|Writer||Richard Catalani (story)|
David Rambo (story)
Jacqueline Hoyt (teleplay)
Carol Mendelsohn (teleplay)
|Original Airdate||January 25, 2007|
|Previous Episode: Sweet Jane"|
|Next Episode: Meet Market"|
Redrum is the thirteenth episode of season seven of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
In order to snare a major drug dealer who has gone into hiding after killing a politician, Catherine, Keppler, Brass and McKeen initiate a reverse forensics operation to stage a crime scene and lure him out. Unfortunately, this proves difficult when the other CSIs start seeing through the bluff.
A Nevada politician, Danilo Zamesca (from the "A Bullet Runs Through It" two-parter), is shot and killed in his parked car in the outskirts of Vegas. On the scene, the CSIs find a torn photograph of him apparently using drugs, which would have been damning for his career since he had made it his mission to fight drug dealing, and a dropped soda cup on the ground. The crime lab processes the evidence and find a fingerprint on the cup's straw and shell casings from the 9mm used which turn out to belong to Simon Thomas, the biggest drug trafficker on the west coast. When LVPD try to pick him up at a club he owns, he turns out to have been gone for weeks. At a breakfast, Catherine, Brass, Keppler and McKeen discuss the case and Keppler suggests something radical to lure Thomas out into the open: reverse forensics, i.e. faking a crime scene. Catherine and Brass are sceptical about the idea since it will involve devieving their colleagues, but McKeen immediately becomes interested and the plan goes into motion.
While the rest of the team are on other assignments, Catherine, Brass and Keppler arrange the fake crime scene, planning to recreate the Zamesca scene and make it look like the same killer was responsible for another murder. Sara investigates the death of a woman named Monique Carter, an ex-lawyer who appears to have died of a drug overdose. However, the autopsy reveals that she was killed by blunt force trauma to the head and her arm was shot up with drugs post-mortem to make it look like an overdose. In the meantime, Catherine and Keppler make a plan to create a crime scene Brass hires a small-time drug dealer, Edwin "Rat" Dennison, to serve as their patsy in exchange for getting a new life elsewhere. The group has a narcotics cop, Ezekiel Holstein, serve as the fake victim. In addition to recreating the tire tracks and shoe prints from the Zamesca crime scene, they recreate the bloody car by spraying the inside with Holstein's blood, taking crime scene photos of him covered with his own blood and then throwing a spent 9mm slug covered with it inside after breaking the window.
Meanwhile, Sofia Curtis continues investigating the Monique Carter case. While questioning her landlord, she learns that Monique was living with someone, but he doesn't know his name. In the meantime, the case starts to deteriorate when Nick discovers a connection between Monique Carter and Zamesca; the tattoo on her arm is the same as that of a woman in the torn photo and a piece of seat material is the same as that of a fragment found in the sand at Zamesca's crime scene. Nick becomes suspicious of Catherine when she ignores the evidence in order to stick to her fake crime scene, even more so when he watches a press conference in which McKeen announces that Dennison has confessed to killing Holstein as well as Zamesca. The fake case crumbles even more when Warrick examines the slug that supposedly went through Holstein's skull and is surprised to find that it is covered in blood, but doesn't have any bone or glass stuck to it as it would have if it went through the window and a human skull.
When Nick looks deeper into the case and, unable to find the Holstein case file or evidence, is warned off by Catherine, he gathers the other CSIs and they decide to dig deeper on their own. Out of fear that Catherine, Keppler and McKeen have somehow become corrupt, they investigate behind their backs. When Nick looks at the bloody car, he discovers that there is no brain matter on skull fragments anywhere inside. An examination of the blood sampled from the scene reveals that it had had anti-coagulants added to it to keep it from clotting. Finally, Warrick discovers that the car's window was smashed with a sparkplug and not a bullet. Meanwhile, with Thomas Simon out in public again, Brass arrests him for Zamesca's murder and finds a 9mm handgun on him. Unfortunately, that becomes the moment that the case collapses, as McKeen failed to properly in form the district attorney and, unable to separate the fake case from the real one, she decides not to file charges.
With the fake case gone, Catherine and Keppler tell the truth to the rest of the team, who are less than pleased to find out. The team then pursues the Monique Carter case full-time, hoping to tie Thomas to her. Her cell phone records show that it was used to call several associates of Simon after her death. When Sara and Nick search her apartment, they find his fingerprints on her pull-out bed. To seal the deal, they find Monique Carter's hair and blood on the gun's handle. In the end, Thomas Simon is charged with her murder. On another bright note, a piece of legislation to fight drug dealing sponsored by Zamesca before his death is passed into law.