Your Honor – Part Eight – Transcript

Jimmy puts pressure on Michael over Carlo's trial. At a family dinner, Adam announces his future plans. Nancy and Lee discover some cops aren't what they seem.
Your Honor - Part Eight

Air date: January 31 2021


[slow, suspenseful music]

[Sarah] It was a setup. I know it.

[Michael] I’m sorry, Sarah.

Did you see anyone at the bar?

White cops stop Black person driving, get lucky. It happens.

[Sarah] Funny part is, I was on my way to your surprise party. I was speeding so that I’d get there ahead of you.

Did you talk to your professional responsibility lawyer?

[Sarah] Mm-hmm. Rehab in exchange for charges dropped and arrest record expunged.

What do you think?

[chuckles softly]

I think I don’t have a drinking problem, and I don’t want to lose the Baxter trial.

This is your career, Sarah.


An arrest is bad. A felony conviction– that’s your judgeship.

They want me off this trial, Michael.


Oh, come on. Don’t-don’t do that.

Don’t do what?

You think this city isn’t capable of connecting up all the dots? Cops in bed with crime families in bed with politics in bed with cops. It’s an unvirtuous circle.

You lose your job, you’re off the case anyway. Sarah, please, you’ve got to be smart now.

I don’t think that D.A.’s got the balls to actually prosecute a sitting judge.

So you haven’t seen it, then.

Seen what?


[Maxwell] I’m gonna need you to take a field sobriety test, ma’am.

You want me to do the alphabet backwards? Z, Y, X, W, go fuck yourself. How’s that?

Come on. Turn around.

You have got to be fucking crazy.

Do I look like I’m crazy? Hands behind your back.

It’s gone viral.


Well, could be worse.

You know why I don’t want to lose the Baxter trial?


You do?

Cops, crime families, politicians. You left out one group– judges. The judges in this building cannot be trusted. Am I right?

Save one. Stubborn bastard in court 14 who insists on putting justice above everything.

[protesters] No justice, no peace! No justice, no peace! No justice, no peace! No justice, no peace! No justice, no peace!

[Michael] There is an existential threat heading our way. It wants in. It wants to contaminate us. And it is my job to protect this courtroom and everyone in it the best I can. So, lawyers, court staff and family members of the accused and the victim are all allowed in the court. Nobody else without express permission. We are having this courtroom deep-cleaned every evening, and I’m putting a man on the door so outsiders don’t get in. I do this with a heavy heart, because excluding the press and the public goes against every principle that I hold dear– transparency, open justice, accountability.

[Fiona] This is going to be upsetting. I’m sorry I have to show it to you. I really wish I did not. This trial is about… what happened in a prison cell in the four minutes between 9:11 and 9:15 on October 13th to turn this child… into this. First rule in the rule book of how to be a trial lawyer– don’t get emotionally involved, maintain a professional distance. Bullshit. I am 100% emotionally involved in getting this brute of a human being convicted of this murder. Why? Because I know he did it. I have proof of Carlo Baxter’s violent, racist nature. I can prove that he had a clear motive for killing Kofi Jones and that he orchestrated his one-night stay in Orleans Parish Prison, allowing himself the opportunity to employ that violent nature and act on that motive. Nature, motive, opportunity.

Can you stand up, Carlo?

[Zander] Objection.

She can’t do that.

Whatever. Stand, don’t stand, doesn’t matter. Pretty soon, you guys are gonna get a good look at Carlo Baxter, whose defense is asking you to believe that he killed five-foot-seven, 40 pounds lighter, unarmed Kofi Jones, because he feared for his safety. Okay, how do I know this? Because he can’t say he wasn’t there, and he can’t say it wasn’t him, because the evidence supporting presence and identity is incontrovertible. So what else can he say about how Kofi Jones ended up dead on a mortuary slab after four minutes in a cell with him? Self-defense is all he’s got. Surprise, surprise, that’s what he’s going with. Call me a cynic.

Who is Carlo Baxter? He’s his father’s son. Who’s his father?

[Jimmy] Don’t go to the hotel. Stay away from the hotel. Get away from the hotel!

No, no. No, no, no.


Turn that off, please.

[Jimmy] Go!

Both of you, up here.

Are you kidding me?

What’s the matter?

