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Novak enlists Clark's assistance in obtaining evidence to remove a judge from the bench after his bias in two child abuse cases leads to the death of a child and and the wrongful incarceration of an innocent woman.


David Platt


Dick Wolf (created by), Michele Fazekas | 1 more credit »


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Meloni ... Detective Elliot Stabler
Mariska Hargitay ... Olivia Benson
Richard Belzer ... John Munch
Diane Neal ... Casey Novak
Ice-T ... Odafin Tutuola
BD Wong ... Dr. George Huang (as B.D. Wong)
Dann Florek ... Donald Cragen
Marlo Thomas ... Judge Mary Clark
Tom Skerritt ... Judge Oliver Taft
Cynthia Gibb ... Karen Campbell
Alicia Goranson ... Rosalin Silvo
Sean Cullen ... Pete Campbell
Sloane Momsen ... Katie Campbell
Matthew Sussman Matthew Sussman ... Lawrence Alcott
Rebecca Luker ... Wendy Campbell


The team is investigating the death of baby which was adopted by a couple with children already. Autopsy reveals that the baby was poisoned. They learn that the mother was not interested in adopting. So they arrest her. At her arraignment the judge appears to be ruling in her favor which Casey finds odd. He later cites Elliot for contempt. They learn that he favors certain people and is hard on others. They learn that in another case he wouldn't allow evidence that would have exonerated a woman who was also charged with poisoning her child. So Casey decides to look into and also tries to have the judge removed. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-14 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

11 May 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Poison 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
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Sean Cullen has played three different characters over the course of the series: See more »


INCORRECTLY REGARDED AS GOOF: When Stabler arrests Karen Campbell he does in fact say she is under arrest for attempted murder, not murder. When he says the word "attempted" he says it quietly, but it's still discernible and the subtitles also say "attempted murder". See more »


Judge Oliver Taft: Ms. Novak, I'm afraid the People haven't met their burden of proving the interview wasn't suggestive. Therefore the defense motion to suppress the witness' testimony is granted.
Detective Elliot Stabler: This is a joke.
Judge Oliver Taft: I beg your pardon, Detective Stabler?
Detective Elliot Stabler: I said this is a joke.
Judge Oliver Taft: You'd be wise to remember no one cares what you think once you're out of that box, Detective.
Detective Elliot Stabler: That interview wasn't suggestive.
A.D.A. Casey Novak: Elliot, stop.
Detective Elliot Stabler: You're one of these judges who thinks cops strong-arms witnesses in order to make their case. What, do...
See more »


References Leave It to Beaver (1957) See more »

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User Reviews

Casey gets on the judge's case
8 February 2013 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

This episode of SVU belongs to Diane Neal as ADA Casey Novak who loses a case because of a biased judge and the victim, a little girl later dies because of her mother's acquittal in a bench trial. Christopher Meloni has a score to settle with that judge because he gives him some time in the slammer for a contempt citation. Tom Skerritt plays the judge just likely to elicit a little contempt.

Sad to say though Skerritt's performance was a bit too broad and possibly due to the writing. This judge was obviously influenced by what John Forsythe did in the Al Pacino classic And Justice For All.

Possibly the hour format did not allow for a character to be drawn with accuracy. Forsythe played the same kind of judge who got to think he was God Almighty on the bench. Skerritt though never was given a reason to behave as he does.

Check out And Justice For All and see what I mean about which character you think was better portrayed.

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