Kathleen Gale is an intimidating defense attorney who becomes a mentor for Callie. She is confident and tough on the outside, but hiding some deeper secrets inside. She is portrayed by Constance Zimmer.
Kathleen had a rough upbringing and was surprised when her mother died of an unexpected heart attack. After this event, Kathleen stopped being surprised by things and learned to expect the unexpected. This contributed to her becoming an excellent attorney. At some-point in her career, the FBI began investigating her.
Kathleen is a no-bullshit attorney who isn't afraid to bend the rules to get the job done for her clients.
Kathleen is a middle-aged woman with strong facial features, a slim build, and shoulder-length black hair with short bangs. She has brown eyes and usually wears suits that are accentuated by her confidence and powerful persona.
In Capoeira, Callie arrives at Legal Aid for work and meets Kathleen Gale, the new tenant who has issues with the drab interior. Callie learns from Teresa and Cary that Legal Aid is moving into the new Legal Aid building downtown for a budget issue. Cary explains that Kathleen is a defense attorney who split from her firm and is now opening a small non-profit defense job at the former Legal Aid building, along with a few of her junior associates.
That night, Callie brings Jared's case to Kathleen Gale, who asks if she wants to smoke weed or drink with her but Callie refuses. Kathleen warns her that not winding down at the end of the day will catch up with her. The case is a loser as the jury will believe the guards over an inmate, and excessive use would be denied. Callie continues to convince Kathleen to help Jared, though she’s apprehensive. Kathleen is impressed by her idealism yet willing to fight, so she agrees to help but on one condition; that Callie quit Legal Aid and work for her. Callie accepts the offer.
In Arraignment Day, Callie returns to her new clinic where she is nicknamed an impulse buy by her new colleagues Tony and Rowan. The paralegals judge Kathleen for her impulsive choice to open the clinic but Callie reminds them that they did the same thing. Kathleen enters and announces they are all picking up cases at the arraignment court from PD overflow. Kathleen is still working on Jerod’s case, but pro-bono cases don’t keep the lights on. At the jail, Callie sees Malika, but Shai Haraz, Callie’s client intercepts their meeting. Callie asks her client to wait while she speaks to Malika.
Callie fills Kathleen in on her meeting with Shai, who was busted for indecent exposure while with her girlfriend in a car. They can’t call Shai’s parents as they don’t know she’s queer. Kathleen tells Callie to convince Shai she’s wrong as a plea deal is a wrong direction to take, though Callie refuses. Kathleen takes the case instead.
In court, Kathleen stands before Judge Richard Patton, who is surprised that someone of her stature had time to spend in a misdemeanor court. She brilliantly tells Patton that two women kissing in a car is not indecent exposure but rather homophobia. She explains Shai’s great past and family, who are present in the courtroom. Shai is released on her recognizance and a date set.
In the hall after the hearing, Callie confronts Kathleen on outing Shai to her parents but failing to tell the judge they were present. Kathleen didn’t tell Judge Patton that Shai's father was in the court, reminding her that the courtroom is a theater and she has to manipulate the judge and jury. She tells Callie to read the jury and the judge to put on a show. She also didn't say the parents were in the court but only gestured, though gestures aren't recorded in court documents. She is later impressed by Callie putting on a show for the same judge, and claps for Callie.
In Whoosh, Pow, Bang, Kathleen enters the DA's office by on her way into a meeting with DA Matthews for Jerod’s case. In a private room, Calle tells Kathleen that Yvonne wants to take the deal which Kathleen isn’t surprised by but doesn’t want Callie to settle. The DA on Jerod’s case enters. Kathleen and Callie meet with the DA who offers one year in prison though he’ll only serve six with good behavior. When they leave, Callie is upset that Kathleen isn’t doing more for Jerod as she doesn’t want to go to trial. She doesn’t want to drag Jerod through prison for longer than a year which he will be if they pursue a trial. She tells Callie that Jerod should take the deal.
Kathleen and Callie meet with the DA where Kathleen refuses his deal due to Jerod’s claims that Deputy Gaffney took his medication. They think Deputy Gaffney planned to sell the anti-psychotics to addicts. When mixed with cocaine or meth the euphoria experienced is heightened. They have a potential pattern since Deputy Gaffney was fired from a corrections job in New Mexico for suspicion of stealing inmates’ medication. Kathleen remarks how great Callie is despite having just passed the bar. The DA notes that suspicion isn’t proof, but is willing to give a deal for six months jail time for Jerod. Kathleen asks for his real best offer, his bottom line, which is three months plus time served, which gets him released in 30 days. She thanks him for going out on a limb for her, but decides to take the case to trial.
