Law & Order: Season 5, Episode 7

Precious (9 Nov. 1994)

TV Episode  |  TV-14  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 76 users  
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A false kidnapping claim leads to the prosecution of a married couple after detectives discover that three of their infants have died under mysterious circumstances.



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Title: Precious (09 Nov 1994)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Marty Willick
Julie Boyd ...
Eileen Willick
Sam Gray ...
Nada Rowand ...
Dr. Margaret Slavin
Joel Leffert ...
Robert Cole
Brooks Rogers ...
Dr. Henry Royce
Becky Borczon ...
Theresa Tritch
Dr. Charles Webb


Detectives Briscoe and Logan investigate the disappearance of a three month old baby, Emily, who was taken while she and her father Marty Willick were in the park. He dozed off for a few minutes and when he awoke, she was gone. The detectives begin to have second thoughts about the veracity of Willick's story and finally the truth comes out: Willick claims that he and his wife found her dead in her crib. The medical examiner finds that the baby has symptoms of asphyxia, though it could have been a crib death. When they learn that two other of the Willick's children also died of crib death, they are certain one or both of the parents were responsible for Emily's death. Written by garykmcd

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Release Date:

9 November 1994 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This episode includes elements from several cases of "Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy", but most resembles that of New Yorker Marybeth Tinning. She is thought to have killed at least 8 (and probably 9) of her children over a 14-year span. Most of the children had not yet reached the age of one year when they were killed. The deaths were originally thought to have been due to a genetic disease (Reye Syndrome) or SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome), but suspicion increased after their adopted son Michael died too. Noted pathologist Michael Baden was involved in the initial investigation and subsequent trial. Tinning is still incarcerated at the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility for Women (Bedford Hills, New York) and has been denied parole four times since 2007. See more »


References E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982) See more »

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Sympathy Junkie
26 January 2015 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

At first Jerry Orbach and Chris Noth are investigating a reported kidnapping of a baby by the father Kevin O'Rourke. When his story doesn't add up Briscoe and Logan are soon getting a different story of how he buried his infant whom he says died of crib death.

O'Rourke is a beaten and shattered man who is shielding his wife from the law. He's got good reason to shield Julie Boyd from the law, two other of their infants died similarly in different jurisdictions.

Boyd is described as a 'sympathy junkie'. It's a special kind of narcissism where she gets to be the center of attention through the death of her infant children. She smothers them to gain such sympathy and O'Rourke just won't confront the possibility either to the world or worse to himself.

As for Sam Waterston he's frustrated by the fact the judge rules that the prior deaths can't be introduced. How it all turns out is for you to watch the episode.

I will say Boyd is one frightening human being and she gives a great performance.

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