Disenfranchised
Original Airdate: October 27, 1986

[Special Services care home]

(a little girl, Shauna Bard, is colouring in an drawing of Lady Justice and when she has finished she scribbles violently all over it)

[City courthouse staircase/foyer]

CHRISTINE: To hell with the agony of defeat, I'd love a victory!
MARY BETH: We aim to please, Christine.
CHRISTINE: In front of one of the better judges, I might add. A woman.
MARY BETH: If she sees the tape of Shauna with the doll, we're home free.
CHRISTINE: Did you see Jenny on that stand this morning? That is one tough little girl.
(they get into a lift)
MARY BETH: Ah, winning is wonderful.
CHRISTINE: (to the lift attendant) Four please.

[Courthouse corridor]

(Shauna's older sister, Jenny, is sitting there with Sandra Timmons)
MARY BETH: How's she doing, Sandra?
CHRISTINE: (to Jenny) How are you doing?
JENNY: She's still in there.
CHRISTINE: Is she?
(Rhonda Gallegos comes out of the courtroom)
RHONDA GALLEGOS: (to Sandra Timmons) Almost finished.
SANDRA TIMMONS: (to Jenny) I'll be right back.
(the duo and Rhonda Gallegos walk out of hearing range of Shauna)
CHRISTINE: How's it going?
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Don't get your hopes up. He says she got it from an X-rated movie channel.
CHRISTINE: So they like to watch goody movies too. That should make our case better.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: She's questioning our case. She says Shauna could have got it from watching television.
MARY BETH: Oh, for crying out loud!
RHONDA GALLEGOS: OK, we knew what we were up against.
CHRISTINE: Yes. A strong attorney.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Thank you!!!
MARY BETH: We did the right thing for those kids there, Rhonda.
CHRISTINE: Damn right! It was a good judgement call.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Nobody said it wasn't. But the fact is that in court there's almost no evidence.
CHRISTINE: You go and look at Jenny's statement. We go back and fight!
MARY BETH: We've got to protect the little one from her pervert father. We could beat Gordon on this one, Rhonda.
(Sandra Timmons comes out of the courtroom with Jenny who goes and sits on Shauna's lap and hugs her)
SANDRA TIMMONS: (as the other three come up) They're getting ready to start.

[Courtroom]

RHONDA GALLEGOS: Your Honour, acting it out was the only means that Shauna had to talk about the molestation.
JUDGE STENBORG: Even if the behaviour is not mimicked the tape is still not inadmissible.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Since you won't allow her to testify because she can't understand the oath, this tape is her testimony!
JUDGE STENBORG: Since the tape can't be cross-examined it would deny the Defence it's right to cross-examination.
CHRISTINE: (aside to Mary Beth) What a crock. It's catch twenty-two.
JUDGE STENBORG: Now regarding this medical report. 'There was no evidence of penetration. And nothing to support that the vaginal irritation was caused by sexual contact'.
CHRISTINE: (leaping up) We've got Shauna's word, Your (Mary Beth restrains her) ...Honour.
JUDGE STENBORG: In my chambers, Shauna denied any sexual contact with her father. (looking at the father) But still, Mr. Bard, families rarely end up in this court unless something's going on. I suggest you obtain family counselling. What we have here is a serious allegation by one child denied by the other supported by...
MARY BETH: (aside to Chris) No matter what we said, it's never enough.
JUDGE STENBORG: I'm reticent to break up families based on nothing more substantive than a child's testimony. Testimony, which in many cases we've seen recanted by the child after a family has been destroyed. Because there is insufficient evidence, I find no grounds for removal.
GORDON: Thank you, Your Honour.
(Gordon shakes Darryl Bard's hand)

[City courthouse staircase/foyer]

(the Bards are with their two daughters. As the duo and Rhonda Gallegos come out of the lift, Shauna runs over to them)
LUCY BARD: Jenny!
JENNY: You lied to me!
MARY BETH: Jenny, we did our best.
LUCY BARD: (coming over and pulling Jenny away) Come on now. Don't talk to them.
MARY BETH: We believe you're telling the truth, Jenny.
JENNY: You lied to me.
GORDON: Go ahead! Talk to her again, we'll call for harassment.
CHRISTINE: (as Gordon and the Bards go off down the staircase) What are you calling what you did to those kids on the witness stand?
GORDON: (shouting back) Cross-examination.
CHRISTINE: On my bike!!
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Ain't justice strange?
CHRISTINE: Yeah.
MARY BETH: Think of those kids.

[Ladies room]

(back in the Precinct House)
MARY BETH: Hitler. Lee Harvey Oswald. They had parents who abused their children. You wonder if they beat their own kids.
CHRISTINE: Jenny is not going to be a murderer.
MARY BETH: I didn't say that, Chris.
CHRISTINE: She is a very angry girl who has every right to be. How would you like it if nobody believed you?
MARY BETH: The whole legal thing is stacked against juveniles.
CHRISTINE: Chafing from tight underpants!!! Who the hell do they think they're kidding?!! That little girl was molested, Mary Beth, and she was just too scared to say so. And then she thought, of course, that we were gonna fix it.
MARY BETH: If we had any lousy evidence, that's what we would have done.
CHRISTINE: Why doesn't that make me feel better?

