"Thin Ice"
L&O, Episode 11.08
Production number: E1310
First aired: 20 December 2000
  th of 456 produced in L&O  
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Al Archer & Raymond Taylor Thin Ice
Teleplay By
Barry Schindel & Matt Witten

Story By
Bernard Goldberg

Directed By
Jace Alexander


The killing of a school-hockey coach leads to a case in which the defendant claims that he committed the crime while suffering from "sports rage."


Main cast

Guest cast





  • Jack McCoy (during his closing argument): Are we really prepared to create a society in which nobody is responsible for controlling their anger?
  • Nora Lewin: When my niece was younger, she used to play soccer. I remember all the parents screaming at each other on the sidelines. Insanity is a pretty good description of their behavior, but it's not a legal excuse.
  • Nora Lewin: What did Dr. Skoda say?
  • Jack McCoy: That just because someone gets real mad doesn't mean they're insane.
  • Jack McCoy: The law says your right to rage ends at the other guy's nose.
  • Ed Green: (Referring to dead victim in parking garage.) Guy stuck his car in a garage, thought he was safe.
  • Lennie Briscoe: He forgot the high cost of parking in Manhattan.

Background information and notes

Background information and notes

  • This episode was originally scheduled to air on 13 December 2000.
  • This episode appears to be ripped from the headlines of the Thomas Junta case. In 2002 Thomas was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and sentenced to 6-10 years in prison, serving 9 and a half.
  • Briscoe: An NHL player hits another player over the head...

There have been a number of prominent cases over the years, but this is most likely a reference to Boston Bruins' Marty McSorley being charged with assault with a weapon for striking Vancouver's Donald Brashear in February 21, 2000; Brashear required hospitalization. McSorley's one year suspension is the longest in NHL history.

  • Lennie Briscoe: An NBA player chokes his coach...

On Dec 1, 1997 Latrell Sprewell of the Golden State Warriors choked coach P.J. Carlesimo because he was in a bad mood and did not like being criticized during practice.

  • Nora Lewin: The Twinkie defense worked.

"The Twinkie defense" is a generic legal term for a defense claim that some outside force caused the action for which the defendant is accused. The term stems from a 1979 case where San Francisco City Manager Dan White shot several people including the mayor. His defense argument was that he had been unusually depressed, and his eating a large number of Twinkies was a reflection of, and may have worsened his depression. They did not actually argue that the Twinkies caused his depressed mindset.

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