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Double Cross
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Season 7
Number 5
Writer Anthony E. Zuiker
Director Michael Slovis
Original Airdate October 19, 2006
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Previous Episode: Fannysmackin'
Next Episode: Burn Out

Double Cross is the fifth episode in season seven of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

Synopsis

A woman is found crucified on a makeshift cross in a Catholic church that's being renovated in a run-down part of town. The investigation reveals the victim was a singer in a local club and that she may have known the priest at the church.

Plot

Victim: Charlotte Danville (deceased)

On the case: Entire team

Two nuns, Sister Elizabeth and Sister Bridget, enter their church and find blood on a statue of Jesus and a blood pool on the ground next to it. When they see blood spatter on the statue's hand, they look up to find a woman crucified on a makeshift cross.

Using a pulley (the same one the killer likely used), Nick and Warrick bring the body back to ground level. Doc Robbins tells Grissom that the victim died from suffocation - due to her hanging, she was able to breathe out, but not breathe in. Catherine sees that the blood pool on the ground is gravitational; since the tips of the blood trail are pointing towards the statue, she figures the victim was bleeding on her way into the church. She goes to find the point of origin.

Father Frank Berlin arrives at the church after having served breakfast at a local shelter. When shown the body of the victim, Father Frank obviously recognizes her, but tells Grissom and Brass that he doesn't. Greg notices blood on the priest's jacket. Father Frank says that he had to break up a fight at the shelter, and Greg leaves with him to collect for evidence. After Father Frank leaves, Brass asks if it's a bigger sin to lie if you're a priest.

In autopsy, Sara pulls thorns from the victim's feet and photographs a bruise pattern. Grissom enters, notices a distinctive bruise pattern around the victim's neck and quickly departs. He rushes back to his desk and brings back a pair of his mother's rosary beads, showing Sara that the beads and the bruise pattern match up perfectly.

Back at the church, Catherine follows the blood trail outside and finds more blood near a statue. Nearby, she finds a pair of shoes and a set of car keys. She walks to the street and identifies the car the victim was driving. Inside, Warrick works on the scaffolding, collecting a hair and finding some blood. Elsewhere, Nick locates the church's utility room and finds everything that could have been used in the crime - rope, nails and hammers.

Grissom goes to the church and speaks to Father Frank. He tells the priest that the blood on his jacket doesn't match the victim's blood. Father Frank denies involvement in the murder, telling Grissom that he wouldn't kill someone and leave the body in his own church. Grissom then asks for permission to search the rectory and the nuns' apartments in order to confiscate all rosaries as evidence.

In the lab, Nick and Warrick have collected everything from the church's utility room. Nick notes that killer used materials from the church and didn't bring anything from the outside. They both feel that the murder was an inside job, and Warrick goes to speak to Brass. On his way, he gets stopped by Hodges, who tells him that the hair recovered from the scaffolding was bovine, not human.

The keys found at the scene, as well as the car close by, belong to Hugo Bombay. A wad of bloody tissues was found in the car's front passenger seat. Under interrogation, Hugo tells Sofia that he loaned his car the night before to a woman he worked with, Charlotte Danville. Hugo recognizes Charlotte from her autopsy photo and says that he doesn't know why she had to borrow his car, as she already had another. He adds that Charlotte was upset and remembers her talking with a guy in the club, who he identifies as Cody White, a local car dealer.

Brass pays Cody a visit at the dealership and tells him that he's taking Charlotte's car as evidence in her murder, despite the fact that the car has already been cleaned and detailed. Cody is reluctant at first, and then is shocked when told about Charlotte's murder, as they were friends. A flashback shows Cody talking with Charlotte in the club and offering to give her a used car. This offer is met with anger from Charlotte; as she gets up from the table to leave, she spills a drink. Cody tells Brass that whatever happened to Charlotte happened after he got the car back, but Brass tells him that the car is still being taken in as evidence.

In Charlotte's apartment, Catherine finds some blood drops along with a blood smear on a pillow, leading her to guess that the fight started there. However, there's no blood trail, so she theorizes that Charlotte got into a fight and drove Hugo's car to the church. This would explain the bloody tissues in the car's front seat. Catherine finds a scrapbook highlighting Charlotte's career and finds a photo of her with a young Father Frank. Another photo shows Charlotte with Cody. Sofia finds broken rosary beads on top of a pair of black high-heeled shoes, and Catherine wonders if these are the beads Charlotte was strangled with. Nearby, Sofia sees that Charlotte left her wallet and cell phone behind, something that would only be done if a person was in a hurry. Catherine notices that the DVD player under the television is on pause; when resumed, it shows Charlotte, Cody and Frank singing karaoke together. There is evidence of sexual activity in the bedroom and, in the kitchen, they see that the refrigerator is fully stocked. Upon finding a bottle of folic acid vitamins, they both wonder if Charlotte was pregnant.

