White police officers are accused of beating and dragging an African American man to his death. McCoy tries to prosecute while facing pressure from Federal prosecutors, who want to make a deal with one of the guilty parties.


Constantine Makris


Dick Wolf (created by), Rene Balcer


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jerry Orbach ... Lennie Briscoe
Benjamin Bratt ... Rey Curtis
S. Epatha Merkerson ... Anita Van Buren
Sam Waterston ... Jack McCoy
Angie Harmon ... Abbie Carmichael
Steven Hill ... Adam Schiff
John Ventimiglia ... Officer Frank Dietrick
John MacKay John MacKay ... Internal Affairs Detective (as John A. MacKay)
Michael McCormick Michael McCormick ... Dietrick's Attorney
John Driver John Driver ... Assistant US Attorney Bob Gervits
David Valcin ... Officer Fratelli
Russell G. Jones ... Raymond 'Ray-Ray' Davis
Joseph Ragno
Michael Hannon
Pamela Isaacs Pamela Isaacs ... Mrs. Michaels


Detectives Briscoe and Curtis investigate the death of an African-American man, Floyd Michaels, who the medical examiner concludes was beaten and dragged behind a car. Local community activist Rev. Ramsay is soon visiting Lt. Van Buren's superior to ensure this hate crime gets top priority. The police find a witness who says he saw two white men pull victim out of his car. They also learn that Michaels was an auxiliary policeman in Westchester County. They find witnesses who identify the attackers' red Pontiac but they trace it to a police compound for seized vehicles. It leads them to believe that the attackers were policemen. For the DA's office, problems arise when the U.S. Attorney wants to take over the case. When ADA McCoy finds he's granted the ringleader immunity, he tries to have the immunity agreement rescinded. Written by garykmcd

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Release Date:

7 October 1998 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Michael McCormick has played four different roles over the course of the series: See more »


In one scene, McCoy and Carmichael have a conversation about Officer Dietrick. The episode then shifts to McCoy's office, where they are talking with Dietrick and his attorney. The defense attorney's notes are the episode script of the previous scene with McCoy and Carmichael. See more »


Abbie Carmichael: [referring to a possible federal plea bargain] By the time the Feds get done with Dietrich they'll be naming bird sanctuaries after him.
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User Reviews

The blue wall will shield you from civilian authority
29 April 2018 | by paolo ceccacciSee all my reviews

Two guys, after a morning spent fishing in the river, found out a dead man on the ground. He was dragged for a quarter mile by a car that ran over him. He was black and he was repeatedly beaten before being killed. An african american witness (Russell G. Jones) confessed to Van Buren what happened (only because she's black as well); the victim was actually a part time cop. Some officers were in charge to prevent people from rob stores in their neighborhood, the victim went by chance in the wrong place at the wrong time. It's all become a matter inside NYPD, several white cops went under investigation, two of them were arrested. Immunity was granted for a highly ranked officer for his testimony, big mistake for prosecutors.

Legal tricks this time go against criminal justice system. Even the mayor put his reputation at stake for a statement made live on TV before knowing the real truth. McCoy jeopardized his place of work to take everything on the right track.

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