|←||SVU, Episode 14.01||→|
|Production number: 14001|
First aired: 26 September 2012
| Written By|
Julie Martin & Warren Leight
The Special Victims Unit tries to stop a growing scandal when Captain Cragen is arrested for the murder of an escort.
The SVU squad is reeling from the fallout after Captain Cragen wakes up with a dead escort - a potential witness in an SVU case - in his bed. Tensions run high at the precinct as the detectives contend with District Attorney Paula Foster's investigation of Cragen, as well as the arrival of a tough new captain, Steven Harris. Brian Cassidy treads an increasingly narrow line as an undercover cop in Bart Ganzel's escort organization, as Detective Nick Amaro struggles with the case and his marriage.
Last season's cliffhanger finale ended with a blood-soaked Cragen waking up in his bed next to Carissa, whose throat had been slit.
On the night of the murder, Carissa called Cragen because she feared for her life. Cragen met with Carissa in a diner and at some point during the meal, Carissa slipped a sedative into Cragen's drink. Cragen became groggy and Carissa helped him home, but Cragen has no idea how she ended up murdered.
After discovering Carissa's body, Cragen calls 911 and then Olivia, who arrives moments before police investigators arrive. Cragen has no memory of the night before. When the police arrive, Olivia is asked to leave the scene and Cragen is taken to the station for questioning.
As the SVU squad goes over Cragen's case, they are interrupted by their new interim captain, Captain Harris, who will be keeping a close eye on them. The squad is warned not to investigate Cragen's case. The squad is also introduced to the head of the D.A.'s Public Integrity Unit, Paula Foster and she is also handling Cragen's investigation.
Olivia has a side conversation with Foster to explain the delicate nature of the case and defend Cragen. Foster says that she has to approach the case without bias, but knows that Olivia won't leave Cragen's case alone. She asks Olivia to keep her informed of any information that might help the case.
Cragen's medical examination reveals scratches on his back from Carissa, his fingerprints on the knife, alcohol in his system and her saliva on certain body parts.
As Cragen is interrogated, he explains the events of the previous evening to Foster. According to Cragen, Carissa had left several messages for him in which she claimed to have information about the former governor's murder. She asked to meet with him alone in a nearby diner and then told Cragen that Amaro had been "inappropriate" with her, but he didn't believe her.
Amaro corners Munch in the restroom to grill him for some background information about Cassidy. Amaro suspects that Cassidy might be more involved with Carissa than he lets on, and that he was involved in her murder.
When Munch and Olivia meet with Cassidy on a rooftop, Cassidy tells them that his boss, Ganzel was in love with Cariss and there's no way he would have murdered her. Cassidy bets that Ganzel's rival, Delia was behind Carissa's death. By killing Carissa, Delia could hurt Ganzel and incriminate Cragen at the same time.
Delia stops by Amaro's house to deliver a warning, telling him that Cassidy and Ganzel framed Cragen & that Cragen will throw Amaro under the bus if push comes to shove. Amaro firmly orders Delia to leave.
At his court hearing, Cragen is declared a potential flight risk. The judge orders that, while he is awaiting trial, he will be held in solitary confinement at Rikers Island prison. Olivia tells the other detectives that Cassidy suspects that Delia is to blame, but Amaro suggests that maybe Cassidy is protecting Ganzel by pointing the finger at Delia.
While interviewing Delia, Foster and Olivia learn that Cragen has a past history with escorts, hiring them on numerous occasions. Delia offers Foster and Benson a deal: if they throw out the charges against her, she won't let her escorts testify against Cragen.
After the meeting with Delia, Olivia and Foster go over the facts. Foster tells Olivia that the evidence is stacked up against Cragen and it's starting to seem like a simple open-and-closed case.
Foster says that maybe Cragen isn't the man that Olivia thought that he was, but Olivia is still convinced that Delia is behind this. They decide to take a run at Delia's former booker, Iris to find out if Carissa ever worked for Delia.
Fin and Rollins head over to Iris' apartment to question her about a connection between Carissa and Delia. Iris tells them that Carissa used to work for Delia and that Carissa probably killed the governor to frame Delia, so Delia killed Carissa to frame Cragen & ruin Ganzel.
When the detectives return to Iris' house the next day, Iris is found dead in her bathtub from an apparent suicide.
The SVU team meets to discuss the details of the tangled investigation. During their conversation, they advise Amaro to stay out of the discussion because he spoke to Carissa the night she was murdered which makes him a witness. Amaro suspects Cassidy is behind the rumors of his involvement and possibly more than that.
Olivia and Munch meet with Cassidy to find out if Ganzel has any evidence that can incriminate Delia. Cassidy says that he has evidence against Delia, but getting it would raise Ganzel's suspicions and put his cover at risk.
Meanwhile, Captain Harris advises the rest of the SVU squad to back off the Cragen investigation. Amaro decides to take his investigation of Cassidy to the next level. He interrupts Cassidy's lunch with his mother to grill him about his involvement with Ganzel and Delia.
Amaro suspects that Cassidy is double-dealing with both parties. He pulls his gun on Cassidy, threatening to shoot him if he doesn't tell him the truth.
- Mariska Hargitay as Detective Olivia Benson
- Danny Pino as Detective Nick Amaro
- Kelli Giddish as Detective Amanda Rollins
- Richard Belzer as Sergeant John Munch
- Ice-T as Detective Odafin Tutuola
- Dann Florek as Captain Donald Cragen
- Dean Winters as Detective Brian Cassidy
- Paget Brewster as Public Integrity Unit Bureau Chief Paula Foster
- Brooke Smith as Delia Wilson
- Peter Jacobson as Bart Ganzel
- Pippa Black as Carissa Gibson
- Ron Rifkin as Defense Attorney Marvin Exley
- Laura Benanti as Maria Grazie
- Reg E. Cathey as Defense Attorney Barry Querns
- Jason Cerbone as Defense Attorney Lorenzo Desappio
- Amy Hargreaves as Iris Peterson
- Michael Mastro as Judge D. Serani
- Tamara Tunie as M.E. Melinda Warner
- Adam Baldwin as Captain Steven Harris
- Sue Simmons as Herself
- Alison Fernandez as Zara Amaro
- Stephen Bradbury as Judge Colin McNamara (credit only)
- Edelen McWilliams as CSU Tech Martin
- Matt Burns as Will Brady
- Mary Ann Hay as Joannie Cassidy
- Ian Blackman as DA Investigator
- Marcus Naylor as Sergeant
- Chester Jones III as Uni #1
Background information and Notes
- This episode is a continuance of season 13's season finale Rhodium Nights.
- Paget Brewster previously appeared in the episode Scheherazade.
Episode scene cards
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