Trial and Error - Transcript done by Ally

Written by: David E. Kelley
Directed by: Rick Rosenthal

-------------------- Disclaimer --------------------
I do not own the characters in this story, nor do I own any rights to the television show 'The Practice'. They were created by David E. Kelley and belong to him and David E. Kelley Productions.

This transcript was written by Ally,

Episode: 1.03

Title: Part III - Trial and Error


Two people fighting, woman screams "get away from me." Man strangles her with hand around throat and she dies.


Focus on tombstone "Donna Braun" Man staring at it

Bobby: (walks up with rabbi) You're the guy's Rabbi

Rabbi (Danny): Yeah but he asked to see his lawyer

Bobby looks at him

Danny: Bobby be quiet

Bobby (to the man): Dr. Braun

Braun: Thank you for coming. This is her tombstone. See I wanted you to uh wrongful death is such a legal term. Cause of action. This is more than a cause of action for me.

Bobby: I have never thought otherwise

Braun: has there been any progress

Bobby: We're waiting until the criminal trial is over

Braun: What if he's not convicted?

Bobby: Well that doesn't affect our civil claim. There's a different standard of proof.

Braun walks away

Bobby: Danny what's going on?

Danny: Trial is no going well

Bobby: I thought the guy confessed

Danny: Only to his priest and now theyíve got all these psychiatric experts saying that he was temporarily insane. I think its working.


STREET Ė Eugene walks up to policeman with woman (prostitute)

Eugene: Have you read him his rights?

Police Officer: Yeah twice

Eugene: hi (to prostitute)

Prostitute: hi

Officer: right inside, inside, lets go (to prostitute)

Eugene walks into room Ė man wrapped in a sheet and handcuffed to a person of short stature (to be PC)

Eugene: Mr. Holsten?

Holsten: It was entrapment

Eugene: Did the police handcuff you to him, was this some kind of little thing?

Holsten: No! She did. I donít know who this person is!

Eugene: is that true sir? (to dwarf)

Dwarf: I aint saying nothing until my attorney gets here

Holsten: It was entrapment. Man cant walk down the street these days without getting handcuffed to a dwarf


Bobby and DA (who is played by Jane Kaczmarek Ė mother on Malcolm in the middle and Brad Whitford's (Josh from West wing) wife) walk down courthouse hallway

Bobby: How can it be working?

DA: You're a defense lawyer, you tell me

Bobby: He strangled her for a full 7 minutes Pam, how is that temporary insanity?

DA: Bobby you got the civil claim, leave the criminal prosecution to me, okay?

Mrs Braun walks up

DA: Mrs. Braun, hello

Mrs Braun: Hello. Hi Bobby

Bobby: Hi Roberta I just saw your husband at the cemetery

Mrs Braun: Oh yeah, his home away from home

Bobby: How you doing?

Mrs Braun: I'll be happy when tomorrow's testimony is over with. Miss Boyd tells me the defense attorney will probably be aggressive

Bobby and Pam share glance

Bobby: Yeah.

Mrs Braun: Do you know the lawyer? Leonard Good?

Bobby: Oh yeah.


Mrs. Braun: She was frightened by him

DA: Frightened. How so ma'am?

Mrs. Braun: He said to her you will not leave me, in a tone-

Defense lawyer (DL): Objection, hearsay. What she says can not be used as evidence of what was told to somebody else!

DA: (same time) Excited utterances, doesnít go to the truth of the words, only what she heard

Judge: the objection is overruled!

DA: Continue Mrs Braun

Mrs. Braun: My daughter was afraid when she broke up with him that he might try to kill her.

DL: You didnít really think that Donna was in any physical danger from my client did you?

Mrs. Braun: I know she thought she was

DL: Yes but if you thought she was in any physical danger, why didnít you call the police

Mrs. Braun: And tell them what? My daughter has a crazy boyfriend, what could they really do?

DL: Well did you see what they could do? Did you call them up and ask?

Mrs. Braun: No

DL: You'd think a concerned mother would bother; you seem a concerned mother. But isnít it true that you werenít concerned?

Mrs. Braun: That is not true

DL: Then why didnít you notify the police?

Mrs. Braun: My daughter was a grown woman and I respected her wished that I stayed out of it

DL: Mrs Braun you're up here basically to undercut the idea that Ronald Martin was temporarily insane, because as the victims mother, you want to see him punished, don't you?

