all the bucks.

Come on, I called
a cab. I'll drop you.

Charging it to a client.

You live in Queens...
Where're you gonna drop me?

We'll swing over
to your place...

No, that's okay, I'm just gonna take
a subway. It's the only exercise I get.

- You sure?
- Sure, I do it all the time.


Where to, lady?

Gooden's pitching.
The kid should see it.

She's never heard of
negotiation? You swap days.

Nope... by the book,
every other weekend.

I gotta call my damn lawyer to
take my kid to the frickin' zoo.

Dispatch: 27 car
for a signal 1056.

Corner of Water and
Vesey, in the alley.

27-Charlie, 10-4.

- Jesus.
- Central K,
we have a female down.

Need ambulance on
corner of Water and Vesey.

Dispatch: Roger, 27.

Call came in at 1:17.
We were down the corner.

- A mugging?
- Too hysterical to talk.

- Where's the caller?
- Joined the silent majority.

9-1-1 anonymous.

Probably used the
payphone around the corner.

Found it down the block. License
says her name is Amy Newhouse.

453 West 45th.

I got 10 bucks says she's taken
self-defense at the 92nd Street Y.

I wish they'd teach these
people it's not worth the fight.

Well, I doubt this one
put up much of a fight.

- What makes you say that?
- She's preggo. Out to here.

Tough town.

12 hours in ER
you see everything.

- Did you see Amy Newhouse?
- Yeah, I admitted her
around 2:00 a.m.

Roughed up, nothing's broken.

Scratches, scrapes, bruises.

It's a first for this rotation... it
looks like the patient'll be just fine.

Paramedic said she was pregnant.

Yeah, maybe five, six months.


Some women sneeze too
hard it causes a miscarriage.

Others, they run a triathlon
and everything's hunky-dory.

What's that, a medical term?

Partial abruption
of the fetus...

The placenta starts to
separate from the uterine wall.

We've got her hooked
up to fetal monitors.

All we can do is wait and
see. You catch the guy?


Belongs in a cage. Talk
about your sociopaths.

This guy kicks her two, maybe
three times right in the belly.

- Can you tell us
where we can find her?
- Yeah, upstairs. 612, South.

I only had $20.

Credit cards?

I don't have any.

Amy, can you remember
anything about this man?

How tall he might have been or
something he might have said?

Cerreta: It's
okay. It's all right.

He grabbed me from
behind. I never even saw him.

He took my bag.

The next thing, I
was on the ground.

My baby, my...

He took your bag and
then he kicked you?

What were you
doing out at that hour?

My... my boss kept me late.

I work for a law firm...
Wood, Carlton & Troy.

Has anybody
contacted your husband?

I'm not married.

The father?


He's at work. He's a cabbie.

You know, I would have
given that man my money.

- What about the baby?
- So far so good.

New York was Amy's idea.

She saw "Working
Girl" one too many times.

You think that bunch of
lawyers gives a damn about her,

keeping her
there till all hours?

She always walk to
the subway that late?

She's a secretary of some hotshot
partner. Jerk thinks he owns her.

A million times I asked
her what she needed

that job for, but she
wanted the overtime.

Maybe now we can
go back to Wisconsin.

Look, I've got to
get to the hospital.

She's gonna be okay. The
baby is a question mark.

Great, so for 20 bucks
we might have a murder.

He already had her bag.
He didn't need to kick her.

And this city is known
for its mental health?

Or maybe somebody had
something else in mind.

Like, for instance?

Like causing a miscarriage.

That's a hell of a
way to get your jollies.

Well, run the MO
through the assault files.

Could be this started
closer to home.

All right, talk to
the neighbors.

See if you can get a
read on the boyfriend.

Ah, I'm sorry... My
hearing, you know.

The best thing about getting
old is you only have to do it once.

That Amy? Oh, she's a doll!

She brings me the
papers every day.

The stairs, you know.

They're such a nice, young
couple. And now a baby!

So Chris was happy
about the baby?

He thought he was too young.

I was his age when I was
already expecting my third.

- Mrs. Fisher, listen.
- Hmm.

Did you ever hear anything...

you know, strange coming
from their apartment?

Well, since Sam died,

I only turn these on for guests.

Are you kiddin'?

