CSI: NY s09e02 Episode Script

Where There's Smoke...

My first time? Dumpster in an alley.
Near 59th.
It was filled with cardboard boxes and tissue paper.
One match and the fire was raging in under a minute.
How did that make you feel? Safe.
Like nothing or nobody could hurt me.
I made those flames dance.
I was in control.
After that, there was no going back.
I was never going to be scared again.
Oh, come on.
Hello? Is there anybody out there? Hello? Help! Somebody, please! Help! Aah! Help me.
Somebody help me! Oh, my God, Mac.
Looks like those pipes were the source of the heat.
Someone turned this elevator into a boiler.
Somebody turned this elevator into a torture chamber.
Our vic's name is Rita Lowman.
According to one of her neighbors, she freelanced a couple times a month as a private nurse.
Found this I.
badge in her apartment and not much else.
And an old acquaintance.
Security cam outside the service entrance captured an unscheduled visit by the elevator repairman early this morning.
Leonard Brooks.
Door's clear, no trip wires.
NYPD! Brooks, open up! Go, go, go.
We're good.
Bathroom's clear, sir.
It's all clean.
It's all clear.
Looks like he cleared out of here in a hurry.
Notify every roll call and media outlet in the city.
I want Brooks caught now.
What's his endgame here, Mac? Whatever it is, Leonard Brooks had 15 long years to plan it.
Out here in the fields I fight for my meals I get my back into my living Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Train stations, port authority and airports are all covered, and units are circulating Brooks's mug.
- Anything from his P.
? - Hasn't heard from him in days.
Turns out Brooks has no known friends or associates, which doesn't shock me, having met the man.
He's independent and self-reliant.
Makes him even more unpredictable.
Answer it.
Just say hello.
Hello? It's for you, Detective.
Sorry about the lack of hospitality, Detective.
I wasn't expecting guests.
Press is wrong about me, you know.
Don't like being called a monster? No, that part is accurate.
I am a monster, but please tell those reporters my victim was anything but innocent.
Just surrender and tell them yourself.
Gracious offer, but I can't accept.
Who was she, Leonard? Why'd you kill Rita Lowman? I got to go now, Detective.
There's still more work to be done.
You can make it alone if you try Till the beat come home, I know you'll sing it You can make it alone if you try They never see your fire till you make it out Well, are you with them? If not, let it go You're either going to rock the boat Or have what they're handing out Now you're somewhere remote They think you got a wire broke But what you hatching up? Something that you wrote Is going to make a good lifeboat Asylum for the torn A rumbling below Said if not now, you'll never go So while we wait it out You can make it alone if you try Till the beat come home, I know you'll sing it You can make it alone if you try They never see your fire till you make it out You can make it alone if you try Till the beat come home, I know you'll sing it You can make it alone if you try They never see your fire till you make it out You can make it alone if you try Till the beat come home, I know you'll sing it You can make it alone if you try They never see your fire till you make it out.
What is? Well, in spite of the severe external tissue damage, internal structures were left surprisingly unscathed.
Based on the relative size and condition of her organs, our vic was in seemingly good health.
Any external injuries sustained prior to thermal necrosis? No indication of penetrating wounds or blunt force trauma.
D is hyperthermia.
Broiled, not burned.
The infrared radiation from above was efficiently lethal.
Not a single flame touched her.
The stainless steel walls kept the compartment insulated and the intense heat contained.
It overwhelmed her thermoregulatory system, causing her core body temp to spike.
She suffered a debilitating drop in heart and respiratory rate, followed by systemic and lethal organ failure.
Her death was anything but quick and painless.
Hey, Sid, you see this? Yeah, looks like a 12-step recovery pendant.
It's personalized.
Hmm? "To Jen, with love"" Vic's first name is Rita.
So, who is Jen, and why is Rita Lowman wearing her necklace? You know, it didn't make any sense, Mac.
For years, Leonard Brooks has suffered from sudden impulse control disorder, compelling him to start fires, but he did it to cause property damage, never to cause bodily harm or to take a life.
So, why does his M.
suddenly change? And in such an extreme fashion? Because, clearly, the relief that he got from starting fires no longer had any value.
So torture and murder is his new drug of choice.
