Law & Order (1990–2010)
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Red Ball 

When a little girl is abducted as part of a car-jacking, McCoy must bargain with the devil in the form of a system-savvy criminal.


Matthew Penn


Dick Wolf (created by), David Wilcox

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Dennis Farina ... Joe Fontana
Jesse L. Martin ... Ed Green
S. Epatha Merkerson ... Anita Van Buren
Sam Waterston ... Jack McCoy
Annie Parisse ... Alexandra Borgia
Fred Dalton Thompson ... Arthur Branch
James Le Gros ... Dwight Jacobs
Wendy Hoopes ... Denise Clark
Brooke Smith ... Margot Bell
Lindsay Crouse ... Judge Deidre Hellstrom
Adam Arkin ... Charlie Graham
Selenis Leyva ... Detective Mariluz Rivera
Patrick Michael Buckley ... Jimmy Clark
Harry Prichett ... Bernard Heinz
Sidné Anderson ... Supervisor


When a little girl is abducted as part of a car-jacking, McCoy must bargain with the devil in the form of a system-savvy criminal.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-14 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

21 September 2005 (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?


This episode marks the beginning of S. Epatha Merkerson's thirteenth season as Lt. Anita Van Buren, making her the longest running character in the show's history. Jerry Orbach's Lennie Briscoe appeared for twelve years. The longest-running original castmember was Chris Noth as Mike Logan, from 1990 through 1995. See more »


The lower right-hand square on each player's side of the board in chess is supposed to be white, but in these men's game, that square is black, meaning they have the board set up sideways. See more »


Jack McCoy: If you want to fire me, Arthur, go ahead. I'm not going to apologize for what I did.
Arthur Branch: Well, then, you just don't get it, Jack. You know, you're a great prosecutor, but you'll never be a district attorney.
See more »

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User Reviews

This negotiated arrangement with the people is something I find contrary to the interests of justice.
26 December 2017 | by CeccacciPaolo1977See all my reviews

In a regular spring day, a carjacker pulled a woman out of his car, leaving her in the middle of the street. The car was found right away, but the toddler placed in the back seat was abducted. CCTV footage at a local bodega caught a portrait of the kidnapper: neither the mother, nor the divorced father actually recognized him. Later on, detectives managed to locate and to arrest him; he didn't want a ransom, he had just wanted to play with justice. The perp (James Le Gros) is a real piece of work, used to be in and out of prison, so McCoy found it very hard to deal with this junk lowlife. Furthermore, his behavior put Fontana and Green really in anger (mainly during the puppet scene). Anyway, he was the only one who knew where the baby was hidden and that put the entire criminal system in a difficult situation not so easy to solve without a deal...

A man of integrity like McCoy put his workplace at stake, by confronting his boss in the way he did. On the other side, the only thing that counts for Arthur Branch is politics.

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