"The Blue Wall"
L&O, Episode 1.22
Production number: 66220
First aired: 9 June 1991
  th of 456 produced in L&O  
th of 456 released in L&O
  th of 1229 released in all  
Cragen Greevey Blue Wall
Teleplay By
Robert Stuart Nathan

Story By
Dick Wolf & Robert Stuart Nathan

Directed By
Vern Gillum

Donald Cragen comes under suspicion when his mentor in the department is investigated for laundering drug money.


After the acquittal of three money launderers, Captain Donald Cragen is investigated for his mentor's role in the scheme. 


Main cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast




"Bankers who help drug dealers clean their money are as guilty as the dealers themselves."

- Benjamin Stone

"Plane lands, 2:45. Doorman says Detective Shearer and his wife got home at 4. He went upstairs, dropped his bags, left again 10 minutes later."
"To get the drycleaning."
"After your honeymoon? That’s very romantic. Paul?"
"According to the doorman, Detective Shearer was gone for 3 hours."
"Your drycleaner in Philadelphia?"

- Paul Robinette, Dennis Shearer, and Benjamin Stone

"If there's any crookedness, I'll buy the whole department dinner."
"At these prices, you'll have to take out a second mortgage."
"Only if I'm wrong."

- Peter O'Farrell and Mike Logan

"This is freakin' amazing. I don't know a computer disk from a slipped disk."

- Donald Cragen

Background information and notes

  • The Blue Wall refers to an unwritten code of "honor" among many police officers in which reporting another officer's errors, misconduct, or crimes is regarded as a betrayal.
  • It's possible this episode is based off the Joe Sanchez Case. Joe Sanchez was an honest NYPD officer who discovered corruption and was framed in 1983 by corrupt cops. He was charged in relation to a 1982 drug bust. Sanchez however was later proven innocent. This incident is also regarded as "The Blue Code of Silence". (Source: Joe Sánchez)
  • This is actor George Dzundza's last appearance as Sergeant Max Greevey.
  • This is one of only a handful episodes in which the DA (Adam Schiff) shares a scene with a police officer (Captain Donald Cragen).
  • This is the first, and only time, we see Captain Cragen's wife, Marge.
  • This episode begins in the courtroom, and not with the police investigation.
  • Captain Cragen would later mention the events from this episode in the Law & Order: Special Victims Unit first season episode "A Single Life".
  • The tenth episode from Law & Order: Trial by Jury is called "Blue Wall".

Episode scene cards

1 2 3

Supreme Court
Trial Part 53
Tuesday, January 23

Forensics Lab
Thursday, January 25

Property Clerk Division
3 Police Plaza
Friday, January 26

4 5

Supreme Court
Arraignment Part 40
Monday, February 12

Supreme Court
Trial Part 53
Tuesday, March 6

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