And when his emotional need shifted, he needed to find another means to satisfy it.
- Why now? - This is a guy who spent a large portion of his life in jail.
And now that's he's out, those urges and sensations are magnified.
They're just overwhelming.
Control may not even be an option for him.
How do we find him? We have to get inside Brooks's head, figure out the origin of his disease.
If we can create a physiological road map, if you will, then we can probably fill in a lot of blanks and help us understand why he targeted Rita Lowman.
Brooks said there was still more work to be done.
There was something in his voice, Jo.
My fear is, if we don't catch him soon, somebody else is going to die.
Where do you think you're going? Get up! You're coming with us.
Oh, oh, I got him.
Growing up with three older brothers has its advantages.
Can I help you with something? Yeah, I need a desk.
Looks a little something like that? Yeah, what are you going to do with it? My job.
Detective Jamie Lovato.
I just got my transfer orders from Narcotics.
My cover was blown, so now I work here.
Welcome to Homicide.
I'm Detective Flack.
As far as your desk goes, the watch commander handles bullpen real estate.
- Thanks.
- Mm-hmm.
Still no sign of Brooks.
But he's got to crawl out from under his rock eventually.
We trace the call he made to his apartment? He used a burner.
Dead end.
What about our vic, Rita Lowman? She was living under an alias.
Rita Lowman isn't her name.
Checked every possible database I could think of.
Turns out there's no record of that name before 2000.
She was wearing a necklace engraved with the name Jen.
Well, whoever Jen is, we know that she's been living off the grid for at least the last 12 years.
Only reason to do that is if you're hiding from something or someone.
Brooks? We need to identify her to make a connection.
Circulate her The, uh circulate Get her face across the wire.
And, uh, maybe somebody can tell us her real name.
All right.
So, where the hell are you, and what are you thinking? What's happening? Is he okay? Can you hear me? Sir, are you okay? Are you okay, sir? Check if he's breathing.
Step back.
Jimmy Clark, age 45.
Collapsed in the park earlier today.
EMTs treated him for a myocardial infarction.
Their efforts were clearly unsuccessful.
- This wasn't a heart attack.
- No.
It was efficiently planned and deliberately induced hypovolemic shock.
is severe blood and fluid loss as an acute result of being burned alive from the inside out.
Precision and intelligence behind it fits the M.
Leonard Brooks did this.
Burn damage is geographical.
Trajectory follows the esophageal tract down to the stomach.
Which is why chemical ingestion was my initial hypothesis.
That's consistent with the contact burns, blisters and tissue perforations.
But not the considerable thermal flash damage to the gastric lining.
Whatever he swallowed, it literally ignited a fire inside his stomach.
So what could cause that? We just got this footage from one of our Department surveillance cameras in the park.
Brooks stuck around to see his plan in motion.
Looks to me like the bastard enjoyed the show.
Pull footage from every other security cam in a five-mile radius.
I want to know where he went when he walked out of that park.
All over it.
Brooks's motive is clearly personal.
We have to establish his connection to each of the victims.
I could tell you how the vics are connected to each other.
Clark, vic number two? Eight months ago, he got popped for assault.
Pummeled some guy in a bar.
Guess who puts up the 15 large to bail him out.
Rita Lowman, aka vic number one.
Well, nobody fronts that kind of cash for someone unless they're close.
That's what I thought, so I dug a little deeper.
Clark's parents died in a car crash when he was two years old.
Had no other blood relatives, so he became a ward of the state.
So they're not related? Means their paths must have crossed someplace else.
Well, our vic number one was a trained nurse.
Why does that matter? Child Protective Services employs nurses to provide public health services to the children they oversee.
- Exactly.
- So Clark could have been one of her patients when he was a kid.
Subpoena his CPS records.
Oh, they're on their way already.
I motivated the file clerk with a couple meatball subs from Romeo's.
If nothing else, Lovato, you got damn good taste in Italian.
Well, it won't be easy connecting the dots without knowing Rita Lowman's real name.
That's why Flack's going to help me.
And since I still don't have a desk, looks like we'll be using yours.
I like her.
Hey, sweetie.
- Whoa! How you been? - How are you? Join the club.
My old man took me fishing every Sunday morning.