The walls are like toilet paper.
This isn't exactly Gramercy Park.

Did you ever hear
anything out of the ordinary?

Put it this way, every time
he's in the mood, I know about it.

Couple of horny
toads. Oughta be a law.

- Any violence?
- Yeah, sure.

The guy blew his top
every now and again.

Did you ever see
Chris actually hit Amy?

Last spring she had
a cast on her arm.

And you think Chris caused that?

She said she fell. Who
am I to say otherwise?

In my opinion, the guy's a dip.

A fare wanted to
go to Forest Hills,

he took him to Forest Lawn.

- You kept him on.
- Almost a year.

Honest beats smart anytime.

Was Chris on duty Tuesday night?

Graveyard, 12:00 to 8:00.

How much trouble could
he get into after midnight?

Can you tell me where
he was around 1:00?

Somewhere on the LIE.

Picked up a fare at
79th and Columbus,

took him out to Kennedy.
37 bucks on the meter,

another 40 comin' home.

He was in the wrong borough
at the time of the attack.

So much for Ken popping Barbie.

That's no alibi.

Hey, summer of '82, I
hacked part-time to pay tuition.

Sometimes in the middle
of the night, I'd get lonely.

I'd park my cab in front
of Janey Meyer's house,

leave the meter
running, go inside,

take care of business,
pay the fare myself.

Which would amount
to what, about $2, $3?

Like going to Jersey and back.

Let's go talk to the girl.

Back home we had the
real thing... 120 pounds.

His name was Regis.

He shouldn't have spent
the money, but that's Chris.

So Chris was happy
about the baby?

Mmm, it's all he talked about.

All he wants out of life is a
wife and half a dozen kids.

Amy, we know about
your broken arm last spring.

You want to tell
us how you got it?

I fell down.

In the middle of a fight?

No, I told you that...

Amy, there's no reason to
protect Chris if he did this to you.

What do you think,
Chris is an animal?

He wouldn't hurt me or his baby.

Look, he hit her once,
he'd hit her again.

This much is clear. She is
lying about the broken arm.

You think he
wanted to nix the kid?

Wait a minute, wait a minute...
Wife beatings are spontaneous.

Are you saying he
actually drove crosstown

then waited outside her
office in order to pop her?

All right, a theory.

Chris wasn't as happy about
fatherhood as Amy would have us believe.

She wouldn't get an abortion,
so it was a do-it-yourself job.

Okay, so he loses his
temper now and then.

But beat her enough
so she'll lose the baby?

Any way you look at it, the
wheel stops at the boyfriend.

He's got buttons, push 'em.

I know how it is, Chris.

She ticks you off, so
maybe you lose your temper.

It happens all the time.

Maybe I hit her once,

but that was a long time
ago, before she got pregnant.

I'd like to believe you,

but whoever did this to
Amy had one thing in mind.

You think I would hurt my baby?

Hey, I know how tough
it is raising a family.

You're broke, you're young...
The last thing you need...

We'd get by.

Chris, if you speak up now,
maybe the DA will listen.

The DA?


- Amy's pressing charges?
- Nobody's under arrest.

She knows I couldn't have done
this... I love her. I love the baby.

Amy had a miscarriage.

Oh God!

If the fetus was less
than 24 weeks old,

there's no homicide, and
all we've got is assault.

- You've got to be kidding me.
- That's the statute.

That's great, so a bunch of lawyers decide
if you're alive enough to be murdered.

Better yet, it could
vary state to state.

Wonderful... good thing they weren't
traveling cross-country when he beat her.

It would have been like tic-tac-toe...
here we charge you, here we don't.

What do you want me to tell
you, the law always makes sense?

Our is not to question why...
We just pick up the garbage.

Fellas, just try to find out
how far along this girl was.

Without the trauma, she
would have had a healthy boy.

Can you tell us if the
fetus was 24 weeks old?

The BPD is 5.8 centimeters.

Femur length's 4.4.

My opinion? Probably
about 25 weeks.

In other words, there's
no way to tell for sure.

Did you check with
her regular OB?

She says she didn't have one.

Look, I don't know
what to tell you.

We take amnios,
we run sonograms,

but the best way is the old
way... Counting backwards.

Amy, the DA does not
like hostile witnesses.

