When Benny Batiste's head winds up on a Georgetown parking meter, defense attorney Stuart Clay has a case that has the District of Columbia in an uproar. Police charge homeless Cleveland Barnes-wearing a green army raincoat, a battered top hat, and bloodied Bally loafers-with murder. Stuart thinks Cleveland is a hapless street person who filched some shoes, but nothing more. Homicide Detective Rhondo Touhey insists that Stuart is dead wrong. By the end, the reader must watch Stuart Clay connect the dots between a band of homeless revolutionaries, some aging New York mobsters, and DC's urban renaissance.