Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (1999–…): Season 18, Episode 5 - Rape Interrupted - full transcript

Benson is forced to choose between loyalty and duty when a sergeant's son is accused of rape.

In the criminal justice system,

sexually based offenses
are considered especially heinous.

In New York City,
the dedicated detectives

who investigate
these vicious felonies

are members of an elite squad
known as the Special Victims Unit.

These are their stories.

To the ancient Greeks,

the male body symbolized harmony
and perfection.

He's so hot. I'd rather
screw him than draw him.

I got to go.

And since then...

Lunch date?

Even when the figure
in a static pos...

[hip-hop playing in background]

♪ ♪

Excuse me, miss?

- Halibut crostini?
- No, thanks.

[door opens]


Vic took a bad beating.
Lost lots of blood.

Obvious signs of sexual assault.
Someone did her with a pipe.

We recover it?

Yeah, didn't have to look too far.

It was on the bathroom
next to the vic.

Who found her?

- Mom and daughter.
- Did they see anything?

Male. Black. 30s.

That ought to narrow it down.

Okay. Any other witnesses?

- Still looking. Nothing so far.
- What about security cameras?

Nothing in the hallway
or the bathroom.

There's something else.
Take a look at the vic's ID.

A public bathroom of a crowded mall
in broad daylight.

This is a hell of a place
to attack someone.

Or it's the perfect place.

Vic is transgender.

[dramatic music]

♪ ♪

- sync and corrections by Zac -
- -

Do these people go by him or her?

Well, this person goes by her.

Okay. I found her
on the floor, near the stall,

dress pulled up over her...
you know.


She was unconscious, so I called 911.

- Is she gonna be okay?
- We hope so.

You know what?

We really want to find out
who did this to her,

so can you tell us about the man
that you saw in the hallway?

Like I told the other policeman,
he was black, late 20s, early 30s.

I didn't see his face,
but there was blood on his pants.

That's all I remember.

Was he tall? Short? Heavy?

Average. I really don't remember.

- He was big.
- Sophie, let Mommy handle this.

So he was big, Sophie?

For God's sake, she's ten years old.


So, Sophie, the woman that we found...
she really needs your help.

So if there's anything
that you can remember

about the man in the hallway...
Did he have any tattoos?

She doesn't remember anything else.

Right, sweetie?

Yes. I don't remember.

Okay. Okay, well,
thank you for trying, Sophie.

And thank you so much
for being so cooperative.

It was just a matter of time
before something like this happened.

Everyone had to make such a big fuss
over this transgender issue.

Why can't people use the damn
bathroom they were born to use?

Is that really so hard?

We'll be in touch. Thank you.
Thank you, Sophie.


Vic's legal name is Eric Carson.

She's a 24-year-old art student
from Montclair, New Jersey.

Seems like she goes
by the name Eva these days.

- Parents?
- They're on their way.

- This is the nurse.
- Hey. What do we got?

Rape kit showed forced penetration,
severe tearing and bleeding,

perforated colon...

significant blunt force trauma
to the head and torso as well.

She's lucky to be alive.

Okay. Semen?
Is there any sign of intercourse?


- Defensive wounds?
- Bruises on her wrists and arms.

We're checking her nails for DNA.

Thank you.


So a transgender art student
from the suburbs

gets beaten and raped
with a pipe in a public restroom

just months
after New York State signs

the gender-neutral bathroom bill.

- Media's gonna be all over this.
- Yeah, for good reason.

This is a hate crime.

Mr. and Mrs. Carson.

I'm Lieutenant Benson from SVU.

When can we see our daughter?

You know, I'm not exactly sure,
but the doctor will be out shortly

to give you an update.
In the meantime, if it's okay with you,

I'd like to ask you
a few questions about Eva.

So when is the last time
either of you saw her?

Last night.

She called me around midnight.
She was upset.

Said she was having relationship issues.

Who the hell would do something
like this?

She's 5'7", 120 pounds,
for God's sake.

Yeah, I'll tell you who.

Some religious,
transphobic monster...

- Honey...
- Who's afraid of a man

living as a woman.

