Corporate Warriors
Corporate Warriors
Season 2
Number 4
Writer Andrew Lipsitz
Director Rob Bailey
Original Airdate October 18, 2005
Previous Episode: Zoo York
Next Episode: Dancing with the Fishes

Corporate Warriors is the fourth episode in Season Two of CSI: NY.


When a man collapses and dies in the middle of the annual San Gennaro festival in Little Italy, the team must investigate how the victim ended up with a wood sliver in his heart. The San Gennaro festival draws over one million revelers annually, making the site a tough crime scene to process. When Stella and Danny are called to investigate a murder at this site, the clues lead them to a pool hall destroyed in a brawl. Meanwhile, Mac and Lindsay investigate the murder of a CFO found decapitated on a bench in Central Park. The investigation leads them to a financial office where the executives practice martial arts competitively. Also, Dr. Hawkes and Det. Flack investigate a suspicious apartment fire that kills a 10-year-old chess champion.


During the Feast of San Gennaro a man comes stumbling out of a building. He bumps into some young ladies. He looks drunk. He stumbles into a cart, spilling food, and bumps into other people including those carrying the festival's statue. He accidentally pulls off the money rug, and people, thinking he is robbing it, start beating him up. He is severely cut up as Mac and Stella are on the scene. Stella taking pictures. Mac asks Stella if she knows what the best part of the San Gennaro festival is. She remarks snidely as to the onlookers, and Mac says it’s the cannoli. They make a deal that if they solve the case cannoli are on her. They discuss witnesses, and Mac gets a call—another DB in Central Park. He leaves her to solve the case and buy the cannoli.

In Central Park, we see Lindsay with the DB taking pictures. Mac comes up behind her, and she answers. The name of the DB is Jared Stanton. His neck is sliced and it seems he was killed predawn. He was attacked without resisting. Mac grabs the head and lifts it off the body with a splotch. Lindsay looks on, her expression that of awe.

Mac and the coroner are in the autopsy room. They have the head slightly separated from the body. Dried blood around the wound explains how the head was kept on straight. It was a clean cut, there were no hack or stutter marks. No trace of a wound tract.

Hawkes and Flack are at the scene of a burned apartment with a 10-year-old boy dead of smoke inhalation. The window was open so he should have had easy access to an exit. His hand is burned the worst, meaning he tried to leave via the door. Hawkes notices that something isn’t right in there. Stella is with the coroner with her DB. He wasn’t beaten to death, his wounds were postmortem. What killed him was a splinter of wood that interrupted his heart rhythm. Also the coroner found out that his hands were surgically enhanced with bones of something non-human. Stella is in the lab and Danny asks her the same question Mac asked earlier. They go over what happened to the DB and they find out what the wood was made of. It was the primary source of wood for nightsticks in the 80s. It is currently used in cutlery, pool cues and other implements of that sort. They get trace from the clothes: rice balls, almond candy, and relish, all items from the Feast of San Gennaro. So they will use the clothes to figure out where he was.

Back with Hawkes, Flack informs him that the fire chief wants a report as soon as he has it. Hawkes finds a V pattern, marking the point of origin: an outlet with loose screws. He grabs them and bags them and notices some trace. He swabs and caps it as the mother and her boyfriend (the father is dead) come. She freaks out, but Flack says she needs to leave and Hawkes hands her his card. Flack is upset because he shouldn’t give cards to victims since that means his phone will ring off the hook at the lab. Hawkes thinks it’s a turf thing.

At the festival, Danny and Stella are checking around. They go to where they found their victim and follow the trail from the trace on the clothing. They find the rice balls, where there is a blood mark on a napkin. Then they find the almond candy, and then the relish. That’s the end of their food trail and it leaves them at a building railing with blood, and a downstairs billiard hall. They head down and the place is trashed. The owner pops up; she’s been cleaning. She gives them attitude but they show their badges. She tells an extraordinary story of men fighting like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. They don’t believe her, and think she’s just drunk. She picks up a tequila bottle and walks away. As they look around, they look at the ceiling and see what looks like a footprint. Perhaps her story was right?

At the lab we have Stella putting together the cues. She finds which one the splinter belongs in. Danny comes in. He got a perfect tread on the ceiling, meaning the owner’s story was right. Stella gets prints off the cue, as the coroner comes in with some personal info on himself: how he likes to play pool there as well. He got serial numbers from the screws in their victim’s hands. The screws are from Trinity Hospital, and he also has an ID.

