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  01x07 - Witness
 Posted: 11/06/11 11:11
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You are being watched.

The government has a secret system.

A machine that spies on you every hour of every day.

I know because I built it.

I designed the machine to detect acts of terror but it sees everything.

Violent crimes involving ordinary people, people like you.

Crimes the government considered irrelevant.

They wouldn't act, so I decided I would.

But I needed a partner-- someone with the skills to intervene.

Hunted by the authorities, we work in secret.

You will never find us.

But victim or perpetrator, if your number's up, we'll find you.

The call came in. We have a location on the target.

Get a team, and I'll meet you there.

We can handle this.

No. I want to be there in person.

I want to kill him myself.



Wait. Can you rewind that for me?

I thought I was all done mopping up bodega shootings when I joined the homicide task force.

This looks like a stickup job to you?

Then maybe you need to go back to working a precinct.

There was no money taken.

Double tap, close range-- this was an execution.

We got any I.D. on the vic?

Not yet, but you haven't seen the best part.

Rewind it again.

We got ourselves a witness.

Any sign of him?

I put out a BOLO.

Had a team canvass a six-block radius.

Guy vanished.

I'd make myself scarce too.

This ain't no neighborhood you want to be called a snitch.

No, it's not.


Send them to the task force P.R. guy.

Let him deal with them.

Yes, ma'am.

Detective Szymanski, organized crime, this is detective Fusco.

Nice to meet you.

Was this a mob hit?

The victim's a former la cosa nostra lieutenant by the name of Benny D'Agostino.

He was out of the game for a couple of years, and then he popped up again on our radar about six months ago.

Brighton Beach is Russian territory.

So what's the LCN doing here?

You kidding? There's a war going on.

Half a dozen VIPs in the Russian mob were taken out last month.

Word is Benny's boss ordered the hits.

This was retribution.

So who's his boss?

We don't know much...

Other than a name--


You heard of him?

Oh, yeah. We go way back.

One of his guys took a shot at me last week.

This Elias is a clever bastard.

Nobody even knows what he looks like.

What about the witness?

Your boys have any luck finding him?

No, but have another look at the surveillance footage.

The victim said something to the witness.

If it's a dying declaration and he named the killers, it'd be admissible.

Yeah, but we've got a problem.

The Russian owner of this fine establishment was on a conveniently timed smoke break when all this went down.

He's not giving us anything.

You think he told the shooters we found a witness?

If he did, the Russians will knock down every door in this neighborhood till they find him.

Well, my guys are working the block.

Something will pop.

It better.

We got to get to this witness before the Russians do.

[Camera shutter clicks]

[Over transmitter] I received his number late last night.

His name is Charlie Burton.

The guy is worried about something.

I'm not seeing a threat yet.

What's his story, Finch?

He's a high-school history teacher working in the Brighton Beach school district.

[Camera shutter clicks]

Lives alone, never married-- not much to go on.

Well, maybe a student's after him.

You know, teaching can be a dangerous profession.

Yes, I imagine espionage was a much safer choice, Mr. Reese.


[Cell phone ringing]

Hello, Lionel.

I'm not sure how you usually do what you do, but I'm looking for a guy, and I could use some help.

He's a witness, saw a Russian mob hit go down.

[Camera shutter clicks]

He's Caucasian, 5'10", bald.

Probably not the most popular guy in his class, if you know what I mean.

We need to find him.

I think I already did.

Why am I not surprised?

Listen, whoever did this hit, they're gonna come looking for him.

[Tires screech]

They've already found him.

Mr. Reese...

We might want to leave this one to the authorities.

No time. I'm heading in.

Cover the exits.

The rest of you come with me.

[Items clattering]

Get out of my apartment.

Mr. Burton, you're in danger.

The men from the bodega are here.

Now, how do you know about that? Did they send you?

Sir, you have a Russian hit team closing in, which leaves us with approximately five seconds before you need to make a decision.

How do I know you're not one of them?

Because I'm standing in front of you and you're still alive.

Doesn't seem like I've got a choice.

