CSI: Crime Scene Investigation s03e18 Episode Script

Precious Metal

(distant siren wails) (helicopter whirring) (distant bird screeches) (thunder rumbles) (engines rewing) (yells) (grunts) Billie! (groaning) Oh, my God, Billie, are you okay? What did you hit? So, according to the girl, one minute she's blasting through the mud and having fun, everything's great, the next thing she knows, she's lying upside down in the dirt, staring at chemical waste.
She called Hazmat.
Now, it's not toxic.
They saw the barrel was buckling, they thought it might explode, so they opened it.
Ugh! Yeah, whoa-ho.
(coughing) Soap mummy.
Adipocere, a.
Mortuary wax.
This is what you get when fatty tissue decomposes in an alkaline environment with limited oxygen.
All you need is a little moisture and enough time.
Anaerobic bacteria digest body fats, converting them into a waxy solid.
Kind of like the way they make vegetable shortening.
I may never eat another French fry.
How long you think he's been in there? How do you know it's a he? Five, six weeks, minimum.
With all this wind and weather, any evidence of the dump is long gone.
We got evidence.
Signed, sealed and delivered.
Gentlemen, saponification occurs most frequently in infant burials.
That's because their bodies have more fat, and their bacterial flora aren't fully developed.
Slowly Hold it.
Look at this.
Something for Catherine.
All right, let's pull the rest of this out.
Now, historically, saponified corpses that maintain their physical features were looked upon as, uh, incorruptible, even saintly.
So, when it happened to children, it just reinforced that notion.
Hand me that foot there, would you? Okay.
(gagging) You know, interestingly enough, since formaldehyde is alkaline and American caskets are sealed, there are more bodies in this country turning to soap now than at any other time in human history.
We are, in fact, the adipocere capital of the world.
USA we're number one.
(horns honking) Are you serious? David lost a body? It happens.
When I was working in Minneapolis, we had two John Smiths come in on the same day.
Sent the wrong one back to Canada.
Anyway, our body's still in the morgue.
David finally processed his ten card.
Guy's name is Keith Mercer.
When did he come in? Found him in an alley off of Fremont in a pile of garbage next to the dumpster.
I guess we got no more crime scene to process, huh? Initially, the police thought he was homeless.
He hadn't bathed, no wallet, watch or keys, and he has scars on his lower legs.
And a nice laceration right here, with ecchymosis on his left temple.
Yeah, cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head.
Could have been an accident.
Could have been a lot of things.
Evidence without context is ambiguous at best.
Did you ever chop wood, split a log? I've seen it done.
You should try it sometime.
I find it relaxing.
The blow here was delivered in a similar fashion.
The temporal bone was hit, driven down hard.
Upper palate smashed.
Most of the teeth gone.
What about the foot? It looks as though that's been sheared off.
Yeah, by something fast and powerful.
Industrial accident? No, industrial accidents are messy.
These cuts are too clean.
My guess single impact.
How about an axe then? Possible.
I'll cast the tool marks.
Body in a drum in the middle of the mountains.
Well, if the head and hands were missing, I'd be saying mob hit.
Could be ritual mutilation or fetish murder.
So, ID from dental records is out.
How about DNA? Bone marrow may still be viable.
My thoughts exactly.
The preferred sample is a large bone with a portion of joint, then we freeze, grind and sequence.
Want a breast or thigh? It's your kitchen.
(whirring) Hey, Sara, I don't want to cross any lines here, but, uh, I've got this buddy who's not going out with anybody No.
No, no, forget it.
Hey, Grissom bailed.
You guys are with me.
He's a cool guy.
I mean, you don't No, Nick.
Listen, just hear me out for a second.
(grinding) (high-pitched whirring) Gone but not forgotten.
DNA hit on the soap mummy? Yeah.
His name was Christian Cutler.
You got to love OODIS.
What's his felony? He wasn't in OODIS.
Department of Defense Registry.
He was in the Army.
An E-5 sergeant, honorably discharged three years ago.
The guy drove tanks.
Well, that fits.
You know that fraternity ring? It's not a fraternity ring.
Omega Zeta Alpha is a mechanical engineering honor society.
Hard-core mechie.
Hey, hey want to know where his drum came from? (distant siren wails) Chemical companies serialize all their shipping containers.
That way, if hazardous waste ends up where it shouldn't be, they know where it came from.