There's always a chance that he's
gonna charge you with obstruction.

You don't want to go
to jail for Chris, do you?


Chris did hit me once.

But it was a long time ago.

He... he found
out I was cheating.

With whom?

My boss.

Your current boss, Mr. Alcott?

It was his baby.

Chris didn't know that.

Chris thought he was the father.

Was Mr. Alcott in the
office on Tuesday night?

Yeah, he left 10
minutes before I did.

I'm sorry about the mess.

It's been 15-hour days since
November with the take-over.

Amy said that you were
with her the night of the attack.

Yeah. I heard about the baby.

Look, I... I feel responsible.

I kept her here late that night.

We had to be at the
printer at 8:00 a.m.

- I had the temp
send her flowers.
- Cerreta: Mm-hmm.

What time did you leave?

Oh, it must have been
about a quarter of 1:00.

I asked her to finish
typing an opinion letter

and fax it to our
clients in Houston.

And then she... I just told
her she could go home.

I knew she liked to
walk, but at that hour...

- You see anybody hanging around
outside the building?
- No, sorry.

- Grabbed a cab,
went up to my club.
- At one in the morning?

I live in Mamaroneck.

If I were to go home,
I'd just have to hop

right back on the train
and come back to the city.

I always stay at the club
when I'm forced to work late.

- Is that often?
- Law isn't 9:00 to 5:00.

So your relationship with Amy
was purely professional, right?

My wife was summa at Bryn Mawr.

Amy is a sweet young girl.

She's not my type.

Cerreta: So this is the place
for the other woman, huh?

Man: Members
have their own rules.

Wives, they take to the
Yale Club, the Knickerbocker.

But here, it's strictly

What about Mr. Alcott?

Nice guy, drinks
Johnny Black, straight up.

Does he drink it alone?


last year I picked
up an extra 10 grand

in stock tips in a down market.

A big part of the
job is keeping quiet.

Yeah, right.

I can get very long-winded when
I pull people in for questioning.

Sometimes it can go into
the middle of the evening.

And then, if I don't happen to
tell my partner what I asked you,

that could, I don't
know, go... what?

- At least another day.
- Oh yeah.

All right.

Off the record...

yeah, Alcott has a
good time now and then.


With her?

Yeah, Ms. Meyers and tonic.

Tuesday night, was he here?

Came in around 1:00.

I'm supposed to close the place
up, but what the hell... he's a regular.

Belted down a couple,
hit the rooms upstairs.

Chris isn't my type... A
little rough around the edges.

But Amy must have
seen something in him.

They get along?

Used to be pretty rocky.

But when Amy got pregnant,
Chris was all lovey-dovey.

What about her boss, Alcott?

Well, a lawyer. Enough said.

Amy told us she was seeing him.

She said that the baby was his.

Set up an appointment for her at
some fancy Park Avenue OB-GYN.

He was gonna pay
for the whole thing

and then send her on a cruise
off to St. Thomas... real sport.

But she didn't want
an abortion, right?

She didn't want to
go through with it.

Alcott exploded.

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

What now, the security
guard saw us together?

Actually, it was the
bartender at your club.

I told you, when I work late at the
office, I spend the night at the club.

Sometimes Amy brings
me papers from the office.

I bought her a drink... That
doesn't mean we're lovers

and it doesn't mean
that I beat her up.

She says she was
carrying your baby.

She's very convincing.


My daughter swears
there's a tooth fairy,

but that doesn't make it so.

I have clients waiting,
if you don't mind.

Of course he denied it.

I've been a legal
secretary for four years...

They're all risk-adverse.

Logan: You ever ask him
to submit to a blood test?

He never questioned
that it was his baby.

At this point, he denies
ever having slept with you.

Unfortunately, it comes
down to your word against his.

How appropriate.

He loved to dictate.

The law wasn't the
only thing on his mind.

I thought I might need it
sometime for protection.

Alcott's voice: With the
marital deduction trust,

the after-tax savings
to the next generation

will be 280,000.

I love to see you
naked in the shower...


God, she's the one who wanted
me to make that tape, you know.

She asked me to do
it... Said it made her hot.

It doesn't sound like
she's the only one.

Come on, it was
a Christmas party.