Switch to Lindsay who is in the lab and we see the clothes of her DB, blood soaked around the neck. Mac enters. She doesn’t have any info from the clothes, but she found a memo for the Board of Directors from American Pacific Worldwide, about the CEO and how he artificially manipulated the stocks on a flash drive in Stanton’s outfit. Mac leaves her, and he heads to the office of Paul Martin, the CEO, who has a collection of memorabilia from Japan. There are several weapons in the room. Martin claims he didn’t kill Stanton. Mac shows him a warrant for looking at the weapons, and proceeds to do so. Martin claims they are decorative. Mac gives a lot of information about the sickle, a fan, and a spear. Martin comments how well Mac knows these weapons. And Mac comments it’s so he can know his killers.

We see Hawkes looking inside the outlet in a chunk of wall he brought to the lab. He found some trace in the outlet and runs it as he checks out the wires. As Mac comes in asking how he’s doing, he says he has some good news, some bad news, and a question. The bad news is the fire wasn’t an accident, as the wires burned from the outside in. They were fine on the inside. The good news is he pulled trace. The question was what the trace was, but then the answer comes through—it's potatoes and vegetable oil from inside and outside the socket. This leaves him with a reconstruction, as Mac says. So they go to a another area with a reconstructed wall. As Mac looks on, Sheldon puts a potato chip bag in the socket. Mac comments the technique is often used in cars for insurance fraud. That means someone put a potato chip in the outlet to start a fire.

Stella is at Craig Thompson’s home, and Danny looks inside the fridge and it's all water and….well that’s pretty much it. Stella looks around, it has all the signs of a struggle, and Danny finds hairs on the bed, female. Danny finds a work card; it’s the same job as the guy in Mac’s case. Mac and Stella are at their building, and both victims lead to the same man, Paul Martin. Mac thinks Martin is capable of both murders. He goes to a weapons room and tests out weapons to see how they work, particularly with the weapons in Paul Martin’s office. Mac finds that one got a piece of the bamboo on it. The weapon in his hands is a katana. Lindsay comes in and she asks about the weapon. He says it’s something you use with a push-pull system, one cut, one kill. Mac cuts with the weapon. It moves right through, but the angle is opposite from their victim, so he sends Lindsay to where the sword came from.

Hawkes is in the lab with items from the apartment. He finds an award plaque and photos. He also finds a chess board with a name engraved on it. Flack comes in and informs Hawkes that they got the boy's internet records. Apparently he was online five minutes after someone called the fire in. What was he doing? Playing chess. He was lost in what he was doing. Before he realized it, he asphyxiated. Lindsay is asking Paul about the katana. He claims anyone could have come in and taken it, she retorts not everyone would know how to use it. Martin consents and sets his tea kettle down facing her, Lindsay takes note. She also comments how he doesn’t seem to be upset about his dead employees. Martin gives some reason saying now is not the right time to mourn them. He claims both men were committed to meaningful business. He comments how both men had training, in fact all APW executives trained together, and that it fosters camaraderie and competitiveness. She asks about Stanton training, and Martin comments how Stanton did yoga and didn’t need to train, and that he was set to name Stanton as his successor. Lindsay turns the tea kettle back to him and informs him it’s an insult to point the spout at one's guest. Whether he knew, which by his smirk we assume he did, or not, is anyone’s guess.

Back at the scene of the burned apartment, Hawkes is with the mother. She is shocked someone would set the fire on purpose. He asks who had access to the apartment. She is upset, thinking she let her son stray too much and his response would be, “I’m a city kid, Mom.” The boyfriend comes in with some items that are left. She starts sobbing for her lost son, and the boyfriend leads her out, leaving Hawkes to be depressed.

Mac, Stella and Lindsay are walking, Lindsay is informing them that Martin is sticking to his open door statement. Mac asks about Thompson, and Stella has a CODIS hit off of blood matching to another APW employee, a Lisa Kay. Apparently she was next in line if anything happened to either Stanton or Thompson. She was also sleeping with Thompson. That’s whose hair it was. She was in the database for assault with a deadly weapon.

Mac and Stella enter a dojo and they see Kay fighting. They question her, and she says that the assault charge was from when she was out one night and had a guy hitting on her the entire time. He followed her home despite her telling him no, and she flipped him over and punched him in the face, then continued walking. She claims her blood was in Thompson’s apartment because they used to spar together and then have sex. She says he was a great training partner, and Mac reminds her, a partner that got promoted over her.

Hawkes is at Washington Square Park with the chess players talking to a “friend” of the dead boy, James Walker. Hawkes mentions how the boy skipped classes the day before during the time the apartment on fire. He says he went to go play with James again after he lost to him for the first time in a couple of years. The boy comments how he was beat by a 10-year-old in 15 moves. He wanted a rematch. But he was beaten again. The boy was angry because he was beaten by someone who didn’t know different moves. Hawkes reminds him Walker is dead, and that there is a difference between being well-trained and gifted.

