Chicago Justice, episode one

Peter Stone (Philip Winchester) and Anna Valdez (Monica Barbaro) are walking into the courthouse and trying to dodge questions.

Dylan Oates, the suspect in the warehouse fire that killed Lexie Olinsky, is in court. He waives council and no bail is set. Onlookers lash out. He’s escorted away.

Mark Jefferies (Carl Weathers) talks to Peter and Anna after the hearing. He’s seen plenty of cases with confessions crash and burn. Peter explains the finer points of the case including the fact that the eyewitness can’t see. They need to figure out why Oates did what he did.

Antonio is at his desk when Olinsky walks in. He offers condolences as Laura Nagel (Joelle Carter) approaches and then does the same. Olinsky wants Antonio to not get a case of morals. Antonio questions the confession but Olinsky doesn’t answer outright. Back at the desk, Nagel talks about how sketch the confession looks and Antonio gets defensive.

They go to talk to Oates’ parents. Nagel asks the mother about Dylan’s friends but she doesn’t know anything. The father is more hot tempered. He has issues with their questions and with the media camped out. The mother talks about Dylan being something of a loner and spending all his time on the computer.

Peter is looking at photos of the victim when Antonio comes in. They didn’t get much from the parents. Antonio talks about his son and how he can’t fathom what Olinsky is going through. He admits that he didn’t hear the confession and Peter yells at him. Antonio admits that Olinsky might deserve revenge. Anna interrupts. Dylan hired a lawyer. Albert Forest (Bradley Whitford).

Voight and Olinsky meet up outside the courthouse. Voight wants Peter to trust him. Peter is hesitant. Voight wants to take the stand.

Forest files a motion to suppress the confession. Peter allows it and moves to go to trial. The judge agrees. At the office Anna found a list of documents Forest’s office sent over. There is information about the factory being a haven for pedophila in the box. A side effect of child abuse is pyromania.

He takes the information to Mark who tells him it is not the time for lawyer games. He has facts on his side and should use them.

In court, Severide is on the stand talking about the incendiary device and how the doors were jammed shut. Forest cross examines. He brings up the build owner’s suicide. Next is the witness that can’t see. She describes that night. Forest asks her about alcohol and drugs. Oates watches on with a smug look on his face. Next up is Voight. He talks about the metal wedged under the door. Forest asks him about the confession and makes him look less than trustworthy.

Anna and Peter talk about what it would be like to represent someone like Oates. Peter admits that he is a “lifer” and that the underdog needs to have someone on his side. When he’s in court he’s not thinking about the state. He’s thinking about the victims.

They subpeona the guy that wrote about the pedophila at the factory but he tells them he won’t take the stand. He threatens to reveal information about Peter if he tries to go against that. He had a weekend with a married woman. Peter meets with said woman, Joan Perry (Teal Wicks), to tell her. She tells Peter that this will ruin her life.

Peter has the writer Todd Anders (Matt Mueller) on the stand to talk about the story on his site. Forest has noathing to say and with that the people rest.

Back at the office, Anna asks Peter how he’s doing. They talk about Forest’s book. In the book he refers to trials as a con. Peter thinks he is the mark.

Forest has the mother on the stand. She describes Dylan as a sweet boy. Forest asks her when he stopped being sweet and she tells the court about a trip he took with his uncle when he was five. He was abused by his uncle for years. His mother says that if he started the fire its her fault. They break for lunch.

During the recess, Peter talks to Forest. The article that they was sent over from his office was intentional. Peter set up the defense for him and worded the questions so that the mother didn’t perjure herself. Peter tells Forest that it isn’t a game, 39 kids are dead but Forest is concerned about the one that is still living. Forest is playing for the mistrial.

The people have no questions for Dylan’s mother. They want to cross examine Dylan, citing his outbursts during his mother’s time on the stand as testimony. The judge grants it and offers Forest 24 hours to prepare.

Anna and Peter try to brainstorm a way to make this work for them. Peter says to send Antonio and Nagel out to find someone that knew Dylan.

Nagel and Antonio return to the scene and search the memorials. Olinsky is there and he and Antonio talk. Nagel finds a note that seems a bit suspicious. They start to investigate it, talking to the girl that left it. She has survivors guilt because she was there with her brother who died. She saw Dylan at the scene, first pacing outside and then arguing with someone inside. The girl he was fighting with? The eyewitness.

Peter and Anna go talk to her. She admits that he talked to her. He claimed that they met months earlier and that he tried to take her out for coffee but she declined, saying she had to study. She didn’t study though. She went to a party and he saw all about it on Facebook. She starts to cry.

Dylan is on the stand. He’s adamant that his mother’s claims aren’t true and says that she are true. The conversation turns to Facebook and his phony account. Peter brings up the fact that he stalked the eyewitness. Peter gets Dylan to refer to the eyewitness and her friends as irrelevant.

The attorneys make their closing arguments. Forest points out that Peter has no motive. Peter brings up the fact that Dylan brought up the motive on his own, digitally, which is the world he inhabits. The jury finds him guilty of all charges.

I liked this show. I liked Antonio on the other shows so I knew I would like him and I didn’t mind Peter. We didn’t really get to know the other characters all that well so I don’t know what to think of them yet. It’s basically Law and Order but in Chicago which is fine with me. I know that this was a setup episode but I do hope that it crosses over with at least PD, if not Fire and possibly Med on a regular basis.

Chicago Justice airs Sundays at 9 p.m.


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