[Teakettle whistling]

Where did this piece of garbage go?

I'll double back.

Mr. Reese, can you get out?

Do you need me to call in a distraction?

Let me get back to you on that. Come on.

[Breathing heavily]

Let's get moving...


Okay, the fastest way out of this neighborhood is through those buildings.

What, are you joking?

Even the Russians don't go into the double "B"s.

A Bulgarian drug dealer runs the place.

Okay, Finch, I'm gonna need another route out of here.

We're on our own. I need your cell phone.

I don't believe in them.

Mr. Reese, can you hear me?

[Phone line pulsing]

Hey, this isn't mine!

Not mine either. Get in.

May I at least have your name before we commit grand theft auto together?

First, we need to get you to the police, so you can tell them about what you saw at the bodega.

The Russian mob is after me, friend.

They've got people on the inside.

If I testify, I'm dead.

I know a detective we can trust.

But we need to get you across the river to Manhattan.

Get down!

We need to keep moving.

That's going to be a problem.

You say the Russians don't go in there?

Well, that's where we're going.

[Indistinct shouting]

[Man speaking indistinctly on television]

See what I mean?

This is crazy.


I still don't even know who you are.

I help people.

And you need help.


Bullet went straight through clean-- no bone damage.

But we need to get you cleaned up before it gets infected.

You see a pharmacy nearby?

The men you saw last night at the bodega...

What can you tell me about them?


What difference does it make?

I guess I like to know a little bit about the guys who are shooting at me.

I worked through dinner, and I was grading papers.

And I stopped at the store on my way home.

I couldn't decide between minestrone and split pea.

And then I saw the guys with guns, and I hid.

Did you see their faces?

They had masks.

But one of them lifted his, like he wanted that guy to see his face.

But that guy they killed...

He said he had a message for someone named Elias.

And he wanted me to give it to him, but I don't know an Elias.

I tried to tell him that.

Mr. Burton, what was the message?

I didn't understand it-- something about Vinnie.

Vinnie was gonna finish the job for him.

Why didn't you call the police?

You don't understand this neighborhood, do you?

Going to the cops here is like playing Russian roulette.

You don't know which side they're on.

One of my students' parents filed a police report last year.

Then he got into an accident.

He's still eating through a straw.

I'll get you to a police officer you can trust.

I'm gonna keep my mouth shut and hope it all blows over.

I don't know. These guys look pretty upset.

If I testify...

I never get to come back here.

And I've worked too hard.

This is my home.

My students, for starters--

I-I can't leave them.

They need me.

Well, you won't do those kids any good if you're dead, Mr. Burton.

Charlie, please--

"Mr. Burton" is for my students.

Do you want to die, Charlie?

Because this isn't a history lesson.

Those bullets are real.

My name is John.

Thank you for saving my ass, John.

Thanks for coming down, Patti.

[Door closes]

We're all very sorry for your loss.

You're not sorry. You hated my husband.

No, I only hated what he did for a living.


Do you know why Benny was in Brighton beach last night?

Was he--I don't know-- conducting business?

Mrs. D'Agostino...

I know that anger you're feeling right now-- what it's like to lose someone you love.

Help us find the men who did this to your husband.

It doesn't matter if you find them.

Elias will.

And he'll kill each and every single one of those Russian bastards.

Elias started a war that can't be won.

Now, a lot of innocent people are gonna die this continues.

Do you want that?

If that's what it takes.


Where is he, Patti?

Where is Elias?

I never met him.

And his crew... They don't socialize.

That's why you'll never find him.

I'm a little confused.

Why does Elias want Brighton beach so bad?

You're not seeing it.

Brighton beach is just the beginning.

Elias has bigger plans.

He'll reunite the five families and take out the Russian trash.

And then when he's finished, you people will be answering to him.

[Sirens wailing]

[Tires screeching]


Five or six heavily armed men were chasing a guy matching the description of our witness.

His name's Charlie Burton, by the way.

Found out he had groceries delivered twice a month from the bodega, and he wasn't dodging bullets by himself.

Who was he with?

Some tall guy in a suit-- definitely not with the Russians.