We would ride the first bus out to Coney Island, get to the pier before anybody else.
I would get a quarter for every fish I caught, and then I would get to spend the afternoon blowing it at Astroland.
What's your fondest memory of him? I don't know.
My ninth birthday.
Ringling Brothers was at the Garden, and my old man greased an usher to sneak us backstage.
He convinced a clown to dress me up, put me in the show.
There I was I was standing in front of 10,000 smiling faces, but my father, he had the biggest smile of them all.
I remember at that moment thinking that I was the luckiest kid in the world 'cause he was my dad.
Zero zero three nine five two.
Jo, uh, so Jane Fonda just called.
She said she wants her workout tapes back.
They are not Jane's.
They're Cher's.
Cher had a workout video? Yes, she did.
Seriously, what do you got here? Video recordings of Leonard Brooks' prison therapy sessions.
- 14 years' worth.
- Why don't you call his shrink and get the Cliff Notes? She passed away last year, so I've got to rely on all these tapes and her handwritten notes to build a psych profile.
Well, maybe I can save you some time.
People like Brooks spend their entire lives blaming other people for all their problems.
And I don't care how rough he had it, there's nothing on these tapes that are going to justify what he did to those people.
I'm just hoping there's something on these tapes that tells us why he did it.
All right.
Let me ask you a question, off the record.
You think Mac's okay? How do you mean? How do I mean? I don't know exactly.
It's just, you know, he's he seems off.
Well, a little off would be pretty damn good considering everything he's been through.
I mean, think about it.
He suffered a life-changing trauma, months of painful rehab.
Most people would have reexamined everything, quit their job and be sitting on a beach, but not Mac.
Couldn't wait to pick up exactly where he left off.
I think it's a miracle and a gift that the guy's the same old hard-ass boss he's always been.
- I worry about him.
- Look at you.
You're just an old softie.
Don't worry.
I'll keep an eye on Mac, just in case.
Now, you get back to your workout.
You wanted to see me? It's so simple, Mac, it's genius.
Brooks used basic chemistry to kill Jimmy Clark.
Based on Sid's ingestion theory, I looked at the uneaten portion of our vic's lunch.
Black forest turkey, muenster on rye, bag of chips and a bottle of water.
I ran it all through the GC-MS.
Get this.
The food was spiked.
Well, not the food per se; the condiment.
Mayonnaise is typically an emulsion of egg yolk, oil and vinegar.
This stuff had a little something extra thrown in.
Which is easy to get from any laboratory supply house or online.
Right, so here's what happened, okay? Our vic takes a bite of his sandwich.
It tastes funny, so what's his natural reaction? To wash it down with water.
Cesium is an alkali metal.
When mixed with H2O, the hydrogen bonds break down into gas, generating intense heat.
The more Clark drank, the more severely he was burned.
And as if that weren't bad enough, as the cesium made its way down the GI tract into the stomach, it was introduced to digestive fluids.
Hydrochloric acid.
Creating a violent exothermic reaction.
The fire burned inside of him until all the fuel was exhausted.
How could Brooks ensure that Clark would eat the sandwich? The wrapper came from a deli on 34th Street.
It's across the street from Clark's apartment.
The deli owner told me that Clark was a regular, that he got his sandwich there every single day.
He also told me that he hired a new counter guy last week.
Leonard Brooks.
Physical description matches.
But Brooks used the name Phil Gordon.
Brooks stalked Clark studied and exploited his routines.
Flack put surveillance in the deli - just in case Brooks comes back.
- He won't.
He's already accomplished what he set out to do.
The question is, what comes next? I am never going to bad-mouth computer files again.
These CPS files are killing me.
This sucks.
Are you always this whiny? Yes.
So, how long did you work undercover narcotics? Three and a half years.
Why'd you request the transfer to Homicide? Stuff happens.
Care to elaborate? No.
Check this out.
Look at the name.
Jennifer Brooks.
It says there that Clark was her foster kid starting at age 15, but her name is Jennifer Brooks.
Jennifer "To Jen, with love.
" Jen, Jennifer That explains the name on the pendant.
That could be Rita Lowman.
Son of a bitch.
Brooks killed his own mother and foster brother.