It was the first one I had been to
in years. I had too much to drink.

- And she was your present?
- All right, all right,
so I slept with her.

It's been five or six months.

- And once she got pregnant?
- I put on the brakes
once she got pregnant.

- I begged her
to get an abortion.
- So it was your baby.

She said she'd stopped
sleeping with her boyfriend.

- You believed that?
- It's a 50-50 shot... what am I gonna do?

I can't afford a paternity suit.

I said I'd help her out
financially. I could live with that.

True or false? Your life is
much easier if she miscarries.

Now hold on now. No, no.

The boyfriend knew that
she was sleeping around.

He probably did it.

She's lucky he
didn't have a shotgun.


Chris knew it was David's baby.

Yeah, so how did he
react when he found out?

He was mad, but...

he didn't hit me.

He didn't do this.

Hey, listen, you've been
jerkin' us around since day one.


Chris thought this baby
would make us rich.

He said Alcott would
have to pay for his mistake.

Are you telling us that
you blackmailed Alcott?

I didn't want to do it at first,

but Chris said I was entitled.

And did he pay?

$2,000. We figured it
was like a security blanket,

in case he tried to fire me.

But then Chris kept saying that
this baby was our meal ticket,

and he was sure that Alcott would
pay big money to keep us quiet.

I didn't say anything
before, because...

Will we have to go to jail?

They're a couple of hayseeds who thought
they'd squeeze Alcott for the big bucks.

Okay, Alcott had a lot to lose...
money, wife and kids, partnership.

- And the other secretary...
- Beverly Kern.

Said he has one
hell of a temper.

Alcott left the office knowing that
Amy would be down in a few minutes.

He knew her route home, he
waited in the alley, and bingo.

- Witnesses?
- One... reported
the attack, disappeared.

So you've got motive
and opportunity.

It's all circumstantial.

Come on, Paul,
the guy's a lawyer.

He's gonna be talkin' deal
before we slap the cuffs on him.

- I'd hock the house on it!
- Assault's a possibility.

Murder may still be a
stretch with a 24-week statute.

I'm game if you are.


Excuse me, you just can't
walk in without an appointment!

David Alcott, you
are under arrest

for the murder of the unborn
son of Amy Newhouse.

You have the right
to remain silent.

If you choose to not
exercise that right,

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

You have the right
to an attorney...

Bailiff: Docket number 1422...
People versus David M. Alcott.

The charges are murder in the second
degree, assault in the first degree.

How does the defendant plead?

This is absurd, Your
Honor. These charges...

This is not a
boardroom, Mr. Alcott.

Mr. Manley, does your
client plan to enter a plea?

Not guilty, Your Honor.

- Applications?
- $250,000 bail, Your Honor.

- What?!
- That is unconscionable!

My client is an esteemed
member of the bar.

Aren't we all, Mr. Manley?

It would be court-sanctioned
extortion, Your Honor.

The People's case hardly
rises to the level of frivolity.

Your regard for our
judicial system is admirable.

The bail is set at $100,000.

No way is it murder...
I just talked with Alcott.

- You can read minds?
- No, but I can read a calendar.

The first time they slept
together? The Christmas party.

That's 20 weeks
before the attack.

Good theory, only she says they started
sleeping together in early December.

Who do you think the
jury's gonna believe?

Come on! No
witnesses, no evidence.

Even assault is a stretch.

Do everyone a favor.

Menacing. Under the carpet,

quick and easy. No time.

- A "B" misdemeanor?
- Yeah.

Try man one... He
attacked her with intent.

- He is innocent, Paul.
- Come on, Jer...

He has a family, a reputation...

Fine, tell his family
they get visiting days.

I need Chris and
Amy to convict Alcott,

so why not plead him down
to petty larceny? Probation.

On extortion? They already
admitted to blackmailing him.

They're kids, Adam. A jury'll
acquit on sympathy alone.

Even with them
it's rough sailing.

No physical evidence,
only eye witness vanished.

Alcott's going to walk into that
courtroom with a suitcase full of respect.

- That's no defense.
- It's reasonable doubt.

Maybe if you want to make a
case for assault, but murder?

The statute says 24 weeks.
Manley's got an expert.

He's got his
expert, I've got mine.

Yeah, you pay 'em
enough, they'll say anything.

