Throughout Minority Report (2002), the Precogs foresee any murder that is going to be happened in the city.

Anderton's superior, Lamar Burgess (Max von Sydow) shoots agent Danny Witwer (Colin Farrell). This is absolutely a murder.

Why didn't the Precogs foresee this murder?

2 Answers 2


It's because, at that point in time, the precogs are offline.

Remember that, after finding out that Agatha was the precog who yielded minority reports, Anderton kidnapped her. Agatha is the strongest, and the other two precogs aren't able to function without her, bringing the system offline. Burgess took the opportunity while the precogs were offline to kill Witwer. His dialogue in the scene, just before he fires, calls attention to this:

Shh. Do you know what I hear? Nothing. No footsteps up the stairs, no hovercraft out the window, no clickety-click of little spiders. Do you know why I can't hear any of those things, Danny? Because right now, the precogs can't see a thing.

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    They were offline when the murder happened... but why didn't they foresee the murder BEFORE they were offline?
    – Shiz Z.
    Dec 25, 2014 at 2:19
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    At the beginning of the film we're shown a crime of passion, where the prediction comes a very short time before the attempted murder. Perhaps Burgess's murder of Witwer was a similar spur-of-the-moment decision, where the precogs wouldn't have had much time to foresee it. Remember that the murder only came about because (a) the precogs were offline, and (b) Witwer was beginning to figure out what was going on. Had (b) in particular not happened, Burgess might not have decided to shoot him at that moment.
    – Kyralessa
    Dec 25, 2014 at 5:24

There is, unfortunately, not a good answer for this. The movie is riddled with logical flaws, such as the fact that John's authorization from entering the building where the precogs "dream" isn't removed when he was being chased for three days.

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