Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (2009) Script

Does it have to be that tight?

Well, we have to be absolutely sure you can't see.

Don't we? Now don't be nervous.

I'll... I'll try not to be.

All right, here we go.

Okay, next.

This is difficult.

Can I try the first one again? No problem.

Here you are.

This one. Yes, this one.

Now are you sure? You don't want to try any of the others?

No, I'm sure. This is the best.

Okay, why don't you take your blindfold off and see which one you chose?

I can't believe it.

We tested 100 people, 22 of which chose the instant coffee just like Marsha here.

Another 29 people chose the canned coffee.

That's a total of 51% who chose the instant or canned coffee over the $3-a-cup gourmet brand.

So the next time you reach for your wallet, are you really paying for a superior blend, or just a very fancy name?

This is CJ Nicholas for the News 8 Shreveport investigative team.

Hey, thanks, guys.

I really appreciate it. That was hard hitting.

I have chills. I hear the networks calling you.

Could you give me some cutaways?

And I'd really appreciate it if you'd both bite me.

There really isn't much more to say.

Lucinda Harris was 22 years old.

She's never gonna have a career.

Did I miss it? Almost.

She's never gonna have a marriage.

She's never gonna be able to have her own baby, hold it in her arms.

And her parents there are never gonna be able to kiss her again, watch how her life unfolds. It's over.

It's done.

And do you know why?

Because this man sitting right here, Andre Benson, felt that she didn't give him her purse fast enough.

Oh, she gave it to him, all right.

Just not fast enough for Mr. Benson.

So he shot her.

He shot her three times.

Only once, she might have been wounded.

Two times, there would have been a spark of life left in her.

So he made sure. He made triple sure.

Now the defense would like to tell you that our whole case is circumstantial.

There is no eyewitness, no ballistic match, no alibi.

Andre Benson was home in his apartment alone watching TV. Probably "Jeopardy. "

The defense can also explain why Mr. Benson ran from the scene of the crime when the police came to his back door.

He's a young black man in a high crime area.

Naturally you hear a loud bang on your door, you get scared.

But do you know what?

We made sure too.

We made triple sure.

There's one thing he can't explain.

This cigarette butt with Andre Benson's DNA all over it was found at the scene of the crime lying right next to the deceased.

Now you have heard the expert testimony of the crime lab.

The odds of this not being Andre Benson's DNA is 6 billion to one.

That's right, 6 billion, with a B, to one.

Hunter dribbles behind the three-point line.

Here comes the shot.

Now if you're willing to take that bet, then I don't want to be your district attorney.

I want to be your bookie. Swish.

With this latest victory, you have never lost a murder case.

Are you going to announce your candidacy for governor?

The latest polls have you ahead. One at a time, please.

Are you running for governor? It's Paul, right?

Paul, let me tell you something. A beautiful young woman's life was taken away in a moment of incomprehensible violence.

That's what today is about.

Now why do moments like this keep happening on our streets?

Those are the things we have to ask ourselves.

Tonight when we all go home, we have our nice dinners, we have to ask what would make a man take an innocent human life and treat it with such little respect?

Just snuff it out like a match in the wind?

Now my only hope out of this whole ordeal is that Mr. and Mrs. Harris will bring some closure to their life.

Today is not about keeping score.

It's not about politics.

Today was a real tragedy. Thank you.

Could he be smoother?

I got a chubby just watching.

Listen, I'll meet you back at the station, okay?

Hey, dude, I keep on telling you. She's out of your league.

And I'm gonna keep on trying.

Thank you. I'll see you tomorrow.

Hey. Hi.

CJ, you've been at the trial a lot.

You noticed me. I noticed you staring at me.

That means you were looking at me.

I was looking at you staring.

You're staring again. No, this is my look.

I'm not staring. Hmm.

I came to beg a favor. Again?

We're doing a companion piece on police interrogation techniques and I was wondering whether you'd give me the police interview tape.

Now why would I do that?

'Cause then you get to go out to dinner with me.

I can't go out to dinner with you.

It's not meal specific. Could be lunch, perhaps a beverage.

CJ, I can't. Why not?

You're a reporter. And you work for the district attorney.

I don't hold that against you. You don't like Mark Hunter?

Not much. Why?

Or why not? Whichever is correct.

A lot of reasons. Too many to mention here.

Why is correct. Give me one.

Too smooth. Way too smooth.

And I'm not sure he's honest.

You say these things about my boss and you expect me to have dinner with you?

I don't expect. I hope.

And I don't want to go out to dinner with him, I want to go out to dinner with you.

Besides, there's gonna be so many things that we disagree on over the years... favorite colors, small dogs... I hate the little yappers... electric or manual toothbrush... countless things we're gonna have to work through.

I promise I won't look or stare.

You'd really be helping me out if you could get me that tape.

What harm could it do?

The trial's over. I'll send it to your office.

In person would be much... I'll send it to your office. better.

Chinese. What?

I like Chinese food.

Chinese. Definitely Chinese.

But just dinner. You're not gonna get me into bed on the first date.

What was I thinking? I have principles.

Hey hey, that same lady who keeps calling and won't leave her name, she called twice today. You're a very bad boy, CJ.

You're my hero. Oh, I don't know about...

Uh, excuse me. You can't go in. Don't worry about it. He's expecting us.

You look great, by the way. Sir?

Thank you, Val. I got it.

This is the big one. Sit your ass down.

District Attorney Mark Hunter is faking forensic evidence to get convictions in murder trials.

He's not sitting his ass down.

I am though. Ass is right down.

Snug. This is his idea.

I've got proof. Sit your ass down.

Hear me out. Three years ago Hunter lost a string of cases.

Now that's not something a district attorney is supposed to do.

And then badda-bing... 17 murder convictions in a row.

Now he's leading the polls for governor.

You think maybe he's on a lucky streak?

DAs don't try cases they don't expect to win.

Okay, take a look at this.

Oh my God.

It's the crime scene photo from the Andre Benson case.

Why am I listening to you?

There was no footprint match, no fiber match, no trace that Andre Benson was even there, except for this cigarette butt.

So Andre Benson had the presence of mind to pick up his shell casings but not his cigarette butt that he left right next to the victim's hand?

I think you used the word proof?

The interview tape.

Just bear with me here.

The detective on the left, one Anthony Merchant.

Now before Hunter joined the DA's office, he was a police detective and his partner for many of those years was none other than Detective Lieutenant Anthony Merchant.

Now watch.

Okay, here we go.

That's how they got the cigarette butt with Benson's DNA.

It's right there in front of us. This is your proof?

You going along with this?

All of these 17 convictions were decided by DNA evidence.

In each case the lead detective was none other than Anthony Merchant.

How did you get that tape?

From a source.

And I bet this source has a skirt.

Does it matter?

Not really. Then what is it?

I mean, this is a story... a monster story.

I just received the new budget.

We can't afford the investigation team anymore.

What? You've got to be kidding me.

Come on. Have you looked at your ratings?

No. Well, it's not a pretty sight.

It just so happens that the folks who own this place have this funny little obsession about ratings.