DA: Objection!

Judge: Overruled

DL: Lets be honest, you want him punished donít you?

Mrs. Braun: He's a murderer and he should be punished!

DL: And you're up here doing your part arenít you?

DA: Objection!

Judge: Sustained

DL: Okay well let me just see if I can get this clear, you were afraid that Mr Martin might kill your daughter but you stayed silent on the whole matter out of respect for her privacy.


Jail cell

Holsten: I thought she was attracted to me

Eugene: I saw what she was wearing you had to know she was a prostitute

Holsten: Hey I didnít agree to pay her. And the dwarf came out of nowhere

Eugene: Look I can argue that, but as you're a repeated sex offender I wouldn't pretend to be optimistic

Holsten: I want my day in court

Eugene: Mr. Holsten I thought we had an understanding. You were going to try to get some help

Holsten: I will! But first I want my day in court!


Judge's chambers

Pearson: Its called discovery council

Bobby: Its called abuse of process this is the third deposition

Judge: he is the plaintiff. Are you suggesting the defendant not be able to depose the person suing him?

Bobby: Of course they can. But there's a difference between deposing a witness and-

Judge: Your motion is denied. Mr Pearson you may resume the deposition. (to Bobby) You'll pay the court costs for this hearing and I'm fining you $500 to boot

Bobby: What!?

Judge: My docket is clogged with 2 zillion cases because lawyers like you come in here wanting to argue everything! And what else!?

Bobby: I'd also be seeking to continue oral arguments on summary judgement

Judge: No!

Bobby sighs

Judge: No, no, no, no, no, no. Delay delay delay delay

Bobby: He filed a two hundred and twenty three page memorandum

Judge: Then why are you here when you could be reading it? Two hundred dollar fine for that!

Bobby: You cant fine me for asking for a continuance

Judge: I just did! 50 bucks for saying I can't! (glares at Bobby) Don't you look at me like that! (turns to Pearson) Mr Pearson as an officer of this court I apologise for that,

Pearson: Thank you your honor


Bobby: he actually apologised to him

Lindsay: Bobby

Bobby: He was sucking up to him. The judge was in awe of Pearson He probably wants a job after he's thrown off the bench. He was kissing the guys ass

Pearson: Excuse me! (Bobby groans) Is this a bad time? I was wondering whether we could push tomorrow's deposition from 2:30 to 2:45. I've got a luncheon seminar that could run over

Bobby: 2:45 will be (long pause) fine (walks away)

Elevator opens and Pearson gets in. Lindsay stays outside.

Pearson: This is beneath you


Rebecca: He's due back any second. Are you sure you donít want coffee

Emerson Ray: I think I'm gonna just leave

Eugene (on phone): Uh no no no Mr Ray, they'll be back

Bobby walks in

Eugene: D'ya see?

Danny, Jimmy and Ray talk at once

Bobby: hold it hold it hold it. One at a time

They all talk at once again

Bobby: Hey!

Jimmy: My problem is your problem, I should get to go first

They go into Bobby's office

Bobby: What's the problem?

Jimmy: People at the bank are asking questions about the loan we extended to you

Bobby: What people

Jimmy: Superiors. Worst kind. They want to know why paper work isn't done yet. This I can handle. But they're also asking about this office expansion, which we said that the loan was for, which it aint since you got no place to expand since the place next to you is taken

Bobby: Your foreheads sweating Jimmy. I donít like it when your forehead sweats

Jimmy: A guy named Jonathon Kramer called here yesterday. Said he got mixed signals. Said he's gonna be asking you some things

Bobby: What things?

Jimmy: Things like did you represent to me that your office was expanding did you show me blueprints and stuff. Those kinds of questions

Bobby: If I answer yes to those questions Jimmy, the next arraignment I go to will be my own

Jimmy: This is probably what accounts for the sweat you see on my forehead. See if you didnít make those representations...unemployment in the commonwealth goes up a blip. This is why I'm thinking we got a problem

Outer office

Ellenor walks in: Got one!

Rebecca: What?

Ellenor: Podiatrist, fortyish, loves movies and Maine, spoke to him on the phone for an hour last night

Rebecca: You gonna go out?