(loud techno music playing) This place seems lively for a warehouse.
A good place for a rave, though.
The cover's each.
I got a coupon.
(crashing and loud music playing) One minute to go, and Slaughter the Bot pulls into the lead! Robot Rumble.
Demolition derby by remote control.
They got a show on cable TV.
And here comes Spiker Chick.
The death blade goes up, and the death blade comes down.
Oh! Slaughter the Bot is made of titanium, but how much damage can he take? Uh-oh, it looks like a jam-up, but with this much horsepower, it won't last long.
Slaughter's driving Yellow Belly into the wall, trying to shake him off.
Oh, it's mayhem in the middle.
Yeah! Yeah! on his back, taking a pounding.
Watch out for Spiker Chick with the death blade.
Oh, no! We got a Spiker Chick sandwich! Spiker Chick is going for Slaughter.
Oh, again and again! Oh, and in a dazzling array of skill and deception Metal weapons, money, competition, testosterone.
We got a roomful of murder suspects.
Your winner: Slaughter the Bot! Whoo! Whoo-whoo! (beeping) Bots fight all over the country, on TV, all over the world.
This is an informal venue where competitors can come to hone their skills and their machines.
You have a gaming license? I don't need one.
See, I just put on a show.
If people bet, that's their business.
You're the only house in Vegas that doesn't take a cut.
Hey, my daddy ran an independent shipping company.
He ran it right into the ground.
He died broke, but he left me a bunch of empty warehouses.
I needed revenue, so I developed a new market.
Hey, Jimbo, you looked ferocious out there.
Thanks, Ginger.
We lost.
Yeah, but I like a guy who goes down with style.
Look available, be unobtainable.
Keeps them coming back for more.
Want to tell me what this is all about? That's Chris Cutler.
He's dead.
We found his body stuffed in a chemical waste drum from this warehouse.
When was the last time you saw Christian? God, about six weeks ago.
Robot Rumble, big free-for-all.
Smash-N-Burn was on fire that night.
Dismantled three or four bots.
Yeah! (laughing) He had the kind of night that most of these boys dream about.
Using the thing that he built to destroy the thing that the other guy built.
It's a basic male drive.
That kind of puts that whole weapons of mass destruction thing into perspective.
I take it this Chris was not well liked.
Let me put it to you this way nobody likes a winner who needs to shove it in your face.
We're going to need you to identify the guys he fought with that night.
As well as their bots.
We can't have a murder without a murder weapon.
We'll take them all.
Keith went to Yosemite to climb El Capitan.
The Shield Headwall.
Did you go with him? I drove to Taos to see my sister.
And got back when? Ten days ago.
Keith's gear was in the living room, but he wasn't there.
What did you do then? I called his cell phone.
I called his office.
And then I called the Park Service, and all they said was that Keith had been by to pick up his permit.
So then I checked the hospitals up there and nothing.
And then I called the hospitals in Vegas.
And then I called the police.
I did everything I could do and nobody would pay attention.
Mercer you have my attention.
And I'd like to see your house.
Looks like his gear's all here.
I don't see a sleeping bag, though.
It looks like someone was trying to clean up, too, but forgot to use their Murphy's Oil Soap.
You called it.
Positive for blood.
And a trail of bloody footprints.
I may have blood here, too.
I think I might have just found our murder weapon.
Spiker Chick, Donsueme, Slaughter 10? You really think one of these things killed your vic? They're fast, they're powerful, and the weapon characteristics fit, so I can't rule them out.
Well, you know what they say it's what's on the inside that counts.
(drill whirs) Well put.
I got blood.
Yeah, join the club.
I'll take these to Greg.
I'll get going on the tool marks.
(saw whirs) Any luck? No.
Tool marks don't match the vic's wounds.
Could have saved you the time.
DNA beats tool marks every time, you know.
I ran your blood samples.
Got a match, all three of them.
Victim's blood, on three different parts from three different bots? That doesn't make any sense.
Well, where did the parts come from? I buy and sell and trade parts all the time.
From all over the place.
Salvage yards, swap meets, eBay.
They usually have blood on them? I don't check.
Doesn't matter if they're clean or dirty, only that they work.
Look, me and Chris are partners.
I built the bot, he drove it.
We kicked ass, made good cash.