It seems that ratings pay the rent. No ratings, no rent.

So you guys are both going on general assignment.

Oh, come on. I don't like this any more than you do.

Hey, I saw your documentary. That's why I hired you. I know you're good.

What about this story? What story?

You've got some stones coming in here using the word proof.

You answer me one simple question:

How in the hell could Detective Merchant plant that cigarette at the crime scene when the interview took place three days after the crime scene photographs were taken?


Pick up your assignments at the front desk and get out of here.

I would just like to say that is an excellent tie.


I've been assigned to our fearless sportscaster and his lovely toupee.

You're doing a piece on people over 65 who run the 10k.

Hunter's dirty. I can feel it in my bones.

And I'm gonna prove it.

I've worked too hard to go back to baby rhinos at the zoo.

There's baby rhinos at the zoo?

What? No, it's a metaphor.

You know, baby rhinos, kitten in a tree. Right.

So there's no baby rhinos? Would you shut up?

Hey, CJ, that woman is on the line again.

Yeah, okay. I'll take it.

Yeah, line 7. Thanks.

Do you mind? No, not at all. Go ahead.

Get the hell out of here. Call me if you need me.



Listen, now's... this isn't really a good time.


No, I'm not.

Things aren't going very well for me right now.

I understand.


I will.

I promise.

Thank you.

You should have seen that 10k.

There should be an age limit for wearing spandex.

Sorry I missed it.

I didn't come out here to do stories like that.

Who does?


You're not staring at me.

You told me I wasn't allowed to.

I didn't think you'd actually listen.

I'm feeling too sorry for myself to do any good staring.

That's a damn shame. I could try.

Give it your best shot.

That's not too bad.

I could do much better.

This is my B stare.

If I ever give you my full stare...

Shut up.

Keep staring.

I felt so sorry for you.

You looked so sad at the table.

Ah yes, the whole end-of-my-career thing.

I was making that up.

It's not the end of your career.

It's not exactly a promotion. Yeah, but it's not the end.

All you have to do is something really good.

Really good, and they'll have to put it on.

Well, I... think I might have something.

Might have.

Maybe. Well, what is it?

Not now.

I just can't tell you now.

I don't even have it yet.

And it's privileged.

Everything I said when I took my clothes off, that's privileged.


Good morning is right.


Thank you.

What's in your kitchen?

A stove, a refrigerator that makes ice cubes.

What about eggs?

Yes, eggs. I can do eggs.

And maybe even some toast? Mmm.

Holy shit.

You won an award.

Yeah, that's what brought me out here.

I was working for a little station in Buffalo, New York.

You know, Mark Twain once said that to commit suicide in Buffalo was redundant.

I did this piece on a girl, Taieesha, 15-year-old kid, got pregnant by her stepfather and her mother kicked her out of the house.

She had no home, no place to go in the middle of December in Buffalo.

You can't even begin to imagine what winters are like there.

Found her living on the streets hooking to make money.

It's nice to know people will pay to have sex with a pregnant teenager.

She was in a snowstorm when she went into labor.

I'd like to see it.

Yeah? Yeah.


She was so little.

She wouldn't let me show her face.

Felt like she could break if you held her wrong.

I cleaned her off as best I could.

I knew I had to keep her warm.

I wrapped her underneath my coat.

I could feel her against my breast.

After a while I felt her grow, you know, cold up against my skin.

I knew the church, they'd take care of her.

They'd bury my baby girl.

When I started to walk away I just couldn't see her wrapped in all those newspapers in front of the church. I couldn't.

I knew she was with God.


I couldn't look back.

Jane Doe's mother had a...


I, uh, don't really know what to say.

It's... I'd like to see the rest.

Go ahead, take it.

I've got a bunch of copies.

She, uh... What happened to her?

She died of an overdose two weeks after the interview.

She never got to see the piece or the attention it got.

So they brought me out here.

It's not much bigger, but at least I got my own investigative unit.

And now that's gone.

CJ, you really are a good reporter.

Hey, no no.

You said you had an idea. Well, go, follow it.

Look, I told you this is not a good time.

All right, I will. Just stay calm.

You dropped your pens.


Four, four, good. I'm not close.

Stay on that way. Focus here.

No seven. I need you. I need you.

Come on. Come on, I was on a roll.

Yeah, I noticed. What's happening?

How far would you go for the story of your lifetime?

I mean, you know me, farther than far.

Would you risk everything?

Depends on what you mean by everything.

Everything means everything, including going to prison.

You're kidding. Never been more serious in my entire life.

Jesus. I mean, I don't know.

I'm talking about the biggest story we've ever dreamed of.

I'm talking about the Pulitzer Prize.

You're also talking about prison. Just hear me out.

When I'm done, you say no we don't do it. It's your choice.

Of course it will mean you'll spend the rest of your numbered days producing ticky tidbits from a minor league infield.

And it'll also mean you have no scrotal sack.

We gonna cut to commercial before we do Final Jeopardy?

Right, cut to the chase.

We both know that Hunter is bringing in fake DNA to get those convictions.

Right. We don't know exactly how, but we know that he's doing it. Mm-hmm.

You with me? So far, yeah.

Well, there's one way we can prove it.

And is this the risky part? Not yet.

First we have to wait for the right murder.

What do you... the right murder?

The murder of some anonymous person, okay?

Some junkie or hooker where the cops have no suspect and they really don't give a shit.

And there's got to be some vague physical evidence like a tire track or a footprint.

Not a lot.

And it's got to happen when I have no alibi.

Who needs an ali... why can't you have one?

I can't have an alibi 'cause that's when we plant the circumstantial evidence.

We what?

We plant enough circumstantial evidence that it points to me.

You're shitting me. I shit you not.

We not only plant it, you document us planting it.

You tape me doing it, each time with the day's newspaper in the shot.

That way we can prove that the evidence came after the fact.

Aren't there laws against this kind of thing?

More than one. Anyway, enough circumstantial evidence and District Attorney Mark S Hunter won't be able to resist.

He'll arrest me, he'll indict me and he'll put me on trial.

And not only will he have a high profile case, he will have a truly sexy, juicy, front page lead story that'll tie up the nomination for governor.

And he'll have a white defendant that he won't be able to resist.

Is there a change of seasons on your planet?

Because he could never ever ever afford to lose this case.

And he'll only have circumstantial evidence.

Some trace of my DNA will suddenly be found, just like it was in all the other cases.

Only this time after he introduces it, you get the video and we show it in court.

You think there's a chance a judge won't have much of a sense of humor about this?

A judge will go stark raving apeshit.

The pandemonium this'll create by graphically proving that Hunter is crooked, that'll overshadow everything.

Do you have any idea how big of a story this will be?

Do you really think the DA's office is gonna want to prosecute us after this thing breaks?

Look, we know a wrong is being committed by a man that may become our next governor.

We are investigative reporters.

This is our chance to prove it.

It's perfect.

I don't know, man.

Come on, this is our chance.

This could be our Pulitzer.

This is the diem that we have to carpe.

This is the proverbial pot that we have to shit or get off of.

This right here, right now, this is it.