Shot one of them in the knee before they got away.

What? You know him?

It's just someone I've been tracking for a while.

Best I've got, he's former military-- a pain in the ass.

Either one of them get hit?

There seems to be an awful lot of shots fired.

Looks like they got off okay.

I got a Russian thug in the hospital who isn't talking, but we got an ATM camera across the street.

That might help shed some light on things.

It'll take two weeks and a warrant to get the footage.

Thankfully, a bystander got some footage of her own.

Meet Peter Yogorov.

As in Ivan Yogorov, the Russian boss?

Peter's his son.

Yo, officer.


Call over to the 8th.

Tell them to pull any file we have pertaining to Ivan Yogorov.

Ivan Yogorov-- got it.

Where are you, Mr. Reese?

Who are these guys?

And what's this cop doing with them?


Detective Fusco.

Hello, detective.

I need to talk to you about our mutual friend.

Who's this?

And who the hell is our mutual friend?

I seem to recall you were going to take him to Oyster Bay once upon a time.

So you're his guy?

No, detective. I think that's your role.

I've lost contact with him.

Do you have any idea where he and the witness are now?

Yeah, somewhere in Brighton Beach.

The Russians opened fire on them in broad daylight.

Those two are going nowhere fast with this type of heat on them.

Unfortunately, the Russian mafia may not be our only problem.

I need you to run a license plate for me.

Yeah, sure, pal. I'll help you out...

If you can tell me what the hell it is I'm doing.

It relates to your case. That's all you need to know.


If I hear anything about our friend, how do I get in touch with you?

You don't. I'll find you, detective.

I'm telling you, I winged the guy.

Let's get in there and finish him off.

Laszlo, wait up. We need to call papa, regroup.

You want to wait around out here?

Fine. I'm going in.

You want to go at it with a bunch of Bulgarian tweakers?

We made a deal-- they stay out of our territory. We stay out of theirs.

Cover every exit.

No way those two get out without going past us first.

I need you to stay awake, Charlie.

I don't want you to go into shock.

So how did you wind up doing whatever it is you do, John?

It's... complicated.

What about you?

Did you always want to be a teacher?

No, it was sort of a career shift.

I came to like the kids a lot.

A lot of their parents are affiliated with the Russian mob, so I try to give them other options.

They're lucky to have you.

Only the ones that I get out of the life and into college.

What about the kids who don't make it?

Probably the ones shooting at us.

Don't go anywhere.

What? Wait. Where--where are you going?

To find us a pharmacy.

You should be careful about your cholesterol intake, detective.

What, are we dating?

Do you have the information I asked you for?

You're the boss, huh?

The voice on the other end of the phone?

The plate's registered to a shell corp in midtown.

It's a dead end.

Hey, let me ask you something.

Who are you trying to track down, "Mr. friend of a friend"?

The Russians aren't the only criminal operation looking for Charlie Burton.

You saying this plate belongs to Elias?

Maybe. You mentioned in your report that the victim spoke to Mr. Burton before he expired.

Whoa. What do you mean? You read my report?

How did you read my report?

Doesn't matter, Mr. Fusco.

What matters is that whatever message Benny was passing along, it means a great deal to Elias.

So you're telling me the Russians want the poor bastard dead because he witnessed them taking out Benny.

And Elias wants him dead because he thinks he has sensitive information.

Not his lucky day, is it?


That car-- I need you to report it stolen, then email the report number to that address.

Hey, you heard from our mutual friend?

What, are you worried about him, detective?

Let's go with curious.


No word from him.

I made almost twice what I did yesterday.

You still ain't made more than me.

Hello, fellas. Can I borrow some of you junk?

Oh, no. Easy, fella. I'm not looking for a fight.

Looks like you found one anyway.

Don't do it.

I'm telling you, now.

[Announcer shouting indistinctly on television]

Thank you.

If Ivan's sons are involved in this, could be the man himself was at the bodega-- avenge his brother's death in person.

Elias' crew took him out last week, along with a half a dozen other Russian hitters.

I thought the Russians were untouchable in Brighton beach.