You don’t like it when your puppet master does the talking?

It’s irrelevant, Your Honor. What does this evidence tell us?

That the accused’s father knew he was about to get arrested and tried to stop it from happening.

And how does that help the jury?

By making them ask a second question.

Which is?

How? How did he know? Is he a police officer? No. How would Jimmy know? Who told him?

And how is this relevant?

[Zander] Yeah.

Because if you kill someone while defending yourself, most people– most innocent people– come forward and say, “I’m really sorry I killed someone.”

[Zander] Is there an argument in there somewhere?

[Fiona] “I had to do it or they would have killed me first.” Not Carlo. Not Carlo and his daddy.

Are we going to see evidence to support this?

I’m asking the jury to use their common sense.

Just lay it out for me, please.

[Fiona] Jimmy Baxter is a gangster.

[Zander] That’s what she wants. They are not gangsters.

The Baxter family are gangsters. They were tipped off to Carlo’s imminent arrest.

Tipped off by whom?

[slow, suspenseful music]

[Fiona] We don’t know… yet. Maybe Johnny here can tell you.

[Zander] Okay, I’m not gonna take that shit from her.

All right. Enough. Enough. This is getting way too personal. I will not have this in my courtroom. Now, both of you, go sit down.

Ladies and gentlemen, what you just heard– the voice mail message– you didn’t. I want you to un-hear it. When I tell you to disregard something, take it from me, there’s good reason, and very often it’s not what you think. So please don’t speculate because you’ll probably be wrong. Let me do the work on what should be the evidence. Trust me, and we’ll be fine.

[Zander] Home. That’s a hell of a word. Shakespeare… called it the most powerful word in the English language. It’s a word I’m going to… I’m going to ask you to think very, very carefully about during this trial. Ten… by six. That’s it. Inside OPP, a man has ten feet by six feet that he can call home. Carlo Baxter was in his home on the night of October 13th. Home was his cell at Orleans Parish Prison.

[Fiona] Objection.

[Zander] Jesus.

[Fiona] I’m sorry, Your Honor. I can’t let this go.

[Zander] This is my opening, Your Honor.

[Fiona] He knows there’s case law specifically excluding prison and jail cells from the definition of “home” in self-defense cases.

[Zander] I’m not using the term in a technical legal sense. I’m appealing to their common sense, Your Honor.

[Fiona] It’s misleading in law.

[Michael] But not in English. So, continue, Mr. Zander.

[Zander] Thank you. A killer walked into his home. Lawyers have to be very careful about every word we use in court. So when I say “killer,” I mean… “killer.” And we know this, because, only days before, he pleaded guilty to causing the death of Carlo’s younger brother, his baby brother, Rocco… by hitting him with a car and leaving him to die by the side of the road. What would you think if you were Carlo? Hmm? You just arrived at OPP, sat all alone in your cell, minding your own business, and suddenly, out of nowhere– without a guard in sight, mind you– there’s the killer of your baby brother just standing there, looking right at you. That’s all you need. Right there. Who’s the aggressor here? Hmm? Kofi Jones walked 300 yards from his own cell block and bribed a guard to get to Carlo. You know, every person has a right to be safe in their home. Everyone. I’d like you to think about that tonight as you go to bed. And God forbid you ever wake up to a known killer standing in the room you sleep in. But if you do, if you do, I promise you this: you won’t need a law book to spell out your rights.

[Michael] We’ll take five minutes.

[slow, gentle music]

Oh. Thank you.

Here you go. Mm-hmm.

Note from the jury.

[paper rustling]

Who wrote this?

I found it in this envelope lying on the table in the jury room.

Your Honor - Part Eight - I found it in this envelope lying on the table in the jury room.

So it could have been from any one of the 12?


[Michael] Tell them I’ll answer it at the end of evidence.

[Betty] It’s a done deal. Carlo’s going down.

[Michael] [quietly] All right.

Lieutenant Cusack.

What about him?

[Lee] Interviewed Kofi right after Nash and Maxwell did what they did to him.

[Nancy] Huh. They’ve been busy.


Cusack’s crew.

Nash and Maxwell run with Cusack?

Cusack’s Baxter-owned.

Are you saying that Jimmy Baxter had LeBlanc removed?