God help me.

I'm in.

No, God help Mark Hunter.

I don't know, Ella.

You're either awfully late for your trial or really early.

You okay?

Uh, yeah, I'm okay.

It's just tomorrow is my first day as lead so I'm trying to...

Thought maybe the best way to prepare is sit here in the courtroom alone, huh?

That's what I did at my first trial.

You know, worked for me.

You see that judge's bench, that big old fancy seal, the flag, the jury box and you go, "Whoa.

This is big. This is really big stuff. "

And it is.

We put bad guys away. That's what we do.

And if you're sure...

I mean down to your marrow sure... that defendant is guilty, that jury is going to follow you anywhere.

But if you've got even an inkling of a doubt, you'll lose them like sand right through your fingers.

It's amazing. They can smell doubt. I don't know how they do it.

So I guess the most important thing is to be sure.

Are you? Yes.

No doubts? No.

You make them feel that, you're not gonna have any problem at all.

That, you know, and maybe work the room a little bit, okay?


Ella, good night. Good night.

And good luck. Thank you, sir.

CJ, wake up! Jesus Christ.

Ow! Shit!

CJ! Coming. Take it easy.

Is she here? I was hoping to barge in on the two of you.

I'm dying to see her naked.

No, she's got a trial in the morning.

What's going on? Why are you limping?

I came down on my ankle funny when I got out of bed because some asshole woke me up at 4:00 in the morning.

What? What is it?

Get dressed.


And I use that term loosely with the fourth estate.

How'd you get here so fast?

We do have police scanners in the newsroom, you know.

Really? Next thing you're gonna tell me is you have a color TV.

Who is she? Dead black junkie hooker.

Her purse was full of condoms. Most of her customers must be white

'cause the condoms are regular size.

Cute. Homicide?

Four stab wounds to the chest and neck.

I'm gonna go way out on a limb and say yes.

Got any leads?

Got a witness. Fella over there saw the whole thing.

Or at least his dog did. It bit the perp.

Any physical evidence? Got a pretty good footprint.

What about the knife? Did you find the knife?

Why are you so interested?

The victim doesn't have to be famous for us to be interested.

Whatever you say.

I'm gonna check him out. Yeah, all right.

Listen, think maybe I could take a look at the crime scene report and photos?

Now why the hell would I do that? I got two primo Springsteen tickets.

Springsteen? Bruce Springsteen?

No, his cousin Ralph. Do I look white to you?


Do I look white to you?

Well, in certain angles.

Your Mr. Springsteen does not do it for me. I am unmoved.

We're talking about The Boss here.

No, he's your Boss. He ain't mine.

Did I mention backstage passes?

I mean, do you have any idea what women will do for backstage passes to Springsteen?

Take a good look at me.

This is exactly what unmoved looks like.

I'll think of something.

You always do, my brother.

You always do.

Goody bag from Nickerson... all the reports and crime scene photos.

I knew he couldn't pass up Springsteen tickets.

All right, let's see what we've got here.

Ooh, wow. Ha.

Shoeprint came in from some loopy Italian sneaker called Montalvo.

They don't make it anymore. Size 10-12. What are you?

11 and a half. He never went for the Springsteen tickets.

They also found a can of pepper spray at the scene.

Probably the victim's. What did he go for?

The witness heard an argument between a man and a woman.

He heard the man cry out in pain. She probably sprayed him.

Then the woman screamed, the dog took off, bit the perp and the guy ran away.

Got him Saint's tickets. Perfect. What kind of dog?

Jack Russell terrier. 45-yard line.

Jim Carrey, "The Mask"... love that film.

45 yard line? That's like my seats. What row?

The witness didn't see the perp but said he was wearing a dark jogging suit.

Looked like Reebok because it had two stripes down the side.

He was positive it had two stripes, sneakers and a dark ski mask.

And he was holding a knife with a dark handle.

Row 22.

Stab wounds are consistent with a switchblade, around four inches.

That's the same row as...

Dude, tell me you didn't give him my tickets.

You're not telling me. It's for one season.

You said one reason, right? Not one season.

What does it say about the victim?

You are beyond a prick.

I am a prick that is going to win us a Pulitzer Prize, my friend.

Now have they ID'd the victim yet? Doris Ruth Owens.


She was just 22 years old.

Lots of arrests for solicitation, some for drugs.

A coulpe here in Shreveport. Nice.

Others in Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York.

One way to see America... on your back.

22 years old.

So let's make our shopping list.

We really gonna do this?

You boys lost?

Crate & Barrel is about four blocks that way.

Actually, we're... we're looking for a switchblade, about four inches.

Some bully picking on you during recess? Taking your lunch money?

It's got to have a white handle. Switchblades are illegal.

I know that. You a cop?

No. What about your sister over there?

Who, me? Cop? No.

Do I look like a cop? You know?

It's a prop. A what?

We're making an independent film.

One of the characters has to use it in the scene.


You've got to be joking.

Do I look like the type of man that tells a joke?

No, you don't.

Come on. I mean, it's way too much.

Well, why don't you try Walmart? Maybe they'll have one.


and throw in a can of pepper spray.

Sounds like a pretty violent movie you two are making.

Yeah. That's what sells.

Cash only.

You got 150?

How's it going?

All right.

Can I get a receipt? No.

Why not? 'Cause I never sold you that.

Can I ask you a personal question?

Go right ahead.

What happens with that nose ring when you sneeze?

It gets snot on it.

Okay, let's...

Thanks a lot.

Thank you.

Are you looking for a specific type of dog?

A Jack Russell terrier.

Like the kind in "Mask" or "Frasier. "

I think I know what a Jack Russell is. Thank you.

We have one that's mostly Jack Russell.

He's out there.

He's not a purebred. If you're looking for a pedigree, this is not the right place for you.

Is he the same size? Yes.

Could we see his teeth?

You can tell he's not too old.

These little fellas can be a real handful.

You might want to think about getting him fixed.

He's completely housebroken. That makes one of you.

We'll take him. That's a wonderful thing you're doing.

Would you mind holding this up? For posterity.

I know what it's like. My wife has to document every occasion like it's a presidential inauguration.

Well, I hope he brings lots of happiness to you both.

Thanks. Appreciate it.

Come on. Here you go.

These doggy treats actually smell kind of good.

I think I might try one.

I'm gonna name him Woodward. Nice.

All right, Woodward.

That's it, get it. Bite the pants.

Come on. There you go, buddy. Bite it.

Yeah, get 'em. All right, grab a beer.

I'm gonna throw these things on. All right.

Ow! Not yet, you moron.

Finley, get in here.

What happened? Look at this.

God damn, this hurts. Damn! From that little dog?

Shit. Give me the newspaper.

Put it in the shot. All right.

Grab that.

Little bastard wouldn't even wait for me to get everything ready.

You got it? Got it.

Who the hell wears a Montalvo?

Never heard of it.

We searched every retailer in Shreveport.

None of them have ever carried a Montalvo.

They stopped making it in 1999.

That tells you how popular they were.

Maybe the guy is from Italy.

