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Stanley Deeks

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Stanley Deeks is portrayed by John L. Bader in the American television series The Practice. Stanley is introduced in the tenth episode of the seventh season as a client of Lindsay Dole and her new firm, who tries to get away with murder and never wants to go to prison.


Season Seven

Deeks calls Lindsay six times to come and see him in jail to discuss his case. When she finally decides to see him she informs him that she is trying to distance herself from criminal cases. But Deeks informs her that she is unique because she, like him, is a murderer and can understand his situation. Deeks confesses that the charges against him are true and he realizes the gravity of the situation. Deeks explains that something inside him told him to kill, and while he realizes its not the same as Lindsay killing a serial killer stalking her, he needs her help. Deeks informs Lindsay that he is willing to go to a hospital to be treated, but doesn't want to go to prison. He says while he doesn't have much money, he will pay her with everything he currently has. While reluctant, Lindsay agrees to take his case. Deeks and Lindsay discuss his case, Deeks mentions that he confessed to the police but Lindsay tells him he only confessed after they found the body in his trunk. Lindsay explains that if the search of his trunk is excluded, so is Deeks' confession, giving them leverage to get Deeks in a hospital. Deeks tells her he is willing to confess again but Lindsay advises against that. Deeks understands her point and then spontaneously confesses to strangling his co-worker, Carol Dalton, during his time as a security guard. Lindsay strongly urges Deeks to listen to her and to tell no one else about killing this woman, Deeks tells her he will.

After Lindsay tells Deeks, Kenneth Walsh is the ADA in charge of his case he starts to panic and says he will confess again, which Lindsay shoots down immediately. Deeks then says he has committed other crimes the police are unaware of and is willing to confess for a deal but when he tries to tell Lindsay, she stops him and advises him to wait until after the suppression hearing and to take it from there. Deeks then mentions the name of his victim, Carol. At the hearing, Officer Hope testifies to seeing Deeks near the trunk of his car. The officer testifies that as soon as he approached Deeks slammed the trunk, to prevent the officer from seeing inside. Deeks claimed he was smoking a cigarette, but the cop didn't see any around and made him open the trunk. Lindsay gets the cop to admit he hand his gun drawn when he made the request and didn't see any signs there was a body in the trunk. When the hearing is over, Deeks asks what is next and Lindsay tells him and Deeks wonders what happens if they lose. Lindsay tells him they will either plead out or go to trial. Deeks tells Lindsay he may have more to offer now, but Lindsay informs him they aren't willing to deal right now and even if they were, Deeks has 4th amendment issues he can use in this hearing. She advises him to play the hearing out and Deeks agrees to wait.

Deeks listens to Lindsay and ADA Walsh argue about the search and after its over, Deeks starts to lose control and starts knocking everything around, calling for Lindsay. When she arrives he screams that he wants to plead out and he can't take the wait. She asks if he can remain calm if the officers let him go, and he says he can but Lindsay has them handcuff his hands and legs before she will talk with him again. He reluctantly agrees to her terms, and explains the main reason he wanted her as his attorney is because of her old firm, Donnell, Young & Frutt. They are currently defending Dr. Stephen Barrett, who is on trial for killing his mistress, a college student named Catherine Vance. Deeks confesses that he was the one who stabbed Catherine and dumped her body in the woods. He says he will confess to both murders to get in a hospital and that if anyone can make the deal happen, its Lindsay, because of her old firm and her friendship with ADA Helen Gamble, the prosecutor on the case. Lindsay advises him to wait after the ruling to make a decision. When the judge rules the contents inadmissible, Deeks is shocked that he can walk out and thanks Lindsay for everything, but informs her that now there is no need to tell the police about his role in Cathy's death. Lindsay momentarily considers breaking privilege to save Barrett, but decides against it and he is convicted of Cathy's murder while Deeks walks free.

A few weeks later, Deeks stops by Lindsay's office to talk with her about a situation and asks about her new associate, Claire Wyatt. Lindsay informs him she is an attorney working for her, so attorney-client privilege extends to her too. Deeks regrettably informs him that he has killed again. Deeks explains that he made friends with a 14 year-old girl named Cindy Burns and they had a lot in common and he befriended her. Lindsay asks him if he killed her and he simply says remains silent and looks away. Deeks writes down the address of the abandoned house where the girl is and when Claire starts looking at him in contempt, Deeks informs her they never had sex and wasn't "sick that way". When Lindsay asks what happened, Deeks tells her that he accidentally squeezed her neck until she stopped breathing. But when Deeks mentions he isn't entirely sure she is dead, Lindsay expresses shock at the fact he doesn't know. Deeks mentions that this girl has been mentioned on the news as missing for two days straight and wonders if it's a police trick. When Lindsay and Claire go to the house to confirm Cindy is dead, Deeks unintentionally sneaks up behind them and when they turn around, they scream in shock. Deeks demands to know why they are in the house and Lindsay tells them that it is to ensure that she was indeed dead and if she wasn't, Deeks' best move would be to save her. Deeks mistakenly thinks they were going to turn him in, but Lindsay calms him by saying they had to make sure she wasn't suffering. Deeks tells them she didn't suffer and laments on beautiful she was and what kind of human being would kill a child. Lindsay tries to appeal to the good in him to tell the police about this, but his fear of prison prevents him from even considering it. Deeks mentions going to a hospital, Lindsay doubts this plan will work, but Deeks is adamant in his decision.

