CSI: Crime Scene Investigation s04e19 Episode Script

Bad Words

Go pull a line towards the garage.
Sam? Sam? Where is Sam? What about Sam?! Sam! You're going to be all right.
Hey, I got one more! Here you go, pal.
You stay right here with your mom.
Ma'am, is there anybody else in there? No.
What's with the 911 page? Fire's not even out yet.
Jack's an arson investigator.
We were here on this same street ten days ago.
Garage fire a few houses down.
Deemed intentional.
So you think it's a serial? I don't know, but I'm keeping my eyes peeled.
Maybe they came back to take a look We got another one.
Got another one.
- We need a paramedic right now.
She's not breathing.
- Sabrina? Sabrina, what are you doing here? You weren't supposed to be here.
? Please help me.
I think our arsonist just turned into a murderer.
She wasn't even burned.
Smoke inhalation happens really fast.
I'm so sorry.
I heard you say she wasn't supposed to be home tonight.
Was she with her dad? My husband died five years ago in a car accident.
She was at her friend Molly's house for a sleep-over.
At least she was when I went to bed.
What time was that? I don't know, 11:00, 11:30.
Abernathy, do you have any idea what may have caused the fire? I go to bed, I make sure the lights are off, lock the doors.
Do you know anyone who might want to set fire to your home? I go to work.
I take care of my kids and my mother, and that's my life.
Thanks a lot.
Okay, folks, any information you feel like you may have How am I going to get my fosamax? Oh, well, I'll make sure you have your medications by breakfast,okay? You're going to be all right.
Everything's okay.
This man will take care of you, okay? What does that one do? That one? That turns on the siren, so we can get to places really fast.
To help people burning inside? That's right.
But not my sister.
I'm sorry, buddy.
It's okay.
So the morning cleaning crew found him.
No ID, but this was in his pocket.
Looks like some kind of code.
"735"? His goal weight? I'm going to talk to housekeeping.
That's a nasty head wound.
It's always reassuring to see an empty soap dispenser in a public bathroom So I'm thinking this is how the vic got his head smashed in.
Thank you.
It's common to find something in blood.
Uncommon to find something on blood.
Petechial hemorrhaging.
Head bashed in and asphyxiated.
No soap was the least of his problems.
The smoke detectors' batteries are all dead.
Sabrina's was the only bedroom that sustained any fire damage at all.
Her mother thought that she wasn't home.
But she wasn't asleep.
Not in her bed.
That would explain why the firemen didn't find her right away.
But it doesn't explain what she was doing down there.
If you can explain the behavior of teenagers, more power to you.
Adhesive they use to put this stuff down is highly flammable.
Crack in the linoleum, the fire will just seek it out and go for it.
This door's unlocked.
The firemen said they only used one point of entry and exit: The front door.
Abernathy said that she locked all the doors before bed.
Well, this could be how Sabrina got in.
Comes home late, forgets to lock the door behind her.
It's an opportunity waiting to happen.
Let's check out the living room.
A few cheap, wood panel walls.
Polyester curtains, couple of fake plants.
All highly flammable.
Plus a bar full of liquid fire with a low flash point.
Coffee table.
Couch? At some point, I think this was a couch.
This looks like a liquid pour pattern.
High-intensity burn.
You think this could be the point of origin? I think this is the area of heaviest damage.
The fire spread up and out towards the kitchen.
How'd you do? Uh, couple of weak partials.
What you got, partner? Newspapers.
I found them in the carport.
That's on the other side of the house.
Yeah, it's kind of weird.
Completely out of the path of the fire and the firemen said they didn't put them there.
You know the fire down the street was in the garage.
Well, maybe he started in the carport, Sabrina came home, provided access to the inside of the house.
Did they find an accelerant at the first scene? Lighter fluid from the garage.
So maybe part of the M.
is that he uses accelerants that are present.
Let's hope he stuck around long enough to witness the damage.
This is home video from the first fire.
