For Deputy District Attorney Samantha Kincaid's 32nd birthday, she gets an unusual gift: a homicide call out. The crime scene is in the elite Hillside neighborhood in Portland, Oregon. The victim is hotshot investigative reporter Percy Crenshaw, who has been bludgeoned to death in his carport.
Tensions in the city have been running high. The previous week, a police officer shot and killed an unarmed mother of two in what he claims was self-defense. In the aftermath, protestors have waged increasingly agitated anti-police protests. Crenshaw's death, it seems, is not unrelated - within a matter of hours, police arrest two young men who appear to have embarked on a crime spree in the aftermath of the protests.
The case looks straightforward, especially when one of the suspects confesses. But then the man recants, claiming coercive police tactics, and Samantha finds herself digging for more evidence in a search that leads her through an elaborate maze of connections between the city's drug trade and officers in the bureau.