[Charlie's apartment]

(he is unpacking a takeaway in the kitchen)
CHARLIE: OK, loosen your belt, honey, here it comes!
(he puts two plates down on the coffee table)
CHARLIE: There ...you ...are. Do you think we could generate a little enthusiasm here?
CHRISTINE: It's terrific, it really is! What have we got for the first course?
CHARLIE: Hey, hey. You win some, you lose some, Chrissie. It comes with the territory.
CHRISTINE: I know that. Pleased to be back in uniform, huh?
CHARLIE: Ah, ah, ah. I will be wearing a blazer with one of those little emblems on the pocket. I mean, we are talking very low key here. I am going to be guarding magnetic tape. That stuff is even more valuable than cash these days. (putting another plate on the table) Fried rice.
CHRISTINE: Industrial security, huh? It has a very high-class ring to it.
CHARLIE: Hey, we are talking growth industry here.
CHRISTINE: Are you going to be packing a piece?
CHARLIE: You don't think they'd be paying me five hundred bucks a week as if I was some rent-a-cop, do ya? (bringing out more take away) Hey, sweet and sour shrimp!
CHRISTINE: Five hundred a week plus your pension? That's not bad!
CHARLIE: Why do you think I'm moving so fast here? I called Danny Whalen. The kid is very big at Pinkertons these days. (bringing out yet more take away) Egg rolls!
CHRISTINE: The kid is fifty-five years old, Charlie.
CHARLIE: Yeah, and he's where he is today because he had one helluva teacher. Maybe you have forgot that. So I had him make a few phone calls for me, and then I follow up. I ask him, point blank, 'When do I come in for my physical?'. And he says 'Tomorrow morning at eight thirty'. And last but not least, your personal favourite, (showing her another dish) Spare ribs.
CHRISTINE: Have you been buying up the whole restaurant?! (Charlie laughs) You'll have to let me pay for half of this, Charlie!
CHARLIE: Are you... What are you talking about?! This is my treat! Chrissie, your old man is working again! Ho, ho, ho. What are you so happy about?
(she gives him a little kiss)
CHRISTINE: I should have said it a long time ago, Pop.
CHARLIE: Yeah. You got that one right, Sergeant daughter. Let's eat.

[Lacey's dining room]

HARVEY: (to Harvey Jr.) I tell the guy 'Don't tell me how to replan. Let's get the architects out here'. Would you eat your pork chop, Mikey?!
MARY BETH: So the architects are coming in tomorrow?
HARVEY: Three o'clock, Mary Beth. And I'm gonna tell 'em both, 'Stay off my place and get yourself new contractor'.
MARY BETH: (looking upstairs hearing Alice crying) Oh, she should be over that lousy colic by now.
HARVEY: No one in my family ever had colic.
MICHAEL: Maybe that's what I've got.
HARVEY: Hold it, honey. ...Oh, she's stopped.
MARY BETH: (sitting down) Michael, you're not eating.
MICHAEL: No, I feel sick. I got sick at school today. Do you think it's colic?
HARVEY: Only babies get colic, Mikey.
HARVEY JR.: He is a baby.
MARY BETH: (as Alice starts crying again) Oh, for crying out loud. (to Harvey Jr.) Go check on her for me, would you, please?
HARVEY JR.: (getting up and throwing his serviette down) How come nobody lets you finish a meal around here?!
HARVEY: (as he and Mary Beth feel his brow) Has he got a fever?
MARY BETH: No. Does it hurt bad?
MICHAEL: Just my stomach, Mum.
MARY BETH: Do you feel like you're gonna throw up?
MICHAEL: (shaking his head) No. I think I'm too sick to go to school tomorrow.
HARVEY: You need work on your grade, Mikey. You're still adjusting to the new school. Sometimes you've just gotta cut things out.
MARY BETH: Yeah, but if he's really sick, Harvey. You have to tell us, sweetheart, because you're the only one who knows how you feel.
(Harvey Jr. comes down with Alice, still crying, and gives her to Mary Beth)
HARVEY JR.: She's wet.
HARVEY: You could have changed her.
HARVEY JR.: I didn't wanna lose my appetite.
MARY BETH: This is nice, huh?
(Alice continues to cry. Harvey is buried in his papers. The boys remain silent. Mary Beth starts to eat with one hand)

[Precinct House front desk]

(Petrie and Isbecki come in dressed as pretzel sellers, trays around their necks)
PETRIE: The whole thing was a waste of time!
ISBECKI: What do you mean, I took seventeen dollars yesterday.
PETRIE: Victor, I meant the stake out. Coleman, give me something real. Something I can sink my teeth into.
(Isbecki puts a pretzel in front of his face)
COLEMAN: Mr. Chandler called. He wants to know if you've got anything on his dog yet.
PETRIE: Thanks. Not much of a meal.
ISBECKI: (to Coleman) Nothing for me, is there?
COLEMAN: The cupboard's bare. You must be slipping.
(Josie, the bag lady, comes up)
COLEMAN: Hey, Isbecki, got any without salt? I've gotta watch my blood pressure.
ISBECKI: (giving a pretzel to Josie, the bag lady) On the house too.