When Eva said she wanted to transition,
we supported her,

but I was afraid
she might get targeted.

So many of these young women
get assaulted.

It's okay. She's gonna be fine.

You said that she was having
relationship issues.

Did she have a boyfriend
or a girlfriend?

Yes, she had a boyfriend.
His name is Logan.

But they broke up.

Then got back together again
last week.

Eva confides in me.
That's why she called me last night.

They were fighting.

Fighting? About what?

He thought
she was seeing somebody else.

And was she?

I'm not sure.


Is she okay?

I called the hospital,
and they won't tell me anything.

Well, we are not sure.

The doctors are doing the best they can.

Right. Okay. I should really...
can we do this later?

I want to go to the hospital.
I want to talk to Eva's parents.

I want to be there when she wakes up.

You know, actually, we'd prefer to do it
now, but it shouldn't take long.

What do you want to know?

Where were you today
between 12:00 and 1:00 p.m.?

Okay. I was here all day,
since 8:00 a.m., in my office.

I ran out for a quick lunch
around noon.

Oh, great.
Did you eat around here?

Yeah, a diner in Tribeca.

Well, Eva's father said that...

that you two were fighting
last night.

It wasn't serious.

- I love Eva.
- Yeah.

Let me count the ways.

"I'm tired of your lies."

"I'm starting to despise you."

"I wish you'd disappear."

I mean, I'd hate to see
your serious arguments.

Look, I lost my temper, okay?

She was...
our relationship is complicated.

Complicated how?

Well, for starters, she's transgender.

No matter how open-minded you are,
it's still challenging.

What are some of the other ways that
your relationship was challenging?

She started working as a model.

Getting paid to go to clubs, parties.

Getting paid
a thousand bucks a night.

That sounds like a good gig.

It ruined her.

She started falling in love
with the "it" crowd.

The scene. All that crap.

You know, luckily,
her agency fired her last week.

Why'd she get canned?

She got into an altercation
with a guest.

Last Thursday, I think.

Where was that?


An altercation?

- Yeah, there's about ten every night.
- Yeah, well, how about last Thursday?

You recognize her?

[sighs] Uh...

Yeah. Maybe.

Look, guys, I'm happy to help and all,
but I don't need a lawsuit here.

Who said anything about a lawsuit?

These days, those trans people...

or whatever you call 'em...
they could sue you

just for looking at 'em sideways.

So you do remember her?

A big music company
threw a party Thursday night.

There were a lot of models here.

- A few of 'em were transgender.
- What was the altercation about?

She slapped one of the guests...

you know, made a scene...
so we tossed her ass.

Got any of that on video?

Right there.
That's Eva.


- It looked personal.
- Who's the guy she slapped?

I don't know.

Know the other guys in his posse?


I'm not into the whole hip-hop thing.
I like country music.

All right.

Just give us the name of the guy
who tossed Eva, please.

Eva's still on life support.
The doctors say it doesn't look good.

Where are we on forensics?

No prints on the pipes.
Still waiting on DNA.

Just got off the phone
with the event planner.

He says he doesn't know the name
of the guy who got slapped,

but he does know he was a guest
of Vincent Love's.

Vincent Love, the rap guy?

Yeah, the founder
of One-Eight-Seven Music.

He works with
the biggest names out there.

So I'm guessing
that big-name rappers

don't appreciate getting slapped
by transgender models.

All right. Let's find Vincent Love
and find out exactly what happened.


I mean, we having a good time.
We hanging out. Drinking Crissy.

This girl, out of nowhere,
she picks a fight.

I try to calm her down.
She slaps one of my boys.

Have a seat.
So my man that owned the club...

I told him to kick her dumb ass out.
Why are we even talking about this?

She's in a coma.

Oh. That's horrible.

So, who was the guy she slapped?

That's my new artist, Hype.

- Hype?
- Yeah.

- Haven't heard of him.
- Oh, you will.

I haven't come across talent
like this in a minute.

It's like some Biggie-style talent.
The industry calling him weevy.

He workin' on his new album
right now.

So why did Eva slap your new artist?

He was cracking a joke.
She gets offended.

