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The List
The List.jpg
Season 11
Number 17
Writer Richard Catalani
Director Louis Milito
Original Airdate March 10, 2011
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The List is the seventeenth episode in season eleven of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

Synopsis

After a cop convicted of killing his police officer wife is killed in prison, the team discovers that he may have been framed, and Brass and Vartann may have been romantically linked to his wife.

Plot

Victim: Vance Tolsom (deceased)

On the case: Catherine Willows, Greg Sanders, Nick Stokes, Raymond Langston, Jim Brass, Louis Vartann

In a prison, one group of prisoners (dressed in red) is escorted past another group (dressed in yellow). Catcalling leads to an all-out brawl, and one prisoner ends up dead, having been stabbed multiple times. Brass tells Langston and Nick that the dead prisoner is Vance Tolsom, a former cop who was in prison for killing his wife Anne-Marie, another cop. Langston loudly gets the attention of the prisoners and asks them for their clothes and DNA.

In autopsy, David Phillips determines that Vance was stabbed 27 times. Based on the injuries, Catherine notes that the assailant should be covered in blood and that the wounds are consistent with a right-handed assailant.

A search of Vance's cell turns up a book that contains "The List" - a list of sexual partners Anne-Marie had. Nick also finds a motion for a retrial based on this new evidence. Brass takes Nick by surprise when he starts snooping around the cell and ogling the pictures of Anne-Marie that Vance had taped to the wall.

Greg goes through the surveillance footage from the prison hallway and sees one prisoner (dressed in yellow) giving another a signal. Since only Vance was stabbed, everything points to this being a hit. Greg and Langston recreate the crime based on the blood spatter on the prison uniforms. They determine that Vance was pinned down by two prisoners, while another prisoner, Tomas Molinez, did the stabbing. Under interrogation, Tomas admits to fatally stabbing Vance in the hopes that it would give him some credibility with his fellow prisoners. He tells Brass the rumor is that the hit was a favor to someone on the outside.

Nick privately tells Catherine about the book and "The List." Knowing how Anne-Marie worked, Catherine isn't surprised that she was sleeping around. Nick reads the prominent names on the list - Ecklie, Brass, Sheriff Atwater, Det. Cavaliere, Det. Vega, Undersheriff McKeen and Det. Vartann - and says that, according to his notes, Vance was convinced that Anne-Marie's real murderer is a cop on the list. As it turns out, Brass was the lead on the case, while Vartann was his second; neither man recused themselves from the case.

In Brass' office, he and Ecklie recount their past meetings with Anne-Marie while Catherine listens. Brass insists that he did everything by the book during the murder investigation, even going up the chain of command. Ecklie notes that the Brime County Sherriff's department was in charge of the investigation and that there are plenty of Brime guys on Vance's list. Since Vance was about to get a new trial and dredge up the past, the team figures that someone with connections on the outside reached into the prison and had him silenced for good.

Langston and Nick toss the cells of the two accomplices in Vance's murder, uncovering a hidden cell phone in the process. The warden informs the CSIs that, outside of his lawyer, Vance had only had one visitor - Jody Cambry, Anne-Marie's sister. She has been to the prison almost every week for the last three months.

Jody tells Nick that Vance wrote to her every week, but she never read the letters. That changed when she read one of them, in which Vance told her that he had something important to tell her. Jody says that Vance swore that he was innocent and that it was all a setup. She decided to look into his claims and found that a lot of people who Anne-Marrie had been with also investigated her murder, which is grounds for a new trial. Based on this information, she put together a list and believes that someone on it is Anne-Marie's real killer, as she was going to leave Vance for a fellow cop. Jody tells Nick that she "just knows" Vance was innocent.

Catherine has Det. Vartann meet her at a coffee shop to discuss the list and the murder investigation. When asked why he didn't recuse himself from the investigation, Vartann replies that Catherine and her team didn't do the same when Warrick was murdered. He tells Catherine that Vance threatened his wife more than once and goes through the evidence from her murder - her burned-out car, blood on the floor of the driver's seat, Vance's bloody clothes and a bloody knife from their kitchen in a dumpster, and a matchbook that tied to the arson of the car. Catherine wonders if the case against Vance was too good, as he disposed of Anne-Marie's body but left a trail of evidence behind. Vartann angrily ends their conversation and Catherine phones Greg, telling him to rerun all of the evidence from the murder.

Greg reruns the blood evidence from the case and finds that it contained EDTA, an anticoagulant. He tested for EDTA because he noticed the blood in the car hadn't clotted, even two hours after the car was found. The team figures someone collected Anne-Marie's blood in order to be able to plant it wherever and whenever they wanted to, meaning all of the blood evidence is compromised. Nick looks at a picture of the matchbook and remembers a similar one used in a 1995 case that traced back to a murder in Brime County. The arresting officer in that case was Lucas Martin, and he just happened to have been the investigating officer for Brime County in Anne-Marie's murder. Catherine posits that Lucas was Anne-Marie's final conquest and when she refused to leave Vance for him, he snapped and killed her.