Ellenor: I'm going to keep it audio for a while

Phone rings

Ellenor: Oh excuse me. (picks up phone) Hi Danny?Ö.Ellenor Frutt

Bobby calls out from his office: Rebecca in my office please

Rebecca: What's with the tone

Bobby: In my office!

Rebecca walks in: What?

Bobby: Somebody from Boston Fidelity called enquiring about our office expansion?

Rebecca: Yeah yesterday

Bobby: And you informed them that this office was not expanding

Rebecca: Well we're not are we?

Bobby: It is not your place to disseminate any information with respect to this law practice. You take messages you donít give them, you got that? You got that Rebecca?

Rebecca: I got it

Bobby: How much if this bank loan do we have left?

Rebecca: None.

Bobby: Okay

Rebecca: Is that all?

Bobby: Yeah thatís all

She walks out

Jimmy: Ok there's a grenade I gotta go fall on

Bobby: What are you going to say?

Jimmy: The truth. Buddy comes in strapped, I invented a way to get him some help

Bobby: What about falsifying loan documents Jimmy

Jimmy: Nothings signed yet

Bobby: That doesnít necessarily matter

Jimmy: Theyíll just fire me, they wont be pressing charges


Priest: He came into the confessional, he was obviously in a state of shock

Pam (DA): Objection

Judge: I'll allow it

Bobby walks into back of courtroom

Defense Lawyer (DL): What did Mr. martin say father

Priest: He said he couldnít be sure but he thought he had just strangled his girlfriend

DL: I seeÖhe wasnít sure?

Priest: He said he could see the image of it. He couldnít remember it as if it was something that had actually happened, but he felt that it did happen

DL: And how did you respond to that, Father

Priest: Told him to go to the police said he had to, and he agreed

DL: And did he say anything else?

Priest: Yes he begged me for forgiveness...for absolution

DL: And did you grant it to him

Priest: Yes I did

Dr Braun gets up

Judge: Sit down Dr Braun! Dr Braun please be seated!

Mrs. Braun (takes his arm): Gerald

Judge: Sit down, sir, or I'll remove you from this room


Eugene: If we go to trial, weíre going this afternoon

Ellenor: just like that?

Eugene: well there's mutiny (?).Judge allowed us a six man jury, there's no discovery. Might as well try it today before his zip slips past and he extends his criminal record (that was so mumbled, I could hardly understand it, its most likely wrong)

Ellenor: and the defense is he was with the prostitute because...?

Eugene: He loved her

Ellenor: Oh yeah hmmm

Eugene: Any suggestions?

Ellenor: United States of America

Eugene: You think?

Ellenor: What else have you got?

Eugene (nods): Yeah...United States of America


Courthouse hallway

Pam: You think I should go hard?

Bobby: I donít know. Tough to look sympathetic cross examining a priest!

Pam: Yeah well that priest was pretty effective. You heard him

Bobby: Listen Pam, if you go at him, don't go half way. You got to get him! (points his finger at her)

Pam: (sighs) Yep



Pam: So, Father, as I understand it, this man commits a murder then he proceeds to your confessional where you proceed to offer him absolution. Is that correct?

Priest: (Scoffs) It's not quite that simple

Pam: Thatís the way it seems. It also seems strange that you come to this court everyday and sit behind him in apparent support

Priest: Well I suppose its easy to love a Mother Theresa, but I believe God teaches us to love all people

Pam: Yes thatís sweet

Defense: Objection, she's mocking the witness Your Honor

Pam: Mocking him? He comes to a murder trial and compares the killer to mother Theresa! Why would I mock that?

Defense: Come on! Move to strike!

Judge: Lets get on with it

Pam: Exactly how long did it take you to forgive Ronald Martin for strangling Donna Braun? More than a minute?

Defense: Objection!

Bobby in back of courtroom smiles

Pam: this man is basically here as a character witness

DL: He's testifying as to fact not character

Pam: May I finish?

DL: No!

Judge: Both of you kindly step up to the bench

They walk up

Judge: Once a month or so I go into a depression. I think it's probably because I come to a place of work everyday populated by rapists, murderers, child molesters. Thatís not the reason. Its because of the daily sewerage I have to swab listening to what comes out of the mouths of the malignant, cancerous, infected little cysts we call lawyers. You (to defense lawyer) don't make me state my opinion of what you are, it would be grounds for mistrial. And you (to DA) stop sinking to his level. We're going to take a break, so you little children can reflect, okay? Now step back. (to the court) 20 minute recess. I see attorney Bobby Donnell is in the back of the room. I'll see you in chambers please.