It looks like everybody's neighbor.
Well, they say arsonists often commit crimes where they feel most familiar.
The last fire was set during the day in the garage when the family was out of town.
A neighbor would know when people were out of town.
Or when the door was left unlocked.
If this is a serial situation, to go from an empty garage to a whole house full of people, we're talking about a major escalation here.
Well, a match was found at the first fire.
If we could find a match in the debris of the second fire, then we may know for sure.
Oh, she looks familiar.
Hang on.
I may have something.
She was at both fires.
I got her name off the canvas.
Let's run her.
She has a record.
You were arrested for attempted arson? I was exonerated.
I have you on film at both fires on cell crook road.
I am not an arsonist.
That's not what your file says.
The law doesn't make much of a distinction between arsonists and pyromaniacs.
What is the distinction? I don't set fires for money or with the intent to cause damage.
But you do set fires? Mmm.
You go home at night, and you feel a little lonely, you put in a racy video.
No, no, no.
We're not talking about me.
I go home I rip open my junk mail, and I put it in the fireplace.
It's an impulse control disorder but it's private.
I don't burn down houses and kill children.
Maybe not on purpose, but accidents do happen.
You rang? Yeah.
Greg, how'd you like to be listed as an assist on an arson case? Is that a rhetorical question? Cool.
I collected these matchbooks from the pyromaniac's house, who was kind of hot, actually.
Really? You dig chicks who dig fire? Yeah.
This, uh this match was used to start a garage fire a couple of weeks ago.
See if you can find a match to one of those.
Thanks, pal.
All right, David.
The three most common ways to asphyxiate: Strangulation, suffocation and Choking.
With this guy, my money's on choking.
Hold this please.
Thank you, David.
An "S"? Cause of death.
I found it in the trachea.
So, he swallows a tile and tries to give himself a Heimlich? Or not.
I found these in his stomach.
You don't swallow six of them by accident.
Your hottie's matchbook collection came up dead.
Doesn't mean she didn't do it.
You know, arson's usually a property crime.
Did you ever find out the Abernathys' financial situation, Warrick? According to Catherine, Jessica Abernathy had major credit card debt but minimal insurance-not even enough to cover what she had.
Besides, people tend to remove mementos when they know what's coming.
So, if the pyro didn't do it for love, and Mrs.
A didn't do it for money, who's left Maybe the high school baseball team.
McKinley High School Gazette.
This is tomorrow's edition with the lead story by editor-in-chief Sabrina Abernathy, entitled "Varsity Hazing Ritual.
" Now listen to this "The question is not whether the so-called student athletes should be expelled, but whether or not they should be arrested.
" Why, what'd they do? Apparently, something with several hookers and a lot of testosterone.
Whatever happened to toilet paper and trees? Hey.
DNA came back.
Blood from the bathroom floor's a match to the vic.
Blood from the bathroom mirror is not.
That's interesting.
What are you doing? Anagrams.
You think the letters might be a message from the killer? Six letters.
What is that? That's 720 possible combinations, not all of them words, of course.
You, uh, missed one.
We got an ID.
Off your DB's prints.
His name is Adam Brenner.
That guy has a record? Well, sort of.
He's a civil servant.
He's a postal worker from Orlando.
Do we know why he came to Vegas? Oh, you're going to love this.
Adam Brenner was one of our top division one players.
Ranked in the high 1,800s.
Is that like the elo system in chess? Logos has all the skill of chess combined with the cruel whimsy of fate.
Adam once set a tournament record by scoring 735 points in a single game.
It was on his t-shirt.
It's an incredible achievement.
So, how did the other players feel about that kind of smack-down? You actually suggesting that somebody here killed Adam? Cruel whimsy of fate.
Guy's from out of town, takes a cab from , checks into the hotel.
The only thing on his hotel bill is four meals a day.
No phone calls.
So everybody he talked to is in this room.
We're going to need a list of his opponents.
What's with the cop? We're just talking.
