Second Chances
Season 6
Number 11
Writer John Dove
Director Eric Laneuville
Original Airdate December 16, 2009
Previous Episode: Death House
Next Episode: Criminal Justice

Second Chances is the eleventh episode in Season Six of CSI: NY.


A reformed drug addict is found dead in an alley, and the CSI team discovers that he was the victim of a premeditated plot.


The burned and battered body of a young man is found in a New York City alley. Mac finds a cigarette butt, which Danny gets a DNA hit on that matches to Joe Koss. Danny and Flack interrogate Joe, who admitted to robbing a fake Santa who was soliciting donations.

Joe lurked in the alley until a car ran over his foot on its way out. Joe tossed his cigarette and went to rob the Santa, but never saw a dead man. Hawkes identifies him as James Manning, who was arrested a couple of times for possession several years ago. Based on James’ injuries, Hawkes and Stella conclude that James was run over by a slow-moving car and the tox screen also indicates he had heroin in his system.

Flack tracks down Grace Chandler, James' fiancée and brings her to the morgue to identify the body, and so that Mac and Stella can get a DNA sample from her. Danny and Lindsay are able to identify the car that killed Manning as a 1997 Taurus wagon based on the tire treads and undercarriage marks on Manning’s body. Danny learns of a 1997 Taurus that the police found abandoned just fifteen blocks away from the crime scene. He and Stella examine it and confirm it is the car that killed James.

The car is registered to a man named Sam Baker and Stella & Danny find him at a recording studio. Sam tells them he didn’t even know his car was missing. The CSIs are suspicious because Sam’s car wasn’t hotwired and both keys are in his possession, but Sam maintains his innocence. Sam’s girlfriend, Debbie Fallon, comes to the precinct and tells Flack she’s hired a lawyer to represent Sam. When the CSIs discover there was a $2.5 million life insurance policy on James and that Grace Chandler is the beneficiary, Mac brings her in for questioning and Grace insists it was James’ idea to get the policy. Stella finds that Grace has no criminal record, and points out that she volunteers at the Queen of Mercy hospital rehab program.

Lindsay discovers female DNA in the car, but it’s not in CODIS. She does get a hit on a strand of hair from the car’s undercarriage which belongs to Matt Davis, a heroin user who died six months ago. The CSIs find a hefty life insurance policy taken out on Matt Davis as well, but when they question the beneficiary, Lisa Williams, Lisa tells them her identity was stolen after she got out of rehab two years ago. Lisa tells them she was in the hospital rehab program at Queen of Mercy.

Hawkes finds a charge for a growth removal procedure on a fraudulent credit card in Lisa's name and gets a hold of the sample. He runs it through DNA and gets a match: to Grace Chandler. Mac has Grace, Sam and Debbie brought in to the station. He identifies Debbie as James’ killer. Debbie's cell phone number was listed as Grace’s emergency contact on the form she filled out when she had the growth removed.

Grace and Debbie were running a scam: they “rescued” homeless addicts, took out hefty life insurance policies on them and then killed them two years later when the policies matured. Stella lets Sam know he was Debbie & Grace's next target and he’s thrown. Debbie and Grace are arrested, and the CSIs head out to volunteer to pass out gifts to children of fallen police officers.


Main Cast[]

Guest Cast[]

  • Vanessa Minnillo as Grace Chandler
  • Kim Kardashian as Debbie Fallon
  • Pat Monahan as Sam Baker
  • La La Vazquez as Lisa Williams
  • David Sullivan as James Manning
  • Chris Coy as Joe Koss
  • Jonas Fisch as Sound Tech
  • Gino Cafarelli as Santa Claus
  • James Stafford as Guitarist
  • Scott Underwood as Drummer
  • Ele Keats as Mary McQuade


  • Train—Hey, Soul Sister
  • Train—Calling All Angels


  • The episode appears to be inspired by the Black Widow Murders case. Two women took life insurance policies out on homeless men in California, only to run over them with cars and collect the money. The duo were eventually tracked and arrested for premeditated murder and fraud.
  • Pat Monahan (Sam Baker) is better known for his band Train and sings Calling All Angels and Hey Soul Sister in the episode with his bandmates, James Stafford and Scott Underwood.

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