After years of struggling, Ben Kincaid shuts down his small legal office and decides to make a living doing something that—compared to practicing law in Tulsa—is easy money: playing jazz piano. He buys a minivan to haul his gear, and gets steady gigs playing in a combo at Uncle Earl’s Jazz Emporium. His new career is just starting to take off when a body falls from the Emporium ceiling, knocking the wind out of Kincaid and sending him right back to his old profession. The dead woman is Cajun Lily Campbell, aof the Tulsa music scene and onetime girlfriend of Uncle Earl himself. And Kincaid must be careful as he readies the old jazzman’s defense, because there is a killer on the north side of town who would like nothing more than to hear the piano player’s last tune.
In his thrilling novels of suspense, William Bernhardt takes us into the fault lines of the criminal justice system, where one mistake, a twist of fate, or an explosive secret can mean the difference between justice and its cataclysmic undoing. In Capital Offense, attorney Ben Kincaid stands amid the chaos of a violent collision between vengeance and death-and it’s up to him to discover where the truth lies.
Professor Dennis Thomas arrives at the law office of Ben Kincaid with a bizarre request: Thomas wants to know if Kincaid can help him beat a murder charge-of a killing yet to happen. The professor’s intended victim: a Tulsa cop who had refused to authorize a search for Thomas’s missing wife. For seven days, Joslyn Thomas had lain in the twisted wreckage of her car, dying a horrifically slow death in an isolated ravine. Now, insane with grief, Thomas wants to kill Detective Christopher Sentz. Kincaid warns him not to, but that very same day someone fires seven bullets into the police officer.
Suddenly Kincaid’s conversation with Thomas is privileged and Thomas is begging Kincaid to defend him. Thomas claims he didn’t shoot Sentz-even though he’d wanted to. Something about the bookish, addled Dennis Thomas tugs on Kincaid’s conscience, and against all advice, he decides to represent this troubled man in the center of a media and political firestorm.
But the trial doesn’t go Kincaid’s way, and a verdict of capital murder is bearing down on Dennis Thomas. That’s when Kincaid’s personal private detective, Loving, starts prying loose pieces of a shocking secret. Working in the shadows of the law, using every trick that works, Loving risks his life to construct an entirely new narrative about Detective Sentz, Joslyn Thomas, and madness in another guise: the kind that every citizen should fear, and no one will recognize-until it is too late.
William Bernhardt's bestselling novels explore politics, power, ambition, crime, and the law. Now he scales new heights of suspense as, in one harrowing day, lawyer and former senator Ben Kincaid enters the eye of an international storm, a crisis with consequences beyond calculation.
Kincaid is in a meeting with the president in the Oval Office when Washington suddenly explodes into chaos. Facing an imminent threat to the White House, Kincaid is whisked, along with the president and his advisors, to the underground PEOC – Presidential Emergency Operations Center – built to withstand a nuclear blast, but vulnerable to another kind of attack.
Inside the bunker, defense specialists realize that a malevolent foreign dictator has hacked into the U.S. nuclear defense system and now has a finger on the trigger of America's most dangerous weapons. The dictator's message is clear: Heed his demands or suffer unfathomable destruction.
Forced to make critical, split-second decisions, the president seems to be falling apart under the pressure. The vice president wants to strip him of his powers – a move that could have a disastrous impact on national defense. But even during this time of upheaval, in order for the president to be removed, there must be a trial. With the clock winding down, Kincaid has precious little time to defend the president.
While Kincaid faces the trial of his life, legendary CIA agent Seamus McKay races through the clogged streets of Washington, searching for a hidden command center – guarded by murderous fanatics – that now controls U.S. ballistic missiles.
Two sides of one unforgettable story, McKay and Kincaid home in on their targets. One uses a gun – and any weapon he can get his hands on; the other employs his intuition and the law. And in William Bernhardt's spectacular thriller, as both move closer and closer to uncovering a world-shattering plot, the ultimate act of betrayal is launched from the heart of America's capitol itself.
In his bestselling legal thrillers, William Bernhardt has explored the dark side of contemporary politics, power, and the law. Now Bernhardt turns back the clock to the city of Cleveland, Ohio, in the fall of 1935. Based on true events and new discoveries about Eliot Ness, Nemesis is a brilliantly told story featuring this legendary lawman's fateful duel with a terrifyingly new kind of criminal: America 's first serial killer.
In Chicago, Eliot Ness had created 'the Untouchables,' the fabled team of federal agents who were beyond corruption and who finally put Al Capone behind bars. Now the headline-grabbing Ness has been moved to Cleveland, where a new mayor desperately needs some positive publicity. The heroic, squeaky-clean Fed is the perfect man to become the city's director of public safety, but by the time Ness starts his new job, a killer has started a career of his own. And this man is as obsessed with blood and mayhem as Eliot Ness is obsessed with justice.
One by one, bodies are found, each one decapitated and uniquely dissected with a doctor's skill and a madman's bent. The police are baffled, the population is terrorized, and newspaper headlines blare about the so-called 'Torso Killer.' Though it's not his turf, Ness is forced to cross bureaucratic boundaries and take over the case, working with a dogged, street-smart detective and making enemies every step of the way. The more energy Ness pours into the investigation, the more it takes over his life, his marriage, even his untouchable reputation. Because in Cleveland, there is only one true untouchable: a killer who has the perfect hiding place and the perfect plan for destroying Eliot Ness.
From the first primitive use of forensic psychology to a portrait of America battling the Great Depression and a man battling his own demons, Nemesis is a masterwork of mystery, murder, and vivid, dynamic historical suspense.
Bestselling author William Bernhardt is an unsurpassed master at blending psychological suspense with gripping, surprise-filled legal action. Now, Bernhardt and his crusading attorney Ben Kincaid return in a thrilling story of love, hate, and the power of a courtroom to separate deception from the truth.
In Tulsa, Ben Kincaid has built a national reputation as a stalwart defense attorney who will fight tirelessly for his clients. In Evanston, Illinois, Johnny Christensen has built a national reputation as a sadistic bigot who beat and stabbed a gay man and left him to die. When Johnny's mother comes to Ben and begs him to defend her son, he has one secret reason for saying no.
But while Ben turns down the case, his younger, beautiful partner, Christina McCall, does not. Traveling to Chicago and facing an explosion of controversy and deadly violence surrounding the trial, Christina steps into a case that is already nearly lost. Her client's only defense is his claim that he left his victim bludgeoned but alive. To prove that someone else committed the actual murder, Christina needs a little bit of evidence – and a good motive to go with it.
When unforeseen circumstances force Ben Kincaid to enter the trial, the defense attorney sees only one way to prove Johnny's innocence. But Ben's plan means luring a killer out of the woodwork – even though he may kill again…
A novel of gut-wrenching twists and surprises, this thriller brilliantly explores the passions between lovers – and the passions behind society's most heinous crimes. Once again, the remarkable William Bernhardt makes us challenge every assumption, second-guess every judgment, and feel the terror of the truth.
Susan Pulaski loves Las Vegas, she is the perfect fit for the city and for her job: unraveling the minds of deviant personalities- until a killer begins decorating Sin City with the horribly disfigured bodies of once beautiful young wom en. White- knuckling her way to the center of the case, Pulaski becomes the key player in a desperate hunt for a killer who believes he has found divine inspiration in the works of Edgar Allan Poe. But even with the assistance of Darcy O'Bannon, a twenty-five-year-old autistic savant astonishing skills, Pulaski is in more danger than she knows. Bernhardt is the author of "Primary Justice" and "Murder One".