Judge: Bobby I assume you know what we think of attorneys who promote criminal murder trials to advance their civil wrongful death claims

Bobby: I'm not doing that. There's nothing wrong with me monitoring the criminal trial. In fact-

Judge: I've been told you've got investigators out looking for some of the defendant's ex-girlfriends

Bobby: One. Who he supposedly beat up. Look it would be malpractice if I didnít try to find her

Judge: Well you'd better be careful on any search and seizure. Because I might just find your conduct to be state action.

Bobby: I'm not working with the DA

Judge: It doesnít look good

Bobby: Well I donít care how it looks. And for your information this is not just about money. If that guy gets acquitted here, I'll be using the civil trial to nail him. Mostly so Donna Braun's parents can get some peace that at least one jury found him to be a murderer

Judge: What you do in your civil case isn't my concern. But keep your nose out of the criminal prosecution. Thatís my only warning.


Deposition at high rise building in enormous conference room. Lindsay and mr. Ray on one side, with about 3 lawyers on other side with stenographer.

Pearson: Your wife's doctor told her cigarettes were hazardous?

Mr. Ray: Yes

Pearson: Did he tell her they could cause cancer and vascular disease?

Lindsay: Objection. You can answer.

Mr. Ray: Yes

Pearson: Mmm hmmm. Did you tell her cigarette smoking could kill her?

Mr. Ray: Many times

Pearson: In fact you begged he to quit didnít you? And she did

Mr. Ray: Many times.

Pearson: But she'd start up again

Mr. Ray: She was addicted.

Pearson: Right.

Bobby enters

Pearson: Ah, let the record reflect Attorney Donnell has just entered

Bobby: Why has this proceeding started without me?

Pearson: We didnít want to make your client wait. And uh Ms. Dole offered no objections.

Bobby: She should have. For the record, bad form Pearson

Pearson: Consider me chagrined.

Bobby gives him a dirty look.

Pearson: Would you like to sit?


Bobby: You're letting him push you around

Lindsay: I'm not!

Bobby: There was no excuse for allowing that deposition to begin without me

Lindsay: I didnít know how late you were going to be

Bobby: Then you postpone it

Lindsay: What with the stenographer and everybody there?

Bobby: What Lindsay, you don't want to inconvenience your mentor?

Lindsay: It wasnít that

Bobby: It was that. I see you, you're looking for his approval. You've got this brilliant legal mind, but if you don't turn into a fighter you are going to be a doormat in this town.

Lindsay: Okay

Bobby: Now this summary judgement hearing, are you up to going against Pearson or not?

Lindsay: I'm up to it...I am!

Bobby: I know you are. I just wanna be sure that you know it.


Holsten: I was walking down the street minding my own business and I saw her.

Eugene: Her being?

Holsten: Sheila

Eugene: And what happened next sir?

Holsten: Well our eyes locked briefly and I came to the conclusion that the attraction

Eugene: And what happened next sir?

Holsten: I exposed myself

Judge William McGough: You exposed yourself sir?

Holsten: That is as close as I usually get to a beautiful woman Your Honor. I'm not a handsome man in the bright sunlight.

Eugene: And what happened next, Mr. Holsten

Holsten: She took my hand and led me upstairs to her apartment.

Judge: A strange woman grabbed you by the hand and led you to her place?

Holsten: Yes your honor

Judge: What were you thinking?

Holsten: Only that I should follow

Eugene: And you did not know that she was a prostitute?

Holsten: No. Next thing I know, police are charging in, and I'm chained to a dwarf smoking a Camel.

Eugene (to DA): Your witness

DA: This woman stated that before she grabbed your hand she said to you, 300, at which point you nodded

Holsten: I thought she was guessing my weight


A big office, Jimmy and his boss standing

Jimmy: He never said anything about office expansion. That was my mistake.

Boss: And how do you make such a mistake Jimmy?

Jimmy: Because office expansion was something he'd approached me about before. I...I...even got the plans. I mistakenly assumed this loan was about that

Boss: So you expedited a 70 thousand dollar loan without even asking the question what it was for. You just assumed and wrote the check

Jimmy: You want it off the record John?