Well, Judge LeBlanc hates the Baxter family. I mean, she’s never tried to hide it. I mean, there’s no judge that they would want less presiding over their case.

[Michael] In the middle of the trial? But how would it look if something happened to me? I mean, uh, they-they-they wouldn’t do that.

Ask Judge LeBlanc if she agrees.

[Michael] Well, what evidence have you got?

Lieutenant Cusack. His crew–

[Michael] Lieutenant Cusack is a prosecution witness. He’s going to be testifying against Carlo Baxter. So… what you’re saying about him, uh, it just doesn’t make any sense. Nancy… there’s no public scrutiny of what is going on in there. So it’s very important that we don’t stoop to speculation. I mean, we’ve got to be rigorous. We’ve-we’ve got to be tough on ourselves, right? Evidence, evidence, evidence. Right?

[sighs] Yeah.

[Michael] Have you… been to Fiona McKee with this?


[Michael] Okay.

[tense music]

Place your left hand on the Bible. Raise your right hand.

[breathing heavily]

Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

I do.

You may be seated.

It’s easier for me to stand.

That’s fine.

You know this man?

Yeah. He, uh, jumped me on the street. January, three years ago.

Why’d he do that?

For being there and being Black. He broke my spine.

[quietly] Jesus.

[Justin] They fused it, but, uh… it didn’t take. At least not all the way. That’s why I got no balance left. That’s why this.

[cane thumps]

[Fiona] Anything else he do to you?

He curb-checked me.

[Fiona] Can you explain to the jury what that means?

[inhales] He made me, uh… [exhales] Sorry, I can’t.

[Fiona] It’s okay. You don’t have to.

Your Honor has the agreed definition?

[Michael] Yes. Yes. [clears throat] “A form of assault in which the victim’s mouth– jaw wide open– is forcefully placed on a curb and the victim’s head… is stomped from behind, causing severe injury or death.”

How did that affect you?

I wake up screaming in the middle of the night. I go to bed getting ready to wake up screaming.

[Fiona] Thank you, Justin.

[Michael] Uh, we’ll take five minutes before cross.

[slow, somber music]

[Michael] Mr. James, thank you for your testimony. I don’t want to keep you on the stand any longer than is necessary, and I’m sure Mr. Zander feels exactly the same way. I can’t imagine what it must be like for you to relive your experience.

[Zander] [quietly] Jesus. This judge. Talk about pro-prosecution.

[Michael] I do have a question. You have… scarring from the attack. Is that true?


[Michael] And from the surgeries?


[Michael] And they’re on your back? Is that right?


[Michael] And the scar on the side of your neck– is-is that also from the attack or the surgeries?

Um, no, it’s a… it’s a tattoo.

[Michael] Oh. Sorry. I couldn’t make it out from here. My apologies. Mr. Zander, are you ready?

Yes, Your Honor. May I? The letter “D.” Are you a member of a gang?

Objection. Justin James is not the one on trial here.

[Michael] I will allow this question.

“D” for…?


[Zander] Desire. Your Honor, may I have the witness turn toward the jury so they can see the tattoo?


[Michael] I think, under the circumstance, it is a legitimate request. I’ll grant it.

[Zander] Desire. Is that the same gang that Kofi Jones was a member of?


[Zander] I’m guessing that Carlo Baxter’s not very popular with the Desire crew that you run with and are loyal to. Right? No further questions, Your Honor.

[Fiona] Redirect, Your Honor. Carlo Baxter went to jail for this vicious assault on you. Right?

Yes, ma’am.

Did he plead guilty?

Uh, no. There was a trial.

Who represented him?

That guy.

[Fiona] Oh. Did you take the stand?

[Justin] Yes.

[Fiona] Did Carlo take the stand?


What did he say?

He said that I attacked him and that he was defending himself.

[Fiona] Did he call any other witnesses?

Yeah. His mother.

[Fiona] He was convicted of the assault, correct?


By a jury?


So they believed you?

Yeah. They did.

[Fiona] So it follows that Carlo and his mother were lying under oath.

Objection. Speculation about what was in the mind of the jury.

Mr. Baxter, you are a racist, a liar and a thug.


[Michael] Ms. McKee.

Her Honor Judge LeBlanc’s words on sentencing Carlo Baxter.

