The Execution Of Catherine Willows

Episode Report Card
Sobell: A | 2 USERS: A+
The Executioner's Stall

We then see Debbie laid out on the gurney, with David sadly saying to Catherine, "Crazy world out there." Gil comes in and apologizes for being late, and asks Catherine to give him the bullet. She does: "Debbie Reston, seventeen. She was taking a night class at LVU. Pre-req for early admission." That poor kid -- working her tail off, and this is what happens. Gil, always looking for patterns, says sharply, "So technically, she was a Western LVU student." Catherine says, "Just like Mathers's other victims." David reminds us all that Mathers is on death row. Catherine says, "Doc, you were here back then: tell me why this one's different." David can't: "Must be intimately familiar with the minutia of the prior cases. What's identical: cause of death, strangulation. Bruising on her wrists. Plastic zip-tie. Navy blue paint. There is one new element -- defensive wounds on the hands. Whatever she grabbed on to shattered and caused these lacerations." We see the glass embedded in Debbie's palms, and Gil asks, "Was that before or after she got the paint on her hands?" David tells him it was after, noting that one of the cuts sliced clear through the paint. Ouch. Gil notices that the paint is still wet, which is odd because Debbie's been dead for at least twelve hours. Gil asks, "What kind of paint doesn't dry in twelve hours, I wonder?"

Hey! It's that grim-looking woman from the execution scene! It turns out she's Mathers's lawyer, and she's stalking Catherine to a library to ask Catherine about this most recent case, arguing that she's doing so because her client's life is in danger. Catherine reminds her, "Ms. Campbell, I have no personal opinion about your client. I tested the evidence in his case, and that evidence failed to exonerate him." Campbell argues that this was the case fifteen years ago, but now "the real killer struck again." Well, that just raises all sorts of questions about what the killer's been doing for the last fifteen years. Campbell asks Catherine if she's planning on testing the pubic hairs against the new suspect, and Catherine points out that she can't test against a phantom. Campbell explodes, "You CSIs are biased for the prosecution. You decide ahead of time how you want the evidence to come out." Wow, Campbell is lucky she picked the CSI with social skills when she made that ill-considered remark. Catherine replies, "I'm only an interpreter of the evidence. I know how to make the evidence speak to me. I don't care about the outcome." Campbell wants to know about guilt or innocence; frankly, it sounds like her job to care, and not Catherine's, but that's just me. Campbell's all, "I hear the same evidence speaking. You know what it's telling me?" That you're backing a losing horse in this one? No, she thinks the killer's still out there. I hope Catherine's mtDNA tests are such where she can send a copy to Campbell with "Neener, neener, neener..." written across the top.

Sara's processing a VW Cabriolet -- and so is Warrick. She tells him, "It's Debbie Reston's car; looks like you and I are officially running the same case." Warrick comments, "This has got to be the cleanest tape lift I've ever seen. There's no stains of any kind in this car." Sara concludes that Debbie met her bad end after leaving her car. Buzz comes up then to tell us that Debbie was taking Econ 101, and had a perfect attendance record prior to last night. Warrick says, "This is my alma mater -- Econ 101, Sabian Hall." I mentally begin running down the locations of all the different departments and introductory classes at my undergrad, and realize I can't do it. Warrick continues, "It's a long walk from here, but I know the way." Warrick and Sara begin walking through a tree-lined path, and after a pack of joggers speeds by, Warrick stumbles and catches himself on a handrail. A quick "damn!" later, we've established that the rail is covered in wet paint. Warrick looks around for something to wipe his palm on, and notices a water fountain; something clicks in his brain, and he asks Sara, "What's the first thing you'd do if you got paint on your hands?" "Wash it off," Sara replies. They both realize how Debbie stumbled into her murder.

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