[Detectives' Squad room]

CHRISTINE: (coming down the stairs as Isbecki comes in) Get a promotion, Isbecki?
ISBECKI: Ah, Cagney, you're gonna be sorry you're not in on this one.
CHRISTINE: Forget it, Victor, it's a dead-end stake out.
MARY BETH: (holding up the Bard file) What do you wanna do with this?
CHRISTINE: Send it down to Records, I guess.
MARY BETH: OK. (putting it to one side and picking up another) We've got a jewellery heist on Lexington. (holding up a second) And we've got the Kent's B and E.
CHRISTINE: Whichever. Either is fine with me.
(Chris sees Mary Beth looking back at the one she put aside)
MARY BETH: We can't just walk in there because we don't like their home life, Christine.
CHRISTINE: We'll have to dig a little deeper. Come up with something else on Mr. Clean.
(Mary Beth picks the file up, comes and sits alongside Chris's desk and takes the form out and gives it to her)

[Manhattan street]

(the Squad car pulls up outside a school. The duo gets out)
MARY BETH: We're not gonna get anything more out of Jenny. We should be looking for busybody neighbours with second-class employment records.
CHRISTINE: I wanna see if Jenny is still around.
MARY BETH: Gordon might say we're harassing a witness.
CHRISTINE: I just wanna make sure she's OK.
MARY BETH: OK.
(they go into the neighbourhood school)

[School gymnasium]

JENNY: She didn't believe me. It all changed after I went in.
MARY BETH: Your little sister told the judge that nothing went on.
JENNY: She was afraid at what would have happened if she told the truth.
MARY BETH: What would happen?
(Jenny does not reply)
CHRISTINE: Is your father threatening you?
(still no reply)
MARY BETH: It must be scary for you.
JENNY: Look, I'm not scared for me. Shauna can't fight back.
CHRISTINE: Jenny, we're not giving up on you.
JENNY: You told us it would be OK! (she goes to move away) You don't want to help anymore!!
CHRISTINE: (restraining Jenny) Wait a minute, that's not true. (Jenny shakes her off) Jenny!!!
JENNY: What?!!!
CHRISTINE: We're not the enemy.
(Sylvia Ortel, the sports teacher, comes up)
CHRISTINE: We're trying to help you.
JENNY: I don't need your help!
SYLVIA ORTEL: Jenny, go to your team. They're waiting for you.
JENNY: I'll take care of Shauna myself. Go and find somebody else to play with!
(Jenny joins her team)
CHRISTINE: I don't seem to be in touch with kids, huh, Mary Beth.
MARY BETH: It's not you, Chris. Why should she trust anybody?

[Manhattan street]

(Mary Beth comes out of an Immigrant Social Service building and is joined by Chris from the adjacent Henry Bookbinding Co. building in the neighbourhood and go back to the car)

[Another Manhattan street]

CHRISTINE: (to the local postman in the neighbourhood who she has been talking to) Thank you very much. (to Mary Beth who is returning to the car) There's nobody there during the day. Well, what did you get?
MARY BETH: Nice Guy. Good parent. Quiet. A real old-time family man.
CHRISTINE: It's just like checking out Robert Young. Nobody's like that in the Eighties.
MARY BETH: According to the neighbours there's nothing wrong. I couldn't believe it. It takes us back to the one incident. You would have thought that somebody heard something.
CHRISTINE: Quiet time.

[Precinct House front desk]

(the duo returns)
COLEMAN: (handing Mary Beth a message) Muriel, one. Harvey's stressed.
CHRISTINE: Samuels in?
COLEMAN: Not back from the District meeting.
MARY BETH: (to Coleman) Thanks.
(there is a commotion. The Press and TV are there as Petrie and Isbecki, still dressed as pretzel sellers, escort three suspects in. A reporter is questioning Isbecki)
TV REPORTER: What did you find out about the coke, Detective Petrie?
ISBECKI: Isbecki!!!
TV REPORTER: OK, I got it. Now, what about the coke?
ISBECKI: Yeah. Yeah. The coke...
CHRISTINE: We could have been on it, Mary Beth. But, oh no, I said it was a dead-end stake out. Huh?
MARY BETH: Do you wanna do good or do you wanna be on TV? Don't answer that!

[Detectives' Squad room]

UNIFORMED OFFICER: (as the duo comes in) Mr. Lacey for you on line two.
MARY BETH: Thanks. (into phone) Harvey? ...What's going on? ...Well, did Muriel take him to the doctor's? ...Oh, how come you had to take off from work?
CHRISTINE: (mouths) What?
MARY BETH: (into phone waving to Chris not to worry) Well, I'm sorry she couldn't reach me, honey. ...So, what you're telling me is that the doctor couldn't find anything wrong. (Chris dials) ...Well, doctors don't know everything, Harvey. He would not have come home from school if it didn't hurt. ...Because I know. Because I'm his mother. (taking the phone away from her ear for a moment) ... I'll be there as soon as I can, Harve.
(she rings off)
CHRISTINE: (to Mary Beth while she holds on) Even Charlie has got a machine. (into phone) Hi. Where are you? Are you celebrating your new job? Call me when you get back and let me know how your first day went. Bye. (she rings off) Everything all right?
MARY BETH: (popping a couple of aspirin) Michael came home from school with stomach ache and Harvey's mad at me.
CHRISTINE: That's logical.
(Samuels returns followed by Petrie, Isbecki and the reporter who is pursuing Samuels)
TV REPORTER: Lieutenant, can you get me something official for the six o'clock news, right?
(Petrie and Isbecki are smiling broadly)
SAMUELS: Official would be easy. I'm gonna try and get Charlie Brown.
TV REPORTER: Great. Can we set it up in here?
SAMUELS: Oh, no, not in here. Out in the booking area.
CHRISTINE: (rushing across to Samuels) Lieutenant! Lieutenant, before you start, can we talk to you?
ISBECKI: We get the collar of the year, and you're gonna make us miss the evening news!
MARY BETH: Victor, we're working on child abuse here.
(as Isbecki protests, Samuels and Petrie try to quieten him)
PETRIE: Victor, Victor! The camera will wait for a minute.
ISBECKI: (reluctantly) OK. ...OK.
CHRISTINE: You're a prince, Isbecki.
SAMUELS: I'll be out in a minute.
CHRISTINE: It's about the Bards.
SAMUELS: I thought that was dismissed.
MARY BETH: It was, sir.
CHRISTINE: But we know he's guilty, Lieutenant.
MARY BETH: We went to see Jenny Bard again today, sir, and actually we think she's telling the truth.
CHRISTINE: We need you to stall for a little time and while we're at it...
SAMUELS: I wanna know one thing up front. Are we talking lawsuits here?
CHRISTINE: All totally above board.
MARY BETH: Daryl Bard checks out with his neighbours, sir, so we went downtown...
CHRISTINE: ...and it just so happens The Bronx has a request out looking for a suspect in a series of street molestations on little girls.
MARY BETH: Darryl Bard works in the Bronx.
SAMUELS: No, no. Hold it a second. Let me guess. The description matches.
CHRISTINE/MARY BETH: Near enough.
CHRISTINE: We could bring him for questioning.
SAMUELS: It seems to me the twos of you are grabbing at straws. But the most you could hold him for is a couple of hours.
CHRISTINE: We'll take it.
MARY BETH: And maybe lean on him a little bit and learn some more.
SAMUELS: All right, bring him in. But only for questioning!
MARY BETH: Yes sir.
SAMUELS: Is my tie straight?
MARY BETH: It looks good to me, sir.
(the duo looks at each other and smile)