Hey, you don't know Hype, man,
but he's straight-up outta the hood.

And what they say...
sometimes, his table manners

ain't exactly perfect, right?

[hip-hop plays]


- What's up?
- What's up?

Nice suit, homey. What is that? Zegna?



Lives two blocks from where
I grew up on Staten Island.

[rap music plays]

♪ ♪

What's up, people?

You Hype?

What can I do for you fellas?

NYPD. We're here about Eva Carson.


The friend you met
in the club Thursday night.

[scoffs] Oh, that freak?

Look, dude slapped me.

You should be arresting
his stupid ass.

Maybe we will.
Once she gets out of the coma.


Yeah, somebody did her with a pipe.

Man, look, I don't know
nothing about that.

Why'd she slap you?

You see, he really looked like a girl,

so when I found out the truth,
I made a few jokes, that's all.

Okay, cool.

Just tell us where you were
yesterday around lunchtime.

Here. In the studio all day.
Working out rhymes.

So you don't know Eva?

The party was the first time
you ever met her?

- First and last.
- Hey.

We're trying to finish up
a few things,

so if y'all ain't got nothing else,
we'd like to get back to work.

♪ Respect my frame ♪

♪ I'm built just like a bulldozer ♪

♪ Teeth so white
they never get pulled over...♪

Hype's real name is Randall Leonard.

Claims he was in the studio
at the time of the assault.

We got nothing that says otherwise.

Okay, so what's your theory...
that Eva humiliated him at the club,

and then he tracks her down
and attacks her?

Wouldn't be the first rapper
with a fragile ego.

Okay. Do we have anything
on Hype's past that suggests

- that he's good for this?
- One prior. Armed robbery.

Plead it down to a misdemeanor,
didn't do any time,

but I listened to some of his music.

It's hardcore.

You mean hateful.

It's full of homophobic rants,
gay slurs...

So he may not be the spokesperson

for the LGBTQ crowd,

but it doesn't mean
that he's good for the assault.

This might. Look at this.

"Look who I just saw
at Cypress market! #HYPERULES."

Posted yesterday at 11:54 a.m.

I mean, that's 20 minutes
before Eva's attack.

Yeah, so much for being
in the studio all day

working on his rhymes.

Let's bring him in. I want to find out
what he was doing at Cypress market

and why he lied about it.

I listened to a few of your songs.

You're obviously not a big fan
of gay and transgender people.

Man, it's just music, a'ight?

You know what? My favorite line

is, "When a tranny looks your way,

"got to make sure the dude pays.

"Cap to the head.
Boot to the grill.

All you bitches know
I ain't 'fraid to kill."

Keep at it, G.
You could be the next Eminem.

And you could be the next
brother from Harlem doing time

if you don't tell us what your punk-ass
was really doing yesterday afternoon.

Look, I told you.
I was in the studio, working.

No. You were outside
the Cypress market

20 minutes before the assault.


So I stepped out for lunch.

Listen. If you come clean,
we can help you.

But if you keep lying, we can't.

Look, I ain't touch
that person, a'ight?

So you're telling us
a dude in a dress smacked you

right in front of your people
and you just let it slide?

You didn't try to save face?

You didn't try to teach Eva a lesson?

So, you really think I need to
beat down some boy with a dress

to prove I'm hard?

But you were outside
the Cypress market.

Around noon?

Yeah. I was getting food.

- You see Eva?
- Nope.

So you're saying you were
there at the same place,

same time, but you didn't see her?

That sounds like
one hell of a coincidence to me.

Not to me.
I eat there three days a week.

My studio's two blocks away.

Can I go now, coz?

Just don't go too far, coz.

Look, this guy's lying
about something,

so get his mug in a photo array

and show it to the mother
and the daughter.

They're in Boston until Wednesday.

Oh, and Hype's not
the only one lying.

Security video confirms
that Eva's boyfriend Logan

left his law firm at 11:30
and didn't return until 1:45.

That's not a quick lunch.

No, not unless you live in Italy.

And he doesn't.

Look. I didn't lie, okay?
I just...

- Chose not to tell the truth.
- Exactly.