Chris worked
nights, I worked days.

I was lonely.

David didn't force
me... I wanted to go.

When did you first start
sleeping with Mr. Alcott?

I don't know... we started
working late on a takeover deal.

It must have been
early December.

And how long had
this been going on?

Maybe a month...

Until I got pregnant.

Stone: What happened
when you got pregnant?

He told me I had
to get an abortion.

He told me it was
the right thing.

What was your response to that?

I couldn't do it.

And how did
Mr. Alcott react to that?

Amy: He threatened to fire me,

but I told him that I
would go to the EEOC.

In other words, you thought you
would blackmail the defendant?

He owed us.

He got her pregnant...
He should pay.

How much should he pay?

He gave us 2,000. I
told Amy to ask for 10.

Stone: And what if he refused?

We'd go to his wife,

and then we'd sue the
partnership for sex discrimination.

- He threw her
out of his office.
- And what did you do?

I went to see him myself.

I said the price
went up to 20,000.

He said it would
be a cold day in hell

before some white
trash screwed up his life.

He wouldn't give a nickel.

Mishon: I measured
the biparietal diameter

and the femur
lengths of the fetus.

Indicating what, Doctor?

- That the fetus was
25 weeks old.
- Thank you.

There are several ways of
determining the age of a fetus.

Isn't that true, Dr. Mishon?

BPD measurements
can be taken inter-uterally

by sonogram or in a
post-rejection autopsy of the fetus.

And when did you take
these measurements, Doctor?

In an autopsy... that certainly is
the more accurate of the methods.


And what is the margin of error

for post-rejection
BPD measurements?

Well, that can vary
with equipment, and...

What is the accepted
margin of error?

Plus or minus
two to three weeks.

So, Ms. Newhouse's
fetus could have been

22 weeks old.

Isn't that correct?


Thank you, Doctor.

Your Honor, considering the fact

that not even the prosecution's
expert can say with confidence

that the fetus in question

is at least 24 weeks of age,

I move that the charge of murder

in the second degree
be dismissed immediately.

Your Honor,
Dr. Mishon has testified...

In my chambers, gentleman.

Mr. Stone knows full well that he
should not have brought those charges.

It's obvious he's only trying to
back in to the lesser-charged felony.

You should have raised
this issue in pre-trial motions.

Oh, be serious, Ben.

I can parade a dozen
experts through that courtroom.

You only tacked on
murder to outrage the jury.

Now they'd convict him
for killing JFK for Godsakes.

The age of the fetus is a
question of fact for the jury.

No, Mr. Stone, it's a
question of law for me.

The defendant's
motion is granted.

There's nothing we can do?

The statute is clear, but medical
science unfortunately is not.

You mean, if it happened
two weeks later, he'd go to jail?

The assault charges
weren't dismissed.

He could still serve five-to-15.

Five years for a life?

We heard the heartbeat.
We felt the kicks.

I'm sorry, Amy.

Manley's smart.

You get an assault conviction

and he claims that
any evidence relating

to the loss of the
fetus was improper.

That's why he didn't object
to the charge prior to trial.

If it's a mistrial, Alcott
walks away untouched.


Thank you.

Not quite untouched.

Chris and Amy just filed a
$10-million lawsuit against Alcott.

Retained counsel... Jacob Bloom.

- The king of torts?
- The prince of darkness.

The woman miscarried. We're
talking major league suffering.

Not to mention the
lifetime earnings potential

of a healthy, white male.

You win the criminal
side, cuts my work in half.

I'm rooting for you.

Mr. Alcott is
bucking for a mistrial.

This kind of publicity
won't hurt his cause.

You've got no limitations
problem. You could have waited.

Is this jealousy I'm hearing?

It's nausea.

Ambulance chasing
always brings that out in me.

Ooh, you better check
your playbill, Mr. Robinette.

Your friends came to me the day
after she got out of the hospital.

I had a helluva time
convincing her to wait

for the criminal case to begin.

I'll say that was a pretty
short period of mourning.

My secretary's cat died,
she took a week off from work.

Million dollar damages.

It's the American dream, I
guess, but some people'll

make it anyway they can.

There's always the chance
that she's suing on principle.

What do we know about
Amy Newhouse, anyway?