In the lab, Grissom compares Father Frank's rosary beads to the bruises on Charlotte's neck. Sara enters and presents him with the beads found in Charlotte's apartment; when held side by side, they see that the beads are a near perfect match to each other.

Brass goes to the church looking for Father Frank and is told that he is hearing confessions. As he walks past Sister Elizabeth and Sister Bridget, the two nuns whisper to each other that a similar incident had happened at another church, resulting in Father Frank being taken away in handcuffs. In the church sanctuary, Father Frank pulls Cody out of the confessional booth and the two start fighting. Cody tells Brass that the two men are old friends and that they were discussing the church finances. It turns out Cody was the one financing the church's renovation, but this doesn't seem to be the case anymore. Cody leaves, and Father Frank is taken to the station for questioning.

At the station, Grissom reveals that Father Frank's rosary and the rosary found in Charlotte's apartment are unique and sequentially numbered. Father Frank admits to giving Charlotte a rosary. When asked why he lied about knowing Charlotte when he saw her body, Father Frank claims he was in shock and didn't remember anything from that day. His alibi for the time of Charlotte's murder was that he was working at a shelter and assisting a crack addict. An officer knocks on the door and summons Grissom and Brass into the hallway.

In the hallway, a bloody hammer wrapped in a towel has been confiscated from Sister Bridget. She claims that this is the hammer she used to build the cross and apologizes for not coming forward sooner. Father Frank says that Sister Bridget is lying and that he confiscated that hammer from the crack addict at the shelter. When asked what she used to hoist Charlotte's body up, Sister Bridget says that she used the rope and pulley the workmen were using. Grissom notes her weight and says that simple physics proves that she was unable to hoist a body on a cross seventeen feet into the air. Sister Bridget claims it was a miracle.

Nick processes the hammer and finds a print on it that belongs to Father Frank. Furthermore, the hammer tests positive for blood and matches the blood on Father Frank's clothes; however, none of it is Charlotte's. These findings are consistent with Father Frank's story of breaking up a fight at the shelter. Sitting with Grissom and Sara, Nick figures that Sister Bridget confessed to Charlotte's murder because she thought Father Frank was guilty. But, the question is: why does she think he's guilty? Father Frank's file shows that he was asked to leave his previous church after a female parishioner committed suicide. Sara says that one of the semen stains collected from Charlotte's bedsheets belongs to Father Frank. In addition, Charlotte was ten weeks pregnant at the time of her death.

Brass again talks to Cody at his car dealership. He admits to giving Charlotte a car and a condo to help her get on her feet, but she made it more than a short-term thing. When asked what the fight at the church was about, Cody is unable to recall what he said, but knows that Father Frank lost it. He tells Brass that Father Frank and Charlotte had a close relationship and were more than friends.

Grissom thumbs through Charlotte's scrapbook and finds the pictures of her with Cody and Frank when they were in high school. He notes that there are several pictures of just Frank and Charlotte; however, another photo shows that she ended up going to the prom with Cody. The next picture of Frank is of him in a seminary, and Grissom wonders if giving up Charlotte was the sacrifice he made to join the church.

Brass heads to the interrogation room where Father Frank sits alone with his thoughts. When asked who killed Charlotte, Father Frank admits to the murder. As Brass walks to his car, Grissom tries convincing him that Father Frank is innocent. Father Frank, he says, is a resurrection theologian, and this is not the way he would kill his pregnant mistress. Even though they got a confession, Grissom says that Father Frank is a Catholic and is, therefore, full of guilt. Brass won't hear it and tells Grissom to find evidence that will exonerate the good father.

Sara processes Charlotte's car and finds evidence of a blood smear in the driver's seat; however, it has been washed away. This contradicts Cody's story of repossessing the car at the club and driving it back to the lot. Sara sprays luminol on the brake pedal and finds a bloody shoe impression.

