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July 28, 2015

Film Adaptation Synopsis: Murder on the Naval Base by Behcet Kaya

Treatment for a theatrical feature or television film of the book, Murder on the Naval Base, by author Behcet Kaya, a novel about a U.S. Navy officer accused of killing his wife and her lover.

The story's main character, a respected naval officer, goes through a tumultuous military court-martial to prove his innocence.

Murder on the Naval Base 
Film Treatment


On a windy afternoon in the wake of a hurricane, a naval officer and a woman are shot to death at a naval base officers' club in the South. Another officer, the husband of the murdered woman, is charged with both killings. He claims he is innocent and must go through the hell of a general court-martial to prove his innocence.


Murder on the Naval Base follows the same suspenseful route of classic military courtroom drama film adaptations.

All of the elements surrounding the two murders, including events and relationships tracing back for decades, are brought into play on the complex chessboard of a U.S. Navy court-martial.

As the tension mounts through the testimonies of prosecution and defense witnesses, the drama reaches a surprisingly-logical conclusion.


  • Anderson Garrett Belguzar, 28 - U.S. Navy officer charged with murdering his wife, Bevin O'Hara-Belguzar, and her lover, Lt. Charles McPhearson.
  • Attorney James Alpine - Anderson Belguzar's lawyer.
  • Charles McPhearson III - Anderson Belguzar's former friend and romantic rival.
  • Bevin O'Hara-Belguzar - Anderson Belguzar's wife and Lt. Charles McPhearson's lover.


  • Elizabeth Russell - Charles McPhearson III's wife and attempted seducer of
  • Anderson Belguzar back in his naval academy days.
  • Admiral Charles McPhearson, Sr. - Lt. McPhearson's father.
  • Judge Michael L. Rosenberg - Justice in Anderson Belguzar's court-martial.
  • LCDR Robert Hardigree - Prosecuting attorney.
  • Lt. Ashley Stevenson - Defense attorney.
  • Machas "Mike" Chertoff - Private investigator who essentially solves the case against Anderson Belguzar.


  • Mrs. Lydia McPhearson - Admiral McPhearson, Sr.'s wife and Lt. McPhearson's mother.
  • Alexia McPhearson - Lt. McPhearson's younger sister.
  • Patricia McPhearson - Lt. McPhearson's younger sister.
  • George Spear - Upperclassman at Annapolis Naval Academy whose brutal hazing of Anderson Belguzar is stopped by Lt. McPhearson. 
  • "Smiley" (Lt. Steven Underwood) - Anderson Belguzar's ECMO officer on the Prowler aircraft.
  • Thomas Rudder - Anderson Belguzar's civilian lawyer.
  • Detective Igor Swatskaya - Had a brief fling with Elizabeth Russell and gives investigator Mike Chertoff the psychiatric records that help Chertoff close in on Elizabeth as a possible suspect in the murders of both homicide victims.
  • Lt. Christopher Hunter - JAG prosecuting attorney.


  • Lt. Abdel Menendez - Eyewitness to the murders.
  • Brantley Casper - Day manager at the officers' club. 
  • Theodor Hopkins - U.S. Coast Guard officer.
  • Mathew Johnson - Shore patrolman.
  • Dr. Farley Smith - Chief medical examiner for Groden County.
  • Donald Belafino - Special Agent, NCIS.
  • Dale Thomas - Forensics Investigator, NCIS.
  • Olga Alton - Surprise witness.


  • Rear Admiral Brunell - Anderson Belguzar's first commanding officer.
  • Det. R.J. Kilburn - Detective for the Groden County Sheriff's Office.


One afternoon at the Murat Officers' Club, located on a naval base in Groden, Florida, the club's heavy double doors suddenly fly open, blowing in debris and dust driven by fringe winds from a Hurricane Lori.

A solitary khaki-clad figure wearing tan combat boots, dark sunglasses, and a cap slung low over the face enters the lobby with a Beretta clutched in one hand. The shooter enters the dining room, takes a few steps, finds the intended targets and steps backward without turning.