Some firms have
switched to HMOs,

but we still stand by your
basic health coverage.

- So check-ups aren't covered?
- Not unless they find
something wrong.

Here we go... Amy Newhouse
put in a claim February 3rd.

Company reimbursed
her on the 18th.

- There was something wrong?
- For most people, pregnancy
is a blessing.

Insurance companies
call it a disability.

Do you have her doctor's name?

Bernard Gluck, 36th and Third.

Amy Newhouse.

Healthy young girl.
Everything was fine.

On February 3, you told
her she was pregnant?

No, that was just a
check-up. I told her

she was pregnant back
in December, the 19th.

That boyfriend of hers...
He nearly jumped for joy.

I haven't seen her
since. How's she doing?

Not too well.

Alcott's voice: Letter
re: Barsky Family Trust.

As per my prior communication,
the tax savings will benefit

two generations without running
afoul of the generation skipping tax.

Last night was spectacular.

You were right, it
was worth the wait.

Better than I ever imagined.

First sight of you naked...

So what? We admitted
he had the affair.

It sounds to me like
you dictated that letter

the day after your
first night with Amy.

- There is a point to this?
- It was dated the 23rd
of December.

The day after the
Christmas party.

How many times do I have to
tell you... I told you she was lying!

So there is no way
the baby was 24 weeks.

You made me jump
through hoops for nothing.

Save the theatrics, Jerry. The
murder charges were dismissed.

The point is, her doctor says she was
already pregnant on the 19th of December.

That little... I want this
case dropped immediately

and I want a public apology.

So the baby couldn't
have been mine.

They knew all along
that Chris was the father.

They set Alcott
up for blackmail.

That doesn't affect his guilt.

What's important is that
he thought the baby was his.

The creeps... They
manipulate this office,

the police, Alcott,
right from the start.

They're liars... doesn't
make 'em killers.

Maybe the blackmail
is a camouflage.

Maybe their ultimate
goal is a civil suit.

There may be more to Chris
than we originally thought.

He practiced law in Wisconsin.

And now he's driving a cab?

Disbarred in '89.

What are you gonna do, Ben?

Well, straightforward's
not gonna work with 'em.

We've gotta hit 'em from behind.

If the light at the end of
that tunnel is a civil suit,

why not seal up the tunnel?

Judge Burton owes you a favor.

Call one in. Get
me a continuance.

What the hell is his
wife's name? Sally?

Your husband may be guilty
of many things, Mrs. Alcott,

but we're not convinced one of
them is attacking a pregnant woman.

You're not required
to help them, Marti.

No, you're not.

But I'm sure your
attorney has told you

that cause has no bearing
on the property distribution.

In books, Mr. Robinette.

In real life, it
goes a long way.

You'll get your divorce.

You'll get his money.

But the penalties for adultery do
not include 25 years behind bars.

Maybe they should.

Maybe then they would
keep their pants on.

David will pay for
this, Mr. Robinette.


If he goes to jail, Chris and Amy's
civil suit against him is a sure winner.

And in that case,
there'll be a lot less

to divide up after the divorce.

What are you proposing?

I'm sure it doesn't surprise you
that Mrs. Alcott has commenced

a divorce proceeding
against her husband.

Chris: And you
want Amy to testify?

As a matter of fact, no. I
want you to drop the civil suit.

Why in the world would we...

- For a million
dollars, that's why.
- We're suing for 10 million.

First of all, let me
assure you that

Mr. Alcott's net worth
is barely $2 million,

half of which I'm claiming
for Mrs. Alcott in her divorce.

Fraudulent conveyance.

We'll recapture the funds.

Very good, Chris.

But I want you to know that I
can tie up his assets for years

pending the divorce settlement.

I've already got a restraining
order on his bank accounts,

his partnership draw
is being garnished,

and tomorrow we start on
pendente lite maintenance

and child support.

I wouldn't mess with
me if I were you, Chris.

By the time you see a dime,
it won't be worth a nickel.

- And what's in it for you?
- Mrs. Alcott will drop
the divorce proceedings...

And I'll let the son
of a bitch rot in jail

while I spend whatever
money he has left.

Cowan: Take a million now...

drop the civil suit,
and everybody's happy.