Right, this has all the earmarks of a mafia hit.

What about a tourist, you know, looking for some late-night action?


I don't know. This smells like an evidence box stored next to all those other evidence boxes of unsolved homicides.

I hate that smell.

I really do.

All right, let's do this.


Yeah, there you go.


Got that? Yup. Sure you want to do this?

I'm sure I don't want to do it. It's just the pattern may be different if we just sprayed the mask. Okay.

Think Katie Couric would do this for a story?

She had a colonoscopy on national television for God's sake.

Huh. Okay, here goes.

God! Shit!

Oh shit. Put your head up. Grab the newspaper.

I can't see. Grab it. It's right...

Oh God, I'm tasting it.

Christ, that burns. Just hold it up.

You're all heart, you know that? You got it?

Yeah, I got it. Okay, the water. Give me the water.

Tomorrow night's the night.

We could go to jail for this, couldn't we?

It's possible. Just checking.

All right, I'm gonna make a backup disc and I'm gonna keep the original locked in my desk.

You can back out now if you really want to.

Just give me the tape and the backup DVD and I'll never reveal you were behind the camera.

What if they threaten you with jail?

I'll already be in jail, so what the hell's the difference?

Okay, what if they go all Guantanamo on you and start doing torture shit?

Then I'd definitely crack. Exactly.

But I couldn't bear the thought of you winning the Pulitzer all by yourself.

Just remember, we can't breathe a word of this to anyone.

Not even my own lawyer can know. Nothing, or he'll be disbarred.

All right. Nobody can know.

Absolutely nobody. No exceptions.

What about the lady with the fantastic tits that works at that bar on Piedmont?

Okay, just her. And what about the one with the tattoo?

Shut up.

I'm just as scared as you are. No you're not.

This way. Come on.

You lied to me. What?

You said you hated small dogs. Oh.

Hey. Hi.

I was at the animal shelter doing a story.

He was pretty hard to resist. He promised he wouldn't yap.

Hello. What's your name? You're asking him?

Probably gonna have a bit of a wait there.

It's Woodward. Hello, Woody.

Your eyes are red. Have you been crying?

Just allergies from the dog.

Hello. Oh. Would you stop that?

Oh my. I would like to kiss you, you know.

What's stopping you? He is. It'd be like kissing him.

No, there's a difference. Try it.

Come on. Don't be a chicken.


See? Now me.


No thanks. I prefer sugar with my coffee, not salt.

Oh, sorry.

It's understandable, they're both white.

Where are you? What?

Where are you?

I'm, uh... I'm just a little distracted.

It's nothing. I'm sorry.

It's because I said the L word last night, isn't it?

You said you're a lesbian? Don't bullshit me now.

I'm sorry.

I was an idiot. I didn't mean to pressure you.

I just got kind of carried away in the heat of passion.

No. No, that's not it.

I was glad you said it. I was thrilled.

Actually, I feel the same way.

Was it just the heat of passion that made you say it?

No. You do?

What? I'm confused now.

No, it wasn't the heat of passion that made me say it.

You do feel the same way?

You know I do.

I... You don't have to say it.

No, I think I do. I love you.

Listen to me. Listen to me very carefully.

You might hear some things. What kind of things?

Things... not necessarily good things.

What are you talking about? I'm asking you to trust me.

Are you married?


Do you have a brood of illegitimate children in ports around the world?

Not a one. Do you have a disease where body parts I like are gonna start falling off?

No. Then we'll be fine.

Come on.

Here we go.

Oh, man.

I had to see this for myself.

Well, my brother, you really have done it.

Go ahead, have your fun. Give it your best shot.

You couldn't take my intermediate much less my best shot.

So I will remember this sight as one of those Kodak moments, which unfortunately was all too brief.

Good news is you made bail.

Your friend Finley is on his way upstairs.

Last name Nicholas, first name Christopher, middle name John; Driving while shitfaced.

Sign here.

The lesser good news is your brethren in the press are gathered outside with their lights and their cameras and their need for blood.

They are a hungry bunch.

I arranged for your friend to park in the department garage which would allow you to avoid your colleagues and sneak out the back.

I owe you. I really do.

I'll think of something.

I'm sure you will.

Hey, guys.

You ready? Yup.

Thanks again.

No problem. No problem at all.

No problem at all.


Something happened tonight.

No no no, no accident. I'm fine.

I am, really.

It's just I sort of got arrested... more like actually arrested for DUl.

No, don't come over, I feel shitty enough as it is.

Wait a minute. Someone's at the door.

Yeah, hold on. I'm coming.

Ella, I'm gonna have to call you back. Remember what I said the other morning?

You know, the I-love-you thing.

Well, it's still happening.

I love you.

Shreveport Police Department. Open up now.

All right, I'm coming. Just give me a second, for Christ's sake.

Open the door or we will break it down.

This is a warrant to search your home.

I need you to read it and then sign it.

Lift your trouser leg, please.

You mind telling me what this is all about?

The pant leg, CJ.

Let's try the other leg.

Well well, what do we have here?

It's nothing. No, it most definitely is something.

Lift the bandage and let me see.

And how'd you get that? It's from him.

Hey, Lieutenant.

Turn around, please. What?

Turn around now.

CJ Nicholas, you are under arrest for the murder of Doris Ruth Owens.

Are you crazy? Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.

You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford one...

I'm sure Mr. Nicholas understands his Miranda rights.

Isn't that right, Mr. Nicholas? I understand my rights.

What I don't understand is why I'm being arrested for murder.

Thank you very much, Detective Nickerson. I'll take it from here.

What? I said I'll take it from here.

Are you taking my collar? He remains your collar.

No one is taking anything away from you.

You'll get all the credit for your work.

I'm taking over the investigation by request of the DA.

I don't get this. But I also realize when it ain't mine to get.

The best seats to any event ain't gonna get you out of this.

I called you every day.

I know you have.

I don't understand. Why haven't you called me back?

You shouldn't be here. What are you talking about?

I don't want you getting hurt. It's too late for that.

No, listen to me. It's your boss who's prosecuting me.

Your boss, for God's sake.

You can't have anything to do with me.

I have everything to do with you. I have no choice.

Have you thought about what would happened to your career if Hunter found out about the two of us? My career?

Are you kidding me? My career?

This is about your life here.

I'm gonna resign from the DA's office and join your defense.

No. No, you can't do that.

You can't. I'm gonna be okay.

You sound like a Martian. I'm telling you I'm gonna be okay.

You're in a lot of trouble.

Promise me you're not gonna do something stupid.

What are you doing? What do you mean?

This has something to do with Hunter, doesn't it?

Why would you ask that? You have some kind of fixation with him.

This has something to do with him, doesn't it?

I'm asking you to trust me.

There's something you're not telling me.

Here's what you need to know:

I love you.

And I'm innocent.

I can't have you mixed up in this.

Please help me by understanding what I'm saying.

Love me enough to trust me.

Can you do that?

Thank you.

After two days of jury selection, the murder trial of Channel 8's CJ Nicholas begins this morning in what promises to be the most...