Leonard Brooks was a happy, well-adjusted kid, and then his dad dies two days after his ninth birthday.
Well, that's a tough pill to swallow.
- Any indication he acted out? - He never talked about it, and then his life skips ahead three years to the time where he starts - setting fires.
- So, sometime between the ages of nine and 12, Leonard Brooks becomes a monster.
Dental records confirm our first vic Rita Lowman was actually Jennifer Brooks, Leonard's birth mother and Jimmy Clark's foster mom.
Clark lived with Leonard and his mother from 1980 to 1983.
And she took Jimmy in right after her husband passed away.
So why assume that kind of responsibility - at such a difficult time? - Money may have been tight.
State's foster care stipend may have helped make ends meet.
So, we have Leonard, his mother and his foster brother.
God, something terrible must've happened in that house for him to start setting fires and ultimately want them both dead.
He claims both his vics are guilty.
Of what? Well, unfortunately, Brooks has killed - everyone who was there to tell us.
- Not yet he hasn't.
Clark wasn't Jennifer Brooks' only foster child.
There's another little girl by the name of Rachel Nelson.
She'd be 39 years old now.
We need to find her before Brooks does.
Any luck locating Rachel Nelson? Rachel Nelson Now Rachel Moore.
Then and now.
Lives in upstate New York, but currently resides at Weddington Rehab Clinic in Midtown for alcohol abuse.
I'm going to try to get the - clinic on the phone right now.
- All right, good.
No one's answering.
Something's got to be wrong.
Now, I'll notify Mac.
911 dispatch.
What's your emergency? Yo, Doc.
No sign of Rachel.
What do you got? It's a pretty lethal cocktail of chemicals despite being outdoors.
Ammonia and bleach? Chemistry 101.
So, there was never a fire? Just smoke.
And vapors strong enough to create chlorine gas.
All right, so he fills the vents with smoke and fumes so somebody pulls the fire alarm creates a diversion.
Giving people a chance to get out In order to grab Rachel Moore.
Easy escape in all the chaos.
So where'd Brooks take her? Now, more importantly, how long does she have to live? I don't know.
Things are just I feel cloudy today.
I'm just I'm just trying to find a way to sort it all out.
When was the last time you slept? I don't know.
Days ago, maybe more.
I-I-I can't trust my mind.
Nightmares again? Close my eyes and all I see are are hunters.
Angry and and vicious, all with blood on their hands.
It's my blood.
It's just a dream, Leonard.
I spend so much time in here thinking.
Thinking, thinking, thinking.
Can't forget anything.
My past just plays on this loop.
Well, the past is why we're here.
No! We're here, Doc, 'cause I went back.
'Cause I tried to save someone.
'Cause I did what no one would do for me! I heard a story when I was a kid about a deer who got lost in the woods who tried to get back to his castle found himself being stalked.
They wanted blood.
To bring home the kill.
That deer just hoped that something or someone would save it, protect it.
And like that, he becomes invisible.
Unseen, unheard unharmed.
Is that what you want, Leonard? To be invisible? Starting fires seems to be in opposition to that want.
You never listen.
Can't you see? I control fire.
No one's looking at me.
All eyes are on the flames.
And I did that me.
Control fire.
I can't do anything else, but I know I can control that.
How many of those have you had? Uh 200, one for every hour of tape I've watched, but the good news is, I think I found something.
Leonard brutally murders his mother, Jennifer Brooks, and yet, in 14 years of therapy, he never mentions her once? That's strange.
Well, given the possible history of child abuse, he could've transferred his feelings to something or someone else which is why he doesn't mention her.
For years, Leonard suffered from a recurring nightmare about being hunted.
He references the story over and over in these tapes.
It's about a deer and a castle.
And the deer's being hunted, but he's saved when something makes it invisible.
The story of Saint Aidan.
So based on transference Brooks's mother and foster brother are the hunters Leonard would consider himself the deerthe hunted.
And in that case, what part of the story would Rachel play, and where's Leonard's castle? Hey, guys.
The trace I found on the roof came back as silver nitrate ointment.
Used to treat burns.
Yeah, but that you could find at any hospital, pharmacy, doctor's office.
But get this, the ointment was severely degraded.
