A woman claims she killed a man outside a bar because he was going to rape her, but was it really a mob hit? Logan is partnered up with Lennie Briscoe, and Ceretta tells Logan that he isn't returning to the precinct after his shooting.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Mary Kostrinski
Kevin Reilly
Valerie Walker
Jimmy Scanlon
Officer Andy Libik (as Michael Ingram)


With Phil Cerreta recovering from his gunshot wounds, Detective Logan is partnered with Det. Lennie Briscoe, an old hand whose brash demeanor is somewhat off-putting. Their first case is a shooting death outside a nightclub just around closing time. The shooter, Mary Kostrinski, freely admits killing the man saying she was in fear of being raped. Dr. Elizabeth Olivet's opinion is that the woman was in genuine fear of her life. The police investigation and her account of events don't add up. She's charged with murder but Stone is prepared to deal to get a conviction, especially after Olivet is called as a defense witness. She has bigger fish for him to fry. Meanwhile, Phil Cerreta decides not to return to the streets. Written by garykmcd

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Release Date:

25 November 1992 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


First appearance of Jerry Orbach as Det. Lennie Briscoe, a role he'd play through the end of season 14. See more »


Mary Kostrinski's doorman says he was glad she stayed when the building went co-op. Later Mary calls it her condo, which is not the same as a co-op. See more »


Lanie Stieglitz: [Stieglitz, Stone's opponent of the week, has just realized that her client has been lying to her] I cannot and I will not perpetrate a fraud on the court. It's unethical and illegal. I'm not going to put you on the stand tomorrow, Mary, and I am not going to make a closing argument. And the jury is going to wonder why.
See more »


Featured in Jerry Orbach Tribute (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

Up to Par.
19 February 2007 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

Spoilers: This is a decent episode of "Law & Order," made during its peak period, with its usual good cast. Here, a man picks up a woman (Lisa Eichorn) in P.J.'s and she shoots him dead on the street during what she claims is an attempted rape. Her lawyer (Elaine Stritch) throws up a feminist defense -- Eichorn weighs 118 pounds and the dead guy weighs 240, and she genuinely believed she was about to be raped. It turns out that Eichorn had been paid by a gangster to knock the guy off, and when Stritch learns this she refuses to continue the defense. The DA wins the case and Eichorn goes up for 15 to life.

One of the most impressive features of the series at its best has always been the economy of the script. Rarely are family relationships brought up and they are never dwelled on. The writing rushes ahead with the momentum of an express on the BMT. Bing, bang, boom. It's efficiently cut even for dramatic, ambiguous scenes. In this instance, Dr. Elizabeth Olivet, the shrink, is on the stand. She believes Eichorn was justified, but at the same time she does not want to cross her friends and employers in the DA's office. Stone has to press and humiliate her. The message gets across in only a few minutes without frills or thespian razzle-dazzle.

But the writing isn't dull either. It's enlivened with occasional cynical wisecracks and bon mots. It's not always politically correct. And it's not afraid to bring viewers face to face with formal legal issues either. The weakness in this story, as in so many others, is that it brings up a controversial subject, explores it in a minimal way, and then cops out. The legal issue here is whether Eichorn was justified in shooting a man she claims was about to rape her. Then the rape disappears. The story ends with the arrest of a corrupt politician. Ho hum.

Guest stars include Elaine Stritch, who was quite a personality on the New York stage in real life, an unpredictable and sometimes outrageous alcoholic wit. Older now, she looks and sounds as if she could chew nails.

Worth catching.

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