Why would I want him dead? You know, Brian, I mean your best buddy drops off the face of the Earth for six weeks You get a call or e-mail or postcard? No.
But you care so much about him that you do absolutely nothing to find out what happened.
You can understand why we're here, so straighten us out.
There was nothing weird about Chris being gone like that.
He did stage effects for Pyrotechnica.
Had some pretty good tunes.
Worth listening to.
Or not.
Anyway when Chris is on the road he's a vapor trail.
He's not a phone call kind of guy.
That's a nice ATV.
You ever take it to the mountains? Yeah, sometimes.
I, uh, I dabble in ambient music.
She wants her daddy.
Yeah, I get some pretty good samples out in the mountains, especially at night.
(baby crying) Oh.
Shh, shh, shh.
You know, you got a lot of hobbies, Brian.
Oh, you don't have hobbies, you go nuts.
Human beings are designed to make things.
It's hard-wired into our brains.
We make things and build things to make more things.
It's what sets us apart from the other animals.
Except monkeys.
Primates in general, I guess.
Brian, Brian.
Yeah? Hobbies take up space.
You, uh, you don't seem to have a whole lot of that here.
Do you have a workshop? Uh, I rent a space.
(saw whirring) All right, guys, we got to clear the room.
Come on, let's go.
Excuse me, bud, you want to shut that down? Yeah.
Need you guys all here to clear outside.
Step out, would you? (chuckling) Oh.
Slow day oppressing the weak? Don't scuff your jackboots, Heir Commissar.
Just keep moving.
Hey, Nick.
All right, we're all clear.
Is this a machine shop or a junkyard? I guess, this is what passes for pinups for these guys.
This is Brian's bot right here.
And it's got a spinning weapon.
I'll take it in for tool marks.
It's missing parts, too.
So this is Hammer of God.
Or at least what's left of it.
Hammer of God is against the ropes.
Rust stain.
That's standard diameter for a 55-gallon drum.
(metallic clink) Catherine, I've got spatter.
(saw whirring and man screaming) I think we've got our murder scene.
I think we just got Ginger.
(distant siren wails, horn honks) We traced the machine shop back through a holding corporation.
To me.
I own it.
It's a rental property.
It's a good one.
It's popular with the bot boys.
I would have told you if you'd bothered to ask.
Well, we found this in Brian's station your fingernail.
They break.
Yeah, they also scratch.
There were skin scrapings under the nail.
We tested the epithelials.
They're Christian Cutler's.
Your shop, your fingernail, your waste drum with a dead guy in it.
I stop by every now and then to make sure my clients are happy.
Chris was there alone one night working.
He kind of got the wrong idea.
Play time.
No, Chris, knock it off.
It's not funny.
Shoving that rack in my face ain't too funny, either.
Stop it! Knock it off! And you didn't think this was worth mentioning? Hey, you guys asked me when I saw him last.
This happened the day before the big free-for-all.
So, that's the price of doing business? Yeah, you could call it that.
Here's the way I'd call it Give me that, you son of a bitch.
Hey, hey easy with that.
(screaming) Listen, I let the geeks fantasize about me.
And most of them are harmless, happy to stare and then go home and spank the monkey like good little college boys.
But Chris was a dumb, vicious Army grunt.
And maybe I wasn't as careful around him as I should have been, but that doesn't mean that I killed him.
Mercer, we found this statue on your mantle.
It had your fingerprints on it.
It was a wedding gift.
Well, we also found your husband's blood on the base of it.
Did you touch or move this statue at any time in the last ten days? Keith hated that thing.
He was always trying to toss it.
When I came home, I found it on the floor.
I thought he'd put it there.
I found it in the hall closet, in the garage.
I even found it in the car once.
It was like a game for us.
Look, I came to you.
You guys have been giving me the runaround for over a week.
Could you tell us what you kept in this box? We inherited a coin collection, and we figured we'd save it for a rainy day.
(beeps) No "Cutler-comma-Christian.
" Ring's not his.
Never went to college.
That part wasn't in his service record.
Scroll up.
Check the K's.
Hold it.
The rings belongs to you, Brian.
You must have dropped it when you stuffing your buddy's corpse into a barrel.
(panting) Here's the way this is going to play out.
This is the best-case scenario.
We arrest you for murder.
The, uh, the jury likes your face, and, uh, you get Man One.