[Corridor outside the Bards' apartment]

(Chris knocks)
LUCY BARD [OC]: Who is it?
CHRISTINE: Police. Open the door, please.
LUCY BARD: (opening the door) Again. What do want?
MARY BETH: We need to talk to your husband, ma'am.
(they push past her into the apartment)

[Bards' lounge]

LUCY BARD: You have no right to be here.
CHRISTINE: Is he here, Mrs. Bard?
LUCY BARD: (to the sisters) Go to you room.
CHRISTINE: Where is he?
LUCY BARD: Why don't you just leave us alone?
MARY BETH: We're taking your husband downtown for questioning, Mrs. Bard.
DARRYL BARD: (opening a folding door and coming into the room) I'm not going anywhere.
CHRISTINE: We're bringing you in for questioning, Mr. Bard. You resemble the description of a child molester who's wanted in The Bronx.
DARRYL BARD: What?!!!
MARY BETH: You work in The Bronx, Mr. Bard?
DARRYL BARD: What in God?!! This is a nightmare!
(Jenny comes back into the room)
DARRYL BARD: Go to your room, Jenny.
JENNY BARD: No!
DARRYL BARD: Now!!!
JENNY BARD: No!!
LUCY BARD: (looking horrified) You can't do this to us!
DARRYL BARD: Now, I know my rights, Detective. This is harassment. I'm calling my lawyer.
MARY BETH: You can make all the phone calls you want from the Station House. ...Come on! Get a coat. ...Come on!!
LUCY BARD: (to Jenny as her husband goes to leave with the duo) You can stop it! Tell them it's a lie!!
JENNY BARD: No!!! It's the truth!! He hurt her!
LUCY BARD: They're taking him away! (she grabs Jenny and shakes her) This is all your fault!!
JENNY BARD: Let go of me! You're hurting me!!
CHRISTINE: Stop it!!!
(Mrs. Bard continues to shout at Jenny and hits her)
DARRYL BARD: Lucy!!
(Chris grabs Jenny and Mary Beth wrestles Mrs. Bard away from the girl)
MARY BETH: (to Mrs. Bard) Stop it!! Back away!
LUCY BARD: He promised he wouldn't do it any more. Please!
DARRYL BARD: Lucy!!! Shut up!!!
LUCY BARD: (with Mary Beth looking aghast) He won't do it any more! He won't do it any more.
DARRYL BARD: Shut up !!! Shut up!!!
MARY BETH: (straight into the face of Mrs. Bard) You knew! (she pushes her into a chair) You knew!!
JENNY BARD: (shaking free of Chris) She knows everything! Go ahead and ask her! ...Ask her.
CHRISTINE: Call for back up. (cuffing Darryl Bard) I'm taking him in.

[Special Services care home waiting area]

MARY BETH: Michael says he's got stomach collywobbles. He hasn't got a fever. He's on a mother kick.
CHRISTINE: Mm.
MARY BETH: My mother was not big on hugging.
CHRISTINE: My mother wouldn't speak to me.
MARY BETH: I hope I love my kids more. ...I could trust her with secrets though.
CHRISTINE: I sure didn't.
(Sandra Timmons comes in)
CHRISTINE: We wanted to say 'Good night'.
SANDRA TIMMONS: Take all the time you want. ...Look. No matter what happens to them, it's always better that they know that somebody believes them.
MARY BETH: How they doing?
SANDRA TIMMONS: Jenny's not talking. Shauna wants to see her mum.
MARY BETH: Her mum is you.
SANDRA TIMMONS: It kills me every time.

