Law & Order (season 16)

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Law & Order (season 16)
LawAndOrder S16.jpg
Season 16 U.S. DVD cover
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 22
Original network NBC
Original release September 21, 2005 (2005-09-21) – May 17, 2006 (2006-05-17)
Season chronology
← Previous
Season 15
Next →
Season 17
List of Law & Order episodes

The 16th season of Law & Order premiered on NBC on September 21, 2005, and concluded on May 17, 2006.

Cast and crew changes[edit]

Jesse L. Martin returned to his role of Detective Ed Green in the season premiere episode, he left at the end of last season to film in the movie Rent. Mid-season, Law & Order's future on NBC was in the air, unknown if the show would be renewed or canceled after this season. Prior to the end of the season, Annie Parisse who portrayed ADA Borgia, quit the series, wanting out of her contract. A show insider said to Fox News, "She saw the writing on the wall, they never treated her very well. They were always complaining about her hair. And they also thought she looked too young next to Sam Waterson (sic)."[1] Parisse's ADA Alex Borgia was brutally killed off in the season finale episode "Invaders".

It was announced that Dennis Farina (Detective Joe Fontana) wished to depart the cast weeks after the season finale episode aired. At the time Farina wished to pursue other offers and projects being developed by his production company. Dick Wolf said in a statement that he respected Farina's decision and looked forward to working with him again.[2]

There were "a lot" of firings, including a portion of the camera crew. "None of the original writer-producers are there anymore," a source said to FOX News. "They've all been replaced by people from L.A. who don't get the show." People also had issues with Dennis Farina coming in to replace Jerry Orbach in the previous season.[1] Walon Green was show runner/executive producer this season with Nicholas Wootton, over Matthew Penn, and Peter Jankowski. Green stepped down as show runner/EP at the end of the season and Wootton took over in the 17th season.


Main cast[edit]

Recurring cast[edit]


No. in
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Prod.
U.S. viewers
350 1 "Red Ball" Matthew Penn David Wilcox September 21, 2005 (2005-09-21) 16001 13.03[3]
When a five-year-old girl is abducted from her mother in broad daylight during an apparent car jacking, Detectives Fontana and Green canvass the streets, only to uncover a more sinister motive when they discover the car intact but no trace of the girl. The investigators soon unearth an ex-convict with the child's bloodied dress who refuses to talk until his release is guaranteed. With time and leads running out and the prospect of the girl's safe return looking unlikely, EADA McCoy and ADA Borgia consider a deal with severe legal and political ramifications.
351 2 "Flaw" Jean de Segonzac Chris Levinson September 28, 2005 (2005-09-28) 16002 15.06[4]

When the body of Patrick Sullivan is found with one of Olivia Benson's business cards in his pocket, Green and Fontana call the Special Victims Unit squad to help them with their case. Although not initially clear, the detectives soon realize that Patrick Sullivan is connected to Lorraine Dillon (Lynda Carter) and April Troost (Estella Warren), career criminals that Benson had previously been unable to catch. Lorraine confesses to the crime and claims she did it to protect her daughter, but when April ends up on the stand she tells a different story, and McCoy and Benson disagree on which of the two is telling the truth.

