Prosecutors have trouble making a case against a father accused of injecting his son with deadly bacteria, so Jack is forced to play hardball with the bio-supplier that may have supplied him with it.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Aaron Downing
Jack Gilpin ...
Theresa Copeland
Dennis Creaghan ...
Downing's Attorney
John Berg ...
Dr. Zev Weiss
John Ramsey ...
Paula Downing


When a 5 year-old Ryan Downing dies from exposure to a rare bacteria, VRSA, the police don't know if they're dealing with a one off incident or a planned attack. They first focus on the on the Downing's nanny, but she is quickly cleared. The medical examiner thinks the boy was likely injected with VRSA - she finds a small puncture mark - and when a junkie named Clarence dies of the same disease, his needles indicate they were used on the Downing boy. The boy's father Aaron was having an affair with a co-worker Theresa Copeland and becomes their prime suspect. In order to get the evidence to convict however, ADA McCoy has to lean on the company that likely sold him the bacteria in the first place. Written by garykmcd

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Release Date:

21 October 1998 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


D.A. Adam Schiff: This man hurt his boy because he was depressed?
Jack McCoy: He's the man in the gray flannel suit, Adam...
A.D.A. Abbie Carmichael: ...with a syringe in his pocket.
D.A. Adam Schiff: When I'm in the dumps I have a scotch and put on Louis Armstrong.
See more »


References The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit (1956) See more »

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User Reviews

Brilliant Episode with a Brilliant Lawyer
19 May 2010 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

This episode was well written, and showed how extremely intelligent and effective Jack McCoy is as a District Attorney. A total sleaze bag is accused of fatally poisoning his son, and McCoy needs the mans employers to cooperate. The employer, a pharmaceutical company, is reluctant, and McCoy makes a deal with them. I do not want to spoil his sophisticated courtroom tactics, but it shows how rare and gifted he is as an intellectual. This episode is Law and Order at its best: showing us the legal strategies and tremendous amount of work the lawyers invest in their cases. Sure, the public can read about such a trial in the newspaper, but not get the whole picture. Law and Order gives us a look at the lawyers, behind the scenes. Also, in Canada and the USA the alleged perpetrators have so many rights, it is often difficult for District Attorneys to make any progress at all. Watch this episode and you will see Jack McCoy as a lawyer, and as a genius.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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