Ah, about what? Sabrina Abernathy died in her home in a fire on Saturday night.
Hey! What'd I tell you -- you don't waste a good pitch! Cody, where were you around 1:00 A.
on Saturday? In bed.
Cody's in bed every night at 10:00.
He gets up at 5:00 to go running.
Except for the nights he's with the team pulling a train on a hooker.
Cody, keep hitting.
This is Vegas.
Who hasn't been with a hooker? Well, most high school seniors who are being scouted by division one schools.
I don't think an expulsion and an arrest would look too good on ascholarship application.
It's a tradition.
Happens every year with every team, and why that little bitch had to scapegoat Cody, I'll never know.
How 'bout you, Cody? Do you know? Look, I'm sorry the girl's dead.
Yeah, but you're not real sorry the whole mess died with her, are you? Yeah, but burning the kid's house down? Come on.
Give my son a little credit.
Thanks for your help.
Hey, hey, hey, no flash drawing.
Challenge over here.
Illegal word-- that's a minute penalty.
- Time's up.
Game over, baby.
Gabbons? - Whatever.
Like I'm really not going to challenge that.
Wilson Janek? Yeah.
Want to try your luck? Step up, baby.
And you are? Gil Grissom.
Nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you, Gil Grissom.
So What do you hear about Adam Brenner? Mr.
735? Heard he's dead.
Well, he was alive last night when he beat you.
Gil you think that trash talk's going to break my focus? You must be new.
Actually I'm from the Las Vegas crime lab.
I'm just here to collect your DNA.
You're a quick study.
But if you think I killed Adam, why don't you go ask Uncle Sam for my DNA? I served my country.
Gulf war senior.
Memorized word lists for a sanity check.
Some guys did ping pong; I did this.
I saw enough killing over there.
I'm a "make words, not war" kind of guy now.
Word on the floor is Adam Brenner really had your number, Craig.
The universe ebbs and flows.
More ebb than flow in your case.
I guess you lost to Adam your last three tournaments in a row? logos.
38 points.
At least you're a good sport.
Loss for one is a win for another.
So what if I was the last person to play Adam? You were the last player who saw him alive.
What are you thinking, that with Adam out of the tournament, I could abscond with the big cash prize? You tell me.
Oh, first prize here is $2,000.
Even if I win, the remuneration barely covers my airfare, accommodation and food.
No, no, I don't play for the money.
You play for the glory.
You ever attempt a New York Times crossword, Captain? Nah, you probably wouldn't make it past Tuesday.
I do Sunday in pen.
I can still spell this.
GC/mass spec found no trace of accelerant on the couch residue.
Well, how can that be? It was an obvious liquid pour pattern.
Well, my dear, this is why you should never pick up the couch left for curbside pickup.
Polyurethane foam.
Outlawed in 1988 due to its highly incendiary nature.
You light that crap on fire, it heats up, creates a burning pool of liquid, and acts as its own accelerant.
Disaster waiting to happen.
All it needed was a spark.
We've got no accelerant.
We've got no match.
We have no idea what started this fire.
Maybe this will help.
It kind of smells like a menthol.
Hmm, looks like a one hundred.
Longer the cigarette, longer the filter.
Cigarettes are a terrible way to commit arson.
They take too long.
Possible DNA trace, but it just doesn't make any sense.
It makes sense if the fire was unintentional.
I'm sorry about this.
Typically, I leave with Sab with Sabrina, but It's fine.
Well, why are we here, exactly? Well, we think we might have figured out what caused the fire.
Abernathy, does anyone in your house smoke? I don't.
Well, don't look at me.
I quit twenty years ago.
Sabrina maybe? I don't think so.
Well, we found a cigarette filter in the remains of your couch.
And we need a urine sample from each of you so that we can rule you out for nicotine.
My house burned down, and my daughter is dead.
And you're asking me to pee into a cup? Sure.
Why not? Everyone except for the little guy was getting high and getting by.