[Special Services care home dormitory]

(Shauna is in a nightdress and sorting out her clothes. Shauna is sitting on the next bed in her nightclothes. Other children are asleep)
MARY BETH: Hi ya. Are you all settled in?
SHAUNA: Are you sending us back to our mummy?
MARY BETH: I'm sorry, honey, we can't do that, but I could tuck you in if you like.
JENNY: I'll do that! It's OK, Shauna. (tucking in and hugging her sister) I'm sleeping right next to you.
SHAUNA: Sleep with me, Jenny.
JENNY: Sure I will.
MARY BETH: How about a bedtime story then?
JENNY: (as Shauna nods) Right.
MARY BETH: (sitting on Shauna's bed) OK. Do you know the story of the incy wincy spider.
SHAUNA: Yeah.
MARY BETH: You do? Tell it to me.
SHAUNA: (demonstrating with her hands and fingers and singing) 'The incy wincy spider, climbed up the water spout'. (putting her arms up and then bringing them down) 'Down cane the rain and washed the spider out'. (circling her hands and arms) 'Out came the sun and dried up all the rain'. (demonstrating with her hands and fingers again) 'So the incy wincy spider crawled up the water spout'. (she laughs and Mary Beth laughs with her) Oh, gosh!
JENNY: (to Chris) Why did she come here tonight?
CHRISTINE: Mary Beth? She's kids of her own. She has a little baby girl.
JENNY: At least she cares that way.
CHRISTINE: Hm.
(Mary Beth is repeating the rhyme)
JENNY: So what happens now?
CHRISTINE: I don't know. Do you wanna stay away from your parents for a while?
JENNY: Why can't me and Shauna go and live somewhere else?
CHRISTINE: It's up to the judge to decide.
JENNY: I don't wanna go back there.
CHRISTINE: Yeah, I got that. Well, you stay here tonight. There's not much else we can do until we come up with more evidence.
(Mary Beth is still going through the rhyme)
MARY BETH: Because what?
SHAUNA: Because all of the rain was dried up.
MARY BETH: And because he had a lot of courage, right?
JENNY: (to Chris) Don't send us back. He'll really get Shauna.
CHRISTINE: (as Mary Beth continues to talk about the spider with Shauna) Why do you say that, Jenny? (no reply) How do you know?
JENNY: (sitting on her bed and hugging her knees) I just do.
CHRISTINE: (sitting down beside Jenny) Jenny, ...why do you say that?
JENNY: (after a long pause) Because I lied to you before. (another long pause) When I was little (hesitating) he did it to me.

[American Red Cross reception]

(next day the duo comes in)
CHRISTINE: Kids lie.
MARY BETH: Sometimes, yes. Do you think Jenny's lying about this?
JENNY: When her backs against the wall I think she'd say anything to get Shauna out of that house. ...In other words, I think she's lying.
MARY BETH: Still, we have to find a way to prove it.
SANDRA TIMMONS: (coming in) Hi. I just left a message for you.
MARY BETH: (as Sandra Timmons hands Chris the report) How did the medical go?
SANDRA TIMMONS: There's a ruptured hymen that would confirm what she told us.
MARY BETH: (to Chris) What else?
CHRISTINE: (reading from the report) 'No signs... No other physical evidence'. (to Sandra Timmons as Mary Beth reads the report) It took her just five minutes to say 'No'. She said her father hadn't touched here since she was ten years old'.
SANDRA TIMMONS: Time passes. The body grows. The body heals.
MARY BETH: (handing back the report) Maybe the physical one.

[American Red Cross consulting room]

JENNY: Do we have to go back?
CHRISTINE: Different court. Different judge.
JENNY: They didn't believe me the first time.
CHRISTINE: That was Shauna. This is you. You're thirteen. You're a better witness.
MARY BETH: Jenny, we'll be in criminal court. We're charging your father with rape.
JENNY: Will they send him to jail?
CHRISTINE: They might.
(Jenny gets up and goes over to the window)
MARY BETH: (getting out her notebook) Did anybody besides your mother know what he was doing to you? (Jenny shakes her head) The baby sitter? Another relative? A neighbour maybe?
(Jenny turns and looks at Chris)

[School gymnasium]

(the girls are playing volleyball)
MARY BETH: Why didn't you believe her?
SYLVIA ORTEL: Children don't know anything at that age. (turning to the game and shouting) Get it up, Jenny! Get it out!!
CHRISTINE: That's an excuse, not an explanation!
SYLVIA ORTEL: Jenny was a sweet little girl. Then she started changing. Became angry. Uncooperative.
CHRISTINE: A medical examination would have explained that!
SYLVIA ORTEL: We've got parents who don't even know where their kids go to school! I know the parents so I spoke to the mother.
CHRISTINE: You should have reported it!
MARY BETH: What did Mrs. Bard say to you?
SYLVIA ORTEL: That she was pregnant and that Jenny was angry. Just what I was seeing.
CHRISTINE: What you were seeing, lady, was a seven year-old rape victim!!
MARY BETH: Mrs. Ortel, we need you to testify about what Jenny told you.
SYLVIA ORTEL: (going over to the girls and shouting) All right everybody, back court. Get in position. (coming back to the duo) What she told me six years ago was a kid telling tales.
(she walks away. Chris pursues her)
CHRISTINE: That maybe, but we have medical evidence to the contrary and we have charged Jenny's father with rape. Now I think you owe her.
SYLVIA ORTEL: Don't bully me!
CHRISTINE: Lady, I haven't started it with you!! Now you can either testify willingly or we're simply have you subpoenaed!
MARY BETH: (coming across) Mrs. Ortel, maybe you're embarrassed. Maybe you're worried because you'll lose your job because you didn't make a report. But think about what Jenny Bard has been through. (Sylvia Ortel walks away. Mary Beth pursues her) Mrs. Ortel! ...Mrs. Ortel, I've got two boys in public school, and I always figure they're safe there because their teachers are people ...who listen. Are these kids safe here with you?
SYLVIA ORTEL: (going across to the girls and blowing her whistle) Everybody, line up!