This episode concludes a story that begins on Law & Order Special Victims Unit in "Design".
352 3 "Ghosts" Constantine Makris Rick Eid October 5, 2005 (2005-10-05) 16003 12.59[5]
A criminal makes a surprising deathbed confession that compels Detective Fontana to re-open his own 10-year-old cold case file concerning the murder of a 12-year-old girl. Instead of the victim's father, whom Fontana is certain committed the crime, the new prime suspect is a former drug-addict whose jailhouse confession to the prosecution's most viable witness is disqualified on the grounds it was made in a spiritual context. Despite dwindling options, Executive Assistant D.A. McCoy continues to pursue a murder-two conviction despite a stern warning from his wary boss, District Attorney Branch, who cautions against the fallout of losing this high-profile case again.
353 4 "Age of Innocence" David Platt Davey Holmes October 12, 2005 (2005-10-12) 16005 10.92[6]
A car bomb kills the husband of an incapacitated woman shortly before the victim planned to disconnect her feeding tube, and when Detectives Fontana and Green wade into the politically charged case, they find the bombmaker who points them to suspects that include the woman's angry family and clergy. As national media arrive, EADA McCoy and ADA Borgia engage in a frustrating shell game where each suspect seems to have a mutually bulletproof alibi.
354 5 "Lifeline" Rosemary Rodriguez Greg Plageman October 19, 2005 (2005-10-19) 16006 12.33[7]
When the body of undercover reporter Teresa Richter is discovered, police soon realize her death is connected to the story she was working on about a Latin gang, L-12. Their investigation leads them to Kevin Drucker, a businessman who reported his car stolen but who was really paying off members of L-12 not to hurt his son Patterson, who was imprisoned on the same cell block with many of the gang members. McCoy and Borgia realize that the only way they can get to L-12, who ordered the hit on Richter, is to get Drucker to testify. Drucker is reluctant to do so, however, unless his son's safety can be guaranteed.
355 6 "Birthright" Constantine Makris David Slack November 2, 2005 (2005-11-02) 16007 12.57[8]
Teenage suspect Traci Sands dies in police custody after being arrested for the murder of the man who reported her to child protective services. Rodgers reveals that she died because someone outfitted her with a benecrine I.U.D. that reacted with Sands' sickle system and ended up killing her. Fontana and Green follow the trail to a charitable clinic and nurse Gloria Rhodes, who believes she is saving the world by sterilizing women that she does not believe are worthy of having children. McCoy faces former assistant district attorney Paul Robinette (Richard Brooks) in court as Robinette defends Rhodes.
356 7 "House of Cards" Michael Pressman Wendy Battles November 9, 2005 (2005-11-09) 16008 10.86[9]
Fontana and Green investigate when the body of a young mother who had recently cleaned up her life is found in her apartment, with her five-day-old infant son Nicholas missing. Detectives soon track down Arlene Tarrington and ascertain that the infant she is claiming is hers is really baby Nicholas, but after her lawyers make a claim of post-partum psychosis and another man comes forward claiming to be the child's father, McCoy and Borgia are forced to decide which of the two they would rather lock up for the crime.
357 8 "New York Minute" Don Scardino Nicholas Wootton November 16, 2005 (2005-11-16) 16009 11.44[10]
When the owner of a big-rig trucking company is shot to death, Detectives Fontana and Green learn that the victim was hauling illegal aliens and suspect a member (Daniel Roebuck) of a citizen's border patrol group; but their only witness is an undocumented Hispanic woman (Aixa Rosario Medina) who risks deportation if she testifies. Meanwhile, prosecutor McCoy is incensed when the witness is physically intimidated as he tries to turn one organization member against the other in court.
358 9 "Criminal Law" Ed Sherin David Wilcox November 23, 2005 (2005-11-23) 16010 11.93[11]
The deaths of three women with the same name lead Fontana and Green to the nine-year-old conviction of Leland Barnes, who had shot and killed his wife in an office full of people. With two of the three witnesses against him dead and Jack McCoy on the hit list, the detectives struggle to determine how Barnes, who has been in prison the entire time, got someone on the outside to kill the only people who could keep him in jail. The investigation leads them to Leland's two sons, with surprising results.
359 10 "Acid" Michael Pressman Richard Sweren November 30, 2005 (2005-11-30) 16011 12.87[12]
After the daughter of one of Van Buren's college friends is found dead in her room, a suicide, Van Buren joins Green and Fontana in hunting down the man who burned her face with acid months earlier, ultimately leading to her suicide. Van Buren is unsuccessful in getting a lot of help from her friend, who is terrified that the man who destroyed her elder daughter's life will destroy her younger daughter as well. McCoy and Borgia's case hits a snag when Van Buren takes the stand and comes close to committing perjury to keep Jason Corley behind bars.
360 11 "Bible Story" Rick Wallace Richard Sweren December 7, 2005 (2005-12-07) 16004 12.13[13]
Jeffrey Kilgore is found murdered after destroying the Speicher Chumash, which had been brought to America from Poland years earlier. Green and Fontana follow the trail of evidence to Barry Speicher, who confesses to the murder, but it's his cousin Eric that McCoy has his eye on after Barry's wife tells them that Eric had everything to gain by Barry going to prison. McCoy and Borgia pursue the matter to trial, but their star witness turns on them.
361 12 "Family Friend" Jean de Segonzac Philippe Browning January 11, 2006 (2006-01-11) 16012 12.83[14]
After Philip and Valerie Messick are attacked in their home, Green and Fontana follow the trail to a small-time thug named Jay Fleckner. After Valerie's testimony unintentionally helps free Fleckner, he is found dead, and detectives soon realize that Bob Cerullo, a family friend of Valerie and her late husband, was the triggerman. Unfortunately, when McCoy attempts to prosecute Cerullo, a retired cop, he threatens to claim that he deliberately planted evidence in his past cases in an attempt to get McCoy to drop all the charges.
362 13 "Heart of Darkness" Richard Dobbs Carter Harris January 18, 2006 (2006-01-18) 16013 12.38[15]