They were. No one knows where Elias gets his information.

He's always one step ahead of all of them...And us.

What I still don't get is why Elias is trying to make a move for Brighton Beach.

A woman named Marlene Elias was murdered in 1973.

She had an illegitimate son with Don Moretti.

I think Elias is the Don's kid.

[Folder rustles]

Last place Moretti ran before he got locked up was Brighton Beach.

So the Don's bastard son came back to clean up?

Claim his birthright?

[Breathing heavily]

What is that?


I guess there's a first time for everything.


Is that glue?


Nothing like over-the-counter polymer, to close a wound in a pinch.

You learn all this in hero training?

Something like that.

Thank you.


No, really...

Thank you.

If it wasn't for you, I'd be dead right now.

You ever use one of these?

Don't you think it would be better if you kept it?

Well, just in case.

No, last time I touched a gun, I shot cans with one of my foster dads...

Accidentally killed a bird-- not my favorite childhood memory.

Simple. Look...

Safety's there. Just load the magazine like this.

Rack it. Simple.

Do you really think we'll get out of here?

We have a hell of a lot better chance than we did 20 minutes ago.

Here they come.

You after those boys running around our building?

That's right.

He took something from my people.

We don't give you any problems, you take 'em out?

I can make that deal.

Give one to the other guy.

We'll help you out a whole lot quicker.

Someone told me they're hiding out on the fourth floor.

And one of them's already bleeding.

Put this on.

If I can find a line that's still operating, we can make a call.

Wow, I thought I was the only one who still had a hard line.

I was hoping there was someone in this building as old-fashioned as you, Charlie.

I'm sorry I got you into this mess.

It's okay. It's my job.

It's a dangerous career choice.

That's the second time today I've heard that.

It's funny. You remind me of him.

[Dial tone]

[Cell phone rings]

Finch... I was just talking about you.

Where are you, Mr. Reese?

The double "B" housing projects-- fourth floor, north tower.

Find me a way out of here, Finch-- one that no one else will use.

City planning office should have old blueprints.

How is Mr. Burton faring?

He's wounded but stubborn.

He'll pull through.

The Russians aren't the only ones after him.

I think Elias is looking for him too.

Two service entrances-- the one closest to you is in the northeast corridor.

Can you make it there?

We've got no choice.

Tell Fusco to meet us at pier 11 at 7:00 A.M.

We'll be on the East River ferry.

Be careful, Mr. Reese.

Come on.

Service stairs should be around the next corridor.

Keep your eyes open. They could be anywhere.

Hey, I think they went this way.

What now?

Wait here.

[Knock on door]

Who's there?

[Knock on door]

Check down that way.

Mr. Burton?


What are you doing?

Hey, Will.

Came in looking for a shortcut, and we just, uh...

This is my friend, by the way.

We just got lost.

[Knock on door]

Check the South side.

Come on. My dad's not home.

You can hide in here.

[Line trilling]

Vehicle recovery services.

Yeah, this is detective Fusco, shield number 7645.

I'm trying to turn on the locator in a stolen vehicle.

Uh, report number is...

Lima 377.

Thank you, detective. How can I help you?

Yeah, could you turn on the car's GPS locator and the microphone?

Of course. Bear with me, please.

I thought you and your dad moved out of here.

Not yet. He said we will as soon as he gets a job.

Yeah, times are tough right now.

I'm sure he'll get one soon.

Just don't move out of my school district, okay?

You did your homework?

Yep. All of it.

What did you think?

Edmond's cool-- a survivor, you know?

Even though he got his revenge, some bad stuff still stuck with him.

Yeah, you're a smart kid, Will.

You just need to show up to class more.

I'm trying.

That's all any of us can do, right?


They're taking over the universe.

Yeah, can't have that.

[Car door closes]

[Camera shutter clicking]

Who are you?

You're that cop.

Word is the Russians are inside the double "B"s.

We better get to them first.

Is that you, Elias?

[Distant knock on door]

You seen these guys? We're looking for them.

I don't know what you're talking about.