So where were you that day
between 11:30 and 1:45?

- I was at a meeting.
- Where?

- Midtown.
- With?

With a doctor.

Okay, I don't have time for this.

Let's go to the precinct.
Let's go.

Okay, okay. I was with Dr. Kennsit.

Look, Eva was planning
to undergo surgery

to become a woman...

but she changed her mind last week.

If she changed her mind,
what was the meeting about?


I put down a deposit.
5 grand.

I went back to convince
the doctor to get a refund.

How long were you at this meeting?

An hour or so. Look, guys.
I had nothing to do with this.

I took a Quick Ride.
Here and back.

Check out the times.

Left here at 11:34.

Return trip from 63rd Street
at 1:20.

Then why did you lie to us?

I should've been more forthcoming.
I get it. I'm sorry.

Eva and I were having problems.

She was starting to see someone else.

I think that's why she changed
her mind about the operation.

- What do you mean?
- This guy she was seeing...

I think he likes her
just the way she is.

Do you know this other guy's name?

I don't know his name,

but I saw him in the park
the other day,

so I took photos.

Yeah, we're gonna need to see those.

Blow that picture up on the right.

There he is right there.

That's Cash Lewis.

That's Hype's business partner
and producer.

Well, he's got quite the rap sheet.

Felony assault.
Weapons. Narcotics.

And gang affiliation
for added measure.

Okay, so Cash is hanging out
with Eva behind Logan's back.

Why would he beat and rape her?

Lots of reasons.

All we need is one.

[rap music in background]

Yeah, that's me. Who cares?

Yeah, so you and Eva
were hanging out?

Hanging out? No, I don't mess
with that gay stuff.

- We was talking business.
- What kind of business?

Eva's a songwriter.
She wrote some rhymes for Hype.

Wait a minute. You're telling me
Eva wrote some of Hype's raps?


Thought she was an art student.

She's an art student
that writes rhymes.

So me and Vincent bought her out.

Gave her some bread
to stay anonymous.

That makes sense.

Didn't want a trans girl's name
on the album as a writer.

How much did you give her?

50 grand.

The dumb bitch don't know we could've
paid her five times that.

That's not a nice way

to describe someone
who's fighting for her life.

Y'all want me to keep talking
about this freak?

Y'all can call my lawyer.

payable to Eric Carson, aka Eva.

We found it in a wastebasket
in her apartment.

Written on a One-Eight-Seven
checking account.

Okay, so why did she rip it up?

I'm guessing out of principle.

Cash the check first.
Worry about principle later.

All right.

So Cash and Vincent Love
try to bribe Eva.

She says no. Then what?

Well, Hype's worried
about some transgender girl

telling the whole world that she
writes all his hardcore raps.

Okay, that sounds
like possible motive to me.

Yeah, but for who?
Cash? Hype? Vincent Love?

My money's on Hype.

- What do you mean?
- I just spoke with the lab.

They found his DNA
under Eva's fingernails.

Sit on his studio.

I'll send Anti-Crime
to the apartment.

You two...
work on an arrest warrant.


[phone rings]

Hey, Rollins.
What's up?

Hype's on the move.
He just stepped out of his studio.

All right.
We'll be with you in a minute.

Judge is signing the warrants now.

Don't take your eyes off him.

[phone rings]

Hey, Rollins.
What do you got?

He's in a cab right now, headed west.

He's on 37th and 7th.

37th and 7th?

That's close
to the hospital Eva's at.

- That's what I'm thinking.
- All right. We're on our way.

Hype's on the way to the hospital?
Kid's crazier than I thought.

He's definitely headed
to the hospital.

We're both right out front.

I'm right behind him.

- Hey! NYPD!
- Oh, sh...

- Stay down! Don't move!
- Stay on the ground!

- Don't you move!
- You got a gun?

No! What the hell are y'all doing, yo?

All right.
He's clean. Come on.

You're under arrest for rape
and assault with a deadly weapon.

All right. Get up.

Hype, we have your DNA
under Eva's fingernails.

We have you near the crime scene
20 minutes before the attack,

and as for motive,
there's too many to choose from.

Hate. Greed.