Level of breakdown suggests it's about ten years old.
Also, the ammonia and bleach were industrial.
A brand called Superla.
Checked it out company went out of business about - Ten years ago? - You got it.
Burn ointment.
Ten years ago.
Leonard's mother.
Jennifer Brooks was a burn ward nurse in three hospitals.
Two are still open.
The third has been abandoned for ten years.
Saint Aidan's.
Saint Aidan's Hospital is Leonard's castle.
If Brooks is setting fire to the past, there's a good chance that's where he wants to end it.
It's payback time, Rachel.
This smell familiar? Since canned heat is the popular drink of choice for a desperate drunk like you, it just felt appropriate.
Well I learned that cocktail from Mom.
Why didn't why didn't you help me? You saw.
Please, Mommy.
No! Not again.
Not again.
Please I wanted to.
Please, Lenny, I'm sorry! I'm sorry.
Hey, Mac, over here.
Please, just just stop.
Stop wh-what?! Stop and be your savior?! I was seven.
What was I supposed to do? Lenny The fence in the backyard, there was that one board.
Seven over with the crack at the top.
Opened into the Winchell's yard.
They were just next door.
You could have squeezed through.
You could have told them.
I didn't know what to say.
The truth.
We could have stopped it, all of it, us, together.
Lenny, please, just stop this.
Just It has to end, Rachel.
Put the lighter out now.
Well done, Detective, but I got to say I'm sorry to see it come to this.
Do it, Leonard.
You shoot me, I'll ignite her before that bullet hits.
Just put it out.
No one has to die here.
Wrong! No one innocent has to die! Killing Rachel because she didn't come to the rescue won't make your demons go away, Leonard.
Turn over! Stay right there! Don't move.
Do not move.
Stay down.
There, it's all right.
He's right.
I should have done something.
I spyears replaying everything.
My mother, the smell of cheap whiskey on her breath, how hot that basement was.
I had to stop the memories, get control.
First your mother, then your foster brother.
He showed up after your father passed.
Right after the abuse started.
You were expecting Jimmy to save you? He was just so big.
He was like an adult.
He looked like one of the guys in the comic books, like some kind of superhero.
But he wasn't a superhero.
He beat you, too, didn't he, Leonard? Afraid that if he didn't, he'd suffer the same fate.
When I think about it, though, Mother was smaller, yet it always hurt more coming from her.
She used to take me to work when she didn't know what else to do.
I wanted nothing more than to be loved by her.
Just, like, an ounce of the attention she gave them.
So you hid in the chapel, guarded by the saints.
My own mother, she liked them, loved them more than me.
All those fires, and the one that got you caught, the one that put you away, is the one where you went back in to save an innocent woman.
You did the one thing no one would do for you: come to the rescue.
You know, it was always only about the fire.
You think I chose to be like this? It's the events in our life that shape us, but it's our choices that define us, and you made the wrong choice, Leonard.
Well, it took you long enough.
But thank you.
You should know, the guys got a pool going.
Yeah? Let me guess: What will last longer, me or the plant? It's just a dream, Leonard.
Starting fires seems to be in opposition to that want.
Can't you see? I control fires.
I close my eyes, and all I see Nobody can hurt me.
All eyes are on the flames.
I did that, me My blood Cloudy today I made those flames dance.
You said starting fires was all about you being in control, but is it really? I don't know.
It's just something I feel.
Something that It's hard to explain.
It's like that moment when you're a kid and you first realize how powerful the ocean is.
You step in, and-and the water's calm, and you hold it in your hand, but it just slips through your fingers.
And you think, "Well, how strong could it actually be?" Feeling bold, you wander out into the abyss.
And by the time you turn around, everyone you left on shore seems too far away to help.
That's when it hits, this wave, this massive current that pulls you in and pushes you down, holds you there, pinned beneath something so strong.
It's like something you can't control.
All you can do is is hold on and fight, but then the more you fight, the more weary you get, and your lungs burn and your throat throbs, so you just let it overtake you.
You feel this force, seemingly benign, but it can consume and destroy you.
It's the thing inside me, strong in ways that nobody can see or comprehend.
This dark undertow that I'm powerless to stop.
I guess the fires were really controlling me.