Boss: Nothing's off the record

Jimmy: Bobby's one of my best friends. He's having a bad month, I helped him. I made the loan under office expansion because I couldnít figure any other way without you asking questions

Boss: And your friend played along?

Jimmy: He just took the loan. He didnít know how I was swinging it.

Boss: You're a sweet man, Jimmy. Stupid, but sweet

Jimmy:'s it gonna be?

Boss: Pack up your office, you're fired. If you and Mr. Donnell return the 70 thousand within 30 days, that will be the end of it. If you don't, I refer the matter to the District Attorney.

John Kramer walks away



Doctor: Mr martin had entered into what we call a dissociative state

Defense lawyer (DL): I see. And could you describe to the jury what that means, Doctor

Doctor: Essentially itís a psychological splitting mechanism, causing segregation of normal integrated patterns of perception.

DL: Uh doctor, I'm sure you feel youíve just explained it, but...

Doctor: (chuckles) Basically when the victim broke off the relationship, Mr. Martin snapped. He lost conscious control and was pretty much on automatic pilot when he strangled her.

DL: He didnít know what he was doing?

Doctor: In my opinion he did not

Outside courtroom

focus on defense lawyer talking to reporters.

Dr. Braun: Look at him strut.

Pan across to Bobby, Danny (the Rabbi) and Dr. Braun outside elevator

Dr. Braun: The joy of doing your job well.

Danny: Get on the elevator Gerald

Dr. Braun: No, no, no, I want to watch

Danny: Roberta waiting for you at home. Get on.

Elevator closes, DL walks up

DL: Dr. Braun I am both mindful of your presence in the courtroom every day and of your loss. I hope you realise that what I do in there shouldn't be interpreted as a failure on my part to feel your tragedy.

Dr. Braun: Why don't you die

DL: (nods and looks at Bobby) I'm sure your attorney can convey my conflict. He has certainly been in my position many, many times

Dr. Braun: Then he can die too

Bobby gives DL a dirty look. Elevator opens and Braun and Danny get in.


Donnell and associates. Office. Bobby walks in

Bobby: Bec will you call Warren Hillebrauner and tell him that we want our motion to compel

Rebecca: Sorry I donít disseminate information

Bobby stops on his way to his office and walks back

Bobby: You got something to say to me

Rebecca: You want me to say it here

Bobby: In my office

Bobby's office

Rebecca: I donít know what's going on with this bank loan. I'd like to say I donít care, but I do care, because this place of business is where I come to work everyday. And if you expect me to be a part of your schemes or lies or whatever it is you're pulling, then youíve never bothered to know who I am. I will never be a participant in that kind of crap. That's one. Here's two. If you ever speak to me with that kind of disrespect, whether it be in front of somebody else or just between us, I walk out that door.

Bobby sighs.

Bobby: I apologise. I was...I was out of line

Rebecca: You got that right. Bobby, you want to keep this place in operation, that's fine. But you gotta think real hard about exactly what it is you're trying to keep going

Bec walks out and closes door

Commercial break

Bobby's office.

Bobby is swivelling something on a plate with a fork.

Bobby: It's brought up by the defense in almost every civil action. It's their shot at getting the case kicked on legal grounds. They almost never work

Mr. Ray: But you're talking like you're worried.

Bobby: Well, if we should lose, the case is over. And as this judge seems to be a little biased (gives funny look at Lindsay, who is sitting on the couch), I won't lie. We're a little worried.

Mr. Ray: If we lose, we're done. What do we get out of it if we win?

Bobby laughs (he looks cute hehehe): Hopefully they'll start taking us seriously

Mr. Ray: Right now they're not

Bobby shakes his head, looks kinda sad: Not as much as we'd like them to

Mr. Ray sighs

Bobby (gives him a friendly slap on the knee): Go, get some rest.

Mr. Ray: Goodnight (shakes their hands).

As soon as he leaves, Lindsay gets off the couch.

Lindsay: Bobby, this judge, it may not be Pearson he's kissing up to, but somebody in his firm

Bobby: what?

Lindsay: Sidney Sharples, she was a year ahead of me in school, she works at Finley. Before that she clerked for Small and supposedly something happened between them.