District Attorney Mark Hunter will deliver his opening arguments in what is expected...

...the most anticipated murder trials in a long time, television reporter CJ Nicholas is scheduled to be here in just a moment.

Hey, how you doing? No touching.

Don't worry.

Just remember, don't get the DVD until I tell you.

We have to wait for Hunter to introduce the fake evidence.

Otherwise we have nothing. It's the whole ballgame.

What's that about? Nothing.

He was just wishing me luck.

We could use some.

All rise.

Oyez oyez oyez.

Section 4 of the Honorable First Judicial District Court in and for the State of Louisiana, Parish of Caddo, is open and pursuant to adjournment, God save the state and this honorable court.

Order and silence are commanded under penalty of the law.

Please be seated.

Are the people ready? We are, Your Honor.

Is the defense ready? Defense is ready, Your Honor.

Then we'll begin with our opening statements. Mr. Hunter.

Thank you, Your Honor.

Jane Doe's mother had a name, which I can't reveal.

She had hopes which can never be realized.

She had love which has never returned.

And she had kindness which was never given back to her.

Two weeks after that interview Jane Doe's mother died of an overdose.

We can only hope for two things:

One, that she's reunited with her baby daughter;

And two, that her death was not totally in vain.

That can only be accomplished if we realize that the only difference between Jane Doe and us is the accident of where we were born.

We had no control over it.

Therefore we are no better nor more deserving than anyone else.

I'm CJ Nicholas. Good night.

And after you saw the man with the knife, what did you do?

Oh, I didn't have time to do anything. Oliver just...

Excuse me. Oliver? My dog.

He's a Jack Russell terrier just like the one from "Frasier. "

They don't know they're small.

They are absolutely fearless. It's amazing really.

Mr. Tarlow, what happened after you saw the man with the knife?

Oliver just ran up and bit him.

Where? On the calf of his left leg.

And Jack Russells have very sharp teeth.

There were four stab wounds.

One severed the left carotid artery.

Another just beneath the sternum punctured the aorta.

The remaining two punctured the abdomen and opened the small intestines.

Dr. Romans, I'd like you to take a look at this knife previously entered as People's Exhibit C.

This was taken from the defendant's apartment.

Could that be the murder weapon?

Yes, the blade's length and width are the same as the stab wound.

And when you examined this knife did you find any traces of blood on it?

No, it had recently been cleaned with a strong industrial-strength cleaning solution.

And deformities on the handle indicate that it had been boiled.

Plus striations on the blade indicate the blade had recently been reground.

I have no more questions. Thank you, Dr. Romans.

Your witness. So just to be clear, what you're saying is you don't know if this is the actual murder weapon or not.


Thank you. No further questions.

The dog bite on Mr. Nicholas's left calf was consistent with a dog bite from a dog of that size and breed.

Now you found a shoeprint at the scene.

What kind of shoe was that?

They belonged to a Montalvo sneaker.

Similar to the shoes owned by the defendant marked for evidence as People's Exhibit D?


Now is that a popular brand sneaker?

No, they're extremely rare.

In fact, there isn't a single store in Shreveport that carries them.

And did you compare the defendant's sneaker with the print at the scene?

Yes. They were a match for both size and weight.

Now the mask, the ski mask that was found at the defendant's apartment marked as People's Exhibit E. What can you tell me about this?

We found pepper spray around the eyeholes on the outside. Someone had sprayed it.

It was consistent with the pepper spray belonging to the victim.

Thank you. I have no more questions, Your Honor.

Now you can't actually tell us that the bite on my client's calf came from Mr. Tarlow's dog? No.

So it could have come from any dog of similar size and breed, like the one owned by my client in fact? Yes, that's right.

The crime scene photos show that there was considerable blood spatter caused by the attack.

Is that correct? Yes.

And yet when you examined the defendant's clothing, entered into evidence as People's Exhibit E, you found no traces of blood at all.

No, but the client had time...

Just a yes or no will be sufficient.

So in fact, would it be fair to say that there is no direct forensic evidence whatsoever connecting my client to this crime?


No further questions.

So sorry.


You'll excuse me for one minute.

Sorry, honey. It's okay.

This better be good.

So what the hell kind of emergency is this?

We checked Nicholas's financials again. Yeah.

He bought a video camera at Wright's Audio two days after the murder.

There's a point to this, right?

He also bought a black Reebok jogging suit and a ski mask at the sporting goods store.

He bought a dog at the animal shelter.

All this within a day of buying the video camera.

Something doesn't smell right.

So when he went on this shopping spree, was he alone?

People at the sporting goods store can't remember.

Salesclerk at Wright's Audio said he might have been with someone.

The man at the animal shelter, for sure remembers he was with another man.

Do you know who this man is? I'm pretty sure.

Well, if someone did a video, then this man's got it.

You think we're being set up?

We can't have that, can we?

Now would you please tell the court what you found on the defendant's pants?

On request of the DA's office, we retested the defendant's clothing.

And what did you find on it?

We found small traces of blood on the seams of his sweatpants.

We missed it the first time. It happens.

You Honor, we were given no prior notice of this testimony.

Judge, we only discovered this evidence yesterday.

I'll allow it. Don't worry, Counselor.

I'll give you time to examine this evidence.

Did you do a DNA analysis of the blood that you found on the defendant's pants?

Yes I did. And what did that analysis show you?

The blood belonged to the victim.

I have no more questions, Your Honor.

Excuse me.


Oh shit.

Your Honor, the prosecution rests.

Are you ready to call your first witness, Counselor?

Yes, Your Honor. The defense would like to call Dr. Aaron Wakefield.

Go. Stop stop.

Stop stop. Stop!

Excuse me. Sorry.

Hi, I need to open my safety deposit box.

My name's Corey Finley. Here's my ID.

Certainly, Mr. Findley.

Oh, it's actually Finley. No D.

Oh. That would explain why I cannot find your record.

Probably, yeah.

You know, I have a cousin named Findley.

You do? With a D.

Second cousin really.

Or is it first cousin once removed?

I can never figure that out.

You see, she's married to my first cousin.

Do you know how that removed thing works?

No, I don't really... you know, if we could possibly...

Here it is. Corey Finley no D.

Do you have your key with you, Mr. Finley no D?

Yes, I do. I have my key. There it is.

Oh, good. Okay.



It's right in here.

150, 151...

2263, found it. It's right here. It's right there.

Well, of course. There it is.

Okay, here's my key.

Do you think that we could speed this up?

I'm in a bit of a rush. No.


Care for a private booth? No thank you.

Mr. Finley!



Excuse me. Excuse me, stop.


And in your opinion, Dr. Wakefield, could those wounds have been caused by a knife other than the one belonging to the defendant? Absolutely.

Any blade of that approximate length or width could have caused those wounds.

There are hundreds of knives with blades that size.

Call your next witness, Mr. Spota.

I can't keep stalling.

Where is this surprise witness you keep telling me about?

He'll be here any second.

You've been saying that for the past four hours.

He should have been here by now. Counselor?

Uh, Your Honor, we're expecting the appearance of a rebuttal witness.

Well, do you know where he is?