[Michael] Objection overruled.

[Fiona] Thank you, Mr. James.

[Michael] [sighs]


[low, ominous music]

Did you forget where you parked?


That’s what I thought.

Who are you?

Detective Costello. C-O-S-T-E-L-L-O.

[Brendan] C-U-S-A-C-K. Cusack.

[Fiona] What was Kofi Jones arrested for on the night of October 10th?

Possession of a stolen vehicle.

And were those charges later upgraded?

They were. Vehicular homicide for the hit-and-run death of Rocco Baxter.

Carlo’s brother.

[Brendan] That’s right.

[Fiona] Thank you, Lieutenant.

You saw Kofi Jones on the day of his arrest?

At the station house, yeah.

Describe his demeanor.

Uh, objection. It calls for speculation.

He’s a police officer. Don’t you read people for a living? Facial expressions, body language and so forth?

Every cop does. It’s a crucial part of the job.

[Michael] Overruled.

[Zander] I’m asking you what you remember of Kofi Jones on the day of his arrest. We know he’d just run over a 17-year-old boy, causing catastrophic brain injury.

[Michael] We-we don’t need to hear the detail.

What, so we get chapter and verse on the curb stomp, and you don’t allow this?

[Michael] Will you please get to your point?

Did he seem torn up about it?

I’m not up here to speak ill of the dead.

[Zander] You’re up there to tell the truth.

Okay. You really want to know? He looked like nothing had happened, like it was just another Tuesday. I mean, when I saw him, he’d just finished eating a bacon sandwich. You’d think, you just killed a man, then…

[suspenseful music]

[Zander] No further questions.

[lively chatter]

I am so… so sorry what’s happening in there. It’s not right.

All that they’re saying about him ain’t true.

I can drive you home.

For what? So you can bullshit me some more on the way?

I-I could offer you a place to stay. I mean, just-just until–

I don’t need that. I don’t need you. I’m staying with Little Mo.

He making you feel like a man? Like you have something?

He got my back.

You know, I used to plead out corner boys all the time. That was my job. And every time they’d sing the same song: “My crew’s got my back.”

Then I’d tell them how many years they were gonna do, and I’d see it land. Then they’d come back at me and say, “I’m a good soldier. I’m gonna take the years.” For what? For feeling like a man?

You got something better for me?

I know the system. I can navigate it for you. With you.

Little Mo hand me cash every week. Every week. And you want to hand me the system? [Eugene scoffs] Fuck you!

Fuck me? Fuck me? Really? [laughs] What, fuck me up the ass? Is that you? Are you the same as him? Or are you better than that, Eugene?

[Michael] One thing before you go home for the night. When you are outside of this courtroom, you do not talk to anyone about this trial or any testimony you hear during it. You do not watch, read or listen to any coverage on this case. I want you clean. I want you free of outside interference. And let me be clear. Anyone breaking these rules is committing a criminal offense, and I will hold you in contempt of court if you do it. [stammers] Why am I being so fierce about this? The answer is beside you. Now… I didn’t put the Constitution up on the wall. It was there when I got here. And it’ll be here long after I’m gone. You know, sometimes I come in early in the morning, and I reread the words… and remind myself of the simple beauty of our system of justice. The accused has the right to be tried by a jury of his peers. Now, notice it-it doesn’t say anything about judges… or lawyers. Our Founding Fathers knew where to put their trust. Now, I will tell you what the law is. But as for the facts– who’s telling the truth, who isn’t– it’s all yours. So despite me being up here in… all my… Dumbledore gear, I am far less important than you. Because of this virus, we’re alone in here. Nobody is watching you. The responsibility and the power is yours. Not me. Not God. You, the people.

♫ I can’t live on the kind of love ♫

♫ That you give… ♫

D-Don’t do that with the stitching.

Why? What’s it worth?

What’s the story with that? Where did Kofi get it?

What’s it worth?

He didn’t tell you where he got it?

Nah. He didn’t get the chance.

When was the last time you saw him?

[sighs] Hmm. Last time I saw him was the night before the cops came and got him. [clears throat] Guess he didn’t have it then– the baseball.

Yeah, I guess not.

Sell it for me?


Best closer in the history of the game right there.