Amy's voice: It was
hardly worth the trouble.

- So much
for suing on principle.
- These two are unbelievable.

Cowan's voice: I can have
a check for you tomorrow.

Amy's voice: Let's just take
the money and get out of here.

The grieving mother.

Does that constitute proof?

Couldn't they say
they got over it quickly?

First of all, Chris was
the father, not Alcott.

Chris and Amy knew that,
but made Alcott think it was his.

- In order to blackmail him.
- In order to file a civil suit.

They weren't going for singles.

These people were going
for the long ball, extra bases.

Staging this whole thing...
That's a helluva couple.

So this whole thing was a scam?

- The beating, the affair?
- My guess, Chris was
the anonymous caller.

And we need you
to break his alibi.

You're the ex-cabbie.

Gimme the book.

Yeah, sure, for insurance
purpose, we check the odometer

of every cab when it
comes in, when it goes out.

Every cab, every day, huh?

You screw up the insurance, they
take away your medallion like that.

Cab 34, be my guest.

Guess what? He's only
half as smart as we thought.

The kid paid off the meter, but he didn't
know that they check the mileage every day.

The only way he
trekked out to Kennedy

airport is if they moved
it to Times Square.

The odometer's 40 miles short.

- And so is his alibi.
- Read 'em their rights.

We've already plead
them out on blackmail.

Experts cannot establish
the age of the fetus,

so murder's out of
the question, too.

Is this true or false?

Amy and Chris intended
to cause a miscarriage.

True, only what they
did wasn't a crime.

But they didn't know that.

Famous law school hypothetical:

I shoot a bullet into
the heart of a man

who appears to be sleeping.

Only he wasn't
sleeping, he was dead.

- Am I guilty?
- Not of murder?

But I didn't know
he was already dead.

I thought I was
committing a crime.

Chris and Amy thought
they were committing a crime.

So they had a guilty mind.

- If not for murder, for...
- Attempted murder.

Learn from your
past mistakes, Stone.

The fetus wasn't legally alive,

ergo you can't
make it legally dead,

ergo you can't
convict on murder.

No one's disagreeing
with you, Ms. Bayliss,

but if you read the
indictment, your clients

are being charged
with attempted murder.

Same difference.

I don't think so. A man buys a
pound of sugar thinking it's heroin.

We all know it's no crime
to buy a pound of sugar.

But, Ms. Bayliss, in every
jurisdiction in the country

the man is convicted of attempted
possession of illegal narcotics.

Yes, Mr. Stone, but if your
man knew for a fact it was sugar,

he's as free as a bird.

Amy: I hate to spoil
your fun, Mr. Stone,

but I assure you, after
three years of law school,

Chris knows how to
read a murder statute.

And I certainly knew how
long I'd been pregnant.

She sat there and admitted
she killed her own baby.

I swear, her pulse
didn't rise above 60.

They knew both the age
of the fetus and the law.

- No murder, no attempt.
- They have proof?

She did have an OB confirm
the home pregnancy test,

plus our young hero Chris'
statement that he knew the statute.

Are you trying to tell me
that a woman that smart

would willingly
sacrifice her body?

That's hard to believe.

Bad and brains are
not mutually exclusive.

Maybe she was abused, but she
was part of this thing from the start.

If she couldn't form the intent,

if she was acting
under Chris' will...

You saw her... that baby was no
more important to her than a watch,

something she could
hock for a quick buck.

We've got to go
forward with this.

You fire an unloaded
gun at me, it's attempt.

You know that the gun is
not loaded, that's nothing.

To be acquitted, I'd have to
prove I knew the gun wasn't loaded.

Chris and Amy will
have to prove they knew

they weren't committing a
crime and take the stand.

Credibility is a
question for the jury.

Exactly... I open up the
slightest hole in their story,

I give the jury the opportunity,
they'll do the right thing.

You want a jury to
ignore the evidence?

No, Chris and Amy want
the jury to look at the law.

I'll get the jury to
look at Chris and Amy.

Adam: The law's supposed
to be a shield, not a sword.

They're despicable, yes.

But by letter of the
law, they're not guilty.

The legislature could never have
conceived of anything like this.

But wrong should not win by
technicalities. You know that yourself.

Get these bastards
off the street.