Uh... no, Your Honor.

Your Honor, the defense requests a continuance at this time so we can examine the prosecution's new forensic evidence.

Motion granted.

We'll meet back here at 9:00 AM Monday morning.

Court adjourned.

Counselor, is the defense ready to continue?

We are, Your Honor.

The defense calls CJ Nicholas.

Raise your right hand.

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

Be seated.

Did you murder Doris Ruth Owens? I did not.

So why are you on trial here today?

'Cause I wanted to be.

What do you mean?

I deliberately implicated myself in the crime.

Why would you do such a thing? I was working on a story about the DA's office planting forensic evidence in murder trials in order to obtain guilty verdicts.

Your Honor, that is an outrageous statement.

I felt the only way that I could uncover evidence of corruption in the DA's office was to implicate myself in the crime, to see if the DA would fabricate DNA evidence which he now has done.


Did you know about this?

Not until my client told me yesterday, Your Honor.

Is this true? Yes, Your Honor.

And you have evidence to support this? We do.

Your Honor, I am not even gonna begin to deal with how insulting and defamatory this is.

However, it is obvious that the defense is desperate.

They're trying to create a jury nullification so you'll call for a mistrial because they know they're going to lose.

You cannot allow them to present this ridiculous defense.

The prosecution opened the door, Your Honor, by introducing last-minute forensic evidence.

My client is on trial for his life.

He should be given every latitude.

You say you have evidence. I'll give you a chance to present it.

I will not... I repeat, will not let you simply make wild and damaging accusations.

Understand me, Mr. Nicholas?

Oh, there will be no mistrial.

There will be a contempt of court citation for you, Mr. Spota, if your proof turns out to be not proof.

We understand, Your Honor. You may continue, although you are on a very short leash. Thank you, Your Honor.

Now, CJ, please tell the court why you have done this.

I had been investigating the DA for some time.

There had been a series of cases in which last-minute forensic evidence, always DNA, was introduced. So I investigated further and I became convinced that the DA was planting evidence.

But why go to such extraordinary lengths?

It was my last resort. My editor told me to back off it.

I couldn't make my suspicions public without proof.

So what did you do? I found out the details of the case from Detective Nickerson. Then I went out and bought a Jack Russell terrier and got him to bite me on the left calf.

Then I bought the switchblade, the pants and the sneakers.

This is a receipt for the sneakers I'd like to mark as Defense Exhibit A.

You can see that it is clearly dated three days after the murder took place.

This is a receipt for the sweatpants, Defense Exhibit B.

Again, dated after the murder.

So if you bought the sweatpants after the murder took place, how did the victim's blood get on it?

The only answer is the DA put it there.

So you're saying because the DA's case was purely circumstantial, he planted the evidence to tie you to the murder scene?


No further questions, Your Honor.

That's it?

That's the proof that I'm a calculating dishonest man?

Not to mention a felon?

A couple receipts for a pair of sweatpants?

My office and myself is a bastion of corruption because you bought a pair of sweatpants a few days after the murder.

I've got to hand it to you, you're something else.

And the sneakers. Oh, the sneakers.

I forgot about the sneakers. Well, that seals the deal right there.

Judge, you've got to put the cuffs on me right now.

I agree.

Do you... and I use this word very loosely... do you have any proof?

I made a DVD documenting the purchases.

Everything. And where is that DVD?

My colleague who shot it...

was killed in an accident on his way to the courthouse.

And the disc was destroyed.

Well, I'm very sorry about your colleague.

But other than you saying that you have a DVD that backs up your claims, is there... and I use this word again lightly... is there any proof that that DVD exists?

I'm sorry, I didn't hear your answer.

Answer the question, Mr. Nicholas.

No. No, you will not answer the question or no you have no proof it exists?

No, all you have is my word.

Well, that's kind of on shaky ground right now, isn't it?

That's not for me to say.

You know what, Mr. Nicholas?

That's the first thing that you've said that I agree with.

It's for the jury to decide, isn't it?

Now I have just one more question, one little pesky question.

The fact that you bought a pair of sneakers and sweatpants sometime after the murder, the fact that you bought anything after the murder, does that mean that you couldn't have owned a pair of sneakers or sweatpants or bought anything else for that matter before the murder?

I'm sorry, I did not hear your answer.

I guess not.

Thank you.

Despite the sensational claims made by the defense, CJ Nicholas was found guilty today of first-degree murder.

It took the jury less than five hours to return a verdict of guilty in the murder trial of Channel 8's CJ Nicholas.

Sentencing is next week.

DA Hunter said that the state will seek the death penalty due to the viciousness of the crime.

Thanks. Thanks for coming.

What's wrong with you? Of course I'd come.

I have a speech.

I've been rehearsing it over and over.

God knows I've had the time.

I kinda thought I had it down, you know?

But now my mouth's all cotton.

Okay, here it goes.

The last time I saw you, you said that you believed in me.

You said you knew I couldn't have done this.

Then you saw the evidence at the trial and you said to yourself, "I want to believe him. I have to. "

There's all this evidence. So much.

And then the DNA evidence. That was the last straw, wasn't it?

It was the clincher. That's why you now think I'm a murderer.

I don't. Yes you do.

And it's all right. You don't have to lie.

I don't blame you.

I just want you to listen.

If there was ever a time that you loved me, if there was ever a time you thought I was a good person, then I want you to hear this.

What I said at the trial was true.

The DNA was planted by your boss, just like he planted the DNA evidence on that cigarette in the Andre Benson case.

Now I know you've never met a defendant that didn't protest his innocence, but I swear it's true.

Finley had the disc that proved it all.

And I think that Hunter had him killed because the disc that Finley had locked in his desk went missing.

I know that sounds crazy.

I believe you. Listen to me.

I'm asking you not to believe me.

I'm begging you to go and find out for yourself.

Be skeptical. Be suspicious.

Do some digging on your own. I know how good you are.

Please, you're my last hope.

Why would I ask you to do any of this if I'm guilty?

Why would I ask you to find out the truth if the truth was bad for me?

Because you have nothing left to lose.

Oh, Ella.

You're so so wrong.

I have you to lose.

Death by lethal injection... that was the sentence handed down by the jury in the CJ Nicholas murder trial, the verdict in the penalty phase of the trial.

Nicholas, when asked if he had anything to say, maintained his innocence and said that the real facts would someday be revealed.

Nicholas was driven from the court directly to death row at the Louisiana State Prison where he will live in complete isolation for up to 20 hours a day until his appeal process is exhausted.

This is not a happy day for anyone.

No life is more precious than another.

Doris Ruth Owens's life was taken from her.

We cannot bring that back.

And the young man CJ Nicholas has forfeited his life.

There's nothing to celebrate.

Two lives are going to be lost, one cut short, the other wasted.

And the only thing that I can say is that the jury's verdict serves justice.

And in that way it does serve us all.

When I started to walk away, I couldn't look back.

I just couldn't see her wrapped in all those newspapers in front of the church. I couldn't.

I knew she was safe and warm, that she was with God.


I couldn't look back.

