|Original Airdate||November 12, 2010|
|Previous Episode: Hide Sight|
|Next Episode: Justified|
Scared Stiff is the eighth episode in the seventh season of CSI: NY.
As the CSIs investigate a case involving a woman who appears to have been scared to death in a supposedly haunted section of Central Park, Mac stumbles on another dead body buried nearby in the same part of the park.
In the morgue, Sid shows Mac the body of a girl in a white dress who died sitting up, arms curled to her chest. Mac notes that the girl was found by a tree in Central Park, and Sid opines that unofficially, it looks like she was scared to death. Sid shows Mac that there’s petichial hemorrhaging in the girl’s eyes, but no signs of strangulation, and though he finds mild cyanosis in her nails, he discovers no evidence she was smothered. He notes a rash behind her ear, and points out that the white dress she’s wearing is old fashioned, indicating her killer may have dressed her. Jo, Hawkes, and Flack canvas the area where the girl was discovered, but find only her footprints, and no sign of a struggle. Hawkes notes that Central Park is rumored to be haunted, and shares some ghost stories with his colleagues. Adam finds a yellow powder on the back of the dress, which Lindsay determines is from someone grabbing the back of it. With a thunderstorm on the way, the CSIs scour Central Park in search of more evidence. Lindsay catches a glimpse of two ghosts skating on the lake, while Mac encounters a man who is most certainly not a ghost exhuming a woman’s body. The man runs off, leaving the body behind… just as the rain starts to pour down. Jo looks at the body and estimates the woman was in her 20s or 30s and has been dead about two weeks from the amount of decomposition.
Hawkes brings Declan “Sully” Sullivan, a ghost hunter who films documentaries about the supernatural world, to the precinct to consult on the case. When Sully tells Hawkes, Flack and Lindsay that he uses sulphur to form a protective circle around the area he stands in before he starts filming, Lindsay realizes it was Sully who grabbed the girl in the park. He admits that he did, telling the CSIs she ran into him and that he was trying to help her, but she just ran off. Sid surprises Mac when he tells him that the second woman appears to have died in 1995; salt from the park appears to have delayed decomposition. The second woman was apparently bludgeoned and stabbed to death, and the CSIs can find no link between them other than that both of their bodies were found in the park. Jo, Hawkes and Adams view Sully’s video and of the night the first victim died, and they find the woman was running from the 72nd Street entrance. Sid discovers the woman died from nitrous oxide poisoning; the gas reacted badly with her anti-depressants. Jo realizes the woman was likely hallucinating before she died. Sid shows Jo bruises under the woman’s arms that rose to the surface. Sid notes that someone must have moved her shortly before her death, likely when she was unconscious. Jo notes that while the woman wasn’t sexually assaulted, she was likely redressed, and she wonders if the man may have left prints behind. Using superglue, Jo and Sid recover prints from under the woman’s armpits. Hawkes gets an ID on the first woman: Isabel Wilde, a fifth grade teacher, but blood trace found on her is a match to a man who died five years ago. Lindsay discovers trace in Isabel’s hair is mortician’s make-up, leading the CSIs to wonder if Isabel was in a morgue before her death.
Sid IDs the second victim as Ronnie Parker—the sister of Chief Ted Carver. Mac tells Carver of his sister’s fate, and the police chief tells Mac that he assumed Ronnie had just disappeared again, something she had a habit of doing. Ronnie disappeared one day, and Carver and his wife took her kids in. Mac vows to find Ronnie’s killer. Flack finds that Sprouse Funeral Home is near Central Park, not far from the location where Isabel ran into the park. Flack, Jo, Lindsay and Hawkes go to the funeral home and find an eerie setup in the basement, complete with nitrous oxide tanks and a mortuary table. Jo finds blonde hair on the table, while Lindsay discovers vintage dresses and a drawer full of women’s purses. The team realizes the owner of the funeral parlor was using nitrous oxide to incapacitate women and control them once they were unconscious, redressing and putting make up on them. Back at the lab, Danny tells Mac that Ronnie Parker’s credit cards are still being used, prompting Mac, joined by Chief Carver, to visit the apartment rented by the person using the cards. When they enter the apartment, no one is there—but a DVD still playing indicates someone was just at the apartment, leaving Mac to suspect the woman knew they were coming. Gordon Sprouse is arrested for Isabel’s murder, but the creepy funeral home proprietor tells Flack and Hawkes that he drugs girls and plays with them—but doesn’t murder them. He says Isabel woke up and ran off. Jo culls through the purses and contacts the women Gordon drugged and dressed up, while Mac is becoming suspicious of Chief Carver….
- Gary Sinise as Mac Taylor
- Sela Ward as Jo Danville
- Carmine Giovinazzo as Danny Messer
- Anna Belknap as Lindsay Messer
- Robert Joy as Sid Hammerback
- A. J. Buckley as Adam Ross
- Hill Harper as Sheldon Hawkes
- Eddie Cahill as Don Flack
Guest Cast Edit
- John Larroquette as Chief Ted Carver
- Sophia Bui as Rosie
- Jeffrey Vincent Parise as Gordon Sprouse
- Jamie Tisdale as Samantha
- Kelly Polk as Isabel Wilde
- Marianne Chambers as Lisa
- Lightfield Lewis as Declan 'Sully' Sullivan
- Anastacia McPherson as Helen