In the elevator, Callie confronts Kathleen about going to trial since it means Jerod would be in prison longer. Kathleen explains that they could get the city to settle for millions with a lawsuit as they can expand their caseload. She refuses to take the offer to Jerod, as she knows that when he gets out he’ll have money for a home and follow-up care as opposed to what he’ll have if he takes the deal.
In Because, Men, Callie tries to track down a family member of Jerod’s but doesn’t have much luck as his sister won’t answer. Mariana inquires about the phone call so Callie explains the DA’s offer and Kathleen suddenly wanting to take the case to trial, putting Jerod in jail for even longer. Mariana asks if that’s legal, which it is, though it is ethically gray. Kathleen thinks that Jerod can’t decide for himself right now, which is why Callie is trying to track down his sister though Kathleen isn’t apprised of the situation. Mariana points out that Callie doesn’t trust Kathleen, though Callie remembers how Marcus told her about Kathleen leaving her old firm under shady circumstances. She worries that she made a mistake working for Kathleen.
Tony compliments Callie on going to trial with the possibility of a settlement, so she asks Tony why Kathleen left the firm she built. The other attorney, Rowan, thinks Kathleen got tired of representing rich clients. Callie wonders why they followed blindly so Rowan admits that a friend of his was fired from his job after he transitioned and no one at the firm would take his case, but Kathleen did pro-bono and won. Callie notes that he owes Kathleen but he corrects that he‘s here because he wants to be like her. Tony is here merely to be taught by the best.
Callie arrives at work and Kathleen calls her out on contacting Jerod’s sister, Zoe, who called Kathleen. She invites Callie into the meeting so they can see if she’s here to derail their case. Zoe explains the circumstances are Jerod's homelessness and his history with mental health. Kathleen sympathizes and tells Zoe to blame the system. She thinks a trial will give Jeord a better chance at starting over with enough money to get proper medical treatment and housing. Callie interrupts that it could also mean he’s in jail for over a year awaiting trial. Zoe asks for another option which forces Kathleen to tell her about the DA’s plea deal of three months plus time served but he’ll have to plead guilty and have a record. The next time he's arrested they’ll treat him worse as he’s already a felon, and if he gets two more serious felonies he’ll face 25-years to life. Zoe thinks a trial is the best option but wants to consult Jerod about his options since the decision is his. Kathleen isn’t sure if he can make those decisions. Zoe thinks they should be careful about assuming mentally ill people aren’t capable of making decisions and taking away their right to advocate on their behalf. Kathleen and Callie exchange a look.
Callie meets with Kathleen as she and Zoe went to see Jerod and he decides to go to trial. She drafted questions for Deputy Gaffney for their interviews, but Kathleen disregards them as she doesn’t plan to give them a preview of their strategy. She then tells Callie to stop questioning her and when Callie tries to intervene, Kathleen snaps at her to stop talking. She points out that this is Callie’s third job since law school, she quit her clerkship with a federal appeals judge, and quit legal aid. She warns that if Callie continues this behavior she’ll be looking for her fourth job and no firm will take her based on that record. Callie apologizes but Kathleen tells her that she convinced the judge to move Jerod to an IMD - institute for mental disease, while he awaits trial. She had no intention of letting Jerod sit in jail, and she also got her a new DA on the Yvonne Byers case so they’ll stop giving her the run-around. Callie thanks Kathleen and stresses that she does appreciate the opportunity to learn for her. Kathleen remarks that for this to work, she has to trust her and asks if she can do that. Callie claims that she can so Kathleen instructs her to do a deep-dive on social media for Deputy Gaffney.
In Help, At the office, Kathleen arrives and is presented with coffee and a bag of treats from Tony and Rowan, the other paralegal in the office. She asks Callie how the meeting with the DA went. Callie tells Kathleen about the DA lowering Yvonne’s fines and community service hours, and she also researched Deputy Gaffney. Kathleen tells Callie to meet her in the office in a few minutes to discuss her findings.
Callie enters the office with her laptop to show Kathleen a series of photos of Deputy Gaffney and other Sherriff deputies. The photos include him with large assault rifles, hanging out in large groups, and more. Kathleen sees a photo and that sparks her to agree with Callie on interviewing the other deputies.