Jane Doe's mother had a name, which I can't reveal.

She had hopes which can never be realized.

She had love...

May I ask you why you are questioning me about Nicholas and Finley?

I'm not representing the district attorney's office.

There's nothing official about this, I promise.

Why are you here?

Please, it's strictly personal. I'm asking for your help.

If anyone finds out that I was here talking to you I could get in a lot of trouble.

Now if... and this is a big if... if there is a story here, you have my word it will be yours.

But again, I don't think there's anything here at all.

What do you want to know?

Did CJ come to you about the story of the DA planting evidence?

Yeah, he claimed that Hunter planted DNA evidence in the Andre Benson case.

He said there were a lot of other cases too.

But you've got to understand, with a guy like CJ, he always had some big story that was just one phone call away, one source away.

The problem was he had hunches and very little else.

What was he basing these hunches on?

He had a copy of the Andre Benson interview tape.

He claimed that the cigarette that he was smoking on the tape turned up at the crime scene.

Now I asked him how could you plant evidence at a crime scene after the crime scene photos were taken?

Was he doing this alone? No.

He dragged poor Finley into it.

Ella. Bruce.

Hi. Hi, how are you?

I'm good. Did you bring the information?

Is that the only reason you asked me here?

Oh, stop it. Honestly.

Thank you. What's this all about anyway?

It's about us getting in a lot of trouble if anyone finds out.

So your lab did the DNA testing for all 17 of these cases?

Yes. Was there anything unusual about them?

No, not really. Nothing?

Well... Well what?

It's not something I can put my finger on.

Put another body part on it. What is it?

It's just that some of the DNA samples, they came in at the last minute.

And that's unusual? Kind of. Sometimes.

How many of the 17 cases?


Oh yeah, I remember them.

How could I ever forget? They seemed like such a nice couple.

The one with the beard always wanted to take pictures.

And it turns out the nicer looking one was a murderer.

And I was standing this close to him.

It gives me shivers. I guess you can never tell, can you?

No, I guess you can't.


Operator, I'll accept.

Ella, listen.

When Finley went home and found the disc was missing, he would have gone for backup. Now think.

What's the absolutely safest place you could keep something?

Um, maybe with somebody else. Where does his mother live?

Both of his parents are dead.

What about a friend? I was his closest friend.

Um, a bank.

A safety deposit box.

Yes. Yes, that makes sense.

Okay, his bank was the Pelican Bank & Trust.

Oh yes, I remember him vividly.

He was in a terrible hurry.

No D in his name, unlike my second cousin or whatever he is.

Rush rush rush.

He simply took something out of his safe deposit box and literally ran out of here.

No private cubicle, nothing.

He didn't even take his key.

I've never seen anything quite like it.

Did you see what he removed from the box?

Oh, we're not allowed to do that.

Our customers are guaranteed complete privacy.

I appreciate that, Ms. Urlanger.

Miss Urlanger. Never quite liked Ms.

Sounds like a beehive.

Um, you said he reached for the box right in front of you.

It's possible that you saw what he removed because you couldn't avoid it, isn't it?

Well, now that you mention it, maybe I kind of saw something.

A plastic thingy with something shiny inside.

A computer disc maybe? Maybe.

The till is directly linked to my inventory.

When I scan the barcode it logs the product and the manufacturer's number.

Right, so you can match any receipt with an item that's been purchased?

Yup, as long as it has the manufacturer's label.

But I already told you guys this.

You spoke to someone from my office?

Yeah. Do you remember who?

Yes, he said he was the DA.

Hi. Hi.

I called about seeing the Nicholas case evidence box.

Right, you're from the DA's office.

Yeah, I have a case number. That's okay. I already pulled it for you.

Oh, thank you. Uh-huh.

Great, thanks.


What are you doing here so late?

I was just looking at the... the original police file on the Belmont case.

I'm not familiar with that case.

It's a carjacking. We brought him in two days ago.

You know Lieutenant Merchant. Yes, hi.

You keep late hours. So do you.

I hope you're not letting your personal life interfere with your work.


You look tired. You should get some rest.

Yeah, I was actually just on my way home.

If you don't get any rest, you can come down with something.

And health is the most important thing we have.


Good night, Ella. Good night, sir.

Let me ask you something.

If you had to run back to your safety deposit box to get your backup disc, wouldn't that mean that there's an original disc missing?

And would it be missing?

I mean, that's just not the kind of thing that disappears, right?

Maybe you lose your cell phone or your keys or something, but definitely not the single most important piece of evidence in your entire life.

Are you listening to me?

Look, I've been thinking over and over.

When I showed the tape to Weldon of Merchant giving that cigarette to Andre Benson, Weldon said, "How could that mean anything since the tape was made three days after the crime scene photographs were taken?"

But what if the crime photos were doctored?

What if they altered the photo somehow?

What if they put the cigarette butt in after the photo was taken?


I am not good at this.

Look, it's okay. I understand.

I'm your intern, you're an assistant DA.

You don't ask interns to lunch unless you want something.

So just ask me.

Listen, you know your partner?

Roberta? You remember her?

Yeah, I remember she's getting her PhD in computer science from the university, right?

You do remember. Well, it's kind of delicate, but I need to speak to an expert in digital imagery.

You mean digital forensics? Yes, exactly.

Well, she can help you.

If she doesn't have the answers for you she knows the people who do.

Great. Can you arrange a meeting between the two of us?

Of course. When? Tonight?

Tonight? It's kind of a secret.

A secret is good. I like secrets.

I mean, absolutely no one at the DA's office can know about this.

Absolutely no one. It cannot go through the regular channels.

I'll set it up for tonight.

Danielle, there could be danger here.



What can I do for you this evening, Miss Crystal?

I'm really sorry to bother you, Sergeant, especially after hours.

It's just I am overwhelmed with casework and...

I haven't even been able to start my report for DA Hunter.

He's gonna have my ass tomorrow if...

Am I supposed to be following you on all of this?

Oh, sorry.

I get kind of wound up when I'm nervous.

We're doing an in-house study on how crime scene evidence, specifically photos, are archived by both the state and local police departments... if there's anything we can do to improve that system, you know, keep the bad guys in prison.

Which brings me back to my first question:

Is there anything I can do for you this evening, Miss Crystal?

Yes. Would you please show me how and where the digital images are downloaded from the photographers' CF cards?

How safe are they? Oh, and also, are they JPEG compressed files or are they uncompressed? I want to compare that to the sheriff's office.

If you look down there, there's a big old double-bolted metal door.

Now all the physical evidence is stored in there along with the hard drives. And only the evidence sergeant has the combination to the lock.

As far as images go, I don't know if they're J-whatever- you-said or not.

They're all stored on a server.

And you can't access to it without somebody with a passcode.

And there ain't too many somebodies with a passcode.

And you might be one of those somebodies?

No doubt.

Can you show them to me? Please?

You got a case number?

Me? No. Anything is fine.

Let's see. How about 11151?

That's from...

May 21, 2006.

Sure, that's fine.

Evidence Sergeant Gilbert.

This is Colletti from Major Crime.