Not to mention that you were
heading toward the hospital...

to what... to kill her?

To make sure that she never
woke up so she couldn't ID you?

You gotta come clean, man.

We already have enough to charge you.

He's right. We're just being polite.

We're giving you a chance
to tell us what really happened.

Now, you can start by telling us

how your DNA got
under Eva's fingernails.


But if I tell y'all,

will you promise to keep it private?


We won't say a word.

Like, for real?

You can't tell no one.

For real.

Okay. Cool.

I appreciate that.


the reason my skin
is underneath her fingernails

is because...

we had sex.

We... we're dating.

We're in love.

[soft music]

♪ ♪

So Hype's in love with Eva.

- That's what he says.
- And you believe him?

He seems credible,
but he's told so many lies.

It's really hard to tell
where he's coming from.

That's what makes me believe
he's telling the truth.

How so?

I mean,
Hype's an up-and-coming rapper.

Hardcore, at that.

So he's been lying
to protect his image.

His career.

I mean, this style of rapping's
all about reputation.

It's all about street cred.

For him to tell his fans
that he's in love

with a transgender woman...
they'd laugh at him.

His whole brand would go up in smoke.

- It's 2016, for God's sakes.
- Not for people selling gangster rap.

Yeah, or some of my relatives.

- Or mine too.
- Look.

This whole gender fluidity thing
is coming out more nowadays,

and that's cool,
but the truth is it's confusing,

and a lot of people
can't make sense of it all.

Me included.

And our friend Hype.

Okay, so let's say we believe this guy,
that he really does love Eva.

That still doesn't make him innocent.

Listen, I agree.

All that denial and self-hatred...

Who knows?

Maybe Hype did just crack
and took out all his rage on Eva.

Let's go back inside and see
if we can learn anything.

- Thank you.
- Sure.

So, Hype, I just want
to go over everything again

and make sure
that I fully understand.

So you and Eva were involved.

And that's the reason
that you went to the hospital?

To check on her condition?

Yeah. I mean, I just wanted
to make sure she was okay.

But like I said, I ain't gay.
Not even close.

I just...

you know,
I just like her, that's all.

- So when did you and Eva first meet?
- Three months ago.

At some party for some photographer.

We liked each other.
Started hanging out.

Why'd she slap you?

'Cause I pretended I ain't know her.
Started making some stupid jokes.

I just ain't want nobody
to know, that's all.

So this had nothing to do
with the songs she wrote.

What are you talking about?

Your boy Cash told us
she wrote some of your tracks,

but you didn't want
her name on the album.

That's why he and Vincent Love
had to give her 50K

to remain anonymous.

What the hell are you talking about?

Eva didn't write no tracks.
She don't even like rap.

Look, I write my own rhymes,
from day one, all right?

Then why were you at Cypress market?

Eva wanted to have lunch.

In public.

She was tired of our
relationship being on the DL.

It was a big deal to her.


I freaked out.

Changed my mind.

I mean, I wanted to have lunch,
but I just couldn't do it.

So I left.

Went to the bar down the street,

drank some peach schnapps,
and went back to the studio.

The bartender at the Golden Goat
says he remembers Hype.

Says he's the first person
in five years

to order peach schnapps.

Surveillance videos show him
there from 12:10 to 1:05.

Okay, so if Hype didn't do it,
then who did?

The boyfriend, Logan,
is in the clear, right?

Yeah. The office manager
confirms he was at

the doctor's office
from 12:15 to 1:10.

So if it wasn't Hype
and it wasn't Logan...

It's gotta be Cash.

Okay, so get the mother
and the daughter down here

right away
and see if they can ID him.

I told you.

I didn't get a good look at his face.

Neither did Sophie. Right?

Keep looking.

You never know
when something might click,

a face might look familiar.


Are any of those men
the one you saw in the hallway?

- I told you...
- Okay, let her speak.

Is that the man you saw?

- She didn't see...
- Okay. You know what?

Can I speak to you
in private for a moment?


I understand that this is hard,

but your daughter needs
to start telling the truth.

She's not going to testify.

I'm not going to risk her safety
over some...