Bobby: You're just telling me this now?

Lindsay: I just heard myself! Chris Kelton, a DA, also in my class, he told me

Bobby: Can we prove it?

Lindsay: I donít know, but even if we could, there's nothing to suggest itís a factor. This was more than two years ago. I don't think Pearson even knows about it.

Bobby: Still if we can get that judge off this case!

Lindsay: What are you thinking?

Bobby: I'm thinking that if that judge slept with a woman at Pearsons firm, then that is a card! And it is not beneath to play it!

Lindsay's eyes go big


Courtroom, Prostitute on the stand

Prostitute: I thought he was cute

Eugene: Mr Holsten?

Prostitute: Sure

Eugene: And when you invited him to your apartment it was because...?

Prostitute: On this particular occasion it was because I found him both attractive and nice

DA: And when you quoted him 300

Prostitute: It was before I decided I really liked him for free

DA: And the dwarf?

Prostitute: Just a friend

DA: And of course, since you yourself were charged, you would have an interest in denying this was sex for a fee, wouldnít you?

Prostitute: Hey, I took an oath to tell the truth here

DA: When this man exposed himself to you on the street, what exactly did that say about him to you?

Prostitute: Just that if I invited him to my room, he'd probably come

Judge looks at her, shocked.


Courtroom Ė closing arguments in Donna Braun murder trial

DL: The idea of setting Ronald Martin free, has to seem horrific. He took the life of an innocent woman. How can we excuse him? How can we feel sorry for him? Well we can. We can and you must, because the law tells you to. We've heard from seven trained medical professionals. We've heard them testify that Ronald Martin was ill when he committed this act, that he was temporarily insane. And if he didnít understand the nature and the quality of this act, then legally he's not guilty. That's the law. Now, you may not like it, that's okay, but you have an obligation to uphold the law here. And as you do, as you go back to that room to deliberate, remember that our system of juror's prudence, more than anything else, is designed to protect the weak. And you can hate him, you can hate him, that's a human thing to, but sometimes the function of the jury is to defend against human nature, against lynch mob mentality. Because the law, the law is here to defend the most vulnerable members of our society who have nowhere else to be safeguarded right here.

Cut to small waiting room, Mr and Mrs. Braun, DA and Bobby enter.

Dr. Braun: Yeah lets all cry for Ronald Martin. We need to feel sorry for these poor misunderstood murderers!

Pam (DA): Dr. Braun!

Dr Braun: What, he gets to sit in that room as the victim! They're looking at him as the casualty

Pam: I will get my turn!

Dr. Braun: My daughter's a piece of evidence now. The Body. This is sick.

Bobby: Gerald

Dr. Braun: She's not even a person anymore. She's Exhibit A! (to DA) You don't even care.

Pam: I'm deeply sympathetic to what you're going through. I know this is an emotional time, but don't you dare accuse me of not caring. I give my closing tomorrow, I promise you, I'm ready.

Mrs. Braun looks as though she's going to say something but Pam walks out.

Bar. Bobby and Jimmy in a booth.

Bobby: So what are you gonna do?

Jimmy: I'll find something. You know me, I always land on my feet.

Bobby: Jimmy. What are you gonna do?

Jimmy: I don't know

Bobby: You'll come work with us

Jimmy: What?

Bobby: Our tobacco case is heating up and we need all the hands we can get

Jimmy: You cant even afford to pay you, how are you going to pay me?

Bobby: I'll work it out.

Jimmy: You need therapy, you know that?

Bobby: Look just say yes or no

Jimmy: You keep digging yourself deeper. You say you'll work it out. This is gonna be on your tombstone. 'He tried to work it out'

Bobby: Right now, we're looking at your tombstone. If you hadn't come to help me, at least you'd have an office to come to. You can pick up some court appointments, hustle up some contingencies

Jimmy: And what about the others, how are they gonna feel? Not collecting regular paychecks then in comes me. How they going to feel about that?

Bobby: Look, youíre where you are coz you helped me. It's time for me to help you.