Then you get to spend the next 15 years staring at your wife and kid through a wire glass window.
Maybe if you're lucky, uh when you get out, you can take her to the prom.
She's going to be so proud of her daddy.
(sobbing) (sobbing) It was an accident.
You want a tissue or something? No.
We were in the shop.
It was real late, no one else there.
I'd made some changes to Smash-N-Burn's program.
We were testing them out.
Smash was acting really flaky.
Sluggish, and then (screaming) It just went crazy.
With all that blood.
And Chris in the middle of it just lying there.
I had to make it go away.
Hey Hey, Brian.
If it was an accident, why didn't you report it? It was my fault.
I was I was so scared.
You disposed of the body.
Cleaned up the scene, dismantled the bot, and sold the parts.
All I could think about was my wife, and my little girl.
My little girl.
I didn't want to lose them.
You got to believe me.
It was an accident.
(sobbing) I'm so sorry.
(sobbing) I'm so sorry.
The bank flagged Keith Mercer's ATM card.
Really? Somebody tried to use it.
(laughs) I guess the machine ate it, huh? Yeah, but we got the stomach contents.
(beeping) (beeps) (beeping) (beeping) You're not Keith Mercer, but you have been using his credit cards.
Do you care to tell us about that? He lent me his stuff, told me to have a good time.
When did he tell you this? Yesterday.
Yesterday? Mm-hmm.
Mercer's been in the morgue for ten days.
So unless you were at a seance I found him, yeah Did you find that suit there as well? No.
L-I bought the suit.
With this credit card? No.
Um I used this one.
It's not a platinum.
It's a it's a gold.
So this is Willy Reddington's original gear.
This guy was classy.
He goes into a store, buys new clothes, and leaves the old ones behind.
And they tossed them in the Dumpster.
I wish these people would start checking IDs.
This is Vegas, baby.
Anybody can get lucky.
So, blood? Not a drop.
No blood on his clothing.
The shoe treads don't match.
And the guy's got no car.
Yeah, how do you dump a body with no car? What did he do, drag Mercer down the Strip? And if you're robbing a house, why don't you take more stuff? Everything was still there.
Except that coin collection.
I think the killer knew what he was going to steal.
Smash-N-Burn isn't some cyborg death machine with a mind of its own.
I mean, you got to drive them.
Well, we prove it didn't happened the way that Brian said it did, you may have your killer.
(whirring) Okay, here we go I think.
It's not responding.
It's Man (drill whirs) You got a transmitter module in the remote and a receiver module in the bot.
They work as a pair.
Yeah, and in every competition, each team is assigned a different numbered frequency.
That way, each driver can control their bot without interfering with anybody else's.
Or vice versa.
This is Smash-N-Burn's receiver.
And this is Brian's transmitter.
The numbers don't match.
Okay, so when Christian died, Brian wasn't controlling the bot.
Somebody was.
Brian claims the bot malfunctioned.
Well, we know it didn't.
It was responding to a different control frequency.
I don't think he knew that.
If he did, he was protecting somebody.
Hey, boss.
Um, I wasn't able to pull any DNA off your vic's personal effects, but I did find something else.
Uh, those yellow spots on his belt I ran them through the GOMS.
You ran it? Yeah.
They're sulfur.
Now, Warrick mentioned something about a missing coin collection.
Now, some dealers bad ones use sulfur to polish up coins for sale.
Shake and bake.
So I figure that your killer is either a coin dealer or a collector.
And he transferred the sulfur to the body when disposing of it.
Are you a numismatist, Greg? Oh, my grandpa started me off with a 1909 V.
"S" Lincoln penny.
Often referred to as a V.
Because it bears the monogram of its engraver, Victor D.
It's a low mintage.
So, let's see, you surf, you scuba dive, you're into latex you like fashion models and Marilyn Manson.
And you also have a coin collection.
Weird, huh? Well I raise cockroaches.
Look available, be unobtainable.
Except when you're trying to beat a murder rap.
Excuse me? Whatever you did worked.
Brian's going down for you.
Oh, so, first you accuse me of whacking Christian.
Now you're accusing me of doing Brian? Well, you are the queen bee.
The drones line up to service you.
What the drones do is make bots and break bots.
And while they're up wiring and soldering all night long, you know where I am? I'm at home.
With this.
Does it have a name or did it come with the wallet? Pretty funny for a scientist.