The team is led to an abandoned above-ground mine. Ecklie arrives and is upset that they're investigating a case outside their jurisdiction with no grounds to do so. Catherine tells him that they're operating off of the assumption that Anne-Marie's real killer is using knowledge from his old cases, and that Det. Martin worked a case in this location. Scent dogs pick up a scent trail, leading the CSIs to a building with underground corridors. The presence of blow flies indicates a dead body and, sure enough, the team finds the body of Jody Cambry, who has been shot in the back of the head. Det. Martin arrives, upset that the LVPD has gone over his head. When Catherine asks him when he last fired his gun, Det. Martin refuses to answer and leaves.

In autopsy, Langston sees that Jody was pistol-whipped and shot twice, with the entry wounds being in close proximity to each other. He believes the killer had training in firearms, which once again points to a cop. The bullets extracted from Jody come back to a gun given to Det. Martin for successfully closing a trial. The irate detective claims to have sold the gun at a gun show out of state, but Brass charges him for Jody's murder.

Catherine relays the good news to Langston, but he has a problem - Det. Martin has an alibi for Jody's murder, as he was on duty at the time. He figures that if Det. Martin ordered the hit on Vance, he likely reached out to inmate Carlos Salavar, one of the accomplices in the murder. Carlos is brought in for interrogation, where Langston brings up Det. Martin's name. He also reveals that Carlos' nephew was recently arrested and that his sister suddenly received $5,000 to pay his bail. When Langston threatens Carlos, the inmate replies that he's never heard the name Lucas Martin and that the CSIs have the wrong cop.

Greg is seen running frantically through the lab before reaching Catherine's office. He has some earth-shattering news for her: the epithelals under Jody's fingernails are a sibling match to her, and she only has one sibling - Anne-Marie. The much talked about Anne-Marie Tolson is alive. Catherine relays this information to Brass and Ecklie, telling them that the original crime scene was staged to cover up Anne-Marie's disappearance and frame Vance for a crime he didn't commit. The evidence in Jody's murder points to Det. Martin, but Catherine notes that the detective couldn't be dumb enough to use his own gun that he knows was already in the system. They wonder if Anne-Marie is the one who killed her sister.

Under interrogation, Det. Martin tells Brass that he gave his gun to Anne-Marie for protection. The two were in love and didn't want Vance coming after them. Their plan was to make Anne-Marie disappear and frame Vance for her murder, with Det. Martin sending her money while she was in hiding. He planned to meet up with her a few years later; however, after he told Anne-Marie that he was retiring, she stopped returning his calls.

Anne-Marie broke up with Det. Martin three months ago, which is about the same time Jody started visiting Vance in prison. Greg and Nick search Jody's house, locate her computer and go through her financials. As it turns out, three months ago, Jody transferred $250,000 to a "charity" in Mexico - the same one Det. Martin was donating to. There's one final transaction for $110,000 that occurred after Jody's murder and while Det. Martin was in custody. The CSIs conclude that Anne-Marie was in the house cleaning out her sister's account.

Langston theorizes to Catherine that Anne-Marie came back to Vegas for two reasons: 1) to stop Vance from getting a second trial and 2) to prevent her sister from ratting her out. They wonder who arranged the hit on Vance, and Vartann gives them a name - a cadet from the academy from long ago named Jarrod Malone, who is now a corrections officer at the prison. Jarrod was working Vance's cell block.

Jarrod calls Anne-Marie and arranges to meet her at a secret location. Upon arriving, Anne-Marie checks him for a wire, but comes up empty. Jarrod calls an audible on their plans, as he doesn't trust Anne-Marie after she killed her sister. Anne-Marie confesses to the murder, claiming that Jody was soft for going to Vance. The police have been listening in the whole time, and Brass and Vartann come to arrest Anne-Marie. Brass tells her that she's going to prison for a long time, but as she's hauled away, she gives him a knowing smile and tells him that it depends on how many men are on the jury.

Cast

Main Cast

Guest Cast

  • Alex Carter as Louis Vartann
  • Marc Vann as Conrad Ecklie
  • Max Martini as Jarrod Malone
  • Dina Meyer as Anne-Marie Tolsom
  • Louis Herthum as Detective Lucas Martin
  • Chris Ellis as Warden Clinton Malton
  • Melinda Page Hamilton as Jody Cambry
  • Reynaldo Gallegos as Carlos Salavar
  • Luis Jose Lopez as Tomas Molinez
  • Bryan Friday as Vance Tolsom (victim)
  • Scott Haze as Anthony Steel
  • Hector Atreyu Ruiz as Jose Castia

Notes

  • Jorja Fox (Sara) and Wallace Langham (Hodges) are credited but do not appear in this episode.
  • Det. Vartann is sporting a limp, the result of having been shot in the leg in the episode Targets of Obsession.
  • When Greg runs frantically into Catherine's office, she asks him if he's running from another stripper, a callback to the episode A Kiss Before Frying.

Trivia

See Also

CSI:Las Vegas Season 11
Shock WavesPool SharkBlood MoonSqweegelHouse of HoardersCold BloodedBump and GrindFrackedWild Life418/427Man UpA Kiss Before FryingThe Two Mrs. GrissomsAll That CremainsTargets of ObsessionTurn On, Tune In, Drop DeadThe ListHitting for the CycleUnleashedFather of the BrideCello and GoodbyeIn a Dark, Dark House
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