Episode PremiereSeptember 29, 2010
Show Period2010 - 2010
Production CompanyJerry Bruckheimer Television
Monica Keller is accused of killing her wheelchair-bound Navy vet dad, Frank Wanamaker, by tossing him into the harbor during the ferry ride home to Staten Island. Monica had been her dad's primary caregiver for the past three years. She's been known to fraternize with organized crime figures and prostitutes. Bail is denied. Prosecutor Kathryn Peele slips defense attorney Jimmy Brogan a custom-made fortune cookie. There's only one word on the message inside: Guilty. Kathryn thinks she has a pretty strong case.
The Prosecution's Case:
After three years of caring for her father, Monica's bank account is decimated and her marriage destroyed. She took out her rage regarding her troubles on her father. A witness saw her tampering with the ferry gate. The same witness says Monica dove in to help her drowning dad only after she noticed he saw her. The accused applied for a passport a week earlier. A visiting caregiver saw Monica strike her dad and chest bruises suggest physical abuse. Chad interviews a co-worker at a bikini bar who says Monica hated her dad and was planning a trip to Mexico. The financially-strapped bikini dancer was also the beneficiary in her father's life insurance policy. Monica's husband, Bob, filed for divorce citing cruelty. Bob also says his ex approached him about scoring some pills that could possibly help get rid of her dad permanently.
The Defense's Case:
The reason Monica was at the ferry's safety gate is to make sure it was secure. The bruises on Frank Wanamaker could have occurred when he went into the water. It's possible that this war vet with advanced diabetes rolled himself off the ferry to commit suicide. Monica says her dad wanted her to get a passport to see the world, just like he did. Frank Wanamaker was going to cash in his insurance policy to help pay the bills, but that would only be $14,000, as opposed to a 200 grand payout by death. Monica's sister, Teresa, is an actual sister, as in nun. She'll testify that Monica loved her dad. A Liberty Island camera shows a man in a Cubs hat approaching Wanamaker's wheelchair from behind. Monica's husband is from Chicago. Until their divorce is finalized, he can still cash in on dear old dad-in-law's life insurance policy. As a construction worker, Bob Keller had access to tools that could cut the lock on a ferry safety gate. But Bob was in Jersey at the time. So who was wearing that Cubs hat?
Kathryn skirts the issue of spouses testifying against each other by citing the exception that takes place when there's conspiracy to commit a crime. Alejo discredits Bob by painting him as a gay-bashing brute. Jimmy crosses the caregiver who saw Monica punching her dad in the chest. He says she was trying to get him to swallow pills during a hypoglycemic attack. Jimmy discredits the ferry eyewitness by bringing up the fact that he had family members who died in a similar fashion. That tragedy likely clouded his judgment regarding what he saw during this one. Monica's neighbor, Brian, has lived next door for five years. He testifies that Frank Wanamaker may have been depressed. Sister Teresa reads from a possible suicide note written by her dad. Kathryn's cross of Sister Teresa reveals the victim physically abused them when he drank. Kathryn argues that Monica never forgave him. Jimmy's closing suggests Frank Wanamaker took his own life out of pain and guilt.
Before the trial, Kathryn approached Jimmy about the issues surrounding the case. She knows that Jimmy takes care of his dad. Apparently, his father has had a drug problem for about 30 years. Jimmy blows off Kathryn's attempt at compassion by accusing her of trying to throw him off his game. It's obvious that was not her intent. Jimmy eventually apologizes, as he also knows Kathryn was just being a good friend.
Monica Keller is found not guilty in the murder of her father, Frank Wanamaker.
The Whole Truth:
Monica returns home to find her neighbor, Brian, waiting for her. She's glad the nightmare is finally over. Brian is happy they don't have to keep their relationship a secret now that Monica's divorce is final. With the insurance money, they can kick off their new life with a trip to Cancun. Still, Monica wonders if her dad truly did kill himself. Brian says, "I don't think we'll ever know." He then goes over to a dresser and tucks his Cubs hat into a drawer.