Let me make it easy for you.
And in case you can't spell, that "E-S-Q" means he and his entire law firm are going to be all over your ass.
Next time you want to talk to me, talk to him.
(knocking) Hey, I was able to pull the cell phone records for our vic.
Most of the calls went to the office, two went to the wife.
But there are two who are interesting.
Jones Collectibles.
Guy is a small-time fence.
That mean anything to you? Does now.
(door buzzing) Anything I can help you with, let me know.
I heard that you dealt in coins.
Really? From whom? Grissom.
He's a friend of mine.
We work together.
I'm looking to see what you got.
I'd like to make a trade.
Why the flip? I've been meaning to get it slabbed.
(sirens blaring in distance) Not bad.
No hairlines.
No fly specks.
You got yourself a slider.
I'd like to get myself a 1916 "D" dime.
Been all over Vegas, can't find one.
You got any? I might have one, but it's pricey.
Well, so is mine.
double eagle gold piece.
I've only seen that in books.
And that's as close as you get.
If you want to deal for the "D" dime, it's yours.
I'll take it.
The bot was on a different control frequency, which means someone was using a different transmitter.
Puppet master.
Somebody else pulling the strings.
That would explain why the bot was sluggish.
I think she's sick, Brian.
Maybe something's jammed.
So, what's the range of those controllers anyway? It's limited.
Definitely not outside this building.
So, if somebody hijacked Brian's bot, they'd have to be nearby, but obviously, out of sight.
Well, there's a good place to hide up there.
STOKES: Maybe we've got motive.
Check it out.
Ooh, proud papa.
The man who built Hammer of God.
Which leaves us with means.
Transmitter modules.
Yeah, check out the 80s.
And look what's missing: 84.
(Stokes chuckles) I bet I know who's got it.
Guy came in a couple of weeks ago with this collection looking to sell.
I bought it.
There must be $50,000 worth of coins in here, isn't there, Greg? (indistinct police radio transmissions) At least.
You must have a record of the transaction.
I know I got it somewhere.
Maybe it's in your car.
Mind if we help you look? No, go ahead.
I got nothing to hide.
(tosses keys) Ten-inch subs.
Four channels? That's state-of-the-art.
Those hot, too? It kind of looks like the DeLorean from Back to the Future.
Trace amounts of sulfur.
You don't artificially tone your coins, do you, Mr.
Jones? Hey, my merchandise is authentic.
Well, you may have some authentic blood in your car as well.
Yeah, well, I cut my finger the other day.
That's Keith Mercer's blood.
You know it and when I get back to the lab, I'm going to prove it.
I think you're busted.
So what happened? I lost.
You didn't lose.
You were destroyed.
(laughing harshly) Ooh! You got nothing left, Luke! (laughing) (horn blows) Yeah! And you wanted revenge.
You couldn't kill Christian's bot so you killed Christian.
I heard Brian killed him.
This is the transmitter from Christian's robot.
So? So it's got your DNA on it.
Brian wasn't in control of the bot.
You were.
(metal clattering) (whirring) (screaming) Oh, my God! I can't turn it off! (screaming) The bot wasn't the only thing you manipulated, Luke.
Chris! Chris! Oh, my God.
What did you do?! It was an accident.
The bot just Oh, my God! Oh, we've got to call the cops! If you do that, they're going to think you did this.
I didn't do it.
They're going to put you in prison for life.
I'll keep this quiet, but you have to get rid of this body.
(grunting) Brian gave you up.
No place to hide now.
I know what it must've been like for you.
Having created something, only to lose it.
Let me guess.
You have a kid? Yes, I have a daughter.
And you think just because you squeeze a baby out from between your legs, you know how I feel? That's biology.
Any animal can do that.
But I took a thought from my head and I made it real.
It was perfect.
I guess the only flaw then was you.
How's it look? Oh.
Blood in the car is the victim's.
Keith Mercer made a bad call.
Yeah, it sounds like a pretty nice collection.
How about I come by Saturday and take a look? Uh, this weekend's no good.
My wife and I are out of town.
Hey, what are you doing? Told you that dude was busted.
What happened to your enthusiasm, Greg? Well every time I make another DNA match in here, my world gets a little smaller.
Out there felt large.
Out there means a pay cut.
I'm not about the money.
That's good to know.