Law & Order (1990–2010)
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Savior 

A hard-luck executive is accused of murdering his wife and son, and injuring his daughter. Dr. Olivet tells prosecutors that he fits the profile of a "family annihilator," but backs down when he refuses to confess on the stand.

Director:

David Platt

Writers:

Dick Wolf (created by), Michael S. Chernuchin | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jerry Orbach ... Detective Lennie Briscoe
Benjamin Bratt ... Detective Rey Curtis
S. Epatha Merkerson ... Lieutenant Anita Van Buren
Sam Waterston ... E.A.D.A. Jack McCoy
Jill Hennessy ... A.D.A. Claire Kincaid
Steven Hill ... D.A. Adam Schiff
Brooke Smith ... Margot Bell
Timothy Landfield ... Ron Weber
Ellen Pompeo ... Jenna Weber
Linda Emond ... Laura Cochran
Shawn Hatosy ... Chester Manning
Carolyn McCormick ... Dr. Elizabeth Olivet
Linda Atkinson Linda Atkinson ... Judge Kyle Gaines
John Driver John Driver ... Mark Levinsohn
Nancy McDoniel ... Sheila Gordon
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Storyline

Detectives Briscoe and Curtis investigate the murder of Joyce Weber and her son Billy who were found shot in their beds. Her eldest daughter Jenna survived the attack but the father, Ron Weber, says he was out drinking and passed out in a local diner. Weber had been having a hard time of late. His alcoholism was getting the better of him and he had lost his job, something he had failed to tell his wife. He was worried about how he would care for his family and meet his responsibilities as the head of the family. Dr. Olivet confirms that he fits the pattern of a family annihilator and ADA McCoy proceeds with the prosecution. Part way through the trial however, Olivet begins to have doubts leading the police and the DA's office to take a second look at Jenna Weber's boyfriend Chester Manning. Written by garykmcd

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Trivia

This episode appears to be based on two different crimes of family annihilation cases:
  • The John List (a.k.a. "The Boogeyman of Westfield") case. On November 9, 1971, List killed his wife, mother, and three children at their home in Westfield, New Jersey, then disappeared; he had planned the murders so meticulously that nearly a month passed before anyone suspected that anything was amiss. List became a fugitive from the law and assumed a new identity. He later remarried, and further eluded justice for nearly eighteen years. He was finally apprehended in Virginia on June 1, 1989, after the story of his murders was broadcast on the television program America's Most Wanted. After extradition to New Jersey, he was convicted on five counts of first degree murder and sentenced to five consecutive terms of life imprisonment without parole. List gave critical financial problems, as well as his perception that his family members were straying from their religious faith, as his rationale for the murders. He reasoned that killing them would assure their souls a place in Heaven, where he hoped to eventually join them. List died in prison in 2008 at the age of 82.
  • The Bradford Bishop case. One of the most famous family annihilation cases in American history. State Department official Bradford Bishop killed his entire family in 1976 when he didn't receive a promotion. He then vanished. He is still on the FBI's Most Wanted Fugitives list, and he has been featured on "America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back (1988)"and "Unsolved Mysteries (1987)." As late as 2010, the FBI believed that he was still alive, likely in Europe, and that he fled the U.S. shortly after the murders using his diplomatic passport.
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Quotes

Lennie Briscoe: [referring to Ron and Joyce Weber] He's a drunk, and she handles licenses to sell booze -- it's a marriage made in heaven!
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Connections

References Hang 'Em High (1968) See more »

User Reviews

 
Family Annihilator
27 August 2020 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Shades of John List. Jerry Orbach and Benjamin Bratt respond to a home where a mother and young son have been stabbed to death and the teenage daughter Ellen Pompeo is wounded. Husband Timothy Landfield is home later and he's stupifyingly drunk. Did he do the horrible deed while inebriated because he admits to nothing.

Is Landfield going to get justice because the cards looked stacked against him. His attorney Brooke Smith tries to deal but he insists on his innicene though he remembers nothing.

The whole theory of what makes someone a family annihilator is discussed at length. The truth is arroved at, but it ain't an easy one to swallow.

Nice performances by Landfield, Smith, and Pompeo.


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Details

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 March 1996 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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