Courtroom Ė Closing's on Holsten's case

Eugene: I could stand here and talk about how there's no evidence of money changing hands. No evidence of culpable intent with respect to my client. Was he foolish to think that a prostitute would sleep with him? Of course he was. This isn't a stable man, I don't need to convince you of that, he's a flasher. They (points to DA) didnít make the elements here. I could sit down right now and you'd have to come back not guilty. But I'm going to stay up here a little longer because I want to talk to you about something else. Something called the United States of America. Big brother police saw Mr. Holsten walk away with Sheila. Mr. Holsten. Gee. Look at him. Overweight. He would just have to pay for sex wouldnít he? What woman would want to be with him? It must be prostitution. Lets follow them and then we'll bust the door down, we can do that and get away with it. You know why? Because we don't like the way they look. And when they walked into that room and saw my client handcuffed to a dwarf, well it just had to be something kinky. But you know what? I believe you need evidence. Times are changing. We are in fact becoming a more tolerant nation. We are in fact becoming a land where people do not prejudge on looks alone. You're three and a half feet tall, you're still worth the presumption of dignity. If you have a sickness, a record of exposing yourself, we will not automatically conclude that everything you do is illegal. This, this, is the United States of America. And this is the land where people go back into that jury box and say prove it. Prove the crime. Donít you dare put a person's deviances on display and expect us to rush to the automatic conclusion that the crime was committed. You prove it! They didnít! Oh they put on a great sideshow but no proof! This isn't an arena of innuendo, ladies and gentlemen. This isn't a forum of foregone conclusions! This is a courtroom in the United States of America. And in this room, even when the defendants are the disenfranchised, you still got to prove the elements of the crime. (He walks away as though finished but pauses and points to the DA) They didn't.

Judge: Uh Mr. Frasier?

DA (Frasier) from his chair: A known prostitute quotes a convicted flasher a price of 300 dollars. They are found minutes later naked in her bed. (he stands up) Without passing comment on the dwarf, I would just like to say, ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country. And then, maybe we can all build a bridge to the 21st century.

Everyone looks confused, Eugene rolls his eyes.

Judge's chambers.

Judge Small: Are you threatening me!?

Bobby: I'm simply saying, given this liaison between you and an associate at Finley Hoe-

Judge: Who the hell do you think you are? This is blatant extortion

Bobby: If you wanted it to be blatant, I'd do it in open court. Would you prefer that? Got a wife, Judge? Kids? Why don't you fine me fifty bucks for saying that!

Judge: Is this the way you practice law?

Bobby: If I have to

Judge: I think you better rethink how you operate council.

Bobby: Look, I donít know whether this relationship makes you biased or not, I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say it doesnít, but there is definitely some favourable treatment going Pearson's way. Intentional or not I donít know, I donít care, I don't like it! And I don't like you.

Judge: Nobody but nobody comes into this room and strongarms me!

Bobby: Fine. Let's just say that you came to this decision on your own. Emerson Ray got screwed once by the tobacco industry, I won't let him get screwed by you! So get off this case!

They stare each other down

Commercial break

Bobby in his office smiling to himself. (maybe I cut off the beginning of that scene, if someone wants to enlighten me, feel free)

Cut to courthouse Ė hallway outside elevators

Holsten: Hung jury. That's fate. For me to get a jury that's hung. Donít you think?

Eugene: Look the DA says he's prepared to re-try it. If that happens after Sheila's case and if she's convicted, he'll have a better hand. He might even get her sentence reduced to get her to testify against you.

Holsten: So you'll cross examine her. Prior inconsistent statements.

Eugene: Lets plead guilty. A months suspended sentence, it doesn't mean anything, you've already got a record.

Holsten: I don't want to go to any sex clinic. If thatís part of the deal-

Eugene: Mr. Holsten, lets sit here for a second

They sit down on a bench

Eugene: Look at me. (Holsten turns to face him) So far you aint made it in life. Me, seven years of lawyering and I'm still representing guys who walk around dropping their pants; that tells me I've got some moving up to do too. I like to look for victories where I can find them. This case here, my little victory would be getting a sick guy to go for some help. If I could help a man face a problem, an illness, that would be something. So I'm asking you, if you donít want to do anything for yourself, then do it for me

Holsten: How long?

Eugene: Two months. In patient. Please

Holsten: Okay.