We need the skirt and blouse from case 18446.

We need to do a DNA match with the perp we've got in custody.

We might have just caught ourselves a serial rapist.

I need to know if you have it.

You want me to go get it right now?

No, I want you tell my captain he'll get it tomorrow instead.

All right, hang on.

Goddamn son of a bitch.

It's like goddamn rush hour around here.

Goddamn son of a bitch.

I'm on a circus train that's full of midgets.

Goddamn son of a bitch.

Everything has got to be right now.

I've got your goddamn right now right here.


Okay, come on, come on, come on, come on, come on.

Damn it. Son of a bitch clown crap.

Everything's right now. God damn it.

If I wanted to talk to people I would have stayed in vice.

Right now, right now, right now.

Goddamn everything's got to be goddamn right now.

Son of a bitch.

No, we ain't got it down here.

Are you sure? Case 18446, you don't have it?

I'm sure 'cause ain't nobody logged it in neither.

They must have got the number wrong.

I'm in some major shit here. I'll call you back.

Yeah, you do that.


So how you doing, ace?

What's this all about?

Guard! Easy easy.

Just want to see how you're getting on.

Is the food okay? They taking care of you?

You know, sometimes it gets kinda lonely in here.

Why don't you just cut the bullshit? You want something. What is it?

Can't a guy even come by and see how you're doing?

What the hell do you want? World peace. What do you want?

I want everyone to know what a scumbag you really are.

Oh, me? Yeah, you.


No, I put away the bad guys.

You planted the evidence.

You do know they monitor the phones here, don't you?

You take care, ace.

You son of a bitch!

Hi. Come on in here.


You must be Roberta. Yeah.

You and Danielle may turn out to be lifesavers.

I mean literal lifesavers. I can't thank you enough.

Do you have it? I want to see it. She has it, right?

Ella, this is Dell and Allen. They're both post-doctorates here.

Sociability is not their strong suit.

Say hello to Ella. Hello.

Do you have it? Here you go, fellas.

They're not used to actually speaking to other vertebrates, so be patient. Right.

Uh, the second one there.

Are these real dead people? I'm afraid so.

These are great. Can I make a copy?

No, Allen. That would be against the law.

I'm Dell.

He's Allen.

Sorry, Dell. Can you open this photograph right here?

All right, here's what I'm looking for.

You see this cigarette right here?

I need to know if you think it's possible that this cigarette was added after the fact.

They're uncompressed. 24 megs, that's good.

Why's that good? The more resolution the more metadata.

Metadata? She doesn't know what metadata is.

She knows lots of stuff that you don't know.

Metadata is literally data about data.

Digital images are comprised of pixels. That's the data.

If you look closer you find that there's metadata around the pixels. Watch. Look over here.

See the patterns? Uh-huh.

Tell her about what Lukas and Fridrich and Goljan found.

Tell her about the statistic characteristics of imaging sensors.

Shut up.

Three researchers at Binghamton found that cameras have a pattern noise and if you look closely enough you can find that there is a difference in the pattern noise of the algorithm of each camera even though they're mass manufactured.

There's a subtle difference in each one.

It's actually like a digital fingerprint.

So let's look at the pattern on this part of the image.

See it? Uh-huh.

Now let's move over to the cigarette and see that pattern.

It's different. Can you see it?

That cigarette was definitely not part of the original photograph.

Oh my God.


What was it? Two, three, four.

Four orange. Orange orange.

Where is it?



You all right?

How'd you know? I was following him following you.

Never liked that son of a bitch.

I knew he was up to something so I followed him.

I don't know what else to say but thank you.

It's what I do. We ain't all like him.

I know. I know.

I've got to call this in. It's gonna be a shitstorm.

He's not the only part.

This storm's bigger than you think.

We could be talking Katrina here.

In an incredible turn of events, District Attorney Mark Hunter was arrested and charged with the falsifying of evidence in the murder trial of Andre Benson causing a mistrial in that case and 17 others, including the trial of Channel 8 reporter CJ Nicholas.

Hunter was taken to the county jail and booked this afternoon. Bail is pending.

Harold Rice, who is now the acting district attorney, said that his office has to review the Nicholas trial along with the others because all DNA evidence in these trials is now suspect.

Rice said that he has serious doubts that there was enough evidence to retry Nicholas as the case was circumstantial and not that strong without the DNA evidence.

As a result, he saw no reason to keep him in prison.

News 8's Kelly Gertner reports.

The scene was a madhouse today outside Louisiana State Prison as CJ Nicholas went from death row to freedom in a matter of hours.

As his taxi sped away from the prison one could not escape being struck by three things... the rise and spectacular fall of Mark Hunter who before this afternoon was destined to be our next governor and is now in jail; the fall and now possibly spectacular rise of CJ Nicholas who before this afternoon was facing execution and is now free and about to become a national celebrity;

Doris Ruth Owens... the young woman found dead in the park shown here when she was arrested for prostitution... her case is now open again and will likely remain unsolved.

She will become one of those statistics, an unsolved case involving a relatively unknown young woman.

She was so little.

...felt her grow you know, cold.


You don't have to watch that thing again.

Turn it off and come back to bed with me.

I'm so dumb. I didn't believe you about Hunter.

You were right all along. I'm so dumb.

Don't torture yourself. You were the greatest.

You saved me.

Why are you dressed?

She was blackmailing you, wasn't she?


You know, sometimes you hear an alarm bell go off in your head.

You don't know what it is or why it's there.

It's like a radio station you just can't quite get.

What are you talking about?

I've got to hand it to you. This was a brilliant plan.

And then I saw this photo.

Bingo, there it is.

That hand.

I mean, who could really forget that hand?

That's Taieesha's hand. Taieesha didn't die of an overdose.

There was no Taieesha.

Doris Ruth Owens was the girl you hired from Buffalo to be Taieesha.

Your award-winning documentary was a complete phony.

Ella... She was blackmailing you, wasn't she?

She followed you up here from Buffalo and she was blackmailing you.

She was going to expose the fact that your precious career was a total lie.

So you had to stop her.

I love you and you love me.

Everything was a lie. Your entire career was a lie.

You killed Doris Ruth Owens because she was threatening to expose your lie.

You are a lie. How can I love a lie?

What was I supposed to do? Just let her bleed me to death?

Ruin my whole life?

What choice did I have? You tell me.

You're worth more than her? Just like that?

No. No, it's not like that.

You don't have to do this.

Look, Hunter put 17 people in prison for crimes they may not have committed.

Are you telling me that she's worth more than all those people?

She's worth more than the whole system?

It was a brilliant plan. You commit the perfect murder, you expose Hunter, you win whatever awards you want to, you get to become a star.

And after you're acquitted they can't try you again because of double jeopardy.

We can go so far together.

There's just one little glitch in your plan.

You weren't acquitted. They declared a mistrial.

So once they make the connection between you and Owens they'll have enough evidence to convict you.

This doesn't have to happen. Oh, yes it does.


Because it's too late.

Ella, what have you done?

What have you done!?

I really don't have anything more to say to you.

You know, I just thought of one more thing: