Sanguine Love
Season 6
Number 14
Writer Carmine Giovinazzo
Director Norberto Barba
Original Airdate February 3, 2010
Previous Episode: Flag on the Play
Next Episode: The Formula

Sanguine Love is the fourteenth episode in Season Six of CSI: NY.


When a young woman's body is found in Central Park, drained of blood and missing part of her ear, the CSIs jump start an investigation that takes them into the dark and mysterious subculture of vampirism.


Mac, Flack and Hawkes stand over the body of an attractive young woman whose excursion to Central Park on a snowy day to take photographs ended in tragedy. Hawkes suspects she bled to death from a puncture wound to the neck, and Mac notices part of her ear appears to have been bitten off. In the morgue, Sid confirms that the young woman died of exsanguination, and points out an unusual scar on her wrist, while Danny develops the photographs from her camera, including several of a young man the CSIs suspect was her boyfriend. Stella and Flack retrace the woman’s steps through her photographs and find the building where she lived. The doorman identifies her as Estelle Christensen, and the man in the photographs as Estelle’s boyfriend, Keith Borgese. He tells Stella and Flack that Estelle and Keith used to go to Central Park together every day. Mac questions Keith, who tells him that he and Estelle fought the day before, so he wasn’t with her in Central Park the day of her murder. Mac wonders if the fight led to violence, but Keith breaks down and says he should have been with her, that he could have protected her. Hawkes runs a fleck of dried blood found on Estelle’s body believed to be from the murder weapon and gets multiple DNA hits on it. One gets a hit in CODIS: a tattoo artist named Billy James. Flack and Hawkes question Billy, who sports a scar similar to Estelle’s on his wrist. Suspecting one of his tattoo guns might be the murder weapon, Hawkes confiscates them. He tests them out at the lab, but none of them match the mark the weapon that killed Estelle made, and Flack reports that Billy’s alibi checks out.

Estelle’s parents identify her body and tell Mac that they brought their daughter to New York as a young girl. She loved the city. Mac, noticing a scar similar to Estelle’s on her father’s wrist, vows to find her killer. Sid stops by Mac’s office later to share a theory: acting on a hunch, he looked up the scar on Estelle’s wrist and found that it was consistent with a cutting ritual by a group known as Sanguine, or real, vampires—people who look at vampirism as a kind of religion. They believe they discover a higher plane through consensual blood exchange. Danny and Flack go over Estelle’s apartment, where Danny discovers an exposed roll of film in the refrigerator. Danny develops it and finds pictures of some sort of ceremony. He recognizes Billy James and spots Keith in one of the shots, and notices an older man in several of the photos, holding a blade of some sort. Mac pays a visit to Estelle’s father and asks him about the scar and the pictures. After an initial denial, the man relents and identifies the older man as Joseph Vance, the master of the local vampire haven. He tells Mac that Joseph has known Estelle since she was a child, and that he asked Joseph to keep an eye on her. After Danny identifies the blade in the photograph as an ankh, an ancient Egyptian symbol for eternity, he and Flack crash the haven and arrest Joseph.

Joseph tells Mac he has never harmed anyone, and that all he did was offer Estelle love and support. Mac is skeptical, and disturbed by Joseph’s practices. When the missing piece of Estelle’s ear is found in Joseph’s apartment and Hawkes identifies some of the blood on Joseph’s ankh as belonging to Estelle, it seems like the CSIs have their killer. But Danny finds foreign DNA on the piece of ear, and Mac assembles the team to try to put Joseph at the scene of the murder. Stella mentions that Joseph is claiming innocence, and threatening to sue the crime lab, saying they planted the ear in his apartment. The team discovers a discrepancy when they realize Keith’s blood is on the ankh, but he didn’t have a scar on his wrist. Mac brings Keith back in and the young man breaks down, claiming that the haven changed Estelle. He followed her to the park that day and attacked her in a rage, killing her. After Keith is arrested, Mac meets Estelle’s father in Central Park and gives him her photographs.


Main Cast[]

Guest Cast[]

  • Melinda Dahl as Estelle Christensen
  • Emma Fitzpatrick as Young Woman
  • Ken Garito as Jimmy Duncan
  • Michael Graziadei as Keith Borgese
  • Andrew Hoagland as Concierge
  • Finola Hughes as Mrs. Christensen
  • Charles Shaughnessy as Mr. Christensen
  • Julie McKinnon as A/V Lab Tech
  • Carlo Rota as Joseph Vance
  • Evan Seidlitz as Vampire
  • Ivan Shaw as Billy James
  • Elena Caruso as Vampire (uncredited)


  • Charles Shaughnessy (Mr. Christensen) also played Maxwell Sheffield on The Nanny.


  • The camera used by the victim was a Nikon F3 with MD-4 motordrive. As her photographic work did not seem to require rapid sequence pictures, it is hard to understand why she would add more weight to an already hefty camera. Another shot of her being attacked showed the camera had changed into a Nikon F2 with MD-2 motordrive, the F3's predecessor. Also, the shutter sound was probably stock SFX, as it was nothing like that produced by cameras of that type.
  • The shot showing the inside of the victim's refrigerator contained several errors. The film was of a light grey with a touch of blue-purple tint, indicating that it was a black-and-white film, but subsequently color pictures were produced from them. If the photographer used a motordrive, the entire film would have been fully rewound into the cassette after exposure, leaving no film sticking out of the light trap. Furthermore, no photographer would allow films out of their factory seals to be in the refrigerator: when taken out, the cold film would create condensation on the sensitive surface, causing damage to the film.

See Also[]

CSI:NY Season 6
EpilogueBlacklistLat 40° 47' N/Long 73° 58' WDead ReckoningBattle ScarsIt Happened to MeHammer DownCuckoo's NestManhattanhengeDeath HouseSecond ChancesCriminal JusticeFlag on the PlaySanguine LoveThe FormulaUncertainty RulesPot of GoldRest in Peace, Marina GaritoRedemptioTales from the UndercardUnusual SuspectsPoint of ViewVacation Getaway