[School corridor]

MARY BETH: We have to get her on the stand.
CHRISTINE: No problem. We'll just subpoena her.
MARY BETH: If she doesn't come in on her own, Christine, she'll be a hostile witness. Gordon will beat her to death.
CHRISTINE: Without her we don't have much. (looking at her watch) Bard's out on bail now.
MARY BETH: At least the kids are still with the Service.
CHRISTINE: Fine. How long will that last?
MARY BETH: Do you wanna feel better? We'll be locking him up forever.
CHRISTINE: The kids are stained forever, Mary Beth.

[Laceys' rear veranda]

(in the evening Mary Beth, drinking a glass of wine, and Harvey are sitting on a swinging bench)
MARY BETH: The kids are the losers, Harve. They've been taken away and punished because the father is some sort of horrible, unhuman thing. The mother is no better.
HARVEY: Some people don't deserve their kids. And some kids deserve to see their parents more of the time.
MARY BETH: These children lose their neighbourhood, their school, their friends. What kind of justice is that?
HARVEY: What about your kids?
MARY BETH: I hear you all right, Harve. This case won't go on much longer.
HARVEY: It can't! I'm working full-time now, plus being a being a single parent.
MARY BETH: I didn't plan for it.
HARVEY: It as not my intention...
MARY BETH: I said I was sorry that you missed your appointment with the architects.
HARVEY: Yeah. Well, maybe if the doctor had found something wrong, it would have been all right.
MARY BETH: If there's nothing wrong, how come his stomach still hurts?
HARVEY: Because he's bold with it, Mary Beth. He doesn't like the new school and he knows that you baby him, it's gonna be all right. That's what I'm talking about. He wants to momma'd!
MARY BETH: Fine! (getting up) I will quit my job and solve everybody's problems.
HARVEY: That's not what I'm saying and you know it. (getting up to go inside) You know, once in a while, maybe just once in a while, you can take a personal day to be with your own kids!
(he goes inside and leaves Mary Beth finishing her wine)

[Charlie's apartment]

(Charlie is sitting with one empty and one part-empty bottle of whisky. There is a knock at the door)
CHRISTINE [OC]: Hey, Charlie! Open up! It's me! (Charlie takes a huge slug of whisky. More knocking) Is anyone home! Pop. ...Are you OK?
(she finds the door open and comes in)
CHARLIE: (picking up the part-empty bottle and sounding very inebriated) Hey, what do you say, Sergeant? Come on in and join the celebrations.
CHRISTINE: What the hell do you think you're doing?
CHARLIE: (getting up) Oh, come on. What do you say? I had some day. Grab a glass! I want you to help me propose a toast to a snot-nosed kid who had the nerve to sit there and say to me...
CHRISTINE: You didn't get the job?
CHARLIE: Huh. They rubbed my face in, Chrissie, just because I've got a little mileage on me. I've forgotten more about police work than that punk kid'll ever know.
CHRISTINE: Enough, Charlie. That's enough! When you were at the hospital, the doctor said if you drank this stuff, I was gonna end up some damn orphan!
CHARLIE: Hey,..
CHRISTINE: Do you remember, Dad?!! He said he wasn't kidding around!!!
CHARLIE: I don't care what the doctors say!! What do they know?!!! I just like to tie one on once in a while!
CHRISTINE: (as he pours some more) Give it to me, Dad.
CHARLIE: Aw, aw.
CHRISTINE: I mean it.
CHARLIE: Aw, aw.
CHRISTINE: Charlie!!! Just give it to me!
CHARLIE: (she grabs the bottle) Hey!!! Are you forgetting something? I used to change your diapers!
CHRISTINE: (as she pours the whisky down the sink) They said that you would die!
CHARLIE: Hey!! What are you doing?!!!
CHRISTINE: They said this stuff would kill you!! I'm going to be responsible for that!!! (throwing the empty bottle at the trash bin) This is great! I'm not gonna stand by while you're pickling your liver just because you didn't get some damn, lousy job!!
CHARLIE: They said I was too old.
CHRISTINE: So ...what?!! ...So what?! If it isn't this job, it'd be another one! It isn't the last job in the world, Charlie! (throwing a packet of cigarettes across the room past him) You're pissing me off, Pop!
CHARLIE: Hey!
(they sit down facing one another, momentarily exhausted)
CHRISTINE: What are you doing to yourself? (she then goes over and crouches down in front of him) You're stronger than this. You're better than this. You are. You're bigger than this. You're my dad.
CHARLIE: (holding his head in one hand) Yeah, yeah. I'm... I'm... (she turns his face to look at her) Yeah, I'm... I'm...

[Courtroom]

RHONDA GALLEGOS: Doctor, your report notes Jenny Bard's ruptured hymen. Now, isn't that often a result of sexual intercourse?
DOCTOR: It often is.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Thank you, Doctor. I have nothing further.
GORDON: Doctor. Can't this also be caused by horseback riding, bicycling or even a bumpy car ride?
DOCTOR: Yeah, it can, but...
GORDON: Thank you, Doctor. That's all.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: (later to Jenny in the witness box) Jenny, do you see the man who raped you in this room today?
JENNY: Yeah.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Point to him, please.
JENNY: (pointing at her father) Over there.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Let the record show that Jenny pointed out the defendant, Darryl Bard. Now, Jenny, can you remember how old you were when your father first raped you?
JENNY: I was five. (Gordon whispers something to Darryl Bard and to his wife. Darryl Bard nods. Lucy Bard looks disturbed) Your witness.
GORDON: Jenny, isn't it true that you've been having sexual relations with a number of boys for quite some time?
JENNY: What?!
GORDON: Jenny, is this true?!
JENNY: No! This is what your parents have told me.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Objection, Your Honour!
JENNY: No! It's a lie!!
GORDON: Even though it pains them terribly, they are willing to testify to this.
JENNY: (jumping up and screaming) No! No!! No!!! It's a lie!!!
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Objection, Your Honour.
JENNY: It's a lie!!!
(Jenny breaks down crying)
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Objection, Your Honour. That is hearsay and argumentative!
JUDGE: Sustained. I suggest a ten-minute recess.