He is later seen exclaiming shock when Lindsay tells him that she and Claire want to tell Cindy's parents what happened. Lindsay tells Deeks they will not say who killed her or where her body is and that the reason she wants to is because letting those parents go on, thinking their daughter is alive, is cruel. After Claire reassures him that they will not implicate him or lead them to any evidence, including her body, Deeks agrees to let them tell the parent about Cindy, but no one else. After they tell the parents about Cindy, Deeks sits in a cafe, watching a news report about her death when Claire sits next to him, telling him not to talk to her or look at her. Claire warns Deeks the police will be watching Lindsay's every move and her office isn't safe anymore and she is probably being watched as well. Claire then tells him that they were both subpoenaed but not to worry because they will not tell them anything and warns him again not to call and not to contact them, they will contact him when it's safe. Claire then leaves the diner to make her appointment in court and true to her word, they don't reveal the location of Cindy's body, even under threat of jail time. Deeks is last seen in a rocking chair, nervously going back and forth, staring as Cindy's body.

When Deeks hears Lindsay has been released, he arrives at her office, disguised as a bike messenger, to see her. After Lindsay sends her husband, Bobby Donnell, away she demands to know why he is in her office. Deeks says he needs an update on what is happening so Lindsay tells him that while she is free Claire is still in jail because they think they can break her. Deeks apologizes to Lindsay for all the trouble he has caused her and says that if the judge is the problem that maybe he should "disappear", subtly implying that he would make a delivery to his house and kill him for the two of them. Lindsay immediately tells him he will do no such thing and if he does, she will call the police and have him arrested. Just then, someone knocks on the door and it is revealed to be Cindy's mom, Marsha Burns. To protect Deeks, Lindsay quickly grabs the package in Deeks' hands and sends him away. Deeks is later seen at a motion where Lindsay tries and fails to get Claire out, but leaves the moment Lindsay spots him.

Realizing that the judge won't let Claire go without the body and feeling bad for the parents, Deeks puts Cindy's body in a package and delivers it to Lindsay's office to get Claire out of jail while avoiding detection. When his plan works, he goes to her office again while she is talking with Bobby about their relationship with a stack of roses, disguised as a flower delivery man. Lindsay drags him into her office and tells her husband Bobby to leave so she can talk with her client. Before Deeks can speak she tells him he is never to come to her office again, never deliver another package and warns him to stay away from her because the police will be watching her. Before he leaves, he gives her the flowers and she closes the door behind him.

Deeks then waits by a newsstand near Lindsay's office until she arrives and he goes to speak with her. Lindsay demands to know why she shouldn't report him for stalking and Deeks explains he will honor her wish to leave her alone, he just needs to make sure they don't leave on bad terms. Deeks tells Lindsay that he appreciates everything Lindsay has done for him and offers his hand in friendship to her, but if she doesn't want to be friends, he will understand. Lindsay tells him he is just a client and her loyalty to him is because of her job. Lindsay then grabs a newspaper and shows him a picture of Helen Gamble and another serial killer named Russell Bakey. She mentions how Russell is a threat to her life because of her job and Deeks came into Lindsay's because of her job. Lindsay states that after their job is done, they want to be left alone. Lindsay asks if Deeks can understand this and he replies that he does understand. They then say their goodbyes and she leaves while Deeks looks on. Deeks is later seen outside Bakey's front door, disguised as a delivery man asking for his signature for a package. As Bakey signs for the package, Deeks looks at Bakey, menacingly, implying he plans to kill him.

After a few weeks have passed, Deeks visits Lindsay and Claire to deliver a check for everything Deeks owes them. Deeks then informs both of them that he got a job as a substitute teacher at a high school while waiting to get certified and loves how he turned his life around, thanks to them. Lindsay expresses doubts about this job, given his past, but Deeks remains happy. Deeks then asks Lindsay about her friend, Helen, and her situation with Bakey. Lindsay is immediately suspicious of this line of questioning, but Deeks claims he is just curious. Deeks is later fired from his job after Claire called the school he worked at and told them about his arrest for Carol's murder. Deeks storms into Lindsay's office demanding to know why they got him fired. Even after Lindsay explains it was because he kills young women he repeatedly says "you hurt me" and the only reason he was able to get his job was because of her, making him believe in the good in the world. After he leaves, Lindsay is terrified but his current state of mind and asks Helen to check on Bakey, without revealing any information of Deeks. It is discovered that Deeks did kill Bakey, by drowning him in his own bathtub and the police find the body. Helen asks for a name and Lindsay, after some coaxing, give her Deeks' name and he is arrested. At the hearing Deeks' new attorney manages to get the charges dropped by arguing Lindsay broke privilege by giving Helen his name. Deeks runs up to Lindsay saying while he is free, he is not happy because he considered her a friend and she betrayed him and scream that he is not happy as she leaves. Deeks barges into Lindsay's office to tell her he has never denied being sick or evil and she was his guardian, helping him find his way to be good again, and that while he is crazy, his offer of friendship was genuine. Lindsay was the one thing in his life that was good and then Deeks leaves her office. After he leaves her office, he buys a gun off the street, goes in front of the police station, and shoots himself in the chest. After his death, Lindsay identifies the body and grieves his death, even paying for Stanley to have a proper burial and service.

Episode Appearances

  • Silent Partners
  • Choirboys
  • Special Deliveries
  • Heroes and Villains

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