Kathleen and Callie meet DA Marc Rothman and his associate Nicolette Baptiste, with Nicolette acknowledging her and Callie's former meeting. The deputies are outside for them to interview, with Callie wanting to speak with Deputy Ross first. Marc leaves to get the Deputy, so Nicolette asks Callie if she got the stain out. Callie claims she did but also didn’t realize Nicolette is in the DA office, with Nicolette clarifying that she is Jamie’s supervisor. Kathleen inquires about who Jamie is but Callie downplays him as just being the DA in her case. DA Rothman enters Deputy Ross, and Kathleen hands the file over to Callie to take charge. They had agreed previously for Callie to ask the questions since the Deputies won’t take her seriously so they will let their guard down. Kathleen assures Callie that at the right moment she’ll swoop in.
Callie presents her case wonderfully and catches Deputy Ross, Gaffney, and Fernandez in lies or exaggerations of the truth. Callie asks Ross if he has any tattoos and Kathleen interrupts to ask if the tattoo he has is reflected in the photo she slides across, which is of a skull with a military helmet on. He denies having the tattoo until Kathleen shows him a full-body image of Ross having the tattoo on his calf. A matching one is on Gaffney’s calf, though he is more hesitant to answer. Fernandez isn’t sure if he’s seen his co-workers with the tattoo. Kathleen asks Gaffney how many of the deputies have the same tattoo, but he claims it’s a brotherhood symbol so he isn't sure. She asks if it’s similar to the Aryan Brotherhood but Rothman and Gaffney’s union rep cut her off. They ask her to either ask more questions about the incident or drop the questioning altogether. Kathleen asks if Gaffney and his deputy friends are members of the Headsman in which the beating of Jerod Murphy was Gaffney's initiation into the gang. The the union rep ends the interview and leaves with Gaffney. Marc asks Kathleen what that was about. She confronts him on handing out settlements to people instead of confronting the gangs inside the Sheriff's department which has led to the gangs beating inmates and intimidating other deputies like Fernandez - who she plans to flip. She also plans to confront Gaffney in court about the beating of Jerod Murphy being his initiation into the gang which allowed him to get the tattoo, drag in all his other deputy friends, and show their tattoos in court. Kathleen and Callie leave triumphantly.
Callie and Kathleen arrive at the office with Rowan forwarding a message to Kathleen’s office. Kathleen re-emerges to tell Callie the DA is dropping the charges and after some debate, they’re offering a cash settlement for signing an NDA. Since it’s a pro-bono case, Jerod will get all the money. Kathleen then proposes turning the office into a copy room. Callie sits down as Jamie texts asking if they can talk.
Callie meets with Jamie, who has recently acquired the position of deputy district attorney, and he warns her that Kathleen Gale is being investigated by the FBI. She doesn't believe his claims despite him warning that he just wants Callie to be careful.
- Callie Adams Foster - Kathleen is impressed by Callie's idealism yet willingness to fight, and agrees to take on a case that Callie suggests despite Kathleen's apprehension about it being a loser case. She also offers Callie a job working for her at the non-profit she is opening, to which Callie accepts.
Notes and Trivia
- Kathleen is the first major female lawyer in the franchise, preceded in Good Trouble by male lawyers Curtis Wilson and Jamie Hunter.
Characters (Good Trouble)
|Main||Callie Adams Foster • Mariana Adams Foster • Malika Williams • Alice Kwan • Gael Martinez • Curtis Wilson • Davia Moss • Dennis Cooper • Jamie Hunter|
|Major||Alex Wood • Andre Johnson • Angela Miller • Benjamin • Bryan • Casey Pierce • Claire Badgley • Dom Williams • Dyonte • Elijah Adrieux • Evan Speck • Yuri Ellwin • Gina Spero • Isaac Hall • Isabella • Joey Riverton • Joseph Turner • Josh Mandela • Kathleen Gale • Kelly • Kendra Zahir • Lindsay Brady • Marcus • Matt • Melina Abdullah • Nicolette Baptiste • Patrisse Cullors • Rachel Boyle • Raj Patil • Rebecca • Ruby • Sam Higgins • Sandra Thompson • Sumi • Teresa • Tony Britton|
|Minor||Bonnie Moss • Cary Plack • Diana • Gwen Tuckerman • Jazmin Martinez • Jeff Maxwell • Jennifer Cooper • Kate Nguyen • Libby Wilson • Margaret Cho • Meera Mattei • Rafael Martinez • Rowan • Tate Wilson • Tolu Eze • Trea Kwan • Yari Clarke|