Chris: We knew that if everything
went wrong and Amy miscarried

we couldn't be tried for murder.

We knew that Amy'd been
pregnant for less than 24 weeks.

But you're not charged
with murder, Chris,

you're charged with attempt.

It's a joke.

You think we would go
through all this and not be sure?

- I knew it wasn't a crime.
- How's that?

Three years, University of
Wisconsin School of Law,

two years practicing
in Fond du Lac.

Thank you.

As an attorney, you are aware
that the definition of murder

- varies from state to state.
- Chris: Sure.

So that what constitutes murder in
Wisconsin may be different in New York?

- That's right.
- Did you ever attend
law school in New York?

- No, but I...
- Yes or no, sir.


But now you claim to
know the law in New York.

I can read, Mr. Stone.

Well, then, maybe you
can tell us, Mr. Baylor,

what happened to your
license to practice law?

- Objection... irrelevant.
- What's the credibility,
Your Honor?

Answer the question.

It was revoked.

You mean, you were disbarred?


I made a terrible mistake,

but we didn't break any laws.

But you testified that
Chris intentionally hit you.

You said it was
all part of your plan.

We never meant to hurt it.

I am so sorry about the baby.

I wish I could take it back.

And what about Mr. Alcott?

Does he deserve any sympathy?

I take it you don't
care for him?

He cheated on his wife.

He cheats the
government for a living.

He deserves whatever
happens to him.


have you been examined
by a doctor recently?


Bayliss: And what did he say?

As a result of the kicks,

there was severe
damage to my uterine wall.

Which means?

I'll never have another child.

- Objection... relevance.
- Sustained.

Thank you, Amy.

Ms. Newhouse...

you testified that you didn't
intend to have a miscarriage...

yet you meticulously
planned the attack

to assure that the fetus would
be under 24 weeks of age.

Chris said it was a fail-safe,

just in case
something went wrong.

Can you tell us why Chris was
disbarred in the state of Wisconsin?

Answer the question, please.

Subornation of perjury.

Stone: Do you know
what that means?

He encouraged a
witness to lie on the stand.

Do you think Chris
could be at it again?

- Objection!
- Sustained.

Ms. Newhouse, do
you know what it means

if you can't prove that
you and Chris knew the law

prior to committing the acts that
resulted in the death of your baby?

Objection! The witness is
not an attorney, Your Honor.

She's not competent
to determine this.

On the contrary, Your Honor,
Ms. Newhouse's entire defense

is based upon the fact
that she knew the law.

She cannot now argue that she is
incompetent to testify as to its meaning.

Answer the question, young lady.

What would it mean, Ms.
Newhouse, if you didn't know the law?

- We would be guilty.
- Of what?

Of attempted murder.

Of trying to kill your own baby.

We committed no crime.

Nobody got hurt.

Stone: No crime?

I mean, what do
you call the plan

that Christopher Baylor and
Amy Newhouse concocted?

They lured her own
employer, David Alcott,

into having an affair with her.

They convinced him that
their own pregnancy was his.

And then they did
the unimaginable...

They staged an attack,

an attack in which Christopher
Baylor savagely kicked

the mother of his
own child in the belly.

And they say it's no crime?

They killed their
own child for greed.

No crime?

The only possible way
that this is not a crime

is that if you can manage
to convince yourself

that that couple had
specific knowledge

of an obscure penal code.

I, however, believe that
if you review the evidence

you will find that when they
came up with this heinous plan,

they were unaware of
the 24-week statute...

and they are guilty of the crime
that was in their hearts all along...

The crime of attempted murder.

Have you reached a verdict?

We have, Your Honor. We find the defendants
Amy Newhouse and Christopher Baylor

guilty of attempt to commit
murder in the second degree.

- Motion to set aside
the verdict?
- Denied.

Gillion should have set aside the
verdict. The only basis was horror.

The public is all over us when a
known criminal walks on a technicality.

I flipped the coin. I let the people
use a technicality to convict.

I'm sure they'll appeal.

The jury disbelieved
their testimony.

Last time I looked that is
not reviewable upon appeal.

But they were telling the truth.

I'm not gonna lose any sleep over it,
and I don't think the jurors will either.

- There's another bit of justice.
- What's that?

She'll never reproduce.