The girl's on uppers, mom's on downers, and grandma sucks on the cancer stick.
Ritalin, valium, and grandma's a liar.
Pants on fire.
That's the black trace you found in the blood pool.
It's a mix of PVC resin and liquid plasticizer.
When heated together, they form a solid elastomer film called plastisol.
What's it used for? Mostly Greg Sanders wear.
Uh, names, hair band logos, inane sayings, anything that can be put on a t-shirt.
Well, that narrows it down to just about everybody in the tournament.
Hey, we got a match on the blood from the bathroom mirror.
Look, just 'cause I was there doesn't mean I killed Adam Brenner.
Put your hands on the table.
You know, that's seven years bad luck.
More like seven to ten.
Yeah, I'm not very proud of that.
Of what? I'm ebullient, you know.
I-I feel the wins and the losses.
The other night, I lost to a division two blue-hair.
But it's not my fault.
She was she was coffee-housing the whole time.
I'm sorry? Coffee-housing? You know, yap, yap, p-p-yapping.
So when I was at the Southern Regionals in Dallas last year, I went to the book depository.
Have you ever been there? Zip it, lady.
I'm trying to make a play here.
I never should have lost that one.
What, are you an idiot? What, are you stupid? You're so stupid! What about Adam Brenner? No, he wasn't there.
But you lost to him, too.
Maybe you took that loss even harder.
Adam? No way.
He's ranked, what, 1,890? It's like getting art lessons from Picasso.
I was honored to even be sitting at the same table with him.
Ma'am, earlier you provided us with a urine sample.
We found traces of nicotine in yours.
That's odd because I don't smoke.
Really? Would you mind opening your purse for me? You know what? I do too smoke cigarettes.
Abernathy, did your daughter have attention deficit disorder? Sabrina? No.
That girl had the focus like you can't believe.
Well, we found Ritalin in her system, and as I'm sure you're aware, ritalin is used to treat kids with ADD, but acts as a stimulant in older kids and adults.
Teens use it as an upper.
So, Sabrina was taking drugs? As were you.
Fair enough.
You know, Sabrina used to scream at me, "I can't wait till I'm old enough to move out of here.
" And I would scream back, "yeah, me either.
" What kind of mother says that to her kid? One with a teenage daughter.
You know what I pictured for this part of my life? S Saturday night, leave the kids with grandma, date night with my husband.
Instead, I'm stuck home alone with two kids and a 70-year-old infant.
Abernathy are you covering for your mother? Part of me wants to say yes, please just take her away.
Let her be the state's problem.
You know, she leaves the stove on, and she leaves the water running I come home, and I find little burn marks in things.
But I was with her the whole night.
I never saw her smoke.
Maybe after you went to bed, she came out into the living room.
I doubt it.
But it's a possibility? No.
It isn't.
Miss Willows, you can go ahead and judge me, but after my mother falls asleep at night, I lock her in her room.
Any luck? Yeah, the bad kind.
My burn scenarios don't match up with your data.
Did you try different variables? Ahah.
Open windows, uh, drafts from vents, all of it.
Here's the problem.
I'm not following.
Okay, the Curie point is the temperature at which all materials lose their magnetic properties, yeah? Mm-hmm.
For the iron in these, the temperature would had to have been 932 degrees in that kitchen.
With the fire starting in the living room, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get it that hot in there.
It just doesn't make sense.
Unless the fire didn't start on the living room couch.
An incandescent light bulb will soften at around 900 degrees, and distend in the direction of the original heat source.
How did we miss that? Living room was crammed with combustible materials.
It received the most damage.
It seems like the point of origin.
Let's dig in.
Do you fondue? The accelerant was ethanol, methanol and petroleum jelly.
Chafing dish fuel, like sterno.
So it has gone from intentional to accidental to personal.
Who have we got? Nick's girlfriend.
She's got no personal connection to the family.
Well, Rick Chilson did call Sabrina a bitch when we were talking.
