Just One Night
Scene 4 - The
Letter of the Law
PRISON YARD AT BASE OF STAIRCASE LEADING TO LIBRARY (OR CEMENT STAIRCASE).
Tom walks into frame.
Now the legal process begins,
and I'm looking at negligent homicide. There's a couple of words
for you? Negligent homicide. What does that mean? Kind
of sounds like it was all just an accident, doesn't it? I'm
sorry. Didn't really mean it. And I'm looking at maybe
1/12 to 2 years, something like that and that's all right.
[Tom steps down - takes a few steps and looks directly at camera.]
Then we hear the crime has been elevated and it's going to be handled
by the attorney general's office. That's not good news.
In fact, my case is going to be prosecuted by the assistant
attorney general, John Stephen, and that's bad news for
me. You see, John Stephen's focus in his legal career is to prosecute
fatalities in alcohol-related crime. He's a serious guy and I learn
that he is going to charge me with manslaughter. Now there's
a word I get. And not only that, but they want 8-16 years
of my life.
starts to walk back towards staircase..
So what do you do?
In my life, the way I was brought up, if you do something, you take
responsibility for it, and you do what you can to fix it. I did it,
so I plead I plead guilty to manslaughter. And now that I'm
guilty, it's time to go in for sentencing.
goes out of frame......
CONCRETE CORRIDOR. Tom walks into frame from beyond the side wall of corridor
and follows camera going away from medium security.
And sentencing is a weird
thing. You go into the courtroom and the victim's family is over
here, and there's John Stephen, the assistant attorney general, and
my lawyers, and the courtroom is packed with 150 people who have come to
support me from all over the country, to tell the world what a good guy
I am. The judge comes out - it's very emotional - she bangs her gavel
and says ‘Mr. Boyle is here having plead guilty to manslaughter.'
back toTom on camera ...
I'll be honest with you,
that's when it hit me. I don't have a speeding ticket.
Never had an accident in my life. But manslaughter I get. There's
a word. And you know, that's what it was. My passenger,
Brian Colgan died horribly. [ He pauses
for a moment.] Horribly.
So anyway, all these people get up and say
what a great guy I am. I'm a good this, I'm a great that. You'd
think I was Mr. Wonderful. And so Mr. Wonderful is found guilty -
and sentenced. And then these guys come up and they shackle
me. And I go out of the room, with 150 of my friends around
me, and family, and they bring me down to a cell. [Tom
and the camera rotate and swap positions so that now the camera is
backing Tom up against the rail that overlooks the prison yard.]
This is the real deal now. My lawyers come down, and they're all
excited. 4-8 Yeah!, Like I won the lotto or something. And
I did, because the prosecutor wanted 8-16 years. So I really lucked
out here. [Tom reaches the railing.] 4-8
years in prison and I'm a lucky man.
turns to look over his shoulder at the prison building. Camera pans to
follow his gaze. Fade to black and then up on ...
5 - A Whole New World