[suspenseful music]

Your Honor - Part Eight - Juror's notes

[school bell ringing]

[indistinct, overlapping chatter]

Adam, do you have a minute?

[Adam] Uh, yeah.

It’s the first picture you showed me after your mom died. You should have it. I, um… I gave my notice this morning.

[Adam] What?

I’m gonna teach out the rest of the semester, and then I’m gone.

[Adam] I-I’m sorry.

Why? There are a hundred high schools within an hour of the NYU campus.

[Adam] High schools? [chuckles]

I’ve put out some feelers already.

[Adam] Wait. Uh, are you–?

Adam, you’ll be 18. [chuckles softly] We won’t have to hide from anybody or explain ourselves to anyone, you know? We can just… we can just be.

[Adam] I didn’t get in. NYU. They said no.

[door opens]


[Michael] Hey, buddy. Oh, boy. Oh, boy. Look at this. Hey.

[sighs] Adam? All right.

[laughs softly]

Look at that. Huh? You don’t care.

Ah. [sighs]

[Michael] Charlie, cancel whatever plans you’ve got for tonight. We are celebrating.

[Michael] Elizabeth? Listen, uh… The Desiato men would love to see you tonight.

[Hurray for the Riff Raff’s “Settle” playing]

I didn’t know.

Oh, it’s not a big deal.

Kind of suits you.

♫ Before I go to sleep I listen long to the bustling streets… ♫

You know, Rocco never had a girlfriend. I mean, nobody he was all in on. Sometimes I feel like I’m living two lives, his and mine. So, um, I hope you don’t mind having an annoying, smiley, dead brother hanging out with us all the time.

♫ They raised me up on brick and bread… ♫


Are you okay? Hey. Are you sure?


♫ How long I’m gonna settle ♫

Yeah, I want to show you something.

♫ I’m gonna settle… ♫

So, my mom used to give people pictures of themselves they didn’t know she’d taken. I mean, all over the city, there are people with Polaroid pictures of themselves taken by Mom. And, you know, people would get pissed sometimes, and so Mom would talk to them or sometimes even go for coffee with them to try to persuade them she wasn’t after their souls. And, I mean, they would open up to her. And I’d be there listening. It was how I learned everything that I know and love about this city. I mean, obviously back then I hated it. Thought she was, like, embarrassing or… And she knew that, so, um, one day she explained it to me. “Go deep, not wide.” She said people make that mistake too often, thinking that going deep is going wide. “Stay where you are, stand still, dig.”


[Michael] Perfect.

How much would you pay for this?

[Michael] Where’d you get that?

Eugene. Wants me to sell it for him.

[Michael] So, he’s talking to you now, huh?

It’s a process, but yes.

[Michael] That’s good. That’s good.

So, make me an offer.

[Michael] All right. I’ll make you an offer. Here.


[Michael] Uh, Desiato. We’re early.

Come this way, please.

[Michael] Thank you.

[hostess] Am I allowed to say something?

[Michael] Sure.

You’re the judge, right?

[Michael] Yeah.

The Baxter boy. So guilty. Tell me I’m wrong.

[Michael] Well, I’m the last person you should talk to about this.

You can ask me.

[hostess] So, am I right?

We’ll be leaving you a very big tip.

Thank you, Mrs. Desiato.

[Michael] Mrs. Desiato. Oh.

[Lee chuckles]

[slow, sinister music]

Right this way.

[Michael] Here, Lee. Well, I should wash up. I’ll be right back.


[Jimmy] Justin James. Justin fucking James. You didn’t have to allow that. You could have told her she couldn’t call him. But now my boy’s a racist. She’s tearing him apart in there.

[Michael] You don’t know what you’re talking about.

And you’re letting it fucking happen! I’m watching my son heading for death row.

[Michael] Do you have any idea what a jury is looking for…

Oh, don’t–

[Michael] in a judge on a case like this? Do you have any idea?

Don’t-don’t… don’t fuck with me.

[Michael] They want me to be their dad. I am giving them that. I am Gregory fucking Peck in there. They watch me stand up to Johnny Zander’s showboating, and they trust me more. They watch me allow in evidence that they really want to hear, and they love me for that. And all the while, I am making them feel secure. I’m making them feel safe by telling them that I love them and that I am not frightened by anyone. I get them to look up to me, to take their cues from me. And then later– not now, not yet, but when it matters– I tell them what to think. They won’t know what’s happening. They won’t ever see it happening. But it will happen. Twelve of our peers will do exactly what I want them to do. Tomorrow or the next day, I am making a move. Now, are we done here?