[Door closes]

[Knock on door]

Open up, or we're coming in.

What do you want? - Hey, little man. You all alone in there?

What's it look like?

[Scoffs] Why don't you let me in, so I can make sure?

My papa taught me better than to let strangers inside our place, especially punks.

Is that right?

That's right.

He also said that vory are supposed to show respect to one another.

Your papa's a smart man.

You be good, kid.


Thanks, Will.

It's all good, Mr. Burton.

You're the best teacher I've got.


Can you make it to the service stairs?

I'll try, but the painkiller sort of wore off.

Why don't you just use the old entrance?

They closed it down a few years ago.

The stairs got all rotted.

Where is it?

It's--it's down the hall.

It's back the way that you came.


Come on.

I owe you one.

I'll see you tomorrow, Mr. Burton.


Yeah, we'll see you tomorrow.

You...did you guys get that hallway?

Let's go.

[Pounding on door]

Open up, or we're coming in.


Anyone home?

Can't hide forever.

Wherever you are, we're gonna find you.

And then we're gonna end you.

Come on. Let's keep moving.

Looks like you got left behind.

How can I help the New York City police department tonight?

Your son Peter's wanted for questioning in the murder of Benny D'Agostino.

Know where we might find him?

Who is this Benny?

Come on, Ivan.

We heard Benny was the trigger man in your brother's murder.

And we know the bodega run was payback.

You seem to know a lot for someone who is here to ask me questions.

Mr. Yogorov, we don't want any more bloodshed.

My Peter was here working all day long.

He's at the storage getting more wine for an event tonight.

With all due respect, sir, you may not be the best person to give your son an alibi.

If you are here to accuse my Peter of something, I suggest you come back with a warrant...

If you can get one.

There are no winners in this war, Ivan-- only dead soldiers.

Are you ready to lose your sons too?

If I knew to what you were referring, I'd say that this so-called war was started by this coward Elias, not me.

He's the one who comes to my neighborhood...

Stealing from me, killing my people...

Not the other way around.

Now, if you excuse me, I have an event to host.

[Speaks in Russian]


Mind if I borrow this for a moment?

Screw you.

[Number pad beeping]

It's a bad move to insult your hostage taker, Laszlo.

Keep your mouth shut, or I'll shut it permanently.

Let's go.

Finch, it's me.

Get word to Carter that her bodega shooters are inside the double "B"s.

Of course.

And I'll make sure detective Fusco meets you and the witness at the ferry.

[Click, dial tone]

You first.

Where are we going now?

Across the river.

Come on, Laszlo, let's move.

Just got a text. He's heading to pier 11.

Let's get over there to intercept him, now.

Nice collar, detective.

You too, Carter.

You find out who called it in?

I have an idea.

[Boat horn blows]

[Cell phone ringing]

Yeah. Fusco.

And I was just starting to believe that we could trust you, detective.

I'm disappointed.

What are you talking about?

Elias' men are on their way to meet our friends at the ferry.

How the hell'd they find out?

I was going to ask you.

You're blaming me for this?

Then who told them?

Listen, there's no way I would've-- detective, are you there?

[Boat horn blows]

When we get you across the river, I'm going to hand you off to my detective.

Now, you can trust him.

Charlie, I need you to testify.

One thing I know for sure-- after everything we went through last night, I don't want to see these cretins running around my town ever again.



Ready to talk?

You ready to let me go?

Peter, we got you on camera.

We've got witnesses that say you and your brother were shooting up the streets in Brighton beach.

No idea what you're talking about.

It's a beautiful morning.

I have to thank you, John.

To tell you the truth, I didn't think I'd see another one.

Elias killed your Uncle.

You, your father, and your brother went to the bodega for revenge.

You didn't know what Elias looked like, so his lieutenant Benny D'Agostino was the next best thing.

And now you're trying to rub out the witness-- the guy who saw your father's face.

[Door opens]

We heard from a source that Elias was supposed to be at the bodega that night.

He was meeting Benny.


But when we showed up...

Benny was all we saw.

Found out what really went down after the owner called us.

