New Year's Eve in Chicago: time for bone-chilling cold, foot-stomping parties, and a frozen corpse in a dumpster. It's a pleasant surprise for Detective Paul Turner and every other member of the city's gay community when the stiff turns out to be Albert Meade, the homophobic judge who'd just voted to uphold as constitutional a Du Page County law forbidding any business or government agency from treating gay people equally. The field of suspects is obviously rich, but none of them, evidently, is close to home, since the judge's son Mike went back to school early, his daughter Pam is on vacation in California, and his boss, Chief Circuit Judge James Wadsworth, smilingly insists that there's no friction among any of his judges (a Mr. Rogers diagnosis that Turner's very next witness is happy to dispute). Even so, the judge's own movements on the last night of his life go way beyond the merely suspicious: Instead of taking off for his scheduled conference in Montreal, he was seen at the Au Naturel with an attractive male dancer--though seen by the world's worst witness, a street hustler who disappears after Turner's initial round of questioning and reappears as dead as the judge. When the cheering for Meade's murder stops, Turner finds that even more than his three previous cases (Another Dead Teenager, 1995, etc.), this one adroitly exposes the limits of his uneasily semi-public attitude toward his own sexuality.