Courtroom Ė Pam's closing on Braun's case

Pam: For the last six weeks, we've heard doctor after doctor talk about Ronald Martin. How he was temporarily insane, how he wasn't responsible, he's this, he's that. He's here. Nobody talks about Donna Braun. She's no longer part of our reality is she? She doesnít get to sit here, day after day, looking human. She's past tense. And every day she becomes a little more gone, a little more forgotten, until one day, she doesnít exist, at all. And all you take back into that jury room is him. Ronald Martin (she turns to walk towards him) That man, right there. With the sad face, the man with a priest sitting behind him, the man that all the psychiatric experts said such nice things about. But also the man who strangled Donna Braun for seven minutes. This was not a snap flash of anger. He choked her for seven minutes. He kept squeezing and squeezing until her eyes bulged out of her sockets and until there was no life left in her. And thatís how he left her as he drove off to the church to beg for forgiveness. (she sighs) Now Mr. Good implores you to protect the American justice system. What is that system? Where rich people buy acquittals? Where if you have enough money you're entitled to one free murder? Well we need to know that's not our system. They need to know it. They lost their daughter, their only daughter. They need to hear you say that is not our system of justice. We all need to hear that.


Nice courtroom Ė Summary judgement for Mr. Ray's case.

Judge: Mr. Pearson, I'll hear from you

Pearson stands up

Pearson: thank you, your honor. I am Anderson Pearson representing the respondent, TL Michaels. And pursuant to rule 56 of the Massachusetts Rules of Civil Procedure (cut to Bobby whispering to Lindsay) we submit the plaintiff's claim-

Lindsay (stands up): I'm sorry Your Honor. Forgive me. I'm a little confused. According to your clerk's notice, we were to hear...what is it...uh any and all discovery or pretrial matters before oral arguments on summary judgement.

Pearson: There are no other matters

Lindsay: Well actually there is one other nagging little matter

She stares at the judge, Pearson looks confused, Bobby smiles smugly. Lindsay sits down.

Judge: I've decided to dispense with oral arguments, Mr. Pearson. I find there to be items dispute the material fact in this case. The defendant's motion for summary judgement is hereby denied; ruling in favor of the plaintiff. Moreover I recuse myself from this case. Another judge will be assigned. Adjourned.

Disbelief by all.


Mr. Ray: So what happens now?

Bobby: What happens now is we get our day in court, with a jury. We are in the fight, we are in the fight.

Elevator opens, they get in.

Pearson walks up: Quite pleased are we? What was that Lindsay?

Lindsay: The beginning professor.

Pearson: Do you know what you're in for?

Lindsay: I think so. Do you?

Elevator doors close.


Jimmy walks in with box of things. Ellenor, Eugene and Rebecca all stare at him.

Eugene: hey Jimmy. Eugene Young. Don't know if we've officially met, but welcome. (takes box of him)

Jimmy: Thanks

Eugene: Let me take that

Ellenor: We're very excited

Rebecca: You need anything supply wise, let me know, I've already got the phoneline set up

Jimmy: Oh great I donít need anything, a pad of paper and somebody to sue (they laugh). Listen thanks for this, I know it couldn't have been good news bringing in another body, especially mine, but uh this is going to be a big year for me, I promise, I'm gonna win a case.

Eugene smiles

Ellenor: We have no doubt'

Jimmy: Thanks

Courtroom Ė empty, people filing out. Bobby is talking to Pam, Lindsay standing in background.

Pam (packing her briefcase): The judge will instruct on Monday, then its up to the jury Any progress finding the old girlfriend

Bobby: No

Pam: We're running out of time

Braun's walk up

Mrs. Braun: Ms. Lloyd, thank you for your words.

Pam: I hope the jury listened

Mrs. Braun: So do we.

Pam: It's almost over

Dr Braun walks away

Mrs. Braun: Yes. Part of me is glad for that. Another part...I wonder what we're going to do when it is over

She walks away

Pam to Bobby: I'll see ya

Bobby: Yeah

He stands up and turns to Lindsay

Bobby: Lindsay. Um...the tobacco case. I want you to try it. I think you're more prepared on it than me

Lindsay: Bobby, I've never even done a jury trial before. Are you sure?

Bobby: Youíve done all the discovery, I think you're ready Do you think you can do it?

Lindsay: Um...sure

Bobby: Tell me if you cant, you donít have to be a hero here

Lindsay smiles: I can do it

They smile

Bobby: Ok. Lets go.

He walks out. Lindsay stays and stares around courtroom before following him out.


The end



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