He said there was another guy.

Hey, what are you-- corrupt P.D., gun for hire?

What kind of guy takes money to protect a scumbag like your boss here?

You think he's going to testify...

After everything he's done?

He's tearing this town apart.

What are you talking about?

You don't know who he is, do you...

What he's capable of?

You don't really get it, do you?

You honestly think we'd go to all this trouble for a witness?


You're in the middle of a situation that you don't even understand.

Don't make me shoot you, John.

Drop your weapon and kick it to me, please.

I thought you didn't like guns.

You know, sometimes you have to do things you don't like.

Like teaching history to the children of your enemies?

Three years, I watched them-- cleaning up after the children of those pigs.

It's a good amount of time to learn what makes your enemies tick, what makes them weak.

You know all the secrets you and your family tried to hide, Laszlo, I learned all about from your own flesh and blood?

Your children hate you almost as much as I do.

Tie yourself to the railing, John, nice and tight.

I know how capable you are of getting out of difficult situations.

On your knees, please.

You were meeting Benny at the bodega that day, weren't you?

The shooters were looking for you.

Yeah, the benefits of no one knowing who you are or what you look like.

That's gone now, I suppose. It's time to evolve.

I'm ready for the next step.

[Gun cocks]

Go ahead.

I'd rather die than see you running my city.

You know what Benny said before he died?

He said, "veni, vidi, vici"--

I came, I saw, I won.

He said your almighty bratva was already crumbling.

He said we'd already won.

This is for Benny.

Elias, if you kill him...

[Boat horn blows]


I'm not going to kill him.


I'm just going to send a message.


You tell your papa, Laszlo, if he gets out of town tonight, I'll let him live.

Brighton Beach belongs to me now.


I thought about killing you, John.

But I realize that that would seem ungrateful.

Besides, how do you take the life of someone so talented?

I could really use a guy like you in my organization.

I wish you luck, John.

If you stay out of my way, I'll stay out of yours.

What if I don't?

Then we'll meet again under less pleasant circumstances.

[Nina Simone's sinnerman plays]

♪ ♪
♪ oh, sinnerman, where he gonna run to? ♪
♪ sinnerman, where you gonna run to? ♪
♪ where you gonna run to all on that day? ♪
♪ well, I run to the rock, please hide me ♪
♪ I run to the rock, please hide me ♪
♪ I run to the rock... ♪

You believe me now?

I'm sorry, detective.

♪ The rock cried out, "I can't hide you" ♪
♪ the rock cried out, "I can't hide you" ♪
♪ the rock cried out ♪
♪ "I ain't going to hide you, guy" ♪
♪ all on that day ♪
♪ I said, "rock, what's the matter with you, rock?" ♪

Nice to see you, Lionel.

Your suspect is tied to the railing.

Tell him "you're welcome."

Couldn't have known about Charlie.

The machine found a man who was targeted for death.

We just didn't know that he was also a killer.

It's my fault he's out there, Finch.

It's not yours alone.

We just saved a man whose only goal in life is revenge.

He spent years studying his enemies through their own children.

John, we have limited information.

We knew when we began this that we might make mistakes.

But we have to go now.

We have more people to help-- more numbers.

And how many of those numbers will come up because we saved one man's life?

♪ But the lord said, "go to the devil" ♪
♪ the lord said, "go to the devil" ♪
♪ he said, "go to the devil," all on that day ♪
♪ so I ran to the devil, he was waiting ♪
♪ I ran to the devil, he was waiting ♪
♪ I ran to the devil, he was waiting ♪
♪ all on that day ♪
♪ I cried power ♪
♪ power ♪
♪ power to the lord♪
♪ power ♪
♪ power to the lord ♪
♪ power ♪
♪ power to the lord ♪
♪ power ♪
♪ power to the lord ♪
♪ power ♪
♪ power to the lord ♪
♪ power ♪
♪ power to the lord ♪
♪ power ♪
♪ power to the lord ♪


It's done.

No, it's just beginning.

Veni, vidi, vici.

♪ ♪

Stay tuned for scenes from our next episode.

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