Yeah, he's an ass, but his alibi checks out.
Surveillance at the Mirage has him playing poker the night of the fire.
What about Cody? He was right there with him.
But I don't think that kid takes a breath without daddy's nod of approval.
What about suspects within the house? Well, who's there? Grandma? I mean aside from being on lockdown, she's arthritic.
I don't see her writing on the floor.
What about Jessica? She seems more frustrated than desperate.
Frustration shows you still care.
And the son, Sam? I don't think so.
" It's such a teenage girl word.
That brings us back to Sabrina.
Well, she did think the baseball team had it in for her.
Her family life was no picnic.
What are you saying, she's on a kamikaze mission? Trying to take the whole family down with her? I might be willing to buy that, but how do we prove it? Adam Brenner was a meticulous note-taker.
He documented every turn of every game he ever played.
How many words used the letters we found in Adam's body? None, actually, at least none with that exact combination.
But here's the weird part.
One the games didn't add up.
When Adam played Craig, he had 60 points written down that I couldn't account for.
And on that same page of his notebook, I noticed that something had been erased.
So I ran it through ESDA.
Adam played "exvin.
" Everything but the "S," 60 points.
What's an "exvin"? You know, I was kind of hoping you'd know.
It's not in the OED.
Well, according to the rules, if you play a bluff and your opponent challenges, you have to take the tiles back, you lose a turn and a minute off your game clock.
No points Right, and later in that same game, Craig played an "X.
" Loxodrome.
Now there's only one "X" per game.
How did he get it? What are you looking for? A six-letter word.
P-I-S-T-O-L? It's not the word we were looking for, but it's interesting.
It's got blood on it.
It's a replica.
I belong to a communist club.
We collect replicas from the fall of the soviet union.
And I found that tokarev downtown at a pawn shop.
A fake gun for a fake word? Exvin? A wine afficionado who no longer drinks.
Challenge! There are six letters missing from your game box.
E-X-V I-N-S.
You made Adam eat his word.
Yeah, huh? You think you're so clever? I'll let you have some Exvins for dinner Here.
Huh! I just wanted to make it as hard for him to swallow as it was for me.
Karmic retribution.
Did you do anything to help him after he started choking? No.
I thought it was another fake-out.
How about after he fell down on the floor and stopped breathing? Out of words? This is old school hydrocarbon detection.
Oh, yeah.
Chafing dish fuel is alcohol-based, but water would have washed away any trace.
Let's just hope that whomever wrote it touched something else.
Well, it's the only shot we've got, I guess.
Take a look at this.
Well, that's good shooting.
Hit the jackpot.
I've got some smudges over here, too.
Mom was locking the wrong door.
They're going to ask you some questions about the fire at our house.
And you'd better start talking, mister.
Abernathy, would you come with me, please? Hey, Sam.
You okay? So tell me, what kind of things you like to do on the weekends? Watch tv, hang out, play.
Like to play with matches? Sometimes.
Why is that? Fire is cool.
You ever have trouble sleeping at night? Only when I got woken up.
Is that what happened Saturday? I lost my key.
Let me in.
Thanks, dude.
Couldn't go back to bed? I got a little bit hungry.
What'd you find? Purple jelly.
Purple jelly? Did you eat it? No.
Mom uses it for the chocolate pot on our birthdays.
That sounds like fun.
Yeah except stupid grandma isn't allowed to have chocolate, so we couldn't do it this year.
Oh that must've made you mad.
Ever since grandma moved in, we can't do anything fun.
So, what happened next? I played for a while.
Then what? I went to bed and then the firemen came and rescued us.
You like when the firemen come? Yeah.
They're so nice.
They talked to me and showed me all their cool stuff.
This one named George he said maybe someday I can meet his dog.
You know, Sam that word that you wrote on the floor you know, that's a really bad word.
I hear it all the time.
My grandma says it.
My mom says it.
And my sister says it.
Well she used to say it.