Only number in here is mine. I want to know what you’ve done and when you’ve done it, and I want it by 10 a.m. the day after tomorrow. Let’s call that a deadline. And let’s give that word its literal meaning.

[ominous, dramatic music]

Thank you.

[Charlie] And then she grabbed my head, and she said…

[Lee laughs]

She said, “It’s in your heart.”



[Charlie] Hey! There she is!

Ah, how are you?

Hello, hello, hello.

[Charlie] The woman of my dreams.

And the man of mine. Hi.


Ah. Mmm.


[Elizabeth] Hey, baby.

How you doing?


[Michael] Here you are.

Thank you. Thank you. Sorry I’m a bit late.

[Michael] Oh, that’s all right.

So, what’s going on? I mean, is there something I don’t know?

[Michael] Hmm, maybe. Here. Open this. You’re going to NYU.

[Elizabeth] He got in?

[Michael] [chuckles] He got in. Six hundred applicants for only five places. Wow. Like mother, like son. Huh? New York. New life, huh?

[voice breaking] Your mom would’ve been so proud.


[soft jazz playing]

Ah. To New York and Adam.

[Michael] Ah, to New York and Adam. Hear, hear.

[Elizabeth] To Adam.

Yeah, um… I-I don’t know.

[Michael] Don’t know what?

I’m just… not sure.

[Michael] About?

[chuckles softly] Actually, I’ve been… thinking about taking a gap year.

[Michael] Really? Wow. Okay. Um, s-so, you have a plan? You’re gonna travel abroad or…?

I think that I should stay here.

[Michael] And-and do… do what? What do you mean?

I think I should stay in New Orleans. Like Mom used to say, go deep, not wide.

Adam, want a ride home in a real car?

[all chuckle]

[Adam] Yeah.

[Michael] Okay.

They, they were here.

[Michael] Who?

Jimmy Baxter and his Celtic goon.

[Michael] When?

As I arrived.

[Michael] Well… It was a coincidence.

Really? How do you know that?

[Michael] This is what happens, Elizabeth. Paranoia sets in. Irrational fear takes hold. We can’t have that. That’s the fight. We have to stay normal. We have to stay strong. Okay?


[Michael] Come on.


[Charlie] I love your father, and I love you. I’d do anything to protect you. So that’s why I-I don’t like it when I see something or someone come between the two of you.

♫ Push it ♫

♫ Pull it… ♫

Girlfriend leaning on you to stay, Adam? Is that it?


I’m your godfather, not your father. Well, godfathers get to talk about girlfriends.

♫ You’re gonna get left… ♫

Okay. [chuckles softly]

Come on.

♫ Now go for yourself ♫

♫ It’s easier taking candy from a baby ♫


♫ Don’t hand me no bull ♫

♫ Now you got it, baby ♫

[vehicle approaching]

[Michael] Ms. Latimer? Frannie? Hi.

[Frannie] Oh, Judge Desiato. Hi.

[Michael] Yeah, hi. I’m sorry to sneak up on you, but I-I did want to catch you before school started. It’s about Adam.

Oh, yeah? Is he okay?

[Michael] Yes. Yeah, he’s… Well, he’s… [sighs] He’s waffling on NYU.


[Michael] Yeah, he’s saying that he might not want to go.

But he-he got the letter and everything?

[Michael] Oh, yeah. Yeah, and the T-shirt, too. Did he confide in you? Did he say anything at all?

No. No.

[Michael] Well, I know he trusts you, doesn’t he? And you’re not his parent, so maybe you can get through to him. I mean, it’s like you said, he’s got something. I mean, he’s only 17, but he should know better. And I’m worried that he’s gonna throw it all away. I hate to ask, but… would you talk to him? Please?

[slow, dramatic music]


[Michael] Yeah?


[Michael] I… Thank you.


[Michael] Thank you.

I should, um–

[Michael] Yeah. Yeah. Have a good day.