A journalist's suicide becomes suspect after Green and Fontana find evidence at the scene suggesting that it was not a suicide after all. Their suspicions turn to the reporter's girlfriend after learning that he was still sleeping with his ex, but their investigation soon leads them in a different direction.
363 14 "Magnet" Adam Bernstein David Black February 8, 2006 (2006-02-08) 16014 14.53[16]
Detectives Fontana and Green investigate the strangling of a promising Hispanic student at a private magnet school. The men soon learn the victim was selling test answers and writing term papers for more privileged students, including their prime suspect, Greg Loomis (Jaime McAdams), a trouble-prone senior who would kill just to graduate. After Loomis' arrest, Jack McCoy spurns any deal with his high-powered attorney Rebecca Shane (Kathleen Turner) but has to overcome her vigorous defense that her client himself was a victim of medication side effects.
364 15 "Choice of Evils" Michael Pressman David Wilcox March 1, 2006 (2006-03-01) 16016 12.39[17]
After the body of a teenage boy is found dead in a warehouse, detectives use DNA to connect the boy to a convicted rapist and serial killer, then to the boy's mother, Allison Ashburn, the convict's ex-wife. While trying to solve Danny's murder, Fontana and Green learn that he recently got his girlfriend Tina pregnant, and his mother had seen him recently when she had given him money despite having claimed she had not seen him for months. Allison finally admits that she murdered her son after the police arrest her new husband John, but claims she did it to save the world from her son, whom she was convinced would become a monster just like his biological father. Borgia and McCoy face an uphill battle trying to convict the perfect soccer mom.
365 16 "Cost of Capital" Michael Watkins Teleplay by: Tom Smuts
Story by: Rick Eid
March 8, 2006 (2006-03-08) 16010 11.79[18]
After a young African-American banking associate is found murdered, Detectives Fontana and Green discover that he had hundreds of thousands of dollars in his checking account. The detectives suspect the victim was having an affair with his high-powered boss Sophia (Lisa Zane) who killed him out of fear and rage. As the police and EADA Jack McCoy build their case, everything hinges on using either the executive's estranged husband or their shaky teenaged daughter Katie (Sarah Steele) as their star witness.
366 17 "America, Inc." Jean de Segonzac Richard Sweren March 22, 2006 (2006-03-22) 16017 9.00[19]
After Jeffrey Pope, a private military contractor, is found dead, suspicion eventually leads Green and Fontana to Robbie Howell, the younger brother of a man who died because of Pope's incompetence, and Kevin Boatman, Nick Howell's former co-worker who had witnessed the tragic events in Iraq. Danielle Melnick returns to defend Robbie and Kevin, and in the courtroom Kevin drops the bombshell that he knows where Pope and his men were keeping an Iraqi prisoner of war, a wanted terrorist. McCoy and Branch butt heads over whether or not to let Kevin Boatman get away with murder in order to get their hands on the prisoner.
367 18 "Thinking Makes It So" Tony Goldwyn Michael S. Chernuchin March 29, 2006 (2006-03-29) 16019 9.35[20]
Fontana and Green investigate when a bank manager is involved in the robbing of his own bank and learn that his daughter is being held hostage and that he had to go along with the robbery or risk losing his daughter. One man is killed in the robbery, but the two detectives track down his accomplice and, while alone with Mitchell Lowell, Fontana uses extreme force to get the answers he needs, prompting Lowell's lawyer to claim that all the information Fontana obtained is fruit of the poison tree. McCoy works to fight the claim of police brutality while also trying to find a way to get around Fontana's actions.
368 19 "Positive" Richard Dobbs Sonny Postiglione April 5, 2006 (2006-04-05) 16020 10.84[21]
When a teenage boy commits suicide after firing on a doctor and hitting an innocent party, Fontana and Green investigate why he was after the doctor to begin with and learn that Jeremy Miller's younger sister had recently died of AIDS. Throughout the course of the investigation, detectives are led to Dr. Andrew Copelan, the doctor in charge of Emily Miller's care, who had been giving her an experimental AIDS drug not yet approved for usage on humans, ostensibly to find a cure for his own AIDS.
369 20 "Kingmaker" Don Scardino David Slack May 3, 2006 (2006-05-03) 16018 10.66[22]
After undercover cop Dana Baker is murdered, Fontana and Green learn that the man who killed her had discovered her identity after seeing a photograph of her in the paper revealing her as an undercover police officer, not the heroin dealer she was posing as. Investigating the story leads detectives to Eric Lund, one of the workers in Congressman Prescott's office, but Lund seems to have an ironclad alibi after an e-mail he sent comes to light.
370 21 "Hindsight" Jean de Segonzac Chris Levinson May 10, 2006 (2006-05-10) 16021 12.68[23]
Detectives Fontana and Green are skeptical when Detective Falco (Michael Imperioli) finds a young woman he took home the night before slashed to death in his bathroom. Anxious to exonerate himself of this crime, Falco takes steps that could be indicative of a cover-up instead of an unauthorized pursuit of the true culprit. Fortunately, Detectives Fontana and Green believe their colleague was drugged by the victim in a plan to rob him but was instead dispatched by a violent female rival. Proving it in court is difficult for Jack McCoy, who must sort through a family of cons and ex-cons, some with ties to Falco, all resulting in a final twist of fate.
371 22 "Invaders" Matthew Penn Richard Sweren & David Wilcox May 17, 2006 (2006-05-17) 16022 13.59[24]
The latest murder victims of two home invaders are the family members of a man who once sold fake D.E.A. badges to the killers and then began secretly cooperating with police. The case takes a harrowing turn when one of the law enforcement teams is put in the line of fire. In a legal gambit, Executive ADA Jack McCoy must then risk his career, and those of others, as well; bending the rules and using corrupt DEA Agent Almonte (Ritchie Coster) to lure out the sadistic psychopaths. Meanwhile, the police and the DAs have to deal with the loss of one of their own in the midst of this high-profile case.