- Some what? Some freak?
- She's just a kid.

It's not her fault some man
in a dress got attacked.

Her name is Eva.
She is an art student.

She lives in Montclair
with her family.

With her parents, Nina and Mark.

The mother
is a fifth-grade teacher

and the father is an electrician,

and if you continue to interfere
with our investigation

and encourage your daughter to lie,

I will arrest you.
Am I making myself clear?

Thank you.

The girl ID'd Cash Lewis.
Is it credible?

I think so...
when she saw his face

in the photo array, her eyes lit up,

and she said she remembered
the tattoo on his neck.

It reminded her of SpongeBob.

Huh. The motive?

Look, Eva posed a threat
to Hype's image. His career.

So Cash tried to buy her off.

When she refused,
he beat and raped her with a pipe.

I'm not sure we have enough
for an arrest just yet,

but I'll get you a search warrant.

[phone chimes]

The sooner, the better.

Our rape case just turned into
a murder investigation.

Eva passed away an hour ago.

[dramatic music]

♪ ♪



Cash Lewis!

NYPD! We have a warrant!

I got a body.

He's still breathing.

Get a bus in here now!

Hey. Hey. Hey.

Drop that gun!
Drop it!

Get on the ground!
Get on the ground!

Don't shoot!
Don't shoot! Please!

Give me your hands.

I read over my contract
real thorough last night.

I was supposed to get 20%
of the profits, not 15%.

So I went to see Cash
and we got into it.

What does that mean? "Got into it"?

I said he was trying to hustle me.

He got pissed off, started saying
some things, and it got ugly.

Yeah, and then what?
You hit him? He hit you?

- He punched me. In the head.
- Right side? Left side?

Right here. Left side.

- And you hit him back?
- Yeah.

We started swinging at each other,

and he pulled out his piece,
so I grabbed it.

But he ain't back down,
and he's big and strong,

so he started stepping to me
with this crazy look in his eyes.

And I was in fear of my life.

I thought he was going
to try to kill me,

so I shot him.

Nice work.

Bottom line, Detectives...
Randall was acting in self-defense.

He's much smaller than Cash,

and despite his tattoos
and his ghetto affectations,

he is an artist.

He's not a fighter.
He's not a gangster.

Cash, on the other hand...
well, let's just say

that there was no pretend
in that man.

Oh, I agree.
But if Cash was so big and mean,

then how did you win the fight
and get the gun?

He grabbed it out of Cash's hand.


He just had it by his side,
so I snatched it.

So this whole fight
was over a contract.

- Not Eva.
- Correct.

Even though Eva died
three hours before this fight.

Even though it was Cash
who killed her.

That may be the case,

but it has nothing to do
with this dispute.

Look, I was just there
to talk business, a'ight?

- If that's what you say.
- So, since this is self-defense,

I assume we have your consent
to take a few photos,

collect your clothing,
clip your fingernails.

This guy's lying his ass off.

More like frontin' his ass off.

I don't want to charge him.
Not yet.

Dig into his story.

Find out what's true. What's not.

Take your clothes off, please.

Between you and me,

I didn't care too much
for that Cash dude,

so I hope you're telling the truth
about this contract thing.

I'd hate to see you
go down for murder

behind a stupid lie like that.

My client's done talking, Detective.
I thought we were clear on that.

I'm just trying to help.


Got a hit on the gun.
It belongs to Vincent Love.

So Hype used my gun to shoot Cash?

He must've stolen it.
He knows I own many guns, man.

What, you just keep 'em
out in the open?

Nope. I keep
everything locked up,

but I always keep one right here
in my desk.

At least I thought I did.

Did Hype know
that you kept a gun in there?

Of course he did.
That's how he stole it.

If you say so.

When was the last time Hype was here?


From 3:20 to 3:43.

I was downstairs with the doormen
looking over the video.


He was here playing me his new album.
He was excited about it.

Do you know anything about some
kind of beef between Hype and Cash?

No. Like you boys, they were tight.

- What about Eva?
- Who?

The lady you had kicked out
of the party last week.

Her? Or should I say, him?

No, you got it right
the first time. Her.