[Courthouse corridor]

CHRISTINE: (pacing up and down) So who makes all the decisions? Gordon's case stinks. What to eat. Where to live. Are we talking about Nazi Germany? No! We're talking about here, now! Anybody under sixteen years old. (Mary Beth is standing there saying nothing) Did you see when that parent threatened to cut off his kid's ears in front of twenty, thirty people and there's not a damn thing we can do about it!
MARY BETH: Christine1
CHRISTINE: That girl was called a whore!!! ....And all the law cares about is, yeah, was she really raped? What do they think that they did to her in there?
(Mary Beth remains silent)

[Courtroom]

GORDON: Jenny, isn't it true that your parents have been called to school because of your behaviour? ...And that you've been a runaway? ...And you were caught shoplifting?
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Objection, Your Honour. The social worker has already testified that that this is common behaviour when a child has been abused.
JUDGE: Overruled.
JENNY: I wasn't the one! I didn't take anything.
CHRISTINE: (aside to Mary Beth) It's like listening to a thirteen year-old.
GORDON: Jenny, isn't it true that the only reason that you've accused your father is to just er, get back at him because of the punishment he's given you?
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Objection, Your honour!
JUDGE: Overruled, Miss Gallegos, the Defence has a pertinent point. Answer the question. ...Please, Jenny.
JENNY: That's not why at all.
GORDON: Jenny, did Detectives Cagney and Lacey tell you that your testimony might keep you out of your parents' home?
JENNY: Yes. But I...
GORDON: And isn't it true that you would like to leave your parents home?
JENNY: Me and my sister want to live some place else.
CHRISTINE: (aside to Mary Beth) How's she supposed to answer?
GORDON: So you've come to this preliminary hearing to tell us exactly what these two detectives suggested. Or they maybe even coached you to say it.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Objection, Your Honour!
JUDGE: Sustained. Mr. Gordon, your point is taken. There is no need to be argumentative.
(Sylvia Ortel comes into the courtroom and touches Chris on the shoulder)
GORDON: Your Honour, I suggest that in the total absence of even a single corroborating witness, (the duo sees who it is and smile) and without no evidence to support their allegations, two over-zealous detectives were not above using a disturbed child (Sylvia Ortel sits down with the duo and they all shake hands) to fabricate a set of malicious lies to incriminate a father whose sense of devotion to his children has always been above reproach.

[Courthouse corridor]

(the duo shakes hands with Sylvia Ortel again)
MARY BETH: Well, thank you for coming forward. We'll see you again when his case comes to trial.
SYLVIA ORTEL: I'll be there.
MARY BETH: And thank you.
SYLVIA ORTEL: (seeing Jenny coming out of the courtroom with Sandra Timmons and Rhonda Gallegos) Jenny? ...Hi.
(Jenny turns away. Rhonda Gallegos escorts Sylvia Ortel away. Jenny and Sandra Timmons go over to the duo. Mary Beth and Sandra shake hands)
CHRISTINE: (to Jenny) You were terrific today. It took a lot of courage.
MARY BETH: (as the Bards come out of court with Gordon) Sergeant Cagney!
DARRYL BARD: If I get convicted, I swear I'll get pay back for all of this!!!
GORDON: That's enough!
(Sandra Timmons escorts Jenny away)
CHRISTINE: (shouting after Jenny) I'll come by and see you later.
LUCY BARD: (shouting after Jenny) Jenny, we love you. We'll have you and Shauna back home soon.
CHRISTINE: I wouldn't count on it, Mrs, Bard.
DARRYL BARD: (shouting after the duo as they walk away) I'm talking defamation! I'm talking false arrest! I'm talking slander! You prissies have ruined my life! (as Gordon restrains him) You haven't heard the last of this!
(he continues to rant and rave until restrained by a court officer)
CHRISTINE: I don't know about you, Mary Beth.
MARY BETH: The obvious solution is to castrate an animal like that. I think. I'm coming around.

[Michael's bedroom]

(Michael is sitting on the bed working on his homework. There is a knock at the door)
MICHAEL: Come in.
MARY BETH: (coming in) Surprise! Before dinner too. I hope your stomach is better.
MICHAEL: A little. I'm glad you're home.
MARY BETH: Me too. (pointing to the wall where several shades of emulsion have been tried out) Have you decided what colour you want yet?
MICHAEL: Er, I'm kind of leaning toward the orange.
MARY BETH: Ah ha. How's school?
MICHAEL: It's OK. Oh, I met another new kid today. A transfer from the City. I talked to him about stuff in Queens. He liked it very much.
MARY BETH: (sitting on the bed) Oh. Terrific! The inside poop on Queens, huh?
MICHAEL: Mum.
MARY BETH: You made a new friend already.
MICHAEL: Mum, we just take lunch together.
MARY BETH: Wonderful!
MICHAEL: It wasn't wonderful. It was Spanish rice. The worst.
MARY BETH: Sure, but you felt better after, right? You did a smart thing, Michael.
MICHAEL: I did?
MARY BETH: Yeah, well you stopped being a new kid. You stopped being scared.
MICHAEL: You think I was scared in this school. I never said that!
MARY BETH: Well, maybe it's me. When I get afraid of something, I get stomach pains.
MICHAEL: It really did hurt, Mum.
MARY BETH: I know. Do you want me to fix that forever?
MICHAEL: Yeah. Forever.
MARY BETH: OK. Come here. (she puts him flat on his back and pulls his T-shirt up. She spits on one of her palms) One here. (she spits on the other palm) One here. Now where exactly is this pain?
MICHAEL: It's there.
MARY BETH: Right...
MICHAEL: ...there.
(she puts on hand on his stomach and the other hand on top of it, and surprises him by tickling his sides. They laugh and hug one another and she kisses on his cheeks and shoulders)

