|←||SVU, Episode 12.12||→|
|Production number: 12012|
First aired: 5 January 2011
| Written By|
A young woman's past as the unwilling star of a series of child pornography videos comes back to haunt her when she is attacked by a former fan.
The episode begins when Larissa Welsh’s boyfriend visits her apartment when she doesn't turn up to work one morning. The landlady lets him in, but when he finds the door latched shut, he breaks in and finds his girlfriend tied to a chair wearing only underwear and pig-tails. Larissa’s rapist, Eldon Balogh, comes out naked, wearing a clear plastic mask and attacks the boyfriend, and after a scuffle knocks him unconscious.
Detectives Olivia Benson and Elliot Stabler talk to the doctors at the hospital where Larissa and her boyfriend are being treated. They learn that the attacker shaved Larissa from the neck down. Larissa’s boyfriend Patrick Binder admits that Larissa was shy; it took Larissa two years to open up to a relationship. He says that Larissa hated the name “Brandy,” which was the name stitched on the underwear Larissa was wearing. Detectives Stabler and Fin questions two young girls who have encountered the suspect. They all admit that the man films them and sexually abuses them.
Stabler finds child porn videos and photos in Balogh’s apartment in Park Slope. Pedophile rings have trading symbols that allow them to identify each other. Balogh is clearly a member of a pedophile ring. Larissa is missing from the hospital. Benson and Stabler search the hospital for Eldon Balogh. They find Larissa and Balogh in room 820. Larissa has been attacked again, and Stabler beats on the offender. After reviewing evidence, detectives find that Larissa was “Brandy” with the star birthmark from the rape videos. She was only a child when the videos were filmed. Larissa admits that men recognize her as Brandy from the video all of the time. She knows that it was one of the fans that raped her, rather than the man who raped her as a child. In police custody, Balogh said he had been looking for Brandy for years. He defends himself by saying that is wasn’t rape because the love was pure and natural. Apparently an elderly man named Orville Underwood knew Brandy as a child and he led Balogh to Larissa.
Benson and Stabler visit Underwood’s home, where they find the old man gasping for breath. Underwood was suspected of raping Brandy 10 years ago, and ever since he has been tormented by men who want to fulfill a sexual fantasy. The pillowcase from Underwood’s home matches the pillowcase with child porn found at Balogh’s. Underwood’s dried semen is found on a child porn photo. Underwood, who became a lawyer after his rape case in 1996, claims he never raped anyone.
While awaiting bail, Balogh was murdered in Rikers after bragging about having sex with his victims. The detectives question Larissa about Underwood, but the last time she saw him was at the rape trial ten-years ago. She is positive Underwood was her childhood rapist. Benson and Stabler want to put Daniel on trial as new accuser because he was in Underwood’s video with Larissa. Larissa positively identifies Daniel Brooks in one of the videos from the 1990s. The video triggers a memory of Daniel burying peanut butter jars in the backyard with notes in them. He would place note to his parents in them and call them wishing jars. Larissa had buried a wristband from Daniel in her foster parents backyard; she wished that Daniel might find her. The detectives dig up the wristband, and the lab finds five partial DNA markers.
Using the DNA, they find that Daniel was reported missing in 1995 when he was twelve. Since then, he has been arrested for shoplifting and prostitution. He owns an abandoned factory in lower Manhattan. Daniel is found filming child porn in the abandoned warehouse, where Stabler and Benson arrest him. At the police station Daniel tells Stabler and Benson that he is not a victim anymore. The psychologist says that Daniel raping children is a way to take control of his own life. Child porn books are found hidden at Underwood’s house. They charge Underwood with conspiracy to commit rape. Underwood argues on his own defense, saying that fiction is protected under the first amendment and there are no photos and/or no children were harmed in the writing of these books.
The opposing side argues that Larissa was hurt after her rapist followed Underwood’s rape instructions. Larissa’s lawyer claim that Balogh highlighted sentences from Underwood’s written instructions, but Balogh cannot back this up because of his murder. After review, the judge reluctantly grants the defense motion for dismissal. The argument fails to present a strong case, but a stronger case would have a chance. Larissa wants Daniel to testify. She visits Riker’s Island to talks to him. Daniel refuses to testify, but whispers something in Larissa's ear.
The next day Underwood calls 911 to alert them about a girl named Brandy, who barged into his house with a gun. When police get to the door, two gunshots are heard from inside. Larissa is found holding a gun and Underwood is dead on the bed, shot in the chest and head. As Larissa surrenders, there's the sound of crying and Benson finds a young girl in the bathroom wearing very little who was almost molested by Underwood. Larissa reveals that at Rikers, Daniel told her that Underwood is still going after young girls. Christina, the young girl Underwood was about to rape is taken away in an ambulance and Hardwicke says that since Larissa killed Underwood while rescuing Christina, its use of deadly force while defending a third person and will not be charged.
- Christopher Meloni as Detective Elliot Stabler
- Mariska Hargitay as Detective Olivia Benson
- Richard Belzer as Sergeant John Munch
- Ice-T as Detective Odafin 'Fin' Tutuola
- B.D. Wong as Dr. George Huang
- Tamara Tunie as M.E. Melinda Warner
- Dann Florek as Captain Donald Cragen (credit only)
- Melissa Sagemiller as A.D.A. Gillian Hardwicke
- John Cullum as Judge Barry Moredock
- James Chen as C.S.U. Technician Adrian Sung
- Stephen Gregory as Dr. Kyle Beresford
- Taryn Manning as Larissa Welsh
- Devin Ratray as Eldon Balogh
- David Patrick Kelly as Orville Underwood
- Brian Justin Crum as Daniel Brooks
- Michelangelo Milano as Patrick Binder
- Lucy Martin as Mrs. Laden
- Peyton List as Young Larissa Welsh
- Sabrina Carpenter as Paula
- Haley Murphy as Kelly
- Mitch Chalhoub as Michael
- Catherine Missal as Heather
- Joseph A. Halsey as Uni
- Stephen Hill as Hospital Guard
- Andrea Weston as Nurse
- Sydney Richardson as Christina
- Hardwicke: The guy's not dumb, he went to law school.
- Finn: Since when was that mutually exclusive?
Background information and notes
- Two of the episode's guest stars, Sabrina Carpenter and Peyton Roi List became stars on two Disney Channel series, Sabrina Carpenter plays Maya Hart on "Girl Meets World" and Peyton Roi List played Emma Ross on "Jessie", respectively.
- While investigating the Larissa Welsh versus Orville Underwood rape trial, the detective found several articles on-line. The byline on the New York Ledger article "Underwood Trial Enters Third Week" was Jeff Crye and the byline on the article "Arrest Made in Kidnapping" was James Bedark. Both work in the Law & Order: SVU Art Department, Jeff Crye as the Art Director and James Bedark as the Art Department Coordinator.
- This episode, part of a doubleheader, marked the series' move to its new timeslot of Wednesdays at 10:00 pm E/P (9 pm CT). This was likely in response to less than stellar ratings in the 9 pm timeslot and the pairing with Law & Order: Los Angeles not having become the power block of programming everyone had hoped.
- Peyton List is erroneously listed in the transcribed end credits as having played the part of Larissa Welsh, a part actually played by Taryn Manning who was listed in the guest titles at the beginning of the episode. Peyton actually only played the younger Larissa shown in the videos.
- Visible on Detective Olivia Benson's desk in this episode is a photo of her and President Barack Obama. This photo is from an event held at the Time Warner Center on Columbus Circle. Cropped out of the photo is journalist Barbara Walters.
Episode scene cards
701 East 13th Street
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