L&O, Episode 1.09
Production number: 66207
First aired: 27 November 1990
  th of 456 produced in L&O  
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Shambala Green
Written By
Robert Palm

Directed By
James Quinn

During the investigation into the grave injury of a little girl in a respectable, middle-class family, Max Greevey and Mike Logan uncover a myriad of family secrets involving abuse, molestation, and murder.


The detectives discover that an abused child has a cocaine-addicted mother, who is also being abused by her drug-addicted psychiatrist husband. The detectives investigate the doctor's checkered past, while prosecutors take a new tactic after the child dies.


Main cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast




"I didn't hear you knock."
"That's because I didn't. If I'd have knocked, you would have heard me."
"I don't doubt that."

- Benjamin Stone and Shambala Green

"Ethically, I'm Snow White."

- Shambala Green

"Are you in charge of this ape?"
"My cross to bear."

- Eugenia Rawlings and Max Greevey

"What does your gut tell you?"
"Put 'em in a dungeon, put 'em on a wheel, and annihilate 'em."

- Adam Schiff and Benjamin Stone

"Everything’s a mirror to her. She holds a dying kid up to it, and all she can see is herself and how it affects her. Now you give her sympathy, she’s gonna want to fight. You give her a fight, she’s gonna want a kiss. You give her a kiss and I swear to God she’ll bite your tongue out."

- Mike Logan

"Please. That was therapy."
"For her or for you?"
"For her! In Reichian therapy, the patient has to--"
"Really get to know the therapist, hmmm?"

- Jacob Lowenstein, Mike Logan and Max Greevey

"My mother used to hold a rosary in one hand while she beat me with the other. The next time I enter a church, six of my closest buddies will be carrying me. "

- Mike Logan

Stone: Mrs. Lowenstein, tell the court why you struck your daughter hard enough to kill her.
Carla: Well, I was loaded, and I really didn't think I had any strength left.
Stone: Why would you do such a thing?
Carla: My husband-- He convinced me to.
Dr. Lowenstein: [jumps out of his seat] She's out of her mind!!
Judge Erdheim: Dr. Lowenstein! One more outburst, and I'll have you shackled for the remainder of this trial!

Judge Erdheim: [during the Lowensteins' sentencing hearing] As eloquent as your counsel was in your behalf, you are not the victim here, Mrs. Lowenstein. The victim was an innocent 6-year-old girl who couldn't defend herself. On the count of manslaughter in the first degree, the court sentences you to 7-10 years in a women's correctional facility. [to Dr. Lowenstein] As for you, sir, from this seat, I thought I had witnessed every degradation, every monstrosity possible, but you, Doctor, are beyond contempt. You have helped a woman destroy herself. You engineered the tragedy of a little girl's death. But you took pretty good care of yourself, didn't you?
Dr. Lowenstein: Your honor, I've lost my family.
Judge Erdheim: Yes, you have. Jacob Lowenstein, having been found guilty of murder in the second degree by depraved indifference to human life, this court sentences you to 25 years to life in a state penitentiary.

Background information and notes

  • This episode is based on the Lisa Steinberg murder case. In 1987, six-year-old Lisa Steinberg was beaten to death by Joel Steinberg, the man who had illegally adopted her. Both Steinberg and his wife were originally charged. (Source: Joel Steinberg at Wikipedia)
Disclaimer Indifference


  • This is the only episode of the series in which a long disclaimer was read aloud, pointing out the actual conclusion of the real case, that of Joel and Lisa Steinberg. The fifteenth season episode, "Fixed", brought back the character inspired by Joel Steinberg, Dr. Jacob Lowenstein (played by David Groh), who was killed after being released on parole. The sequel was inspired by Steinberg's actual release in 2004.
  • Goof: Brian Smiar is credited as "Judge Harper" but his nameplate states his name is "Tyler B. Ashford".
  • Goof: Louis Zorich is credited as "Judge Milton Erdheim" but a scene card shown lists his last name as "Erdheims".

Episode scene cards

1 2 3

1998 Riverside Drive
Wednesday, February 22

Rudy Scelza's
615 Central Park West
Thursday, February 23

Therapy League
610 West 86th Street
Friday, February 24

4 5 6

Chambers of
Judge Erdheims
Monday, April 17

Office of
District Attorney
Adam Schiff
Tuesday, June 6

Supreme Court
New York County
Criminal Term
Thursday, June 29

Previous episode:
"Poison Ivy"
Law & Order
Season 1
Next episode:
"Prisoner of Love"
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