Scene from Screenplay

3dProcessBook300wideScene from Screenplay © 2002, 2003, 2004 by Bonnie J. Thompson. All rights reserved.

No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without written permission from the author.This screenplay is based on a true story. In some instances the names are real, but in other cases, the actual names have been fictionalized. I have taken some creative liberty with respect to dialogue and scene setting; however, some of the spoken words you’ll find in dialogue were discovered in courthouse files and police reports. Any similarities of fictionalized names to real people of the same name is merely coincidental.
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LAMBERT

Who could think of a guy smoking somebody over a few dollars worth of meat?

FOLTZ

His M.O.’s getting rid of witnesses.

ROGER
(in agreement)

By process of elimination.

(beat – frustrated)

Problem is, we’ve got our hands tied. We have no solid evidence to make an arrest, and until we find something, he’s out there free as a bird.

SGT. VONDERAHE
(word of warning)

Yeah, and we’ve got President Ford making a whistle stop at the depot in five days.

Everyone looks uneasy.

LAMBERT
(easing the tension)

The department will be out in full force, plus the secret service will be there. We’ll make sure they know about Smrekar. Between them and us, we oughta have it covered.

ROGER

Ann Mardis indicated that her chances for identifying the assailant were 50-50. She picked out Smrekar’s mug shot, but she also chose the photo of the other guy, Bowling. I’m not big on line-up ID’s. We really need to have her identify him in a public place, that’s what the law favors.

LAMBERT

I’d like to make a suggestion. Now, this may sound a little too hocus pocus, but maybe Ann should see a hypnotist. There’s this Dr. Hauter, he’s supposed to be real good, I understand. He might be able to help hone her memory of that night.

FOLTZ

Would hypnosis be admissible in court?

ROGER

I believe it would. Dr. Hauter might be worth a try. But if we do this, we’ve got to make sure that he’s kept in the blue regarding any information pertaining to Russell Smrekar. Don’t show him any photographs. We have to avoid any possible future supposition that could imply that hypnotic suggestion was used.

 

LAMBERT

Who could think of a guy smoking somebody over a few dollars worth of meat?

FOLTZ

His M.O.’s getting rid of witnesses.

ROGER
(in agreement)
By process of elimination.

(beat – frustrated)

Problem is, we’ve got our hands tied. We have no solid evidence to make an arrest, and until we find something, he’s out there free as a bird.

SGT. VONDERAHE
(word of warning)

Yeah, and we’ve got President Ford making a whistle stop at the depot in five days.

Everyone looks uneasy.
LAMBERT
(easing the tension)

The department will be out in full force, plus the secret service will be there. We’ll make sure they know about Smrekar. Between them and us, we oughta have it covered.

ROGER

Ann Mardis indicated that her chances for identifying the assailant were 50-50. She picked out Smrekar’s mug shot, but she also chose the photo of the other guy, Bowling. I’m not big on line-up ID’s. We really need to have her identify him in a public place, that’s what the law favors.

LAMBERT

I’d like to make a suggestion. Now, this may sound a little too hocus pocus, but maybe Ann should see a hypnotist. There’s this Dr. Hauter, he’s supposed to be real good, I understand. He might be able to help hone her memory of that night.

FOLTZ

Would hypnosis be admissible in court?

ROGER

I believe it would. Dr. Hauter might be worth a try. But if we do this, we’ve got to make sure that he’s kept in the blue regarding any information pertaining to Russell Smrekar. Don’t show him any photographs. We have to avoid any possible future supposition that could imply that hypnotic suggestion was used.

EXT. LINCOLN TRAIN STATION DEPOT – DAY – FIVE DAYS LATER

SUPERIMPOSE: OCTOBER 16, 1976.

WIDE ANGLE LONG SHOT: We SEE a HUGE GATHERING OF PEOPLE surrounding the Lincoln TRAIN DEPOT. The crowd encompasses several blocks, and they’re all awaiting the arrival of President Gerald Ford who will be making a brief whistle stop as part of his campaign for the upcoming November Presidential election. BARRICADES block off the streets around the station, and we see many PARKED POLICE CARS and numerous LINCOLN POLICE OFFICERS – out in full force.

THE CAMERA PANS THROUGH THE CROWD, and we see John Foltz and Roger Thompson standing on a street corner on the west side of the tracks. Lambert and Fink are near the depot, and other officers are strategically positioned in the crowd.

FROM THE P.O.V. OF AN UNKNOWN BYSTANDER, we see another visual of the crowd as the BYSTANDER weaves his way between the people.

ANGLE ON DAN HANDLIN who’s standing on the east side of the tracks in front of ALVEY’S DRUG STORE (a Republican Party hot spot) conversing with some folks.

ANGLE ON ALVEY’S DRUG STORE: HOMER ALVEY, 60’s, with white hair, glasses, and wearing a cardigan and a tie, and Logan County Republican Chairman, JOE SAPP, 70’s, somewhat hunch over, sharp features, wearing a suit and top coat and sporting a fedora, walk out of Alvey’s onto the sidewalk.

DAN HANDLIN
(calling out to Joe Sapp)

Hey, Joe! Wasn’t Ford supposed to arrive at two o’clock?

JOE SAPP

Yeah, he’s running late!

Suddenly, the crowd begins to stir and We HEAR a TRAIN WHISTLE.
HOMER ALVEY

Here he is!

DAN HANDLIN
(calling out to Joe Sapp)

Hey, Joe! Wasn’t Ford supposed to arrive at two o’clock?

JOE SAPP
Yeah, he’s running late!

Suddenly, the crowd begins to stir and We HEAR a TRAIN WHISTLE.

HOMER ALVEY

Here he is!

ANGLE ON TRAIN STATION: The CROSSING GATES begin to lower, the crossing lights start flashing, and we HEAR the “ding- ding-ding” of the warning bells and ANOTHER WHISTLE from the approaching train.  OVERHEAD WIDE SHOT of the TRAIN arriving at the DEPOT and the CROWD moving in tighter for a better view of President Ford.

EXTREME CLOSEUP OF THE TRAIN WHEELS ON THE TRACKS squealing to a stop.

A BANNER above the rear of the train displays in BIG BOLD LETTERS, “THE HONEST ABE”. We HEAR the High School BAND giving it their all with their rendition of “God Bless America”.

STANDING AT THE REAR OF THE TRAIN ARE SEVERAL PEOPLE – among them are Senator CHARLES PERCY, BETTY FORD, PRESIDENT FORD, CONGRESSMAN EDWARD R. MADIGAN, and GOVERNOR JAMES THOMPSON.

President Ford is receiving wild applause from the cheering, flag-waving (mostly Republican) crowd.

TIGHT ON PRESIDENT FORD and BETTY FORD who are smiling and waving at the people.

MONTAGE: SEVERAL SECRET SERVICE AGENTS scan the crowd for anything suspicious.

ANOTHER MONTAGE: Lincoln Police Officers are positioned around the train station and the street corners – caught up in all the excitement.