[Special Services care home]

CHRISTINE: You did a good job today, Jenny. And now you have to do it again.
JENNY: Again?
CHRISTINE: Nine o'clock tomorrow morning. Down in court.
JENNY: I have to tell it again?
CHRISTINE: Well, it's another custody hearing. Your parents are challenging our right to keep you and Shauna away from them.
JENNY: You mean I have to go home.
CHRISTINE: We're going to do everything in our power to make sure that doesn't happen.
JENNY: (getting up) I'm going to see if Shauna's all right.
CHRISTINE: Wait a minute, Jenny. We won today. Now we're gonna do that for you again tomorrow. And then it will be over soon.
JENNY: Is that another promise?
CHRISTINE: I don't make promises I can't keep. (calling after Jenny as she goes off) I'll see you tomorrow.

[Courtroom]

(the judge's chair is empty. Sandra Timmons is sitting with the duo. The Bards are also there)
CHRISTINE: What could be taking so long? How many questions do they have to ask?
MARY BETH: Personally I'm glad we're in here.
(Judge Stenborg come in with the sisters and Rhonda Gallegos and Gordon)
JUDGE STENBORG: I'd like to thank you girls for being so brave and truthful in helping me determine the facts. (to the sisters) But now you have to wait outside till we finish in here.
CHRISTINE: (aside to Mary Beth) I think I smell a win.
MARY BETH: It's about time.
SHAUNA: I want to see my mummy.
JUDGE STENBORG: You'll see your mummy in a few minutes, honey.
JENNY: (as she takes Shauna out) It's OK, Shauna. She'll be a second.
JUDGE STENBORG: (in her chair) I had reservations about this case. But in the light of the testimony presented this morning, I find Jenny and Shauna Bard shall remain in the custody of Special Services for children pending...
DARRYL BARD: (leaping up) You can't so that, Your Honour!!! We're the parents, for God's sake!!
JUDGE STENBORG: (striking her gavel) Sit down, Mr. Bard before I find you in contempt. The girls will remain in custody pending an investigation.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: Thank you, Your Honour.
JUDGE STENBORG: Until that time, each of the girls will be placed in foster homes.
(Mary Beth goes to get up and say something. Rhonda Gallegos restrains her)

[Courthouse corridor]

(the duo is waiting. Judge Stenborg comes out with a court usher)
CHRISTINE: Judge!
JUDGE STENBORG: (to the usher) Tell the tailor I'll be along in a minute.
CHRISTINE: Your Honour, you can't separate them.
MARY BETH: They depend on each other, Your Honour.
JUDGE STENBORG: Look, you've both done a commendable job but it's finished now.
(she heads towards the lifts. The duo follows)
MARY BETH: With respect, we're trying to do right by these children. They've been bounced around since we took them out of that house. What, do we tell them now they can't be together?
JUDGE STENBORG: Would you rather leave them at home or treat them the way the law indicates? (shouting towards the lifts) Down! But every effort will be made to put them in a home together as soon as one's available.
CHRISTINE: Well, when is that gonna be?!
JUDGE STENBORG: Look, I'm following regulations. I just don't invent the rules here.
CHRISTINE: Well, somebody damn well better, because the ones they have for kids don't work.
JUDGE STENBORG: (in the lift) I agree. Excuse me, I'm late. Down please.
MARY BETH: Every effort will be made.
(later Sandra Timmons is with Shauna. Rhonda Gallegos is waiting near the lifts)
CHRISTINE: (to Jenny) I did tell the judge you should be together.
JENNY: I'm not gonna stay there. I will find Shauna and we'll go somewhere else.
MARY BETH: Mrs. Timmons is going to do everything she can. The homes are not that far apart. You could visit, maybe.
SANDRA TIMMONS: (coming up with a man) Jenny, this is Randy Turner. He'll be taking you to the Turner house.
RANDY TURNER: OK?
JENNY: I'll say goodbye. (going over to Shauna and kneeling in front of her and taking her hands) Don't worry. I'll talk with you tonight ...on the phone.
RHONDA GALLEGOS: (coming across to the duo) Well, at least somebody finally believes them.
CHRISTINE: Yeah.
(she shakes hands with the duo and goes)
MARY BETH: Not really. Somebody believes a grown-up. Where would they be if the teacher hadn't come forward?
JENNY: (still with Shauna) It's gonna be OK. (the sisters hug while the duo watches) OK? I'll phone.
(they hug again. Sandra Timmons and Randy Turner come up to the sisters)
SANDRA TIMMONS: Jenny. ...Shauna we've gotta go.
JENNY: (tearfully) No!
(with difficulty they separate the sisters and take them off in different directions)
CHRISTINE: (calling after her) Be careful, Jenny.
MARY BETH: (calling after her) Hang in, honey.
(Chris wipes an eye)

[Outside the City Courthouse]

CHRISTINE: There are times when I really hate this job.
MARY BETH: Yeah.
CHRISTINE: Charlie's started drinking again.
MARY BETH: Oh, gee. I'm sorry, Chris. What are you gonna do?
CHRISTINE: Hide.

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