Sara and Sofia visit Cody on the set of a commercial shoot with a warrant for his shoes and a DNA sample. He's wearing a cowhide vest, and Sara notes that there was bovine fur on the scaffolding at the church. Greg appears with a pair of Cody's cowboy boots in an evidence bag; the sole of the right boot tested positive for blood.

In interrogation, Sofia presents Cody with the evidence against him - Charlotte's blood on his boot, his footprint on the brake pedal of Charlotte's car in her blood and the bovine hair from his fur vest found on the scaffolding. He says that he went to the club to watch Charlotte sing; there, she gave him back her car keys and thanked him for his generosity. Sofia sees things playing out a little differently; a flashback shows Charlotte returning the keys and informing Cody that she was moving. She told him she was in love with another man, leading Cody to throw a drink at her and angrily leave.

When Charlotte went back to her apartment to change her clothes, Cody was there, demanding who she was leaving him for. When she refused, he slapped her and then found a rosary on the floor. Figuring out that Father Frank was the other man, Cody took the rosary and started strangling Charlotte; however, she was able to escape and headed to the church. Cody knew she would head there and followed her. At the church, he attacked Charlotte while she was looking for Father Frank. He tells Sofia that something evil came over him that night; a flashback shows him building the makeshift crucifix, tying her to it, and pulling her up before she came to. Sofia informs him that the baby Charlotte was carrying was his - he killed his own baby. Cody weeps.

In another interrogation room, Father Frank tells Grissom that he was preparing to leave the church in order to spend his life with Charlotte and would also father her child, even if it wasn't his. Brass guesses that Cody came into the church and confessed to Charlotte's murder, but Father Frank can't discuss that because of the seal of confession.

In the hallway of the police department, a handcuffed Cody passes Father Frank and blames him for not being a man and coming forward regarding his relationship with Charlotte. When asked by Grissom if he can forgive Cody, Father Frank says that it's Christ's mandate. Grissom translates: "you have no choice."

Cast

Main Cast

Guest Cast

  • Wallace Langham as David Hodges
  • Larry M. Mitchell as Officer Mitchell
  • Sean Patrick Flanery as Cody "The Big Hombre" White
  • Tim Guinee as Father Frank Berlin
  • Meredith Monroe as Sister Bridget
  • Waylon Payne as Brady Somers/Hugo Bombay
  • Lorna Raver as Sister Elizabeth
  • Blake Lindsley as Charlotte Danville
  • John Lee Ames as Marty
  • Zachary Bostrom as Young Frank Berlin
  • Kendall Clement as Sergeant Crawford
  • Janelle Marra as Candice White
  • Tyler King as Young Cody
  • Olivia Leigh as Young Charlotte Danville

Quotes

Brass: Is it a bigger sin to lie if you're a priest?
Grissom: I hope so.



"I'm not really a Catholic anymore, you know. I suppose I practice a kind of Secular Catholicism that involves ritualizing certain aspects of everyday life and imbuing them with a spiritual intensity they might not otherwise possess. But I don't to put too fine a point on it."
―Grissom explains his beliefs to Sara

Goofs

  • When Nick is cutting the rope so that Warrick can take the victim down with the CSI rope, he counts to three. Nick is cutting with his right hand and with his left below the marked spot, but when you see the actual cut his left hand is suddenly above the marking, only to be below the cut in the next scene again. Also notice his right hand which is first positioned to cut from left to right, then the actual cut is from right to left only to change again after the cut.
  • In the beginning of the episode, while the victim is tied to the cross, she is looking down. A take ahead, she is looking at her left, and nobody had moved the cross yet.
  • The character portrayed by Waylon Payne is credited as "Brady Somers", though he is named "Hugo Bombay" in the episode.

Notes

  • Catherine lights a candle for her father Sam Braun, who was killed in the episode Built to Kill, Part 2.
  • Greg is still sporting bruises on his face from the assault he sustained in the previous episode, Fannysmackin'.
  • Grissom calls Sara "dear" when they are alone together.
  • Grissom indicates he is a lapsing Secular Catholic.

See Also

CSI:Las Vegas Season 7
Built to Kill, Part 1Built to Kill, Part 2Toe TagsFannysmackin'Double CrossBurn OutPost MortemHappenstanceLiving LegendLoco MotivesLeaving Las VegasSweet JaneRedrumMeet MarketLaw of GravityMonster in the BoxFallen IdolsEmpty EyesBig ShotsLab RatsEnding HappyLeapin' LizardsThe Good, The Bad, And The DominatrixLiving Doll
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