Why is she even relevant to this?

Because she and Hype
were involved. Romantically.

That's why you cut her
that 50G check,

so she would go away.

Didn't want her to screw up his
career before it even got started.

But when she said no,
Cash went next-level.

Beat her with a pipe.

I don't know nothing about it, bro.

But look, if y'all need
any other information,

y'all call my lawyer.
Y'all have a nice day.

[tense music]

♪ ♪

This whole self-defense thing
is a total mess.

First and foremost,
Cash didn't pull the gun.

Hype did.

The kid is lying about everything.

To avoid admitting
that he was in love with Eva.

Even if he tells the truth...

that he was seeking revenge
because of Eva's death...

he could still be
staring down a murder charge.

Look, the guy finds out that the
love of his life has just died

after being beaten and raped
with a pipe.

I mean, it sounds like
heat of the moment to me.

No. He had three hours
to cool down.

He stole Vincent Love's gun.

Then he drove 60 blocks
looking for his victim,

and he shot him in cold blood.

To me, that sounds like murder.

Well, if the victim wasn't
such a hate-filled,

pipe-wielding rapist,

then I'd be more inclined
to agree with you.

From a legal perspective,
that's irrelevant.

I know,
but from a human one, it's not.

Cash killed Eva
because she was transgender.

Is the world really
gonna be a worse place

because Hype does 5 years
instead of 20?

[door opens]

We're going to indict you for murder
first thing tomorrow.

Randall acted in self-defense.

Mmm. We disagree.
The evidence doesn't add up.

But the good news is I'm here
to offer you a deal, sir.

Man One.

I will, however, need you to allocute

so that the judge
and the public knows

why I'm offering you
such a good deal.

What's that mean?

That means you need to tell
the judge what really happened:

that you killed Cash in a heightened,
emotional fit of rage

because you loved Eva.

This ain't got nothing to do
with nobody named Eva.

Okay, Hype. Don't be stupid.

I shot Cash over a business dispute!
In self-defense!

Like I said,

I ain't no faggot.

That kid thinks, because he's in love
with a transgender woman,

that he's gay.

- He's confused.
- Well, we tried.

It was a good deal.
Almost too good.

Either the guy has got a lot
of confidence in his lawyer...

Or he's being handled.

That lawyer is in
Vincent Love's back pocket.

Any time one of his rappers
gets jammed up,

good old Hampton gets a call.

- So?
- "So?"

So the real client
is Vincent Love, not Hype.

He's allowed to pay the legal fees

as long as there's
no conflict of interest.

No conflict?

He just talked Hype
out of the best deal

that he is ever going to see,

because he's protecting Love's brand.

They're transphobic, homophobic,

and if they have to sell
Hype out in the meantime...

you know,
convince him to stay street...

so be it.

I don't disagree,
but it's not my problem.

I've got a trial to win.


I think Vincent Love
orchestrated the attack on Eva.

Oh, you're not gonna let me
get out of here.

He's the one who had Eva
thrown out of that party.

He told Cash to pay her off.

When she refused,
he told Cash to beat her.

- Go on.
- Vincent Love has too much to lose.

Hype was supposed to be
the next big thing.

His golden goose.

He has the looks, the talent,
the attitude.

The only thing that could
possibly screw that up was Eva.

Liv, it's a little late in the game
for this, don't you think?

Do you have any evidence
anything at all, to back this up?


Well, then, you got to let it go.

Or find some, fast.

So you will get me a warrant
for Love's office?

His studio?

- Yes.
- Thank you.


I told you we are not ready to plead

to any charge
that is gonna force my client

to lie about
some fictitious relationship

with a transgender art student.

We all know that it's not fictitious.
And so does Vincent Love, your boss.

We've been searching his texts,
his emails, his studio,

but you... you already knew that.

Is there a point to this meeting,
or are you guys just really bored?

Here's the point, smartass.

Homey gotta move off
this tranny thing.

Ain't good for business.

I know.

But Hype don't listen.

So make the tranny listeninstead.

That audio, courtesy of Vincent Love
and the now-departed Cash Lewis,

was recorded two days before
Eva was attacked with a pipe.