With legs spread, the shooter raises the Beretta with both hands and without hesitation points at a table occupied by a beautiful brunette and her male companion. The assailant fires two rapid rounds, the first directed at the woman and the other at her male companion.

It is all over in an instant.

The woman slumps against the back of her chair. The male officer, in the midst of jumping to his feet, falls to the floor. A moment of eerie silence descends on the room and then chaos erupts as the few remaining diners scramble to get out of the way.

Twelve hours before the murders, Lt. Anderson Garrett Belguzar is hiding in a closet, his body curled and his head resting on his knees. He feels trapped and confined in his small apartment, which he shares with his wife, Bevin O'Hara.

He goes outside and starts to walk. He comes to a crowded, noisy street and continues to walk, away from the people and noise. When he reaches the naval base entry gate, he walks past it and turns onto an unpaved road, paralleling the swampland bordering the base.

As he walks, he talks silently to himself about his deteriorating marriage. Eventually, he walks back toward his apartment.

The next morning, Lt. Belguzar opens his eyes and finds himself face down and fully dressed. His left hand hangs over the side of the bed; his right hand clutches his wife Bevin's hand-written note. He sits up and rereads the message: "Casino Hotel - Biloxi."

Lt. Belguzar changes into shorts and a T-shirt, goes into the kitchen, and wolfs down some juice and a bagel. He leaves the apartment and drives off, determined to confront wife Bevin and her lover Lt. Charles McPhearson III, his former best friend.

When he stops at a gas station after getting a flat tire, he is confronted by two civilian police officers who have pulled in behind him. He is ordered out of his car, identifies himself and is frisked but not placed under arrest.

He is told by the officers that he must come to the Groden County Sheriff's Office, to which he agrees.

At the station, Lt. Belguzar is informed that police have responded to an all-points bulletin issued by the base commander at NAS Groden. The police officer also informs him there has been a double murder at the Murat Officers' Club and it may be why he's being detained.

Lt. Belguzar is escorted back to NAS Groden, where he is interrogated by NCIS. Although he denies any wrongdoing, Lt. Belguzar is officially charged with the murder of his wife and Lt. McPhearson.

In his holding cell, his anger replaced with sadness and confusion, the suspect closes his eyes and thinks back to his first meeting with wife-to-be, Bevin O'Hara.


Lt. Anderson Belguzar meets Bevin when she is a secretary at his flight school and has shown interest in him. Anderson makes a date with her to meet at the officers' club after work.

A nervous Anderson arrives early at the club; soon Bevin arrives and they begin their date, exchanging small talk and exploring each other's backgrounds.

Bevin reveals that she lost both parents by the time she was fifteen. Anderson tells her that his father was killed in a training accident before he was born, and his mother died when he was 14 years old.

As the evening progresses, the conversation turns lighter, and Anderson relaxes in Bevin's company.


The following morning, Lt. Belguzar is taken to an interview room where he is introduced to his appointed defense attorney, JAG Officer Lt. Ashley Stevenson and her assistant, LN1 Pete Levinson.

For several hours, Ashley goes over in detail Anderson's whereabouts for the past several months, particularly the past twenty-four hours.

The reality of what is happening to Lt. Anderson Belguzar starts to sink in. Who killed Bevin and Charles, and why? Those unanswerable questions plague his thoughts. Worse, the media has latched onto a sensational story.

Attorney James Alpine, a successful African American lawyer, sits in his richly appointed Santa Monica office on Wilshire Boulevard.

His secretary buzzes him on the intercom and tells him that U.S. Marine lawyer Thomas Rudded has arrived to see him. Rudder, tall and balding, fills Alpine in on Lt. Belguzar's predicament and explains that he has been asked to find the best civilian defense attorney in America to defend him.

Alpine agrees to see Belguzar... and the adventure begins.

  • Written and created by Behcet Kaya 
  • © All rights reserved
    Writers Guild of America
  • Registration #1626418
  • States Copyright Office