There’s a thunderstorm at Blackwood Correctional Facility. Scratch that. It’s actually a category four hurricane and there are mandatory evacuations going on. This of course doesn’t apply to the prisoners, and it doesn’t seem to apply to the guards either. The problem is, the guards still have the capability to leave, and they do. Two of them talk about getting back to their families, and they encourage the third guard, the ranking officer in charge, to do the same. As the guards are jumping ship, the cells are starting to fill with water.
Taylor needs Bull’s help. Her brother-in-law was the ranking guard in charge during the hurricane. He left to help his pregnant wife, Taylor’s sister, and their two kids. Emergency services didn’t make it to the prison for three days, and two of the prisoners drowned. Ralph, her brother-in-law was just arrested and charged with manslaughter.
Taylor, Bull, and Benny talk to the sister and then get Ralph out on bail.
After that, Bull and Benny talk to him. He’s usually the third in command but the warden and the second command didn’t come in because they were evacuating their families. He planned to get his family and come straight back. They had already been rescued by the time he got home, and the roads were impassable when he tried to go back. The prison had a new roof and pumps. He thought the prisoners were safer than his family. This is something Bull can use.
Half the jury pool are no shows. This is unfortunate, because they are the kind of jurors that Ralph is going to need. The judge also excuses anyone personally affected by the storm, which is another blow to their strategy.
Taylor tells her sister that she needs to go through their finances. The sister is evasive and says that she needs to talk to Ralph about it first.
The warden is on the stand. Benny brings up the excellent point that a 28-year-old prison guard with four years of experience was left in charge of the prison and only left for the reason that the warden never came in. He wanted to help his family. He also goes through the policy for emergency situations such as the hurricane. Even if Ralph had stayed, those men might have died, because it would have taken him three hours to move the prisoners affected by the flooding safely and through the proper procedure.
A prisoner whose cellmate drowned is on the stand. He’s very good and the jury hangs on his every word. He thinks that Ralph left to save himself, not just his family.
Ralph tells him that this is a lie, but the only witness is his pregnant wife. If they can find the owner of the rescue van that took them to a motel, that would be credible along with his wife’s testimony.
They put the wife on the stand, and she says that she was completely hysterical and that she pleaded with Ralph to come home. That was all that they talked about.
Taylor has some questions about their bank statements but can’t get her sister on the phone. Her and Danny talk. Danny wasn’t able to find the van driver, but she found the log for the motel. Maybe the driver is on it.
The log plus the bank statements causes Taylor to wake her sister up. It turns out that the sister is a dirty rotten liar. She and the kids were already safe when she called Ralph. She wanted him to get the $50,000 laying in a duffel bag in their garage. Taylor rightly freaks out. Her sister just committed perjury, and both her sister and her brother-in-law are selfish scumbags.
She finds Bull before he goes to court. He gets a 24-hour continuance from the judge and then he and Benny lay into Ralph. He got the money from selling phones to prisoners. He didn’t think anyone would get hurt. He’s either highly naïve or extraordinarily stupid. Someone could organize a hit from a cellphone or any number of other things. Just because everyone else does it does not make it right.
Bull and Benny tell Taylor that their best course of action is to put Ralph on the stand and have him tell the truth. He may be a selfish scumbag, but he didn’t kill those men, and never should have been left in charge.
They don’t mention the money specifically, just “vitally important things in the garage.” The judge calls for a 20-minute recess.
Bull talks to the prosecutor and convinces him to make a deal.
The deal is that he will drop the charges if Ralph will pay damages to the families of the victims: $25,000 each. They take it and Taylor thanks Bull from the bottom of her heart.
They got off easy. They got off so easy, but Bull is right. He never should have been left in charge. 8/10.