Hawkes sees the boyfriend playing chess with his daughter. Hawkes introduces himself again to the boyfriend, Mr. Robertson, who is surprised at the doctor title and also angry and thinks they brought in someone who wouldn’t be “up” to finding the killer. Hawkes notices a band-aid on the girl’s hand. Danny and Stella are in the lab with the clothes. Danny finds the fiber from the katana sword and the fiber from Thompson’s overcoat are a match. The fiber was in the lining in the overcoat waist high. Greg had lured Jared to the park by calling him. Also, trace from the tree was on the sleeve of the overcoat. The head never came off and Greg had hung upside down from the tree, revealing why the angle was different when Mac tested the katana. What’s left is to see who murdered Greg.

Hawkes is in the lab, and Flack comes in telling him who was online with the boy at the time, Nina, Mr. Robertson’s daughter. And they have her laptop. Flack inspects it and finds some potato chip oil smeared on it. There is a flash of her playing and the laptop top being slammed on her finger. He finds blood by the edge, and we see him remembering her band-aid. Hawkes uses a system to find the moves of chess they were playing.

Mac is with Stella, and they said they exhausted all the evidence at Thompson’s apartment. He says how he was skilled enough to decapitate Stanton, so whoever killed him had to be equally skilled. Then she looks at the shoe imprint as Mac does, and she tells him it’s a shoe imprint from a ceiling that corroborates the account of an unreliable eyewitness. And Mac gets an idea: someone who operates at a level above…Martin.

Mac is in Martin's office looking around the ground. He finds a spot of red on the rattan floor. It’s a chip of wood. They take pictures of Martin’s torso, and say how he was controlling how much pain he must be in from the injuries he sustained from Thompson. They confront him with murdering Thompson. They confront him with the evidence they have. Martin claims that’s not why he saw him. He went to lecture Greg for killing Jared with what he taught him. The memo in the flash drive was fake and made by Greg, so it would point the CSIs to him. Martin goes with the two cycles of business: the kind he spent fostering, the virtuous cycle, and the kind Greg belonged to, the vicious cycle. He said it’s a choice we all make when we walk into work. He claims when Greg attacked him, he defended himself. He claims the jury will understand that, they will look at his record and think. Mac retorts with those who live by the sword die by the sword.

Hawkes finds Mr. Robertson in Washington Square Park playing chess. He plays with him saying how it wasn’t the girlfriend’s fault, or his, which is what Robertson said on different occasions to both Mrs. Walker and himself. Hawkes says the best part of being new is that you’re thorough to make sure you get everything right. He comes up against him with all the evidence: how quiet James can be when he’s playing, that he (Mr. Robinson) ate potato chips from the bag, and how nervous he was and that’s why he ate. He also got epithelials from the laptop, and knows he tried getting back to the apartment but he was too late. They have made several moves in their game then Hawkes makes another and asks if Robinson knows what a zugzwang is. It’s when a player is at a disadvantage because he has to move, but any move he makes would cause him to lose his game. Hawkes informs him that’s where he is, and shows him a warrant. He says that if Robertson steps up before he serves it, that will help him. Robertson asks why Hawkes is telling him, and Hawkes says he knows there is not one piece of evidence that he wanted to hurt James. All the while Robertson has been fingering a chess piece (and as everyone knows, it’s not considered a move until you let go of the piece after your move). Robertson mentions how he kept asking Karen to move in with him and she wasn’t sure. He started the fire so she couldn’t stay in her apartment. Hawkes tells him that it’s his move, and Robertson knocks down a piece, which would allow Hawkes to checkmate.


Main Cast[]

Guest Cast[]

  • Ron Yuan as Dr. Evan Zao
  • Paul Schulze as Luke Robertson
  • Lori Petty as Maddy
  • Tony Schiena as Paul Martin
  • Katheryn Winnick as Lisa Kay
  • Karen S. Gregan as Karen Walker
  • Javier Picayo as Tom Nikkos
  • Devin Brochu as James Walker
  • Ramya Pratt as Nina Robertson
  • Danielle McKee as Lab Tech
  • Andrew MacBeth as Jarrod Stanton

See Also[]

CSI:NY Season 2
Summer in the CityGrand Murder at Central StationZoo YorkCorporate WarriorsDancing with the FishesYoungbloodManhattan ManhuntBad BeatCity of the DollsJamalotTrappedWastedRiskStuck On YouFare GameCool HunterNecrophilia AmericanaLive or Let DieSuper MenRun Silent, Run DeepAll AccessStealing HomeHeroesCharge of this Post