[pulsing, dramatic music]

[Dr. Edward Grether] Massive trauma causing multiple brain contusions, the result of blood entering the brain tissue.

[Fiona] Can you tell the jury what that looks like?

[Grether] Okay. Um, the deceased was, um–

You can call him Kofi.

[Michael] Ms. McKee, please.

He’s Kofi his whole life, and then he gets killed and suddenly he’s “the deceased”? How did Kofi die?

Kofi’s skull couldn’t expand, so his brain swelled up. The pressure inside his skull reached an intolerable level. That pressure wasn’t relieved. It’s a terrible way to go.

[Fiona] Exhibit B. [Fiona clears throat]


[Michael] Now, Counselor, we don’t need to go here.

I just have a few more photographs.

[Michael] I think the jury has seen all that they need to see.

[Fiona] Uh… may I approach?

Your Honor.

[Michael] Right. Please turn this off.

I appreciate your concern for the jury’s feelings. You’ve seen the photos?

[Michael] Look, they’re easy for us to look at because we’re used to them. But a jury? It’s harrowing. And we don’t know how sensitive they might be to these.

Do these injuries look like they were caused by someone defending themself? I mean, even if the jury buys that Carlo wasn’t the aggressor, they still have to decide if the force he used to defend himself was proportionate. These pictures go directly to the heart of that question. They need to see them to do their job.

Come on, Fiona. It’s overkill.

Shut up.

[Michael] And I need to protect my jury. Let’s continue.

[Fiona] Okay. We don’t have any pictures of what happened to Kofi’s brain. So we’re going to have to use words.

His head was bashed repeatedly against the wall.

[Fiona] How do you know?

[Grether] Small particles I picked out of the wound, some of which were embedded in Kofi’s skull– they match the wall material in the cell.

[Fiona] Stone from the wall was in his skull?

[Grether] That’s right.

Well, a skull is hard, right?

[Grether] Very.

So it would have required–

A tremendous amount of force to do what was done here.

How many bashings?


And what can you tell us about the force that was used?

Well, the, uh, wall of the cell is flat. There are no significant bumps or ridges. So, in order for particles from the wall to be embedded in Kofi’s skull, the force must have been enough to… to loosen the material of the cell wall.

Which was?

Concrete. He almost certainly had him by the hair when he was–

So, wait. Like… like that? Like this? Like this?


[banging continues]

[slow, suspenseful music]

[Grether] I found Carlo Baxter’s skin under his fingernails.

[Fiona] What does that tell you?

Kofi fought for his life and lost.

Thank you, Doctor.

[Michael] Mr. Zander?

[Zander] No questions, Your Honor.

[Michael] Ladies and gentlemen, thank you, and we’ll see you in the morning.

[clicking mouse]

[phone buzzes]


No. No way. Who reported me?

[Michael] That’s confidential.

I’m not allowed to know who accused me? That’s a habeas corpus suit right there. Was it juror eight?

[Michael] I need to see your phone.

This is ridiculous.

[Michael] Let’s clear it up.

Fine. Here you go.

Oh, my God. That… that-that wasn’t me. Somebody did this to me.

[Michael] Why would they do that? Ms. Long, I don’t doubt that you had good intentions, but I gave very clear instructions.

[stammers] You’re not listening. I didn’t do this. Someone did this to me. What are you gonna do?

[Michael] Replace you with an alternate.

This isn’t right. I could go out that door right now and tell the press what happened here.

[Michael] Sit down. The trial would collapse if you did that. We’d have to start over with a new jury. Justin James would have to come back and relive the horror of being curb-stomped all over again.

I think we both know what’s going on here. I won’t be intimidated by anyone.

[Michael] Do you have children?

A daughter.

[Michael] And you love her more than anything in the world?

What-what does she have to do with–?

[Michael] Nothing is more precious than her. Not principle, not courage, not conscience. My guess is that you were leaning toward convicting the accused. Hmm? Let me tell you something. I have sat through hundreds and hundreds of jury trials, and I can always call them by the end of day one. I’m never wrong. Justice won’t miss you, Ms. Long. You can walk away, and I would bet my life that we will still get the result you want. Carlo Baxter is going down.

[plaintive music]

[Michael] Go home. Be with your daughter. Pretend this never happened.

[indistinct chatter]


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