A gay man who had a brief stint in a Fundamentalist Christian-sponsored sexual re-education course is found murdered, and suspects range from the conversion program itself, a bigoted church group who kept sending him threatening letters, a group of psychologists studying the nature of homosexuality, and two of his ex-lovers, one of whom is the son of one of the professors.
Daniel Timothy Dey
Did You Know?
The case Casey refers to is a federal murder trial that dealt with the murder of Matthew Sheppard, a gay man from Wyoming who on October 6, 1998 was robbed, beaten and tortured by two men who allegedly targeted him because he was gay. The men lured Sheppard to their pickup by pretending to be gay, they then drove him out to a remote area where they proceeded to brutally beat and pistol whip Sheppard. They then tied Sheppard to a fence post and left him for dead, he was found almost a day later by a bicyclist and was still barely alive, Sheppard was taken to a local hospital and placed on life support. Police identified the suspects who attacked Sheppard, Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson after they were arrested for starting a bar fight. Police searched McKinney's pickup and found the gun he had used to pistol whip Sheppard, the gun was covered in Sheppard's blood. McKinney and Henderson were arrested and initially charged with attempted murder, kidnapping, and aggravated robbery but six days later Sheppard died from the serious cranial injuries sustained in the beating, the fatal damage being to his brainstem. After Shepard's death, the charges were upgraded from attempted murder to first-degree murder. Henderson avoided going to trial when he pled guilty to second degree murder and first degree kidnapping charges. In order to avoid the death penalty, he agreed to testify against McKinney and was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences. McKinney claimed in a pre-trial motion that he had never intended to kill Sheppard, that the plan was just to rob him but he lost control and flew into a rage when Sheppard made sexual advances towards him. His lawyer tried to use a "gay panic" defense, arguing that McKinney was driven to temporary insanity by alleged sexual advances by Sheppard. Had this defense been allowed to be used at trial McKinney could of been convicted of manslaughter in the first degree instead of murder in the first degree but the defense was rejected by the judge. At his trial the jury found McKinney not guilty of first degree premeditated murder but they did find him guilty on the lesser charges of felony murder, first degree kidnapping and first degree aggravated robbery and assault. The jury deliberated on giving McKinney the death penalty but in the end he received the same sentence as his accomplice, two consecutive life terms without the possibility of parole. At the time of Sheppard's death there were no statues on the killing of someone because of their sexual orientation being a hate crime. Sheppard's parents started a movement to get the murder of a person because of their sexual orientation added to the hate crimes statute and they were finally successful 11 years later when President Obama signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act (often referred to as The Matthew Shepard act for short) into law on October 28, 2009. See more
The woman escorting the school children at the beginning of the episode begins to lead her charges across the street despite the fact that the "Don't Walk" signal is clearly displayed over her shoulder. See more
Det. Elliot Stabler
Go back in there and strangle the son-of-a-bitch.
Detective John Munch
I love the guy; I want to invite him to the Christmas party.
References Law & Order