Those damn hot mics.

You never know
what you're gonna hear.

- That conversation proves nothing.
- It does if your client testifies.

If he tells the jury
that Vincent Love and Cash Lewis

were urging him to break off
his romance with Eva.

Cash may have attacked Eva,
but that is all over and done with,

and Vincent had nothing
to do with it.

That sounds
like a conflict of interest.

I'd much rather bury
the man responsible

for killing Eva than you.

If you cooperate,
I'll reduce the murder charge.

To Man Two.
You'll do three years.

- We've already discussed this.
- Hold on.

Why don't you let your client talk?

It is not his job to talk. It's mine.

Then why don't you speak
on his behalf for once?


Cash and Love told you
that Eva would ruin your career,

and when
she wouldn't accept the money,

- they killed her...
- I know what they did.

- Trust me.
- Well, then, testify.

Get justice for Eva.
Doesn't she deserve that?

Do it for her.

- Look, I can't do this, man.
- Don't look at him.

This is your decision, not his.

We're giving you an opportunity here,

and if you lose this case,
it'll be you doing 20 years.

Not Hampton.
Not Love. You.

They'll be out walking free.

Making money
on the music that you wrote.

[tense music]

♪ ♪

I ain't no snitch.

See you in court.


At 3:00...
the defendant learned

that his girlfriend,
Eva Carson, had died

from injuries sustained
during a vicious sexual assault.

About 20 minutes later,

he stole a handgun from his
business associate's home.

He hailed a cab, drove uptown...

approximately some,
what, 60 blocks...

to kill the man responsible
for Eva's death...

Cash Lewis.

Revenge is a natural, primal emotion.

We've all felt the urge
to right a wrong,

but in a modern, civilized society,

there is no place
for vigilante justice,

so whether or not Cash Lewis
is responsible for Eva's death,

what the defendant did
constitutes murder

under New York law.

My client, Randall Leonard,

is a rising star in the music industry.

He's a gifted, raw, authentic artist

with insights into
the postmodern urban existence.

Is this an opening argument
or an advertisement?

Randall has worked his whole life
to become a successful artist...

to make enough money
to help his mother,

his brothers and sisters...

so when he discovered that his friend
and business partner, Cash Lewis,

was trying to take advantage of him

by coercing him
into signing an unfair contract,

he confronted him.

They fought.
Cash pulled a gun.

Randall grabbed it
and shot Cash in self-defense.

This case has nothing to do with love

or some fictitious relationship
with someone named Eva.

That is simply a convenient
and imagined narrative

the prosecution concocted
to help justify

this baseless murder case.

So your fatal argument
with Cash Lewis

was all about a contract...
it was a business dispute.

Right. Cash screwed me.

That's how this whole thing started.

Even though the contract had been
signed two months before the argument.

- Yes.
- And so help me out here.

If the contract was so unfair,

then why did you email him
on the day you signed it and say

"Thank you for hooking me up
with this sweet-ass deal"?

'Cause I ain't read it close enough.

But you did read it
close enough two months later?


So what made you decide
to reexamine the contract?

Legal curiosity? Boredom?

- What do you mean?
- It's Wednesday.

You're in the middle of working
on a new album,

and all of a sudden, you decide
to print up the contract

and analyze its legal nuances?

I just wanted to make sure
it made sense, that's all.

So it's all about the contract.


It had nothing to do with the fact
that a woman named Eva had just died

after being raped and beaten
with a metal pipe.

She got nothing to do with this.

Can't you just tell the truth?
You shot the son of a bitch

who raped and murdered
the woman of your dreams...

on the order of Vincent Love...

Just because she was transgender.

- Objection.
- Withdrawn.

Nothing further.

Has the jury reached a verdict?

- We have, Your Honor.
- What say you?

On the charge of murder
in the second degree,

we find the defendant guilty.

The court would like to thank
the members of the jury

for their time and service.

[dramatic music]

♪ ♪

Three lives destroyed...

all because some woman named Eva
was born a boy.

I just read
Hype's single hit number one.

That's all that really matters.

- sync and corrections by Zac -
- -