  1. ^ a b Friedman, Roger (April 26, 2006). "'Law & Order' in Trouble as Actress Quits". FOX News. Retrieved April 26, 2006. 
  2. ^ "Dennis Farina to leave 'Law & Order'". USA Today. May 30, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  3. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 09/19/05 THROUGH 09/25/05". ABC Medianet. September 27, 2005. Archived from the original on June 1, 2009. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
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  5. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 10/03/05 THROUGH 10/09/05". ABC Medianet. October 11, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  6. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 10/10/05 THROUGH 10/16/05". ABC Medianet. October 18, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  7. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 10/17/05 THROUGH 10/23/05". ABC Medianet. October 25, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  8. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 10/31/05 THROUGH 11/06/05". ABC Medianet. November 8, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  9. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 11/07/05 THROUGH 11/13/05". ABC Medianet. November 15, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  10. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 11/14/05 THROUGH 11/20/05". ABC Medianet. November 22, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  11. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 11/21/05 THROUGH 11/27/05". ABC Medianet. November 29, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  12. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 11/28/05 THROUGH 12/04/05". ABC Medianet. December 6, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  13. ^ "WEEKLYPROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 12/05/05 THROUGH 12/11/05". ABC Medianet. December 13, 2005. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  14. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 01/09/06 THROUGH 01/15/06". ABC Medianet. January 18, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  15. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 01/16/06 THROUGH 01/22/06". ABC Medianet. January 24, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  16. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 02/06/06 THROUGH 02/12/06". ABC Medianet. February 14, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  17. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 02/27/06 THROUGH 03/05/06". ABC Medianet. March 7, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  18. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 03/06/06 THROUGH 03/12/06". ABC Medianet. March 14, 2006. Archived from the original on October 11, 2014. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  19. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 03/20/06 THROUGH 03/26/06". ABC Medianet. March 28, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  20. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 03/27/06 THROUGH 04/02/06". ABC Medianet. April 4, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  21. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 04/03/06 THROUGH 04/09/06". ABC Medianet. April 11, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  22. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 05/01/06 THROUGH 05/07/06". ABC Medianet. May 5, 2006. Archived from the original on July 28, 2014. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  23. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 05/08/06 THROUGH 05/14/06". ABC Medianet. May 16, 2006. Archived from the original on May 28, 2010. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 
  24. ^ "WEEKLY PROGRAM RANKINGS FROM 05/15/06 THROUGH 05/21/06". ABC Medianet. May 23, 2006. Retrieved July 19, 2012. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Season Fifteen
List of Law & Order seasons
Succeeded by
Season Seventeen