"In the criminal justice system, the people are represented by two separate yet equally important groups. The police who investigate crime and the district attorneys who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories."
Filmed entirely on location in New York, the realistic program looks at crime and justice from a dual perspective. In the first half-hour, Detective Cyrus Lupo and his new partner, Detective Kevin Bernard, investigate crimes and apprehend suspects under the supervision of their precinct lieutenant, Anita Van Buren. In the second half-hour, the focus shifts to the criminal courts as Executive Assistant District Attorney Michael Cutter and the Assistant District Attorney Connie Rubirosa work within a complicated justice system to prosecute the accused under the guidance of the newly appointed District Attorney Jack McCoy.
A guest is murdered on-air on a controversial talk show. Meanwhile Logan and Briscoe have a new boss, Lt. Anita Van Buren, and Stone gets a new colleague. The police and district attorney attempt to prosecute the show's abrasive host.
A disruptive, unbalanced homeless man is found severely beaten in an alley of the middle class neighborhood he calls home, leading Stone to try and prosecute one of the residents for premeditated murder.
A college student charges an admittedly promiscuous rock star with rape, but he claims the act was consensual.
Stone finds himself up against an ambitious black lawyer defending a white, racist serial killer.
The police suspect a cover up when they receive an anonymous tip that a wealthy man was murdered by his wife, who refuses to allow an autopsy after a physician declares that the death occurred from natural causes.
A 17-year-old boy becomes the chief suspect in the murder of his father, raising questions of self-defense and abuse that the family does not want to face.
Stone and Kincaid try to prove that the young woman believed to have planted a bomb in a parking garage had been brainwashed and was acting under the direct orders of a charismatic cult leader.
A skeleton unearthed at a building site resurrects one of Stone's old cases, and brings him face to face with the tenacious, brilliant culprit, who is seeking a new trial.
A lawyer decides to defend her teenage client charged with murder as an adult with the claim that he's violent because of a genetic predisposition due to an extra Y chromosome.
A "green-card" bride from Russia is suspected of murdering her rich, but cold husband, who was threatening to divorce her just weeks before she would qualify to remain in this country.
An emaciated elderly woman is found dead of an apparent heart attack and her granddaughter is charged with neglect and grave indifference to human life.
A millionaire friend of Schiff's won't cooperate with the police following his son's kidnapping.
While investigating a woman's claim that she passed out in a taxi and awoke to find her newborn missing, Briscoe and Logan uncover a scam involving private adoptions.
A phone call threatening a woman's young daughter leads to a case that causes Kincaid to resign from Schiff's office because of an affair in her past.
A 14-year-old's shooting death involves the son of a former police detective, who's also an old friend of Briscoe's.
A scientist becomes the chief suspect when his estranged wife, who's been delaying divorce proceedings, is the victim of a letter bomb.
During a 24-hour period, Briscoe and Logan have a heavy caseload that includes 5 unrelated murders and a domestic quarrel, which results in the maiming of the husband.
Briscoe and Logan bet that the killing of a star athlete's father is linked to gambling debts and threats to the baseball player's family.
A black minister fans the flames of racial intolerance after a hit-and-run in Harlem claims the life of a 12-year-old and the Jewish driver isn't indicted.
Briscoe and Logan investigate the disappearance of a child from her abusive foster home and find her being held by a loving but disturbed woman who insists she has acted only for the child's own good.
An assailant breaks the wrist of a tennis player prior to a tournament, and a competitor is among the suspects.